Best Sandals for Runners – 7 Sandals Reviewed & Rated

Best Sandals for Runners

 

The love for running barefoot is totally an underestimated craze. If you are one of these people, you too might want to look and invest in some of the best minimalist running sandals there are.

 

These are some of the best barefoot running sandals that we are talking about. These pairs have the ability to absorb shocks, provide comfort and durability with attractive designs, all supplied with a close to the barefoot experience.

 

What we mean is that the best sandals for runners not only offer great structural support and grip while running but will also have some fantastic designs to up your style game.

 

However, you don’t really have to spend a fortune to have the best running sandals. Instead, you will be surprised to know that some of these sandals in the market are super pocket-friendly with long-lasting, multipurpose performance.

 

With the variety of options available on various mediums to choose from, we are here with an excellent selection of best men running sandals as well as running sandals for women.

 

You also get a buying guide in the end to select the best sandals, which would allow you to make a quick and precise selection.

 

At A Glance

 
 

In This Article

 
 

What Exactly Is A Barefoot/Minimalist Running Sandal?

Tracking their existence to ancient times, these sandals served as the initial invention for protecting your feet, which further developed into running shoes and even running sandals.

 

The traditional terminology associated with these running sandals is barefoot running sandals which provide a fulfilling running experience accompanied by continuous contact with the ground.

 

Design encompassing the pattern of running sandals includes just a strip and a back supporting strap which serves as a distinct feature from that of flip flops.

 

Let’s get started and have a look at some of the best sandals for runner!

 

Comparison Table for Best Running Sandals 2021

Here are some of the best sandals for runners, which are the absolute best barefoot running sandals in the market. Provided below are some of the vital information about them that would aid in making a healthy comparison before buying.

 

ProductFabricSole typeSizesCheck Price on Amazon
LUNA Sandals OSO FLACO Winged EditionLUNA Sandals OSO FLACO Winged Edition – Best running sandals Butyl rubberVibram, BIIR6 to 13 for women and 4 to 11 for menMen’s Design
Teva Men's Original Universal SandalTeva Men’s Original Universal Sandal PolyesterRubber7 to 14 Men’s Design
Women’s Design
Xero Shoes Men's Z-Trek Sport SandalsXero Shoes Men’s Z-Trek Sport Sandals PolyesterRubber6 to 14 for men

6 and 7 for women

Men’s Design
Women’s Design
Chaco Men's Z Volv SandalChaco Men’s Z Volv Sandal PolyesterRubber7 to 15 for men
 

5 to 12 for women

Men’s Design
Women’s Design
Vibram Women's VI-S Fitness And Yoga ShoeVibram Women’s VI-S Fitness And Yoga Shoe – Top Running Sandals For WomenPolyesterRubber6.5 to 7Women’s Design
KEEN Men's Newport H2 SandalKEEN Men’s Newport H2 Sandal PolyesterRubber7 to 17Men’s Design
Teva Men's Hurricane XLT SandalTeva Men’s Hurricane XLT SandalTextileRubber8 to 16 for men
 

5 to 11 for women

Men’s Design
Women’s Design

 

7 Best Minimalist Running Sandals Tried and Tested

 

Here is a wide and in-depth review of the various products listed above. The following information will help you to determine the best running sandals for your needs. You will also find some of the best trail running sandals also mentioned below to make your experience with nature a more memorable one.

 

1. LUNA Sandals OSO FLACO Winged Edition – Best Trail Running Sandals

LUNA Sandals OSO FLACO Winged EditionMen’s Design

 

Key Features

  • Vibram, BIIR sole
  • Durable Vibram Megagrip
  • Buckle as closure type
  • Sandal base with MGT (Monkey Grip Technology) – suitable for daily wear and running
  • 7 mm thick sole
  • 5 mm lug height
  • Weight 7.2 oz
  • Moonrock Guarantee
  • Thread pattern grip

 

USP: These sandals also stand out as the best trail running sandals because of their durability. These sandals have an excellent grip reducing the risk of tripping and falling.

 

Pros

  • Best for trail running, marathons and ultra-marathons
  • They have an ergonomic design and possess perfect fitting.
  • Good for everyday usage too
  • Long-lasting
  • Straps dry quickly
  • One of the best barefoot running sandals high in style quotient

Cons

  • Side strip fit issues
  • A bit expensive

 

PassionateRunners Take – Hit
 

Fitting & Comfort – Excellent
 

Breathability – Excellent
 

Sole thickness and grip – Excellent
 

If you are a runner who has a great fondness for grip, which would not just be valuable but also stylish, then these pairs of sandals would be the best choice in the category of best running sandals for you.

