Best Espadrilles Reviewed for Performance & Style
Let’s face it: everyone needs a pair of shoes that can do almost anything. We need something comfortable so that if need be, we can be on our feet all day. And we also want to look stylish. That’s why we all have at least one pair of sneakers in our wardrobe.
The term ‘sneakers’ (also called espadrilles, runners, athletic footwear, gym footwear… and the list goes on) usually describes a shoe that has a flexible outsole made of rubber or synthetic materials, and an upper part made of leather or synthetic materials. The actual word ‘sneakers’ only made its appearance in America around the turn of the 20th century.
- Nautica Curia Espadrille
- Classic Style
- Great For Summer
- 1.4.3. Girl Island Espadrille
- Unique Design
- Comfortable Accurate Fit
- Sea Star Beachwear Beachcomber Espadrille
- Made For Water
- Lightweight and Flexible
The colors and styles vary from one company to the other and one model to another. There are also several types of sneakers, such as high-tops that cover the ankles (the famous Converse), sneaker boots that rise up to the calf, low-tops (or oxfords), mid-cut sneakers, slip-ons, low-top CVO (Circular Vamp Oxford) and high-top CVO.
10 Best Espadrilles
1. Nautica Curia Espadrille
This is an open-toe wedge style so there needs to be an extra support to keep your feet stabilize. These wedges are equipped with a strap that is doubled. The bottom strap wraps around your heel and the top strap wraps around your ankle and is adjustable. Not only will you have a stability but you’ll have a customized fit too.
A lot of footwear can only be worn with certain outfits or clothing pieces. These can be worn with virtually anything. Think about the endless options: Skinny jeans, summer dresses, denim skirts, and so much more. You can also wear these to cookouts at the park or your office job.
Cost and Value
Mid-price range and great for the spring/summer seasons. What makes these so worthwhile is their ability to be worn with anything, anywhere. You have a wardrobe staple that will last you for years and years.
True to size
Great quality material
Tightly woven stitching
No half sizes
2. 143 Girl Island Espadrille
Maybe it’s a casual day at the office or you want to take it easy on a weekend outing. No matter the occasion, you have a style that is simple, easy, and will blend easily in all casual settings. You’ll still be fashionable no matter what.
The most uncomfortable thing ever is having a toe-box that cramps your toes. These ones have a rounded toe and that provides you with extra wiggle room while remaining stylish.
Cost and Value
Very low-priced so this an affordable option for those of you on a budget. Once again, this is strictly for casual, light activity wear so anything more could wear them out quickly.
Bright, sparkle color
Exposed stitching inside
3. Sea Star Beachwear Beachcomber Espadrille
The construction is the material neoprene. Neoprene is a synthetic material that is very resistant to liquids and various temperatures. When it comes in contact with water, it quickly dries within fifteen minutes, saving you time when you need it most.
Fit For Comfort
A lot of flats have little to no support for your feet. Not only is the neoprene upper flexible and soft, the rubber deck outsole is thick enough to provide cushioning without weighing you down. These can be worn all day.
Cost and Value
Higher priced but these are specially made for water activities. It’s not a pair you would wear everyday or everywhere. If you want a beach, pool, or even water park footwear that’ll keep your feet dry while supporting them, these are for you.
Water release outlets
Water environments, activities
No half sizes
Sizing runs small
4. Jessica Simpson Sirella Espadrille
A lot of footwear is stylish but lack support. The Sirella comes equipped with a memory foam insole. This gives you foot support that conforms to the special shape of your feet providing you with natural, all-day comfort that fits you.
The wedge has no heel straps or ankle straps so you can just slip them on and off. This is great for individuals who find straps to be a nuisance and want an easier time wearing such footwear.
Cost and Value
The cost is $70.00. It’s a higher end but when you consider the brand plus the style, it makes perfect cents. This isn’t a pair you would wear every day so you’ll receive long-term usage from them.
Great for summer
Wide foot support
Supportive memory foam
Comfortable and flattering
5. Fashion Thirsty Gold Stud Espadrille
Many espadrilles come in a uniform design but these are very stylish without overwhelming the rest of your outfit. From essentials primaries to cutesy pastels, you have a decent color selection. Regardless of your color choice, each pair has a detail of gold studs to give an edge that stands out.
The espadrille-style is usually an easy slip-on and slip-off. For some, that’s all they need but having an ankle strap can provide a better secure fit and have more of a fashionable appeal.
