The Best Men’s Dress Sneakers for 2022

Ponto’s The Pacific delivers the best combo of style and comfort.

In This Article

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Best Men's Dress Sneakers

Amazon, Zappos, and Fini

As many of us spent hours upon hours in front of our screens in endless Zoom meetings during the pandemic, the dress shoes in our closet collected dust. Instead, we donned slippers, sneakers, or let our bare toes fly. Now that many of us are returning to the office, is it time to dust off the ol’ dress shoes that left our feet in agony every night when we came home? Err, maybe not.

Dress shoes have fortunately evolved beyond the stuffy pair our grandfathers wore in favor of more comfortable styles with soles otherwise found on sneakers. You can also — dare we say it — totally get away with wearing a fresh pair of white sneakers to a meeting these days without anyone batting an eyelash. If you want a single pair of shoes that you can wear on a business trip or to the bar, take a look at Ponto The Pacific, a sleek, sustainably-mined hybrid dress sneaker. Otherwise, check out our recommendations below.

Here’s our breakdown of the best men’s dress sneakers:

Best Overall: Ponto The Pacific

Ponto The Pacific

Zappos

Why We Love It: It’s a sleek and stylish sneaker that can be worn with or without socks.

What to Consider: There are shoes that are more waterproof, dressier, affordable, and comfortable — but none with as much going for them as these.

It’s hard to find a do-it-all dress sneaker, but Ponto takes a good crack at it with its sustainability-focused The Pacific. The unisex shoe has a water-repellant upper made from recycled scrap leather that would have otherwise been destined for the dump. For its comfy sneaker-like sole, it uses biofoam made from sugarcane. It also deploys odor-fighting fabric for the interior so you can wear them sockless.

But our favorite thing about The Pacific is that it isn’t claiming its shoes will cure the environment — that’d be greenwashing. Every time you buy something it has a carbon footprint, so Pronto wants these to be the only shoes you wear from the office to the bar — and from the look of these, we can’t see why they shouldn’t be. Just note that fit is a half size up.

Sizes:‎ 8.5-13 and 14 | Weight per pair: 15.4 ounces | Material: Recycled leather, biofoam outsole

Best Overall, Runner-Up: Cole Haan Zerogrand Wingtip Oxford

Cole Haan Zerogrand Wingtip Oxford

Amazon

Why We Love It: This modern take on the Oxford isn’t your grandfather’s dress shoe — and that’s what makes it great.

What to Consider: The insole isn’t removable, and it might not be worth adding an insole due to a lack of padding.

Is it a dress shoe or a Nike Free? This Cole Haan sneaker is the best of both worlds. It’s super lightweight and flexible with a firm, foam-enforced midsole. Plus, it looks stylish with a laser-etched wingtip design. This pick is definitely a terrific dress sneaker to bring on your next business trip.

If you’re in a rainy climate, Cole Haan also makes a waterproof Zerogrand. See the company’s website for more colors and sizes of all models.

Sizes:‎ 7-16 | Weight per pair: 1.16 pounds | Material: Leather upper, EVA midsole, rubber outsole

Best Budget: Bruno Marc Casual Dress Shoes

Bruno Marc Casual Dress Shoes

Amazon

Why We Love It: It’s comfy, breathable, and affordable.

What to Consider: Durability is lacking.

For under $50 (or as low as $28 at Walmart), Bruno Marc’s Oxfords are surprisingly great for the price. They’re breathable, comfy, and made with all-vegan faux leather. Plus, they’re as stylish as shoes four times the price. Just don’t expect them to last more than a few years with frequent use.

Sizes: 6.5-13‎ | Weight per pair: 2.65 pounds | Material: Synthetic upper, thermoplastic rubber midsole, rubber outsole

Best Slip-on: Cole Haan Nantucket 2.0 Slip-on Sneaker

Cole Haan Nantucket 2.0 Slip-On Sneaker

Amazon

Why We Love It: It’s a high-quality slip-on at a great price.

What to Consider: The finish on the leather makes it look fake.

Gotta hand it to Cole Haan — the brand makes great dress sneakers. These lightweight slip-ons are stylish, comfy, and very affordable. Their sleek, minimalistic appearance makes them easy to dress up or down everywhere from the office to an upscale restaurant on vacation. They also come in 5 different styles, which makes it tempting to buy several to match with various outfits.

Sizes: 7-13‎ | Weight per pair: 1.39 pounds | Material: Leather upper, EVA midsole, rubber outsole

Best Sustainable: Matt & Nat Hugo Men's Vegan Sneakers

Matt & Nat Hugo Men's Vegan Sneakers

Matt & Nat

Why We Love It: They’re very minimalist and affordable for an all-vegan shoe.

What to Consider: They’re not available in half sizes.

Montreal’s Matt (referring to materials) & Nat (referring to natural) is a sustainable-focused brand that keeps their prices graciously low. Its Hugo dress sneakers are minimalist, all-black, and like the rest of the company’s products, vegan and cruelty-free. 

That said, just one of its Chinese factories is SA8000 certified for quality working conditions. Still, the company is transparent about how it’s trying to be better and you’ll be hard-pressed to find 100 percent sustainable fair trade footwear at this price. 

Sizes: Full sizes 9-12 | Weight per pair: 1.5 pounds | Material: Polyurethane

Best Arch Support: Vionic Khai Slip-on Shoe

Vionic Khai Slip-On Shoe

Amazon

Why We Love It: Dress sneakers with arch support are few and far between.

What to Consider: We don’t love the look or the durability.