 

These LUNA sandals are even very light weight, which makes them suitable for even daily usage providing valuable coverage to your feet.

 

The reason why they are good for trail running is also because of the easy adjustment you can make to the strap effortlessly.

 

With all the factors listed about the merits & demerits of the product, LUNA also offers a Moonrock Guarantee, i.e., a guarantee of lifetime adventures with safety. It is surely the best sandals for runners and worth every penny!

 

Men’s Design

2.  Teva Men’s Original Universal Sandals – Runners Up for Best Jogging Sandals

 

Teva Men's Original Universal SandalsMen’s Design
Women’s Design

 

Key Features

  • Fabric upper material
  • Foam base
  • Strap lining made of fabric
  • Hook and Loop closure type
  • Heel with a height of ¾ inch
  • Custom-fit with adjustable hook & universal strap
  • Made from converted, checkable and traceable plastic
  • Great for daily wear
  • 18 color variants
  • 15.4 oz weight

 

USP: Great for every occasion – an all-rounder pick.

 

Pros

  • Comfortable with arch support
  • Stylish
  • Available for both men and women
  • Perfect fit for all seasons
  • Durable
  • Multiple colors to choose from

Cons

  • Comparatively lesser support by strips
  • Not appropriate for slippery floor
  • Size problems

 

PassionateRunners Take – Hit
 

Fitting & Comfort – Good
 

Breathability – Average
 

Sole thickness and grip – Good
 

If you are a couch potato and lazy enough to not differentiate your sandals for every other activity, then these sandals will be a promising choice for you.

 

Available in various colors and designs for both men and women, they can also be entitled as the best running sandals for women. They can also be put up as a great option for daily water activities or just roaming around the city.

 

With the strap made up of 100% recycled plastic, it possesses an abrupt drying element, which even acts as an aid in all seasons.

 

With the great price, they come up with a great quality which is the top-most priority for an individual while making a purchase. The reason why it is considered an all-rounder sandal is that it has numerous designs and colors to suit everybody’s needs.

 

Furthermore, the external sole is made up of rubber, which creation traction and a good grip on the ground.

 

3. Xero Sandals – Men’s Z-Trek: Runners Up for Best Barefoot Running Sandals

 

Xero Sandals - Men's Z-TrekMen’s Design
Women’s Design

 

Key Features

  • Water-resistant
  • Lightweight
  • No animal commodity employed
  • Great fitting
  • Rubber sole
  • Xero drop 5.5mm thin sole
  • Weighing around 6.6 ounces
  • 3 colors

 

USP: Best men’s running sandals suitable for slippery surfaces because of their high friction anti-slip grip.

 

Pros

  • True to fit
  • Complete barefoot experience
  • Suitable for all seasons
  • Flexible
  • Very thin sole
  • High outsole traction
  • Light and comfortable
  • Decent style and fitting

Cons

  • Straps too shallow
  • Not durable
  • Extremely thin sole might not be comfortable for many people while hikes
  • Causes toe rubs

 

PassionateRunners Take – Hit
 

Fitting & Comfort – Good
 

Breathability – Excellent
 

Sole thickness and grip – Excellent
 

Next on our list of best running sandals are these super thin Xero Sandals. These sandals will present as a great option for buyers who are fond of the recent trend of barefoot running and minimalist design.

 

Carrying a thin sole aids in maintaining contact with the ground, which not only assists in providing a great experience but also a natural strengthening of foot muscles.

 

The hikers who love to connect with nature will be in love with these sandals too. Thin soles are not the only reasons why you should buy these sandals, but the water-resistant feature makes it the perfect pair of sandals encompassing a precise fit for the feet.

 

The reason why they are entitled as the best minimalist running sandals is because of the lightweight of just 6.6 ounces and 5.5mm thin sole.

