The 7 Best School Shoes in 2018

When school season hits, students flock to both offline and online stores to check out the latest collection of the stylish school shoes available in the market today. Since most buy shoes almost at the same time, they end up with school shoes that look the same.

To get the cool pair of school shoes that will make your student stand out, not just in style, but also in comfort, durability, and affordability, you need to exert more effort. After all, style shouldn’t be the only consideration. Students walk a lot, so they need a reliable shoe that can handle day-to-day pounding for the next couple of months or years.

It can be hard to get the best back to school shoes, given that there are so many to choose from. That’s why we made this best school shoes review to help you out. We looked at stylish and durable shoes that come in both affordable and high-end collections. Based on a thorough assessment, we have decided that the Stride Rite Claire Mary Jane is the best deal you can find today. Here is a rundown of the best footwear for students this 2018.

Editors Picks: 7 Best School Shoes in 2018

Name

Sole

Closure

Price

Stride Rite Claire Mary Jane

Rubber sole

Hook & loop

Keds School Days II Sneaker

Rubber sole

Lace-up

Vans Men's Sk8-hi(tm) Core Classics

Rubber sole

Lace-up

Converse Women's Chuck Taylor All Star Seasonal Color Hi

Rubber sole

Lace-up

Hush Puppies Lexi Uniform Mary Jane

Rubber sole

Hook & loop

Geox Toddler/Little Kid W.Snake Mocassino Hook-and-Loop Shoe

Rubber sole

Velcro

Keds Daphne T-Strap Sneaker

Rubber sole

T-strap

1. Stride Rite Claire Mary Jane (Toddler/Little Kid/Big Kid)

Stride Rite Claire Mary Jane (Toddler/Little Kid/Big Kid)

Stride Rite Claire Mary Jane is an ideal shoe for girls who wear a uniform to school. The versatile look it adopts allows girls to wear it to virtually any occasion even outside the classroom. The top section is entirely made of leather and is therefore very durable.

This shoe’s grippy outsole totally supports the company’s mission to offer better protection. The three things that enhance comfort in Stride Rite Claire Mary Jane are the flexible rubber sole, the padded collar, and the memory foam insole.

The hoop-and-loop closure mechanism means your precious daughter will only spend a couple of seconds tying up the shoe. The upper section is open to facilitate complete air circulation which lessens chances of odor and bacteria buildup. This shoe comes in three basic colors: Black, Brown, and Navy.

Top Features:

The top features of Stride Rite Claire Mary Jane include:

  • 100% leather
  • Hook and loop closure
  • Non-marking rubber sole
  • Memory foam insole
  • Padded collar
  • Available colors: Navy, Black, Brown

Pros:

Here a few things you may like about Stride Rite Claire Mary Jane:

  • It is a durably-built leather shoe.
  • It is non-slip, courtesy of the grippy sole.
  • It is affordable.
  • It has features that make it comfortable to wear.
  • It is versatile and can be worn outside the school.
  • It is easy to clean.

Cons:

Here are a few things you may not like about these Mary Janes:

  • Its design is unimpressive.
  • It is not true to size.

Stride Rite Claire Mary Jane looks simple and might go with many school uniforms. If you aren’t sure what shoe type the school wanted, you could start off with this one, as other colorful varieties may get rejected. This shoe is affordable, and yet it lasts longer than most of its closest competitors.

2. Keds School Days II Sneaker (Little Kid/Big Kid)

Keds School Days II Sneaker (Little Kid/Big Kid)

For kids who obsess over classic designs and bright colors, Keds School Days II Sneaker is the option to go for. The top reflective leather is of outstanding quality, yet the shoe’s price remains affordable. The advantage of such leather overlay is that it makes cleaning easier.

Keds is ultra-comfortable thanks to the memory foam footbed, padded tongue, and collar. Your child will feel relaxed, confident, and inspired enough to explore new heights in their education. The lace-up closure system may take some time to tie up, but it’s the best for attaining a secure fit.

This shoe’s rubber is sturdy and flexible with a grooved bottom for better stability in wet and slippery surfaces. For those with slightly deeper arches, the sole also curves a little to hug the region, thus minimizing pain during walking. This pair comes in three main colors: White, Black, and Navy.

Top Features:

Some of the outstanding features of Keds School Days II Sneaker include:

  • 100% leather
  • Rubber sole
  • Terry cloth lining
  • Lace-up closure
  • Padded collar
  • Memory foam footbed

Pros:

The pros of buying this shoe include:

  • It’s one of the cheapest options in this review.
  • It has a classic design.
  • It is easy to clean.
  • It offers arch support.
  • It is comfortable.

Cons:

Some of the downsides of this classic shoe include:

  • It is only available in limited colors.
  • It is not true to size.