Cost and Value
The cost is $18.99 making them one of the cheapest on the list but the construction is far from cheap. Reviewers speak about the comfort and quality that you’ll receive. Also, you don’t have to spend a lot on a good looking pair of footwear.
Velcro strap available
Goes with every outfit
Adjustable ankle strap
Sizing runs small
6. Nature Breeze Casual Espadrille
Straps can make any open-toed shoes look great but they can also cause discomfort. These straps being elastic gently hold your feet in place while also being able to confirm which is great for any swelling from all day walking. Also, they do not rub or dig in your skin.
A lot of espadrilles fall flat on support but these have an espadrille outsole and midsole for extra comfort. The insole is padded gives your feet even more support. You’ll never run tired in these.
Cost and Value
Depending on the selection, these will cost you anywhere between $30.00 and $39.99. The style is an easy to wear look that will go with anything so these can be your one-stop shoes. If any feature should convince you to buy, it should be the comfort and support and that can run expensive with other brands and styles.
Elastic shoe straps
Insoles are padded
Sole is stiff
Sizing runs large
7. TOMS Classics
Suede is arguably the best footbed material as it is lightweight, breathable, and durable. The Suede molds into your feet to ensure comfort when wearing these espadrilles.
This shoe might look casual, but it also wears casual. The complete canvas design means you can wear these shoes anywhere without worry, from the park to the beach. These casual shoes will look great with any type of apparel.
Cost and Value
The TOMS Classics vary in price and can seem expensive upon first glance, but once you see how versatile in functionality the TOMS is, the price becomes reasonable and well worth it for this casual espadrille shoe.
Not ideal for wide feet
8. VISCATA Pubol Espadrille
The majority of espadrilles are of synthetic construction. The Pubol is made of materials that are natural. The upper is a cotton canvas with a lining that is leather. The outsole is a natural rubber and the other soles are pure jute. To make it even more natural, every pair is crafted by hands.
No bulky, boring, or old looking comfort here. It’s a wedge but it’s only at two inches giving you a heel attire that doesn’t hurt your feet. The insole has a soft padding and you’ll have a cloud-like feeling when you walk. Lastly, the ankle strap is easy to use and has buckle holes large enough for the prong to fit but small enough to stay put.
Cost and Value
These are a luxury brand so the price is higher ranging between $74.95 and $84.95 depending on selection. When you consider, however, how they are made and materials used to give you the greatest quality, the cost might just be well worth it.
No toe rubbing
Easy heel height
Rich sparkly colors
Soft and plushy insert
Reports of buckle breaking
9. 206 Collective Braylon Espadrille
The Braylon can be worn with any outfit. Denim jeans, slacks, shorts, dresses and even skirts. Okay, you maybe wouldn’t wear them with a three-piece suit but if you work in a casual environment, then they can blend in easily. Fits great with cotton-based clothing.
These are great for those summer days. Maybe you’re going to the park or a celebration cookout, these shoes will fit perfectly for the occasion. Also, if you’re planning on boating out on the lake, these can be a great option too.
Cost and Value
Higher priced at $65.00 and while there aren’t any special features that might justify the price, the fabric quality (silk-like) and the high-end style could be worth it to you. These are made to last and can be worn anywhere with virtually every outfit.
Sole is non-slip
Eye-catching in person
Slight glossy appearance
Sizing is narrow
Not for wide feet
10. London Fog Pickwick Espadrille
There is no buckle on the heel/ankle strap because these shoes are slip-on. The straps are stretchable enough for you to stretch out to slip on your footwear. This is a great option for anyone that doesn’t want to be bothered with cumbersome buckles.
For most espadrilles, the detail is in the espadrille material itself but the Pickwick gives you extra detail in the straps. There are mini, rectangle-like cutouts that give the footwear character and personality. It’s a great way to add extra fashion while still remaining simple and unassuming.
Cost and Value
For such a fashionable model, they are very affordable in the $34.98 to $39.98 range. These are best for evening wear or occasions that require a bit more dress but these can go great casual too.
Attention to detail
Only one color
In conclusion, sneakers come in all shapes and sizes. Some run small and others run true to size. The colors may vary, and some companies might offer more color schemes than others. But at the end of the day, the first thing you have to think about is what you’re planning to do with your sneakers. If you think about being up all day for hours at a time, then maybe a sneaker with arch support and comfortable insoles is what you should be looking for. The same thing goes if you want to wear them mainly to the gym, then ankle support should be your priority. There’s no question that style should be important, but your feet carry you all day long so don’t forget to take care of them!
