Gotta make my mind up: which slip-ons should I buy?
May 21, 2011 7:26 PM   Subscribe

I'm tired of my shoes wearing out every six months. Are Vans slip-ons worth the extra cost vs. Payless Airwalk? Is there a cheap, durable alternative that I haven't considered?

I've been wearing the women's equivalent of these Payless Airwalk slip-ons for years, getting them for ~$11 when they're on sale at my local Payless. They are super comfortable, but I only get six months at best before there are holes in the bottom that let water and pebbles and what-not in.

So I'm considering getting something like these Vans, especially if I can find them discounted somewhere. But are they actually better/more durable, or would I just be paying for the name? Does any have any other suggestions for reasonably priced, comfy, durable slip-ons? For the record, I don't skate; these would just be my normal shoes.
posted by randomname25 to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (14 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Try the Vans outlet stores or (lots of $25 Vans on there).

But overall, I've had 2 pairs of the plan Vans slip ons for ~5 years. Granted, they're not my every-single-day shoes, but there have been periods of time where they are. Overall they've held up very well.

Some people have wide feet and you see the fabric wearing at the edges though.

They'll certainly last you more than 6 months, which would make them worth it, I think.

I've had Converse All-Stars (Chuck Taylors) last for less time, although I wear those much more frequently.

Honestly, I would not recommend slip ons like these as every-single-day shoes. Your feet probably deserve more support.
posted by k8t at 7:39 PM on May 21, 2011

$11 for 6 months of shoes that are getting daily wear is a great deal. Dollar for dollar my Vans give me less wear, so I'd stick with your current plan.
posted by telegraph at 7:45 PM on May 21, 2011

Best answer: I too use the Payless Airwalks for daily use, and bought some Vans at a discount a while back and wore them daily. They didn't last any longer.
posted by Anonymous at 7:51 PM on May 21, 2011

Hmm, I think I'm going to start getting those Airwalks! I wear the Vans slip-ons for work, and they don't last much more than six months, either. And they're $15 more expensive.
posted by prior at 7:56 PM on May 21, 2011

Response by poster: Alright, consensus here seems to be that I would just be paying more for the brand, and that I'm already getting a good deal. Thanks everyone!
posted by randomname25 at 8:11 PM on May 21, 2011

Six months for a shoe worn every day that isn't high-quality leather and isn't rotated is going to be about normal. If you want to prolong your shoe life, buy two pairs and rotate them; they should last more than 12 months that way.
posted by DarlingBri at 8:38 PM on May 21, 2011 [2 favorites]

Yeah. Six months for daily wear is not all that atypical depending on your usage pattern. You're paying less than $2/month for a critical item you wear every day to protect your feet. Seems like a pretty darn good value to me. Makes a Netflix subscription seem hideously expensive.
posted by zachlipton at 9:28 PM on May 21, 2011

An alternate would be to invest in an expensive brand like Clarks. I wear mine almost everyday and only recently replaced it after 5 years.
posted by infini at 1:58 AM on May 22, 2011

I buy my shoes from thrift stores - and I have had used Clarks lasted for 2 years.
posted by jb at 6:26 AM on May 22, 2011

I have to say absolutely worth the cost. I didn't realize what I was missing until I picked up a pair of Vans slip-ons. They are my main shoe. I have one pair I've had for three years and they just about a month ago started getting a little hole in the toe.

That said, I always buy at the Vans outlet near me (I have three pairs now and have converted two others to the brand). For me though, I never thought the Airwalk version was quite comfortable, I was blown away that people could just wear vans all the time. Then I got a pair. I now understand.
posted by magnetsphere at 8:18 AM on May 22, 2011

Best answer: I'm a former frequent Payless customer, not quite so much anymore. There's nearly always a noticeable leap in quality when you upgrade from supercheap shoes to the $50-60 range. You're hardly ever just paying for the name with shoes at that price. However, the difference in quality is probably the smallest with casual, non-athletic, non-leather shoes like the Airwalks.

I agree that six months is the average lifespan for just about any shoe you wear daily. My commute shoes tend to fall apart at the six-month mark, no matter the brand. I usually buy nicer brands on sale, though, because they're often more comfortable and they hold up better until the falling-apart point, if that makes any sense. With cheap shoes you can see it coming; with better shoes you look down one day and realize you no longer have any treads.

It sounds like you're perfectly happy with the Airwalks aside from their short life, so I'd say keep wearing 'em.
posted by Metroid Baby at 8:55 AM on May 22, 2011

with better shoes you look down one day and realize you no longer have any treads.

Agree :) Felt the thick rubber sole suddenly let the slushy snow in one day and saw a triangular weird hole that had given way along the edges of the tread design...
posted by infini at 11:07 AM on May 22, 2011

still going strong after 11 years. Vans.
posted by lowdirt at 11:19 AM on May 22, 2011 [3 favorites]

Don't wear Converse. I do, and they wear out every 6 months.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 10:23 PM on May 22, 2011

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