The Best White Sneaker Brands On Earth (According To Esquire Editors)
You want the best. And heck, you deserve the best. But there's a lot of choices out there, and sometimes the best is hard to find. Fortunately, we know where to find it. Every week, the Esquire editors reveal their favorite brands, from under-the-radar steals to luxury loves, so you can invest in the best clothes, watches, and accessories that money can buy. This week, the summer essential that keeps on giving: it's the immaculate white sneaker.
Murray Clark, digital style editor
Reebok Workout Plus at reebok.co.uk
"The chunky, swollen trainer: a thing of the past, sneakerheads cry. Déclassé! Redundant! Done! And yet, before Balenciaga, pre-Gucci and long before the days of Margiela, Reebok Classics was doing the big and bouncy sneaker – and they were doing it without the ugly part.
"Better yet, the paneled white leather Workout Plus has outlived them, now sitting as pretty with white socks, cropped black trousers and a simple T-shirt as they do the Nineties tracksuits of pre-fire regulation yore (yes, I still like those a lot too). I'll take that over a Mondrian hoof any day."
Finlay Renwick, deputy style editor
Novesta Star Master Monochrome (£49) at endclothing.com
"OK: so my favorite white trainers aren’t technically white, they’re more on the beige-ecru spectrum, but who’s really counting? Made by Novesta, a Slovakian brand that has been around since 1939, the Star Master is somewhere in between a German army trainer and a classic plimsoll, with a cotton-canvas upper, a chunky sole, and signature vulcanization marks around the middle. They’re just the right profile: light, super comfortable and cost less than £50. They can also handle a go in the washing machine.
"I think spending big money on white trainers is a fool’s errand. Buying a pair of Novestas? Quite the opposite."
Olivia Ovenden, senior digital writer
Veja White Esplar Trainers at mrporter.com
"No other trainer will make you feel like more of an everyday hero. While sustainability is often a box ticking afterthought for brands, Veja has built a company around making trainers with responsibly-sourced materials that still look every bit as sleek as their competitors.
"Their Esplar rubber-trimmed leather sneakers are less chunky than some of the round-toed white trainers you’ll find, but not so narrow as to compromise comfort. And as the hardest working item in a man's wardrobe, Veja's cost-per-wear makes the already reasonable price tag a steal. You won't need to tell everyone you're saving the world either, as the V on the trainers also stands for Very Good Man Indeed."
Tom Nicholson, digital writer
Tretorn Nylite Classic White Trainers at tretorn.com
"Meteorologically, the first day of summer is 1 June. Spiritually, it’s the day you first slip into a pair of canvas trainers. It’s a big moment. Suddenly every grass verge is freshly cut, all your friends are in the same beer garden as you, and you’re holding a Calippo in each hand. It's summer.
"Swedish brand Tretorn has been there since the very beginning of trainer culture – Victorian sneakerheads were copping them in 1900 – and these days it's locally-sourced materials boast solid green credentials too. The Nylites’ chunked-up outersole is the little tweak that makes these summer essentials."
Adidas Stan Smith
Dan Choppen, fashion assistant
Adidas Stan Smiths at endclothing.com
"I'm rather lazy with footwear, especially in the summer months – but that's because I can be lazy with Adidas Stan Smith. An iconic sneaker that has stood the test of time, you can style them with anything (and I mean anything): an unstructured suit, any shade denim, pleated trousers, gym gear. Stan always works.
"They're comfy too, and sturdy, and still as effective beaten-up as they are box fresh. Quite frankly, I blame Adidas for my apathy."
Nick Pope, deputy digital editor
Common Projects Original Achilles Trainers at matchesfashion.com
"In his 1877 epic Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy warned that ‘if you look for perfection, you’ll never be content.’ The wise words of a genius, undoubtedly – but also the words of a man who never slipped on a pair of Common Projects Achilles low-tops.
"For that reason, his opinion is null and void. Because the Italian/American brand’s cult sneaker is as close to minimalist perfection as it gets. The crisp white design – interrupted only by gold numbers stamped onto the outer heel of each shoe – is combined with top-quality construction to create the most versatile sneaker on the market. They come with a hefty price-tag, but they’ll be your go-to trainer for years if you treat them right."
This story originally appeared on Esquire.co.uk. Minor edits have been made by the Esquiremag.ph editors.