 

4. Skechers Chaco Men’s Z Volv Sandal

 

Skechers Chaco Men's Z Volv SandalMen’s Design
Women’s Design

 

Key Features

  • Fabric external material
  • Synthetic sole
  • 2.5cm sole
  • Hook and Loop Velcro
  • Comfortable
  • Kind to feet
  • Adjustable with the help of Velcro
  • 2 color options

 

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable
  • Fit for even summers
  • A great choice for women and men
  • Extensively padded
  • Adjustable

Cons

  • Comfortable but not stylish
  • Bubbling issue in the sole
  • Sandals are narrow
  • Thick sole
  • The size differs from standard Skechers shoe size

 

PassionateRunners Take – Not a great hit for running
 

Fitting & Comfort – Average
 

Breathability – Good
 

Sole thickness and grip – Average
 

These pair of sandals are good for day-to-day tasks but not the best for hiking, water activities, etc, as the strap styling won’t give a very tight fit.

 

The sole they have is synthetic and thick. In short, if you’re on the hunt for the best men’s running sandals with a barefoot experience, these shouldn’t be your pick.

 

These aren’t our best choice for running sandals; however, the pair will be suitable for getting accustomed to spending your day in running sandals. The sole will be comfortable enough to not provide any harm to your feet.

 

5. Vibram Women’s VI-S Fitness and Yoga Shoe

Best Lightweight Pick for Women

 

Vibram Women's VI-S Fitness and Yoga ShoeWomen’s Design

 

Key Features

  • Buckle type closure
  • Rubber sole
  • Washable
  • 3.5mm thick sole
  • High-traction sole

 

USP: It has the longest toe area (+/- 0.125 in).

Having the thinnest sole along with the unique toe shaped design aids in maintaining perfect fit.
 

Pros

  • Comfortable
  • Easy to slide in
  • Great fitting
  • Machine wash

Cons

  • Sizing not exact
  • Might need some getting used to
  • Issues regarding strap
  • Not meant for wide toes

 

PassionateRunners Take – Hit
 

Fitting & Comfort – Excellent
 

Breathability – Average
 

Sole thickness and grip – Excellent
 

The design here can either be loved or simply rejected by buyers. There is no in-between. But for us, this is surely one of the unique designs and concepts.

 

The design is such that it gives you the closest to barefoot feel; however, you cannot expect it to last long because of the same thin-sole design. So, it’s a no if you are looking for the best trail running sandals.

 

They are entitled as the lightweight best jogging sandals for women with comfort as they weigh just 3.17 oz, accompanied by a 3.5 mm sole.

 

Another title they hold is of the budget pick as they are just the pocket-friendly pairs in the category of best running sandals that one would love to have.
 

Women’s Design

6. KEEN Men’s Newport H2 Sandal

Choicest Closed Sporty Sandals

 

 KEEN Men's Newport H2 SandalMen’s Design

 

Key Features

  • Polyester fabric
  • Rubber sole material
  • Bungee closure type
  • Conformational contoured arch sole
  • Washable
  • Bump toe design
  • Razor siping grip
  • Quick lace
  • 28 color variants

 

USP: These pairs of sandals have a razor siping grip which helps in maintaining grip in every terrain. Also, it gives you the protection of shoes in sandal design.

 

Pros

  • Sporty design
  • Comfortable
  • Great for everyday purpose
  • Durable
  • Suitable for water sports
  • Arched sole

 

Cons

  • Bottom sole separates over the time
  • Size runs smaller
  • Heavy design

 

PassionateRunners Take – Hit

 
Fitting & Comfort – Good
 

Breathability – Good
 

Sole thickness and grip – Good
 

These are the finest sandals for runners who are quite not sure yet about going all bare with sandals. These pairs come up as a combination of sandals with an appearance of shoes.
 

Therefore, they are a good pick in the category of best running sandals for people who wish to have a closed design for their sandals for some extra protection.
 

Existing as the pair which would not just be comfortable but also provide comfort fit with the help of a quick lace system. The Razor Sipped Grip and the cushioned sole the sandal offers are not only helpful in everyday usage but also aid in hiking.

 

Men’s Design

7. Teva Men’s Hurricane XLT Sandal

Budget Pick

 

Teva Men's Hurricane XLT SandalMen’s Design
Women’s Design

 

Key Features

  • Rubber sole
  • Nylon straps
  • 1.5” heel
  • Lugged outsole
  • Convenient cushioning
  • Perfect for any terrain
  • Adjustable straps
  • EVA foam midsole
  • 18 color variants
  • Weighs 14 oz

 

Pros

  • Comfortable
  • Great water Sandals
  • Long-lasting
  • Built-in shock pad
  • Paw friendly

Cons

  • Toe rubbing
  • Slippery when wet

 

PassionateRunners Take – Hit
 

Fitting & Comfort – Good
 

Breathability – Excellent
 

Sole thickness and grip – Average
 

If you are enthusiastic about water sports and sunbathing and that too in style, then these pairs of sandals will be the best running sandals for you with wide variety of designs.