Kids love everything that comes in shiny colors, and thus they are likely to fall in love with Keds School Days II Sneaker. The pair has awesome client feedback and rating on several platforms and doesn’t cost too much.

3. Vans Men's Sk8-hi(tm) Core Classics

Vans Men's Sk8-hi(tm) Core Classics

Vans Men's Sk8-hi(tm) is a vintage collection that was out of the market but was brought back thanks to its solid performance. It’s a young man’s design that can set one apart from the crowd.

You’ve got to love the support this shoe provides all the way to the ankle. The top overlays are 100% canvas which is durable and at the same time easy to wash. The waffle outsole it comes with is one of a kind. It’s thick enough to absorb shock and can flex as well.

On top of that, one can walk on smooth and slippery floors without losing stability. The absence of arch support makes Vans an exemplary skating shoe.

Vans Men's Sk8-hi(tm) doesn’t compromise on comfort. The tongue, collar, and its interior consist of plush material that softly hugs the feet. The insole is EVA-enhanced and laced with antimicrobial properties to prevent odor and bacterial buildup.

The shoe is made for the most active school kids, and it makes sense to secure it through the lace-closure system rather than the dual goring or hook and loop. And here is the best part: it comes in so many colors. It’s impossible for one not to find the color they prefer.

Top Features:

Some of the definitive features of Vans Men's Sk8-hi(tm) include:

  • Spot clean
  • Rubber sole
  • 100% canvas
  • Embed badge
  • Waffle outsole

Pros:

This Vans pair has the following pros:

  • It fits as expected.
  • It has over 20 colors to choose from.
  • It features a vintage design.
  • These shoes are extremely comfortable.
  • It has a vulcanized construction.
  • It is a multi-purpose shoe.

Cons:

Vans is almost perfect, but there are a few things that may disappoint users:

  • There is no arch support.
  • The high-end collections are expensive.

Vans Men's Sk8-hi(tm) Core Classics is a top-grade collection suitable for students who engage in part-time skating. It’s extremely comfortable, protective, and stylish. However, for all those luxurious features, you need to pay a little bit more.

4. Converse Women's Chuck Taylor All Star Seasonal Color Hi

Converse Women's Chuck Taylor All Star Seasonal Color Hi

For ladies who love a shoe that can cover all the way to the ankles, Converse Women's Chuck Taylor All Star is the option to go for. It’s a genuine product, stylish, and able to help the student express themselves in a unique style that is not seen everywhere. Of course, there are other shoes with such a design, but this one is more colorful with a badge imprinted on the ankle.

The durable canvas overlay provides a gentle covering while making the shoe easy to clean. The rubber outsole provides a firmer grip and absorbs shock to lessen the impact when walking or running. However, the tongue and collar do not possess any padding which could make it a little uncomfortable for those who do plenty of walking.

Converse Women's Chuck Taylor All Star is a versatile pair that can be taken to the fields on sports day. Therefore, it’s ideal for it to have the lace-up closure system. The shoe comes in over 20 colors so you can definitely find something that suits.

Top Features:

Here are some of the more noteworthy features of Converse Women's Chuck Taylor All Star Shoe:

  • 100% Canvas
  • Traditional toe cap
  • Rubber sole
  • Lace up closure
  • Non-slip sole

Pros:

The advantages of buying this shoe include:

  • It is available in over 20 colors.
  • It is priced fairly.
  • It has a vulcanized construction.
  • It features a well-ventilated canvas.
  • It has a classic design.

Cons:

A few downsides to this shoe include:

  • The tongue and collar are not padded.
  • There is no arch support.
  • It is not true to size.

Converse Women's Chuck Taylor All Star offers comfort, breathability, durability, and a classic design at a pocket-friendly price. The sneakers are versatile and hence good for virtually any occasion. The color options are limitless as well.

5. Hush Puppies Lexi Uniform Mary Jane

Hush Puppies Lexi Uniform Mary Jane

No parent wants to spend a lot of money on a shoe only to realize that the school dress code policy doesn’t accept it. In moments of uncertainty, simple black shoes like Hush Puppies Lexi Uniform Mary Jane are usually the go-to options.

This Hush Puppies Mary Jane is made from durable leather with a long-lasting rubber sole. The non-marking outsole is reliable for walking and running on smooth and slippery surfaces.

This shoe is basic but comfortable thanks to the thick overlays, collar padding, and the memory foam on the footbed. The hook-and-loop system is quite convenient especially on days when your child is late.

Kids spend many hours in school without a chance to remove shoes. To avoid accumulation of heat, Hush Puppies Lexi Uniform Mary Jane is wide open at the top to allow for air circulation. Only three colors are available for selection: Black, Brown, and Navy.

