Verdict from 100+ user reviews

8 reasons to buy

  • The New Balance 801 uses a leather upper that grants great support on foot, according to many users. 
  • The upper of the shoe is also plush and well-padded that grants most users a well-cushioned and comfortable experience on the trail.
  • Several buyers are happy with the running ability of the NB 801.
  • A few reviewers who are into hiking love how this trail-inspired shoe is lightweight on foot and allows them to move freely compared to some hiking boots.
  • Although most colorways are appealing, many reviewers state that the Night Lights stands out and preferably a stylish option among the colorways. 
  • Several users with wider feet note that the shoe has a wide feet option that allows them to have a cozy fit.
  • The chunky demeanor of the shoe leaves purchasers in awe stating that the shoe has a fashionable edge to it. 
  • The versatility of the shoe has satisfied many purchasers that they plan to buy another pair. 

2 reasons not to buy

  • Some reviewers of the New Balance 801 share that although the shoe has great support, it still comes a bit stiff and takes a long time to break in.
  • The insole of the sneaker comes off as a bit hard for several wearers, causing them to feel a slight pain on the ball of their foot.

Bottom line

New Balance brings back the favorite "dad shoes" of the 90s with the 801 All Terrain. This trail-inspired lifestyle sneaker tries to offer the same features as other trail shoes. Its comfort and support make it a go-to outdoor shoe for several hiking enthusiasts. 

The shoe comes in a rugged look that gives it a fashionable edge, leaving fans to comment on how it is worth the purchase.

Tip: see the best sneakers.

Good to know

The New Balance 801 All-Terrain comes with a sturdy upper. It uses mesh around the vamp, which makes the sneaker breathable. Synthetic leather around the back of the shoe to hold the heel in place. It is also used with suede overlays for additional support while on the move.

The sneaker has a well-padded interior that grants cushioning around the heel area and lightweight comfort for the day. For the midsole, the shoe uses the Abzorb technology, which does not only give lightweight comfort but also reduces the shock on the foot when in action. 

This low-top sneaker is available in men's sizes. Women can go around two sizes down or better check the size guide on the site for a better fit. 

The 801 sneaker takes inspiration from trail running shoes. Its rugged outsole and retro look give the shoe a stylish edge that can be sported for the outdoors. It comes in colorways that give varying attitudes. 

Although the All Trailer sneakers look great with the outdoor look, they can still be styled for the streets. When donning this shoe, men can go for some capri pants with a plain tee for an everyday casual look. It can also go well with some chinos or jeans and pair it with a long-sleeved shirt, giving a slight edge to the casual getup. 

Women can style the sneaker with ripped pants and a crew-neck sweater for a laid-back look. During the cooler seasons, women may sport the shoe with a pair of leggings topped with a long-sleeved sweater and a puffy jacket. Adding a scarf and beanie may add a warmer vibe to the casual look. 

New Balance re-releases its first all-terrain shoe from the 90s. The 801 is a trail-inspired shoe that has a retro touch. It comes with a pull tab with New Balance's N logo and around the heel, the words "All-Terrain" can be found. The sneaker uses the chunky C-Cap midsole with Abzorb cushioning, which makes it well-cushioned, shock-absorbing, and flexible at the same time. 

New Balance is one of the household names when it comes to producing shoes that provide both comfort and quality. Although the company was founded in 1906, it focused on producing arch supports and tailored-designed sneakers, but never its own shoe. It was until 1960 that it came up with the Trackster. It was labeled as the first running shoe that provided traction thanks to its rippled soles. The shoe gained recognition and success, which was the start of the company's growth in the footwear industry. 

With the rising running trend in the United States during the 70s, the brand released silhouettes that cater to the market. In the 1980s, it continued to add more and more products into its line as running has become a hobby or lifestyle. Through the releases, it got to establish itself better in the market. 

Besides running, New Balance brought about classic NB silhouettes that cater to various lifestyle categories. One of which is the New Balance 801. This classic runner was first introduced in 1998. It is a running and hiking hybrid that can tread on various terrains for the whole day. The shoe received fame, allowing New Balance to rank first among other brands in trail running footwear during the 90s. 

Due to its popularity, New Balance re-releases this runner using its original colorways. Its rugged look makes it street-ready that people may cop as their everyday footwear.  

  • New Balance collaborates with Herschel to release limited edition colorways, which are the Rock, Cement, and Night Lites.
  • This low-top sneaker comes with extra laces.


How New Balance 801 ranks compared to all other shoes
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Bottom 19% New Balance sneakers
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Bottom 10% low sneakers
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The current trend of New Balance 801.
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Danny McLoughlin
Danny McLoughlin

Danny is a sports nut with a particular interest in football and running. He loves to watch sports as much as he loves to play. Danny was lead researcher on RunRepeat and The PFA’s report into Racial Bias in Football Commentary. His football and running research has been featured in The Guardian, BBC, New York Times and Washington Post.