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The Best Kid Shoes - 2020

Last updated on October 30, 2020

We looked at the top 7 Kids Shoes and dug through the reviews from 36 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best Kids Shoes.

Best Kid Shoes

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Our Picks For The Top Kids Shoes

Show Contents
Our Take
Experts Included
Pros
Cons
  Best Overall

Under Armour Assert 8 Alternate Closure Kid Shoes

Under Armour

Assert 8 Alternate Closure Kid Shoes

Overall Take

Multiple Color OptionsYou'll find these kid shoes are available in 23 different colors, including red, comet green, royal blue, eclectic pink and icelandic rose.

Experts Included
DWYM Baby and Kids Experts plus . Along with user reviews from Amazon.
  Most Versatile

Native Slip-On Kid Shoes

Native Shoes

Native Slip-On Kid Shoes

Overall Take

Waterproof and WearableThese breathable kid shoes can be worn anywhere, even wet weather.

Experts Included
DWYM Baby and Kids Experts plus Shoe Hero, Let’s Cruise Kids, Verywell Family, Shoe Advisor, Experienced Mommy, Good Housekeeping and 12 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon and BestOneHour.
Pros
" These injection-molded EVA shoes from Native are perfect for endless hours of summer fun. They are easy to pull on and they are waterproof making them perfect for a day at the beach."
Cons
"It is not good for children with wide feet."
  Stylish Pick

Saucony Baby Jazz H&l-K Kid Shoes

Saucony

Baby Jazz H&l-K Kid Shoes

Overall Take

Easy On/Off ShoeThese kid shoes have a large Velcro hook and loop closure that’s easy for kids and parents.

Experts Included
DWYM Baby and Kids Experts plus Mom Loves Best, Shoe Hero, Shoe Advisor, Canny Buyer Reviews, Fitfootpro, Angel of Mom and 1 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" These sneakers from Saucony come with a durable, and large, Velcro hook and loop closure."
Cons
"Relatively provides less ankle support"
  Slip-On Construction

Converse Child Low Top Kid Shoes

Converse

Child Low Top Kid Shoes

Overall Take

Built For ActivityFlat soles and good traction make these kid shoes a good choice for active kids.

Experts Included
DWYM Baby and Kids Experts plus Review Meta, Shoe Advisor, WalkJogRun, Shoe Hero, Mom Loves Best. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" The canvas construction is breathable and comfortable for growing feet. These trendy sneakers have been designed for day-long play and are certain to make your pre-schooler one of the coolest kids in class!"
Cons
"It runs narrow"
Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
14

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the kids shoes available to purchase.
7

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

36

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: Mom Loves Best, Shoe Hero, Shoe Advisor, Canny Buyer Reviews, Fitfootpro.

19,181

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including

Our experts reviewed the top 7 Kids Shoes and also dug through the reviews from 36 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Kids Shoes.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Overall

Under Armour Assert 8 Alternate Closure Kid Shoes

User Summarized Score

9.6
3,219 user reviews

Our Take

Designed for younger kids, these kid shoes are easy to slip on and off. They feature a hook and loop strap that is easy for preschoolers and kindergarteners to manage on their own. The sneakers are also lightweight and breathable, so they won't feel heavy on tiny feet.


The Best Bang For Your Buck

Native Slip-On Kid Shoes

Our Expert Score

9.0
18 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

9.0
5,593 user reviews

Our Take

With socks or without, the perforated uppers on these kid shoes lets feet breathe and cuts down on odor. They're made from acetate which is not only durable but fully waterproof. Environmentally conscious parents will love their low-emission manufacturing policy and materials that don't harm animals.

