7 Best Minimalist Sneakers, 100+ Shoes Tested in 2022

Sheena
Sheena on
7 Best Minimalist Sneakers, 100+ Shoes Tested in 2022

Minimalist sneakers are primarily worn for their simplicity and subtle elegance. While the majority of athletic brands design their shoes with wild patterns and funky flairs, the best minimalist sneakers take things in a more relaxed style.

Opting for a minimalist design that comes with a mostly solid color, stripped-down neat cutting, and a little branding is a benign way to create an unparalleled stylish versatility, which perfectly blends with a broad spectrum of sporty outfits, casual wear, and occasions.

From Adidas and Nike to Puma and Vans, if you're after great quality sneakers that suit your minimalist inclinations, you're in the right place. We’ve rounded up and ranked 500+ of the best minimalist sneakers available in the market today. Check out our top picks below.

How we test sneakers

Identifying the truly great quality sneakers requires serious wear tests and micro-level analysis. As self-confessed sneakerheads, our team of wear testers and analysts is up to the task. Each model in our database is meticulously examined to its minutest details. Here is exactly our approach:

  • We buy the minimalist shoes with our own money for testing. This is because we don’t want any brand to influence our reviews. We want 100% transparency.
  • We bring the shoes to our RunRepeat shoe testing lab for a thorough examination of everything about the shoes – the quality of materials used, outsole, softness of the midsole, etc…
  • We clock in hours of wear-testing each model exhaustively. We take every model for days of wear and tear performance test to be able to provide a comprehensive review of its fit, comfort, durability, and many more.
  • We also check the feedback from other independent testers and sneaker enthusiasts.

To end the process, we assign a final score for each model utilizing our CoreScore system. All the models will show a rating from 0-100 depending on their performance during the testing process.

Best minimalist sneakers overall

Adidas Stan Smith
Adidas Stan Smith
£35
£35
£40
£57

CoreScore

93
Superb!
4.6 / 5 from 342,746 users

Pros

  • Classic silhouette
  • Numerous colorways and collaborations
  • Easy to style
  • Durable
  • Weatherproof

Cons

  • Runs large
  • Lack of support
  • Takes some time to wear in

Verdict

The Adidas Stan Smith is a legendary sneaker with a claim to fame as the original white tennis shoe for the masses. Culture has respected that for the last 50 years the Stan Smith is still as relevant today as it was when the man was winning trophies. It's fair to say that with its robust design and sleek looks, it's probably going to last another 50.
Adidas Stan Smith full review

Best Nike minimalist sneakers

Nike Tanjun
Nike Tanjun

CoreScore

92
Superb!
4.6 / 5 from 402,942 users

Pros

  • Secure fit
  • Nice in-shoe feel
  • Like running on the clouds
  • Breathable
  • Durable
  • Matches many outfits

Cons

  • Tight toebox
  • Weird sole
  • Break-in period

Verdict

The Nike Tanjun is comfortable, lightweight, breathable, extremely durable, and has a price that fits! Buy them. You won’t regret it!
Nike Tanjun full review

Best Adidas minimalist sneakers

Adidas Busenitz
Adidas Busenitz

CoreScore

91
Great!
4.5 / 5 from 6,086 users

Pros

  • Incredibly durable
  • Fits true to size
  • Grippy as anything
  • Technical shoe for responsive skating
  • Surprisingly weatherproof
  • Classic silhouette
  • Easy to clean

Cons

  • Takes a long time to break it
  • Narrow in the toe box
  • The big tongue isn't for everyone
  • Not very breathable

Verdict

The Adidas Busentiz has been around for a while. It stands on its own against modern skate shoes because of its durability and versatility. More than anything it's a really clean-looking sneaker that works just as well on a night out as it does in a skatepark. It helps that the shoe is easy to clean, sturdy, and has loads of cushioning to keep you comfy and supported.
Adidas Busenitz full review

Best Puma minimalist sneakers

Puma Carina
Puma Carina

Out of stock in all 35 shops

Puma minimalist sneakers  

CoreScore

91
Great!
4.6 / 5 from 129,530 users

Pros

  • Padded comfort
  • Can be paired with any outfit
  • Lightweight
  • Fits true to size
  • Customizable fit
  • Excellent traction on city pavement
  • Inexpensive

Cons

  • Rubs the ankle
  • Sole wears out after several uses

Verdict

Another modern sneaker that was inspired by its classic iteration, the Puma California, was released. Puma Carina features a timeless look constructed with a premium upper materials. It boasts its comfortable, lightweight, and grippy ride making this a nice go-to pair for most ladies. Its style, meanwhile, is dubbed as versatile as it is easy to mix and match with almost any casual attire.
Puma Carina full review

Best minimalist low top sneakers

Vans Old Skool
Vans Old Skool

CoreScore

93
Superb!
4.6 / 5 from 158,355 users

Pros

  • A classic silhouette deserving of any wardrobe
  • Easy to wear in
  • Super comfortable
  • Fits true to size
  • Incredibly breathable thanks to the all-canvas upper
  • Clean aesthetics
  • Very durable outsole
  • Brakes well on the board

Cons

  • Not very durable in comparison to other modern skate shoes
  • Collect stains easily

Verdict

Vans Old Skools have soared from subculture staple to mainstream fame repeatedly over the years. It’s easy to see why. With a classic, versatile silhouette, brand recognition, and a comfortable, breathable upper, who could resist having a pair in their wardrobe? While the canvas/rubber construction might not be the most durable and can collect stains easily, the Vans Old Skool still looks amazing when beaten and worn.
Vans Old Skool full review

Best value minimalist sneakers

Vans Authentic
Vans Authentic

CoreScore

91
Great!
4.5 / 5 from 122,900 users

Pros

  • Eternal silhouette
  • Fits true to size
  • Durable canvas upper
  • Breathable
  • Easy to slip on and off
  • Perfect lifestyle shoe

Cons

  • Could use some more padding
  • Vans' canvas shoes always attract stains
  • Not a great year-round sneaker

Verdict

There's so much that's already been said about the Vans Authentic. It's a shoe that began an entire movement in the California skate culture. Since then, through Vans' stubborn connection to its roots, you wear pretty much the same shoe as people did nearly 60 years ago. That's because it's a silhouette that works with any wardrobe and construction that's built to last.
Vans Authentic full review
Author
Sheena
Sheena

Sheena is a wordsmith turned sneaker addict. Her sneaker fixation intensified as her passion for writing grew. A hands-on mom of two sweet yet spunky kids (plus three dogs and two cats), she finds solitude in leafing through shoe catalogs to find the next "it" sneaker. Scrutinizing hugely popular and underrated kicks is her favorite pastime.