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6 Essential Men’s Summer Shoes (Top Trends to Watch)

Check out what summer shoes should be a mainstay in every man's closet to stay on trend and keep you looking cool and comfortable all summer long.

A close look at a man wearing a pair of checkered pants to match his summer shoes.

Choosing the right summer shoes isn’t as simple as slipping into some flimsy sandals or lacing up your old running shoes. Whether you’re looking for something to wear on vacation or to the office, summer shoes should be fashionable and comfortable, no matter how high the heat and humidity are. Here are six shoe trends to keep you stylish and cool all summer long.

1. Sandals

A man wearing a pair of strap sandals with his pants.

While flip flops may be tempting, they don’t provide the support you need. A flimsy pair of plastic flip flops are fine for showering off at the gym or an outdoor shower at the beach, but spend a long afternoon walking along the boardwalk or an amusement park in a pair of plastic sandals, and your feet will pay the price.

Sandals offer much more support. You don’t have to get a pair with a flat, non-supportive sole. If your sandals are going to be your go-to summer shoes, it’s important to choose a pair that prevents sore feet.

Top Picks:

1. BIRKENSTOCK Unisex Arizona Leather Sandal

Birkenstock Women's Arizona Birko-Flo Black Birko-flor Sandals - 35 N EU (US Women EU's 4-4.5)

Birkenstocks are trendy, but for good reason. They’re some of the best sandals around. This unisex design features the iconic Birkenstock look with two broad, buckled nubuck leather straps attached to an anatomically-supportive cork foot bed. As you walk, the shoe molds to your foot to provide the customized support you need for those long summer days.

2. Rockport Men’s Darwyn Slide Sandal

Rockport Men's Darwyn Slide Sandal, Brown Ii Leather, 10.5 W US

If you prefer something with more coverage, try something like these slide sandals from Rockport. They’re made of 100 percent leather and the rubber sole and PU outsole support the foot and absorb shock so your feet don’t get tired or sore as easily. They’re easy to clean, and the mesh lining wicks away moisture, allowing your feet to breathe easier. These no-fuss sandals are perfect for any summer activity and can be dressed up or down.

2. Casual Sneakers

A man wearing a pair of casual red sneakers with his blue jeans.

A simple pair of canvas sneakers can serve as the backbone of your summer wardrobe, serving as your everyday shoe and providing more coverage and support than a pair of sandals. They look great, even when they get a little bit dirty, and they’re affordable enough that you don’t have to worry about them getting soaked in a surprise summer rainstorm or a water ride at an amusement park.

There are a lot of different options when it comes to casual sneakers, so you’re sure to find one that suits your style.

Top Picks:

1. Converse Men’s Chuck Taylor Sneakers

Converse Unisex Chuck Taylor All Star Low Top Charcoal Sneakers - 8 Men 10 Women

These iconic shoes may be the most well-known casual sneaker around. Just about everyone owned a pair of Chucks in their life. The design has been a mainstay since the style was first introduced in the 1920s. Not much has changed since then, though there are a lot more colors available now.

2. Sperry Men’s Striper II Salt Washed CVO Sneaker

Sperry Men's Striper II Cvo Sneaker, Navy, 11.5

If you’re looking for something that looks more preppy, take a look at these sneakers from Sperry. They have a simple canvas design that’s easy to slip on and off, and the rubber sole provides extra traction and adequate support. They’re available in a nice range of colors, too.

3. Espadrilles

A man wearing a pair of green espadriller with his faded blue jeans.

A lot of men might be hesitant about espadrilles, but they’re an excellent choice for summer. They’re stylish, lightweight, and super comfortable while being a slightly dressier option than sandals.

Espadrilles are best when paired with shorts, but they look great with cuffed cotton pants or even lightweight denim. You can pair them with just about any shirt, too, like a tee, polo, or a simple chambray shirt. They should not be worn with socks, but if you must, make sure to pick a no-show version.

Top Picks:

1. Castaner Men’s Pablo Canvas Flat Espadrilles

Castaner Men's Pablo Canvas Flat Espadrilles 2Cm Beige in Size US 11

These espadrilles from Castaner show exactly how neat a pair of these can look. They’re made of durable canvas that allows your foot to breathe and features the standard jute sole that most espadrilles have. The square toe gives your foot adequate space, and the back handle makes it easy to slip them on in a hurry.

