Verdict from +100 user reviews

8 reasons to buy

  • Most of the reviewers consider the Vans Authentic Surf as very comfortable.
  • This model is found at an affordable price point.
  • Several reviewers like the foldable heel which allows them to wear this model with ease.
  • Many respondents highly vouched for this revamped version of the Vans Authentic.
  • The Vans Authentic SF is very stylish and easily upgrades their usual casual attire, several wearers have said.
  • Few reviewers consider this model versatile which they could use in various activities from relaxed hang out to travel, and even for the light workout.
  • Vans offers this in multiple colorways.
  • This sneaker is deemed to be lightweight by a few testers.

2 reasons not to buy

  • A number of critics find the heel area a tad hard which eventually causes blisters.
  • The arch support is unsatisfactory, a few complainants have said.

Bottom line

This timeless look of the Authentic Surf makes this pair a highly recommended sneaker for everyone. Vans added an easy to slip-on feature which adds a few extra points to this iteration. 

Without ripping any pockets, wearers can enjoy a very comfortable sneakers without sacrificing its overall style and uniqueness. 

Tip: see the best sneakers.

Good to know

The Vans Authentic SF is a unisex pair offered in men's and women's sizing. The brand inserted a removable molded UltraCush sockliner to deliver superb comfort and padding. To boost the overall cozy feel, the brand used cotton drill lining for added breathability. Meanwhile, the lace-up fastening system delivers a personalized and snug fit.

The low-top Vans Authentic Surf kept the charming throwback elements of its predecessor with its flexible and lightweight Nubuck leather upper atop a thick, white midsole. This kick struts its vintage heritage modernized to create a modern cool to keep up with the current trend.

Vans offers this in several designs to suit various fondness of its buyers. The Retro Rainbow colorway features dark blue Nubuck upper with rainbow-colored detail around its midsole. Meanwhile, the Distress Check colorway displays checkered canvas upper with a hint of vintage feel for authentic throwback appeal. Another variation is the Checkerboard Denim that shows the iconic checkerboard print in denim-inspired hue.

This striking kick is practically effortless to style with any ensembles. Some wearers sport this with their baggy pants, rolled-up trousers, or khaki shorts paired with an unbuttoned polo over a plain t-shirt. Meanwhile, some ladies opt to style this with their dress or mini skirt to add a sporty vibe to their girlish attire.

Aside from the noticeable graphics on its upper, what makes the Vans Authentic Surf a true eye-catcher is its kick-down heel. This collapsible heel allows its wearers to slip this kick on easily without the fuss of the lacing technique fitting for wearers with an on-the-go lifestyle.

Vans was founded by brothers James and Paul Van Doren in Anaheim, California. They started by selling footwear with a minimalist look and straightforward function. One of the earliest offered silhouettes of the Vans is the Authentic that has remained unchanged for almost fifty years. This iteration was unveiled in March 1966 and was designed by Paul Van Doren, the co-founder of Vans.

The Vans Authentic was also known as # 44 deck shoe that showcases simple design on its canvas upper seated atop a thick vulcanized sole. Many skateboarders enjoyed the simple look that is fitting for their laidback lifestyle. Since then, this model gained a cult-like following and evolved as the kick of choice in the Thrashers domain and has been attached to the skateboarding history in the United States.

The majority expressed admiration to the timeless look of this model which made it hard for the brand to modify the original canvas upper with the thick outsole and tread pattern, that has been applauded by skater and non-skaters all over the globe.

To give its followers alternatives to the timeless Vans Authentic, the brand introduced several variations while keeping all the essential classic details. This model has been a staple in every generation; thus Vans unveiled several re-releases of the Authentic that helped this iteration switch from a pure skating shoe to a lifestyle sneaker smoothly.

This model is delivered in several colorways and among the most favored hues are the Black/White, Black/Black, Estate Blue/True White, Silver Lining/True White, Crimson/True White, Flame, True White, and Baby Blue/True White.

Meanwhile, the Vans Authentic Surf was introduced as a part of the Fall/Winter Surf Collection. This model features the classic details incorporated with the Vans Surf SF build. This model uses water-based glue and inks with graphics on the Nubuck leather upper and collapsible heel.

  • This pair has a single-wrapped foxing tape to provide lightweight comfort.
  • The Pro Vulc Lite construction fuses the lightness, durability, and the waffle-patterned rubber outsole for excellent board feel.
  • This pair has four sets of metal eyelets to provide extra reinforcement.
  • Vans branding can be found on the lateral side and the heel area.
  • The Vans Authentic SF weighs 312 grams.


How Vans Authentic Surf ranks compared to all other shoes
Top 33% sneakers
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Top 50% Vans sneakers
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Top 32% low sneakers
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The current trend of Vans Authentic Surf.
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Danny McLoughlin
Danny McLoughlin

Danny McLoughlin is a researcher for RunRepeat covering football, sneakers and running. After graduating with a degree in computer science from The University of Strathclyde, Danny makes sure never to miss a game of his beloved Glasgow Rangers or the Scotland national football team. He has been featured in prestigious publications such as The Washington Post, The Irish Times, Footwear News and the like.