Criteria for Selecting the Best Espadrilles
Size & Fit
With every pair of quality sneakers comes a precise size and fit. That’s why choosing the correct size for your foot in an espadrille or sneaker is imperative when looking for the perfect pair. It is highly important that you become familiar with sizes before you shop, as—most of the time—sizes can vary when shopping online and going in blind is often dangerous. We’ve got your back, however, with a small guide on how to choose sizes and the different types of sizes for each footwear.
Believe it or not, there are many different types of them, ranging from closed-toe, open-toe, and sneakers. Each type, however, fits differently depending on the size and shape of your foot. Thankfully, there is a general rule of thumb on choosing sizes for specific types such as the leather and the suede ones.
For leather sneakers, size up; it is imperative to understand that all of them—open toe and closed toe—are quite narrow. If you are someone who has wider feet than the average, it’s always the best call to size up to avoid any unnecessary pain. Suede sneakers fit similarly to leather ones, in that you should always go half a size up. Canvas ones are often similar, but there can be some slight variations. They are one of the tightest types and always run a half size smaller so it is crucial to go with a larger size when buying online. Some that are a mix—for example a leather body and canvas toe-cap—run a full size smaller. The moral of the story: these sneakers are tight, so buying half to one full size up is always a smart idea.
They should never slip at the heel. Like any other footwear, if they slip at the heel, they are too big and it is often dangerous to walk in them. They should fit with a precise and snug feel, with no looseness to be found except in the toe-box. You should never size up to feel loose. They must feel snug in your heel but not too tight to cramp your toes. There are few specific types such as the Chanel ones which will stretch out after wearing, making buying the actual or smaller size a better decision.
Breaking in them can be one of the hardest parts. When you get your first pair, you may find that they are difficult to get on; no-lace closed-toe ones are often tight and narrow, making the first time wear a tight squeeze. There is, however, a correct way of putting them on for the first time that may reduce all the hassle: first, slide your foot into them and over the heel area. Try to wiggle your foot as far back as you can and then pull the heel area out from the back of your heel. This way, your foot isn’t forced into the footbed and you aren’t crushing the fabric by yanking the heel area.
You may never have even heard of one, but shoe stretchers are a thing. And they are important to use regularly on them if you aren’t wearing them often. They work by stretching and reshaping the shoe, relieving pressure sites and target tight or painful areas that could cause blisters. If you are an average collector, and are interested in buying a lot of them but can’t wear them all weekly, it would be smart to invest in a wooden shoe stretcher that will keep your sneakers long and lasting. They sell for as little as $20 on Amazon.
All in all, although they can vary in size, sneakers are narrow and, unless you are going for Chanel or something of similar design, it is imperative that you often buy a half size up. Although footwear that is too loose is never good, a pair that is tight and causes blisters is even worse. The sizing and fit are imperative for a great experience.
- You need to know your proper size and fit to receive a great wearing espadrille.
- They come in different constructions, designs, and styles so fit can vary but it isn’t usually too much of a difference. They do have the tendency to run narrow and wide feet people usually can’t wear them. It’s best to go either half a size of a full size up.
- Leather, suede, and canvas are the most common materials for espadrille construction and such materials are usually tighter fitting so take note of that as well.
- The fit should be snug and there should be no slippage and loose feeling but some of them will stretch out over time.There is usually a break-in period as well.
- Shoe stretchers, especially wooden, can be a great choice to create more room in them.
This category can be one of the most diverse in the industry. There are tons of different designs and sub-categories, and the very term can range from high-heels to sneakers. There are, however, a few basic types that you should familiarize yourself with before buying.
Espadrille flats are the most common and comfortable among types. These flat-heel ones are popular and are often easy to wear and won’t cause any pain experienced from high-heels or wedges. Sneakers, casual, navy, and street shoes all fall into this category of flats. Flats are most often made of cotton or linen—natural elements that are conserving and environmentally friendly. Fashion-wise, flats go fantastic with dresses of any kind, and you can fit them with skinny jeans, shorts, or skirts.
Wedge ones are the second type. These ones have only recently been adopted into the market and have grown a big fan base, as they include all the needs of typical ones while also adding the sophistication and luxury of a high-heel. Wedges look elegant and are often designed with an open-toe shape. Wedge ones can be a mix of casual and professional tone, so they are great for your everyday use but can also be worn to anything formal or work-related.