2. TOMS Men’s Espadrilles

TOMS mens Espadrilles Espadrilles, Blue Navy 000, 9 US

TOMS is known for its cool comfort and timeless style and, while most people are familiar with the brand’s popular slip-on shoes, their espadrilles are worth a look. They come in a variety of fabrics, colors, and patterns, and the textile foot bed is lightly cushioned for comfortable support. Plus, TOMS gives a new pair of shoes to a child in need for every pair they sell.

4. Athletic Shoes

A man tying the laces of his yellow athletic shoes.

A solid pair of athletic shoes is a good idea any time of year, but they are particularly useful in the summer. Of course, you need a good pair of shoes to jog or go to the gym, but summer is also the time you’re more likely to spend the day walking about an amusement park or a few hours at a street fair or some other outdoor adventure.

There are a lot of different styles of athletic shoes. In the summer, look for something made out of lightweight material with a lot of vents to let your feet breathe. And don’t be afraid to look beyond the usual athletic brands. There are a lot of shoes out there that are just as comfortable and supportive.

Top Picks

1. On Running Men’s Cloud Swift Mesh Trainer

on Running Mens Cloudswift Mesh Trainers (11.5, Rusk/Rock)

These running shoes from On Running feature a silicone cage that molds to the shape of your foot and an engineered mesh upper that stretches and breathes, ideal for summer activities. The rubber sole is supportive and comfortable, and the sock-like construction is easy to slip on and off. Other summer-friendly features include a lightly padded tongue and collar, breathable fabric lining, and temperature resistant technology that maintains its shape, no matter how hot it gets.

2. Under Armour Men’s HOVR Sonic 2 Running Shoe

Under Armour Men's HOVR Sonic 2 Running Shoe, Wire (400)/Ash Gray, 10

If you prefer a neutral running shoe with versatility, cushioning, and flexibility, check out these trainers from Under Armour. What’s cool about them is they feature the brand’s Record Sensor technology that analyzes and stores information about your run so you know what you have to improve. The micro thread upper is extremely breathable and available in a range of colors.

5. Brogues

A man wearing a pair of checkered pants to match his pair of brogues.

Brogues are an ideal summer work shoe. They differ from Oxfords in that they have holes running through the upper. They let your feet breathe a little more while allowing you to maintain a more formal, professional look. Lighter shades are better for summer, so save the black leather brogues for fall and winter and stick to light browns and tans when the weather is hot.

Top Picks:

1. Bruno Marc Men’s Leather Lined Dress Oxfords Shoes

Bruno Marc Men's Brown Classic Brogue Wing Tip Lace Up Soft Round Toe Oxfords Formal Dress Shoes Size 12 M US Louis_1

These shoes feature a synthetic leather upper, rubber sole, and stylish wooden heel. They’re flexible and feature a breathable leather lining that helps your feet stay dry and odor-free. There are several color options available that are appropriate for summer.

2. ZRIANG Men’s Dress Shoes Cap Toe Brogue Leather Lined Lace-up Oxfords

ZRIANG Mens Classic Brogue Dress Shoes Leather Lined Oxfords (7 M US, B-Tan10)

This classic wingtip design is made of premium PU leather with brogue perforations along the top of the feet to let them breathe. The leather naturally stretches without creasing or cracking, molding to the shape of your foot for customized support.

6. Boat Shoes

A man wearing a pair of khaki pants with his dark brown boat shoes.

Boat shoes might be the perfect shoe for summer. Also called topsiders, these shoes are available in multiple materials and colors, though we recommend leather if you want something that’s going to last a long time.

The best thing about these shoes is that they can be worn in a variety of situations, as long as it’s laid back and casual. A pair of khaki shorts, a polo, cuffed cotton pants, a chambray shirt – just about anything goes.

Top Picks

1. Sperry Men’s Authentic Original 2-Eye Boat Shoe

Sperry Mens A/O 2-Eye Boat Shoe, Sahara, 12

If you want to go full-on preppy, go with the best. Sperry boat shoes are made with 100 percent leather with durable rubber soles. The unlined leather resists freshwater and salt, perfect for walks along the boardwalk or hanging out on the dock. As for traction, the soles are made of non-marking rubber with the right amount of grip.

2. Columbia Men’s Bahama Vent Relaxed Laced Boat Shoe

Columbia Men's Bahama Vent Relaxed Laced Boat Shoe, British tan/Tangy Orange, 13 Wide US

For something trendier, this pair of boat shoes from Columbia looks great and is loaded with all the features you need for summer fun. They’re waterproof, breathable, and have a lace-up closure for a secure fit. The durable midsole has excellent shock absorption and a slip-free rubber sole. There are multiple color options available, and the full-grain leather and canvas construction is made to last for a long time.