We spent 8.9 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what sneaker fanatics think:

8 reasons to buy

  • Many reviewers applauded the versatility of the Vans Gum Block Authentic. They liked how they can easily pair it with anything.
  • This low-top from Vans is easy to clean, according to a couple of reviewers.
  • The Gum Block Authentic is often described as “cool” and not boring or basic.
  • The majority of purchasers left high ratings for this shoe.
  • This Vans low-top is easy on the pocket.   
  • Lots of reviewers loved the checkerboard print and half gum block design combo of this Vans shoe.
  • At least one buyer mentioned that the Vans Gum Block Authentic fits like a gem.
  • Few reviewers stated that this shoe looks even better in person.

1 reasons not to buy

  • Some reviewers noted that the Vans Gum Block Authentic may feel uncomfortable at first until broken in.

Bottom line

US footwear brand Vans made a noticeable upgrade to its iconic Authentic silhouette through the Vans Gum Block Authentic sneakers. It added a noteworthy gum block detailing along the heel which does not only further elevate the classic style of the crowd-favorite Vans Authentic but also gives a new and fresh look to it that suits the modern market.

Like the core model, the Gum Block rendition appealed to many with its no-fail casual flair, versatile look and colorways, and superb fit.


Base model: Vans Authentic
Top: Low
Inspired from: Skate
Collection: Vans Authentic
Price: $65
Colorways: Black, Blue
Special editions: 15 special editions
Small True to size Large
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A top 7% best sneaker
A top rated Vans sneaker

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The men's Vans Gum Block Authentic is available in sizes that range from US 4 to 13 in D Medium or Standard width. It generally fits true to size. This low-top shoe features a canvas material on the upper, which allows wearers a snug yet flexible and breathable fit. A lace-up closure system is also in place for an adjustable fit. Padding is minimal, but the shoe’s overall support is sufficient.

One way to describe the Vans Gum Block Authentic sneakers is that they are a mix of classic and modern styles. Although designed with an upgraded partial gum in the heel area, the shoe still retained its classic and retro look by maintaining the core features of the Vans Authentic – low-top profile, canvas upper, lace up closure, and flexible rubber sole.

The Vans Gum Block Authentic is one of the many updated renditions of the now classic and iconic Vans Authentic shoe. It is based on the Authentic silhouette with a canvas upper, lace-up closure, metal eyelets, and vulcanized rubber outsole. In this rendition, the Authentic gets a modern twist by adding a brown gum block heel that further improves its no-fail flair. The canvas upper is no ordinary, too, as it carries the Vans signature checkerboard print.

In 1966, brothers Paul and James Van Doren founded Vans initially as the Van Doren Rubber Company in Anaheim, California as a skateboarding shoe company. Backed up with decades-long experience in producing performance-focused and stylish skate shoes and casual sneakers, Vans was able to establish a solid ground in the footwear industry. Throughout the years, it has spawned countless sneaker models that caught the attention of the market in and out of different skate communities.

One of the most iconic and favored Vans sneakers that stood the test of time is the Vans Authentic, which was initially known as the #44 deck shoe. It may be simple and plain compared to other sneakers, but that feature alone helped in making it a classic shoe model. The simple silhouette is sealed off with a breathable canvas upper, thick vulcanized rubber outsole, and secured lace-up fastening system. The first pair of the Vans Authentic shoe sold on March 16, 1966.

Came 1974 when skateboarding as an extreme sport started gaining attention from the crowd. Vans took this opportunity to gather a niche market, and it was a success. The Authentic since then became a staple skate shoe of skaters. To date, it is available in different modernized renditions and upgraded versions. One of these is the Vans Gum Block Authentic, which features a standard canvas upper, vulcanized rubber sole, lace-up closure, and a striking gum block design accent on the heel.

  • Earlier releases of the Vans Gum Block Authentic feature solid-colored canvas uppers, while recent ones feature a checkerboard printed upper design.
  • The shoe also features Vans cushioned footbed for plush in-shoe feel.
  • Reinforced metal eyelets are utilized for increased durability.
  • The vulcanized rubber soles feature Vans’ signature waffle tread for durable grip and traction.
  • Vans logo branding is visible on the midfoot area and heel.


Danny McLoughlin

Danny is a sneakerhead turned sneaker industry expert that believes a good outfit begins from the feet up. His aunt currently isn't speaking to him for wearing a pair of kicks at his cousin's wedding. He spends most of his time trying to keep on top of the latest releases, hitting up his contacts and doing what needs to be done to secure his next pickup. Danny has been featured in prestigious publications such as The Washington Post, The Irish Times, Footwear News and the like.