In addition to flats and wedges, they also come in open-toe and closed-toe platforms. Open ones give off a fun and fresh image, but they are often less comfortable with a less supported arch and footbed, while also fitting less snug. Closed ones are more professional-looking. They are polished and often luxurious if paired with a high-heel style. If you’re looking for more of a strong and sound impression rather than a casual, fresh one, closed toed ones are the best to portray your personality. If you have any type of foot pain problems such as Plantar Fasciitis or toe fungus, it is always better to wear closed toe ones with a supporting footbed.
There are also the obscure terms that you may not yet be familiar with. For example, what in the world is a jute? Jute is a term used a lot when talking about this type of footwear. The Jute, in actuality, is a plant from the mallow family cultivated in tropical regions. It is also the name of the fiber extracted from the plant used to make a natural, elegant textile. The soles of these sneakers are often made using jute.
Although new fabric types are chosen each year given the current trend, jute has always been an iconic fabric used in them. The use of natural fabrics can make them extremely lightweight and breathable. This makes them ideal in warm weather and the footwear is now present all across the world. When buying, you should always look for natural and quality material such as Jute and linen for the fabric and outsole.
Considering all the different types, choosing one that fits your lifestyle is the most essential part. Wedges and closed-toe ones are for more formal occasions while open-toed flats can be worn in casual settings or at home. The fabric should generally be a quality material such as jute and leather. It is best to avoid cheap, short-lasting materials such as plastic.
- They are very diverse with various designs and a significant number of specialized categories.
- There are, however, certain types that are the most common. Flats, wedges, and platforms are common and there are options of open-toe and closed-toe in all three.
- Flats are the most popular and are easy to wear and are made for everyday wear and can usually be worn everywhere with virtually everything. Flats are usually constructed with cotton or linen.
- Wedges have a popular fan base and are a great dressy option. Some are even very luxurious and can give great sex appeal. They can be profession or casual, open-toe or close-toe, and can be worn for special occasions or everyday wear.
- Platforms are another an option and can be fun to wear but also very rigid and sometimes uncomfortable. They usually fit better in more casual settings but some can be worn in the workplace without being obnoxious.
- Jute is the fiber the espadrille textile is constructed from and is very breathable and lightweight.
Cushion and Comfort
Similar to the design of many other types of footwear, they can also be taken apart in the following parts: outsole, midsole, insole, tongue, and ankle. Each of these portions can have padding that can cushion your foot and highly increase the level of comfort. Especially in these ones—where tightness and narrow width are common—the padding can be imperative to avoid blisters and other injuries.
The padding on the tongue and ankle is important to keep your foot from abrasively rubbing the sneaker. Especially in high-heels or wedges, padding can be the difference between a great experience and painful bruises.
The midsole is the portion of the shoe where padding and design are essential. The midsole’s functionality makes each pair feel different. Some can be more flexible while others can be softer. Each midsole, however, must be able to control excessive amounts of movement. EVA padding is a type of foam that is lightweight and ideal for sneakers or flats. There are also others, however, that can use gel, foam, or other materials for padding, making the midsole more durable but less comfortable.
But ones with too much padding are also bad. Excessive padding can lead to low amounts of breathability in the shoe, potentially causing toe-fungus or blisters. A good balance of cushion and breathability is the key to finding a comfortable espadrille. For those with a removable footbed, it is ideal to replace the sole every 3-6 months to avoid flattening the EVA or another type of soles.
There are also many benefits in using orthopedic cushions if you have injuries such as Plantar Fasciitis. These types of cushions can absorb shock and prevent injuries relating to the heel or ankle. Accommodative orthotics are prescription foowear that already has inserts to provide cushion and comfort. Functional orthotics are over-the-counter insoles that have padding to control abnormal movement in the foot, preventing foot pain and injuries. Functional orthotics can be bought in a plethora of online stores by searching for models that are designed for heel or ankle injuries.
- They have the following shoe parts: Ankle, insole, midsole, outsole, and tongue. Each part can have cushioning and padding to help increase comfort.
- Tongue padding reduces rubbing. Midsole padding gives better feel and durability. There shouldn’t be too much padding as it can reduce breathability and make the shoe even more uncomfortable than intended.
- Some of them have orthopedic cushioning and some allow for orthopedic inserts.
Care and Cleaning
While it’s crucial to choose the best pair for you, it is also important to know how to maintain them. Depending on the material, there are different ways of ensuring that they are long-lasting.