 

These pairs have enumerable features like the nylon shank, which provides better control, water-proofing that gives you the liberty to wear it in different weather conditions; still, users have reported fall-off and slip incidents.

 

So, it’s better to keep off this item for use in swampy areas. These are a definite no if you’re looking for the best trail running sandals.

 

Men’s Design
Women’s Design

Factors To Keep In Mind Before Choosing A Running Sandal

Material

It’s important to know what is the material of the sandal that you are going to buy.

 

Especially in the category of best running sandals, for both men as well as women, each material will have its own advantage.

 

For example: one will be waterproof, the other will provide a better grip on the ground, one might be more durable, and the other will dry real quick.

 

Make a pick that suits the terrain you live in.
 

Style (Strap Design)

The best sandals for runners will be the ones with a perfect fit, neither too tight nor too loose. For the adjustability and perfect fitting, it is important to make a precise look at the kind of strap the sandals hold. Many have adjustable Velcro straps, while others have a plain nylon buckle belt.

 

Depending upon the usage varying from day to day to hiking, the strap design will always possess an important factor.

 

The arrangement of straps is also important to consider keeping in mind your feet’ shape. For instance, a foot with a higher arch will enjoy a cross strap.

 

It’s also important to see if there is a back support belt for your foot heel.

 

Fitting & Comfort

For making your pair of best barefoot running sandals worthy, it is important to first ensure a proper fit first.

 

Without proper fitting, the sandals won’t serve their purpose at all. Nobody prefers a sandal that’s loose and makes you fumble mid-run, walk or hike.

 

Sole Thickness and Grip

Furthermore, the thickness of the sole also varies depending upon the type of sandals you select. From barefoot running sandals to sports running sandals, the sole thickness varies.

 

While barefoot sandals keep you closer to the ground, they lack cushioning. On the other hand, the best jogging sandals with thick soles will lack a minimalistic feel.

 

We suggest you go for a thick sole if you’re suffering from any kind of foot pain, especially in your feet sole.

 

Brand Reviews

The reputation of the brand over the years is what aids in making a final choice. The customer only loves to choose the brand which has been trustworthy and reliable for years. Therefore, keeping an eye on the brand review would also help in making a good choice.

 

Price

You would not like to pick just any running sandals for women or men that are overpriced with no reliant features nor a cheap pair with average style. Therefore, deciding a budget and picking a pair that’s value for money is the wisest thing to do.

 

Let’s Clear Your Doubts About The Best Sandals for Runners (FAQs)

Ques 1. What is a minimalist sandal?

Ans. They can be termed as sandals that assist one in providing a barefoot experience by helping in maintaining close contact with the ground.

 

Ques 2. Are Minimalist Sandals Suitable for Hiking?

Ans. Minimalist Sandals provide suitability for hiking by delivering a perfect grip and comfort. But, make sure you don’t suffer from foot injuries or conditions that cause pain in the foot sole.

 

Ques 3. Are sandals good for running?

Ans. Yes, definitely! The best running sandals strengthen your foot muscles naturally. Sandals also provide more room for your feet to breathe and acquire a natural form while running. Since these sandals are lightweight, they don’t put any extra weight on your feet too.

 

Ques 4. What is the point of barefoot sandals?

Ans. Barefoot sandals are made for people who love to maintain perfect contact with the ground while walking and even while running. This, in turn, is believed to help you get stronger feet naturally.

 

Ques 5. Is running barefoot better than with shoes?

Ans. The idea of betterment in the running cannot be claimed for running sandals nor for shoes, as it depends upon the runners and their choice of comfort.

If one is fond of maintaining full coverage while running or walking, then shoes come as the perfect choice, whereas if one is committed to maintaining a perfect grip with the ground, then barefoot sandals would be a perfect choice.

 

The Winner Is…

In conclusion, the Teva Running Sandals (Hurricane XLT) would be the best sandals for runners as they not only have a perfect style which you would love to buy but also they provide great comfort to the feet.

Available in various designs for even women, it gives you the opportunity to wear matching sandals to your partner. So, it is not only the best men’s running sandals but also has some great feminine pieces.

You might also want to check out our recommendation for the best running jackets and some good quality running gloves here.