Neither traditional dress shoes nor flat sneakers are great for people with flat feet or other foot issues. Even the hybrids that have a more athletic-style outsole lack in that regard since they do little to support the arch. For those who need arch support, there aren’t too many options out there, but the Vionic Khai is a standout.

The company has worked with a podiatrist to design its sole to keep you upright and from overpronation. That can help relieve heel pain, prevent plantar fasciitis from running around all day (e.g., for waiters or flight attendants), as well as issues with your knees and lower back. 

Sizes: 7-14‎ | Weight per pair: 1.81 pounds | Material: Nubuck leather upper, EVA midsole, rubber outsole

Best for Walking: Ecco St.1 Hybrid Brogue Oxford

Ecco St.1 Hybrid Brogue Oxford

Amazon

Why We Love It: It has the most comfortable sole of all the picks we reviewed.

What to Consider: It’s available in full sizes only.

Ecco has been dishing out some of the most comfortable shoes for a long time thanks to its innovative sole designs that absorb the shock while you walk. Thankfully, it also makes a hybrid dress sneaker.

From the top, the Brogue looks like a stylish Oxford, but the sole is equivalent to that of an excellent walking shoe. The heel cushion absorbs every step and it keeps your foot in an anatomically-correct position.

For those with orthotics or inserts, the insoles can be removed.

Sizes: Full sizes 5-13 | Weight per pair: 1.19 pounds | Material: Leather upper, rubber outsole

Best Casual: Allbirds Men's Wool Runners

Allbirds Men's Wool Runner

Allbirds

Why We Love It: They’re comfy and office-approved.

What to Consider: They run warm and aren’t appropriate for even slightly more formal occasions.

A sure sight in Brooklyn and Silicon Valley, Allbirds might be at least partly responsible for inserting casual sneakers into the work environment. With a breathable Merino wool upper, it’s light and cozy when it’s cold outside — and the variety of colors go with pretty much anything.

Sizes: Full sizes 8-14 | Weight per pair: 14 ounces | Material: Merino wool upper, EVA sugarcane foam sole

Best Boots: Blundstone Original 500 Chelsea Boot

Blundstone Original 500 Chelsea Boot

Amazon

Why We Love It: They’re long-lasting boots you can wear anywhere.

What to Consider: They may be too rugged for dressier work occasions.

Timeless in style (and how long they’ll last), 150-year-old Australian footwear brand Blundstone makes classic boots that are super comfortable to wear. You can seamlessly go from the office to a hiking trail without getting sore feet, and the slip-on style means you won’t have to waste time tying them up.

Sizes:‎ 7-13 | Weight per pair: 2.65 pounds | Material: Leather upper, rubber sole

Best Flashy: Fini Bold Piccaso

Fini Bold Piccaso

Fini

Why We Love It: They’re made in Portugal with local materials — and are funky af.

What to Consider: You really do have to be bold to rock these at work.

For those who like to stand out rather than blend into the crowd, Fini’s Bold Picasso are mighty stylish and will make you look like a creative genius. Made in a Portuguese factory that respects its workers, the Picassos are made with local leather and cork and abstain from any virgin plastics.

Sizes: Full sizes 4-13 and 15 | Weight per pair: 3 pounds | Material: Portuguese leather upper, cork footbed, rubber sole

Best All-White: Thursday Boot Company Premier Low Top

Thursday Boot Company Premier Low Top

Thursday Boot Company

Why We Love It: They’re a fresh style made with incredible materials at a surprisingly fair price.

What to Consider: They’re heavy for sneakers.

Dressing for work isn’t what it used to be — you can thank the pandemic for that. So, if you roll up to the boardroom in a set of all-white sneakers you won’t look disruptive, just stylish. These sneakers from inexpensive footwear brand Thursday Boots are not just cool-looking, they’re also made with great-quality materials like Italian leather and dual-density rubber, 30 percent of which is recycled.

If white isn’t your vibe, there are 12 other styles to choose from.

Sizes: 6-16 | Weight per pair: 4.5 pounds | Material: Napa leather upper, Vachetta leather insole, rubber outsole

Tips for Buying Men's Dress Sneakers

Prioritize comfort

If you’re doing any more in your day than walking from your car to your desk (which you should), then consider buying a comfortable pair of dress sneakers. As this list shows, comfort doesn’t necessarily sacrifice style.

Think about the whole outfit

If you wear a suit every day, make sure the sneakers you’re buying have a cut that doesn’t look weird; you’ll want something that roughly falls in line with your pant leg. Also think about the color of your outfit — you don’t necessarily need to match black shoes with a black suit, but traditionalists will say you do.

Look for durability

It pays to get a good quality pair of dress sneakers — having the sole separate from the upper isn’t only frustrating for you, it’ll look unprofessional when it happens. So look for durability, especially if you plan to do a lot of walking.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • How formal are dress sneakers?

    If you’re going to an event like a funeral or a “black tie” formal, you should probably avoid wearing sneakers, unless perhaps hybrids. You should also consider your dressiest pair if it’s a first meeting or if you don’t know what other people are going to wear when returning to the office.

  • Can you wear dress sneakers with a suit?

    Yes. Most offices are business casual these days and sneakers are in. Just avoid wearing them at extra formal events, as mentioned above.

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Travel + Leisure writers are shopping and product experts who use personal experience and expert recommendations to choose the best items for shoppers. For this article, writer Joel Balsam, a frequent traveler who has visited more than 50 countries, reviewed and selected from the industry’s best options.

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