For leather models, make sure they are out of the sunlight. Leather footwear—like leather bags or clothes—can dry and get tan under the sunlight, causing the fabric to change color and become fragile. Black leather can tan to dark brown over long periods of time, causing them to loose their sleek style. If you aren’t wearing your pair, make sure to store them and gently stuff them with tissues to hold their shape. They have a tendency to reshape when not worn in a long time, causing the need for shoe stretchers. To prevent this, use tissues or a cedar shoe tree, which is a device that retains a shoe shape, moisture, and odor. It is also important to polish your leather pair for them to keep their shine.
For canvas ones, you can use a protective spray that keeps them from picking up dirt or moisture. A common causation of bad shoe care is the edges of the espadrille fraying. This can be prevented by using an anti-fray product.
Canvas, leather, and jute: these are the most popular materials used and cleaning them should be a common knowledge among espadrille buyers. One imperative rule is to avoid soaking them when cleaning. Large amounts of water can ruin the shoe entirely because the moisture penetrates the sole and these fabrics take quite awhile to fully dry. It is also crucial that you do not throw them in the washer, which is another way to ruin them.
To begin cleaning your footwear: use either a cloth or a specialty brush to remove any dirt or debris from the exterior.
Second: use a cleaner to help remove any stuck on dirt or staining from them.
Third: leave them out to dry before you wear them again. If they aren’t completely dry, it can end up deforming in shape and size. White ones made of canvas uppers can be left out outside to dry, but other types should be kept in the shade to prevent color change.
For jute soles, it is of great importance that you don’t let jute soles get wet since they are sensitive and take several days to dry completely. Removing them before cleaning and then using a protective spray is the best way to care for jute insoles.
Lastly, it is important to note just how important it is not only to buy the best ones for you but to maintain them in the best way possible. If you follow our steps in cleaning and maintaining, yours will certainly last to their maximum span.
- While it’s crucial to choose the best pair, it is also important to know how to maintain them. Depending on the material, there are different ways of ensuring that they are long-lasting.
- They need care in order to last longer. The material determines the care factor.
- Leather will dry out and turn color over a period of time especially if in direct sunlight a lot and can reshape as well. Canvas collects a lot of dirt and moisture so protective measures such as sprays or creams for the canvas should be considered. Keep an eye on fraying too. Jute does not mesh well with water and can take a long time to dry.
- Try to avoid water contact with them unless the model is specifically constructed for water contact. They take longer to dry out and do not wash them in the washer either.
- Cloth, specialty brushes, and cleaner made for espadrille material works just fine.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: What types of espadrilles are there?
A: There are two general types: flats and wedges. Flats often include sneakers and sandals while wedges include mid and high-heels. Flats and wedges can come in a variety of open-toed, closed-toed, open-lace, no-lace, etc. styles.
Q: How do I choose the right size?
A: Espadrilles are particularly tight and narrow, so to ensure proper fit it is best to choose 0.5 to 1 size up.
Q: How can I make sure they retain shape?
A: Make sure to stuff tissues when storing them for long periods of time without wear. It is also optional to invest in a shoe stretcher.
Q: Should I choose open-toed or closed-toed ones? Wedges or flats?
A: It depends on what type of style you wish to give off. For a formal style, closed-toe and wedges or high-heels are the best choice, as they give off an elegant, ravishing tone. For a casual look, open-toed flats such as sandals should do the trick.
Q: How do I clean my pair?
A: Although this depends on the type of fabric, most of them are made of leather, canvas, or jute, and these all can be cleaned by first using a cleaning brush to remove surface dirt, and then using a cleaning form to remove excess dirt and creases, and then allowing the shoe to dry.
Q: Should I dry them in sunlight or shade?
A: Always dry them in the shade because the sunlight will bleach the color of the shoe, especially if the shoe is of leather material.
Q: Should I wash my jute soles?
A: For jute insoles, if they are removable you should always leave them out of the shoe before washing as they are sensitive and take longer periods to dry. Protective sprays can be used to ensure your jute insoles stay durable.
Q: What are EVA soles?
A: EVA stands for Ethylene Vinyl Acetate and is the most common soles used in espadrilles sneakers. EVA soles are lightweight, breathable, and provide one of the best shock-absorbing paddings in the market.
Q: Should I look for breathable or comfortable ones?
A: With every aspect, there comes a sacrifice. Breathable ones are often uncomfortable because they lack the required padding. Comfort ones often have excess padding and have problems with breathability. It is important to find a balance between both to prevent injuries such as heel pain or toe fungus.