Less is more. Now, there’s a way to translate that philosophy to your footwear wardrobe. Step into a pair of low-tech sneakers from some of the leading athletic and lifestyle brands. While there’s an increasing emphasis on technology features today from customized lacing systems to enhanced cushioning, there are still plenty of options for guys who prefer no-frills versions for everyday wear with jeans to suits.
If you think these stripped-down looks come up short on comfort, think again. These styles are designed with plenty of underfoot support, while flexible outsoles offer enhanced traction on a range of surfaces.
A wardrobe of these easy-to-wear looks are also easy on your summer budget, typically available at under $150 so you buy multiples. They also lend themselves to barefoot dressing, a great alternative for those guys who shy away from sandals.
The category includes classics such as French brands Lacoste and Superga, to core U.S.-based labels including Sperry, Vans and SeaVees. And for those who have not abandoned technology all together, there comfort brand Alegria has developed a technology that incorporates a chip in the sole of the shoe that can automatically track your steps throughout the day, so forget about cheating on your exercise regimen.
If you’re planning a summer getaway, consider packing a pair or two of these low-tech sneakers. They make great travel companions since they can do double duty for a day of big city sightseeing to dinner out on an exotic island.
Here, FN has rounded up some of the leading low-tech looks for spring that are colorful, comfortable and affordable.
1. Lacoste Chaymon 318 3
The iconic French brand keeps things simple in a basic black style that opts for a subtle logo treatment with its crocodile done tone-on-tone.
2. Traq by Alegria Sneaq
This comfort brand goes high-tech by embedding a Q-Chip pedometer in the outsole that counts each step you take, then connects to a smartphone app to personalize your routine.
3. Superga 2750 COTU Classic Sneaker
A signature Superga style in sturdy cotton canvas is extra-comfortable with a round-toe silhouette, soft textile lining and cushioned footbed.
4. Olukai Nohea Moku
This water-friendly sneaker is done in canvas and mesh for quick drying, while an inner stretch bootie construction is designed for barefoot wear featuring medial water drainage ports and washable dual-density contoured footbed with gel insert.
5. Seavees Legend Chambray Sneaker
Keep things classic with a seafaring-inspired style in soft cotton denim that naturally pairs with a pair of khaki slacks or seersucker shorts.
6. Vans Classic Slip-On Core Classic
This must-have slip-on is done in durable canvas, then picks up a cushioned insole and rubber outsole with signature waffle tread for enhanced traction on and off the skateboard.
7. Sperry Captain’s Slip-On Prep
Don’t worry if you don’t have a boat, this seafaring style works both on land and sea, detailed in a nautical flag print with a signature textured outsole to prevent slippage on wet surfaces.
8. Puma Suede Classic
This signature silhouette is designed with a padded collar and tongue, then incorporates a cushioned footbed and rubber outsole for even more comfort.
9. Pro-Keds Royal Lo Classic Canvas
An update to the classic cap-toe style is done in denim-friendly canvas, then updated with a molded, cushioned footbed with arch and forefoot support.
All products featured have been independently selected and curated by our editorial team. If you buy something through the links included on our site, FN may earn a commission.
9 Men’s Workboots That Offer the Best of Safety and Comfort
9 Innovative Lightweight Running Shoes You Can Buy on Amazon Now
9 Must-Have All-Black Sneakers for Men
Hear some important tips from Reebok CrossFit trainers.