Top Features:

Hush Puppies Lexi Uniform Mary Jane sports the following top features:

  • Rubber sole
  • 100% leather
  • Memory foam footbed
  • Non-marking outsole
  • School uniform approved

Pros:

The advantages of this shoe include:

  • It is school uniform approved and thus it’s less likely to get rejected by any school.
  • It has a non-slip rubber sole.
  • It’s made from a solid material that lasts longer.
  • It is affordable.
  • It is breathable.

Cons:

Things that you may not like about this pair of Mary Janes include:

  • It has an uninspiring design.
  • It is not true to size.

For schools that demand a uniform, Hush Puppies Lexi Uniform Mary Jane will be accepted. It features no fancy design or colors and so will fit any uniform. The pair is among some of the lower-end collections in this list with a long lifespan.

6. Geox Toddler/Little Kid W.Snake Mocassino Hook-and-Loop Shoe

Geox Toddler/Little Kid W.Snake Mocassino Hook-and-Loop Shoe

Just because a shoe is meant for school doesn’t mean it should lack in design. Geox W.Snake Mocassino Hook-and-Loop is one of the coolest back-to-school shoes in this review worth considering.

The shoe is made from 100% leather with a rubber sole that has some serious tread beneath it and can absorb shocks. You’ll be sure your kid won’t slide and break a leg or arm while wearing this pair. Some mild padding can be spotted on the collar and interior linings.

At first glance, Geox W.Snake Mocassino Hook-and-Loop Shoe may come off as a rigid shoe, but that’s not the case. The interior delivers a gentle feel to the feet so the kid can concentrate on what is important. The Velcro fabric used for securing the shoe is strong and makes for easy on and off.

Top Features:

The main features of this Geox Shoe include:

  • 100% leather
  • Italian patent
  • Durable rubber sole
  • Velcro closure
  • Available in three colors: Black, Black Oxford, and Navy

Pros:

Some of the advantages of buying this shoe include:

  • It has optimal breathability.
  • It features a shock-absorbing outsole.
  • It’s of durable construction.
  • It is an Italian patent shoe.
  • It is affordable.

Cons:

There are a couple of things that might disappoint you about this shoe:

  • It doesn’t have comfort-enhancing features like an EVA insole.
  • It is not true to size.

If your child insists on a good-looking school shoe, then look no further than Geox Toddler/Little Kid W.Snake Mocassino Hook-and-Loop Shoe. With an exclusive Italian patent, your child will be confident enough to face every occasion and event in style. The pair lasts longer and is inexpensive compared to similar competing styles.

7. Keds Daphne T-Strap Sneaker (Toddler/Little Kid)

Keds Daphne T-Strap Sneaker (Toddler/Little Kid)

Keds Daphne T-Strap is a colorful sneaker for school kids that takes into account the comfort requirements for little ones. The interior is lined with soft fabrics to maximize comfort. The top leather is of medium quality to allow for easy flexibility.

The rubber sole has been crafted skillfully to include deep flex grooves that keep the feet firmly on the ground. The memory foam layer on the footbed enhances the plush feeling which, in turn, contributes to healthy feet growth.

The T-strap closure mechanism is ideal for kids. If the shoe accidentally comes off, they can easily put it on and fasten it up faster than they can do the lace-up system. Kids tend to be selective when it comes to looks. Thankfully, the Keds Daphne T-Strap Sneaker comes in over ten colors, making it possible to get a pair that will please your little champ.

Top Features:

Here is a rundown of the main features of the Keds Daphne T-Strap Sneaker:

  • Made from leather
  • Rubber outsole
  • Memory foam footbed
  • T-strap closure
  • Available in over ten colors

Pros:

Some of the pros of this little kids’ shoe include:

  • It has better traction for stability.
  • It is a medium price shoe.
  • It has colorful designs.
  • Its T-strap closure system makes for quick off/on.
  • It is comfortable.

Cons:

One thing that may bring down this shoe’s perfection includes:

  • It is not true to size.

The availability of Keds Daphne T-Strap Sneaker in many colors is a real blessing to parents with kids who are picky. The shoe doesn’t cost much, and given the stellar customer feedback it has received on various platforms, it’s perfectly okay to say that it delivers the best experience to school-going kids.

What to Consider When Buying the Best School Shoes

When shopping for the best school shoes, you need to take the time to decide on what type of shoe you need. It’s not hard, but when done in a rush, you may end up buying the wrong shoe that your student doesn’t want. Sure, you can send it back for a replacement, but you will lose time and money in return shipping costs.

So before checking out that pair of shoes you want for your school-age student, here are a few things you need to pay attention to in order to get the best school shoes.

Size

Frankly, you cannot afford to overlook the sizing of a shoe as you would end up with a pair that is either too small or too big. Ending up with the wrong shoe size means an uncomfortable time in class; even walking from one place to another can be a pain.

Therefore, when placing an order for school shoes online, make sure to request the size that comfortably fits you or your student. Check the “fits as expected” feature; those below 80% tend to disappoint.

Fit

The shoe must fit properly to allow for comfortable use. At the end of the day when the shoes are taken off, the feet should not hurt. Good school shoes must leave an allowance of ¼ between the toe and the toe cap.

Quality

Quality is an essential aspect to consider. Money is hard to come by, and that means the shoe you buy must last for at least several months, if not years. The nature of the material should give you a rough idea of the shoe’s longevity. Leather lasts longer followed by suede, and then other fabrics come last.

Heel Height

This is one of the most ignored aspects in a shoe. A shoe with a proper heel height can eliminate foot pain and other issues such as calluses. Some people find slightly raised heels to be forgiving while others love the slightly heeled ones. Choose shoes with the appropriate heel height.

Comfort

The best shoes for high school students must include an element of comfort in them. Otherwise, a student could spend the entire lesson focusing on foot pain and not concentrating on what is being taught.

Comfortable shoes have some paddings on the collar and tongue. Things like memory foam footbed, EVA midsole, and soft material promote comfort in shoes as well.

Cost

If money is not an issue for your family, ignore this point. However, if you are budget conscious, you need to go for a shoe that you can afford. Note that no one is advising you to penny-pinch. Usually, the pricier the shoe, the longer it lasts, although, of course, it is not always the case.

Extra Tips for Buying the Best School Shoes

You already know what to look for when buying school shoes, but the checklist above only gives you a handful of ideas to help you make better purchasing decisions. Here are a few more tips you can look into to ensure you get the best pair of school shoes.

1. Don’t buy used shoes.

Hand-me-down shoes and those from consignment shops provide a great chance to save a few dollars. The problem, however, is such shoes have a high chance of carrying bacteria and fungus. Additionally, they have lost all the cushioning and padding and thus may be extremely uncomfortable.

2. Buy shoes that don’t need to be broken in.

Unless you are buying it a little early, there is no point in buying a shoe that demands to be broken in. It’s an uncomfortable experience squeezing your toes against the shoe each day waiting for them to expand. The best back-to-school shoes are the ones that come ready to be worn.

3. Shop with the wearer.

If you are shopping for your son, daughter, or a friend, make sure they are around to select the style and design that suits their taste. This will also help in getting the right size and avoid the long waits associated with returned products.

4. Consider the sole quality.

There are several important things to check out in a sole. First, you need to make sure it's non-slip. Students walk and run around all day, and having a non-slip sole prevents accidents. It should also flex and offer support to the foot’s arch. Finally, consider the material as it determines how long the shoe will last.

5. Consider adding special features.

To some people, a shoe is simply something to put on. To others, comfort, design, and unique additions such as a midsole, insole, cushion pads, and breathable mesh linings mean a lot. Make sure to consider these special features as they add comfort to the shoe.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are a few FAQs that can help you get a clear picture on your hunt for the best school shoes.

Q: What is the best shoe for school?

A: The best shoe is the one that fits the user perfectly, offers maximum protection, lasts longer, and doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. Some of the best options in this review include Chuck Taylor All Star, Vans, and Stride Rite Claire Mary Jane.

Q: How many pairs of school shoes should one own?

A: More than one pair, definitely. Students should have shoes for different occasions and activities like soccer, baseball, etc.

Q: How much do you need to pay for school shoes?

A: It’s a bad idea to obsess over cheap quality pairs when you can comfortably afford top-level collections. Expensive shoes tend to be multi-purpose and longer-lasting.

Q: What are the most appropriate shoes for a school uniform?

A: This can vary depending on the school. Nevertheless, closed black or brown/dark brown shoes in moccasin or oxford are the most preferred. Check the school dress code policy before buying anything.

Q: How long do school shoes last?

A: This will depend on the quality of the shoe and how often it is used. Poor quality shoes and those that are worn on a daily basis can last less than six months. Also, proper maintenance goes a long way in lengthening a shoe’s lifespan.

Conclusion

The beginning of a new school session needs to be greeted with a new set of stuff, like a new school bag, new clothes, and of course, new school shoes. Having new gear usually motivates students to go back to school. For those hunting for footwear, this article has outlined some of the best school shoes on the market today.

Students spend over 30 hours in school, walking from one place to another. It can get uncomfortable if the shoes they are wearing is of a mediocre quality. When you are buying school shoes for your kids or for yourself, do not make price the number one factor for decision making. Choose the best school shoes based on durability and comfort level

If there is any shoe we’ve missed that deserves to be in this list of the best school shoes on the market today, feel free to share it in the comment section below.

Robert Hallman
 

Robert Hallman is a sports enthusiast, writer, blogger & chief editor at Sportsly.NET. He haled from Big Lake, Texas. He is a regular sportsman and sports is his passion of life! He also loves to play all types of exotic sports, test different types of sports gears.

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