What other experts liked

These injection-molded EVA shoes from Native are perfect for endless hours of summer fun. They are easy to pull on and they are waterproof making them perfect for a day at the beach.
- Shoe Hero
August 14, 2019 | Full review
The odor resistant and massaging footbed molds to your feet which makes it comfortable for all-day wear. This sneaker can be worn with or without socks and the perforated upper allows feet to breathe.
- Let's Cruise Kids
September 26, 2019 | Full review
Parents and kids alike praise these shoes for their look and feel. They say they’re nearly indestructible, fit well, and are a great everyday shoe.
- Verywell Family
October 18, 2019 | Full review
They are made from 100% Ethylene Vinyl Acetate with a rubber sole. These materials are washable, odor-resistant and very comfortable to wear.
- Shoe Advisor
October 3, 2019 | Full review
A summer shoe that is waterproof simply makes your life easier if you go to the pool regularly, play in the sprinkler, or even for those quick summer showers that come through. They also dry quickly and can put on again and again from dry play to water play.
- Experienced Mommy
September 12, 2019 | Full review
The ventilated holes throughout keep them feeling breathable and there's traction underneath to help prevent slips. These come in more colors than you can imagine with sizes for the entire family.
- Good Housekeeping
October 25, 2019 | Full review
These shoes are 100% waterproof
- Business Insider
June 18, 2019 | Full review
Rubber insole assures the kid’s great comfort as they move around.
- Canny Buyer Reviews
April 16, 2019 | Full review
The shoes are made entirely of rubber, with no mesh for dirt and muck to get caught in. Holes around the side and top of the shoes, as well as in the sole, ensure that the shoes drain extremely quickly.
- Women Today
September 12, 2019 | Full review
We finally found a durable, warm weather shoe my son could wear in all warm weather environments, even as a water shoe.
- Lucie's List
They have perforations all over to allow your kid’s feet to dry rapidly while preventing bacteria and mold.
- List Outdoor
For the environmentally-conscious parent, Native uses a low-emission manufacturing process, and the shoes have a PETA-Approved Vegan Footwear seal of approval, so no animal products have been used in the creation of these shoes.
- Morning Chores
There’s just as much for parents to love. The lightweight material is odor-resistant and easy to hand wash with a quick-dry design that won’t hold water. These slip-on sneakers protect kids’ feet with slip-resistant traction outsoles and a rubber toe for better foot protection.
- Best Kid Stuff
June 30, 2019 | Full review
A warm-weather alternative to heavy, clunky rubber rain boots, these rubber-soled slip-ons clean up easily, making them great puddle stompers. They’re also useful beach shoes for toddlers who have difficulty walking in flip-flop style slip-ons.
- Trips To Discover
May 6, 2019 | Full review
Made out of synthetic material called Ethylene Vinyl Acetate (EVA), these shoes are comfortable, waterproof, stable, and can withstand wear and tear.
- Best Fashion Nova
November 2, 2019 | Full review
There are modest holes all close to the shoe for air circulation.
- Baby Boy Shoes Review
December 2, 2018 | Full review
The rubber sole ensures the shoes do not slip while walking. At the same time, it provides a form of shock resistance. The inside of the shoes is lined with EVA foot-bed which cushions your child’s leg, ultimately enhancing comfort.
- Swim Network
October 10, 2019 | Full review

What other experts didn't like

It is not good for children with wide feet.
- Let's Cruise Kids
September 26, 2019 | Full review
The main drawback that parents noted is this shoe may not be best for little ones with chubby or thicker feet.
- Experienced Mommy
September 12, 2019 | Full review
Your child will need to break them in, and that process can rub skin raw and even cause blisters.
- Business Insider
June 18, 2019 | Full review
Keep in mind that rubber can cause chafing against your child’s feet. The heel in particular doesn’t add any fabric material to keep your child’s feet from rubbing, so you shouldn’t expect them to walk particularly far in these shoes.
- Women Today
September 12, 2019 | Full review
It can lead to formation blisters if you choose the wrong size
- List Outdoor
Not ideal for long periods
- Morning Chores
The plastic-foam material can shrink or warp if left out in the sun or heat for an extended time
- Best Kid Stuff
June 30, 2019 | Full review
Few of them also recommended to keep them away from hot temperatures like in cars as they may deform.
- Best Fashion Nova
November 2, 2019 | Full review
Shoe is incredibly cute but the sizes are soo off and not ment for chunky babies.
- Baby Boy Shoes Review
December 2, 2018 | Full review
It may not be a good option for those allergic to rubber.
- Swim Network
October 10, 2019 | Full review

Overall Product Rankings

Under Armour Assert 8 Alternate Closure Kid Shoes

1. Under Armour Assert 8 Alternate Closure Kid Shoes

Overall Score: 9.6
Reviews Included: 1

Native Slip-On Kid Shoes

2. Native Slip-On Kid Shoes

Overall Score: 9.0
Reviews Included: 20

Saucony Baby Jazz H&l-K Kid Shoes

3. Saucony Baby Jazz H&l-K Kid Shoes

Overall Score: 8.9
Reviews Included: 8

Converse Child Low Top Kid Shoes

4. Converse Child Low Top Kid Shoes

Overall Score: 8.7
Reviews Included: 7

Adidas Kid Shoes

5. Adidas Kid Shoes

Overall Score: 8.6
Reviews Included: 4

Stride Rite Athletic Kid Shoes

6. Stride Rite Athletic Kid Shoes

Overall Score: 8.5
Reviews Included: 4

PUMA Kid Shoes

7. PUMA Kid Shoes

Overall Score: 8.5
Reviews Included: 3

Our Kid Shoe Findings


Under Armour Assert 8 Alternate Closure Kid Shoes

What We Liked: Designed for younger kids, these kid shoes are easy to slip on and off. They feature a hook and loop strap that is easy for preschoolers and kindergarteners to manage on their own. The sneakers are also lightweight and breathable, so they won’t feel heavy on tiny feet.


Native Slip-On Kid Shoes

What We Liked: With socks or without, the perforated uppers on these kid shoes lets feet breathe and cuts down on odor. They’re made from acetate which is not only durable but fully waterproof. Environmentally conscious parents will love their low-emission manufacturing policy and materials that don’t harm animals.


Saucony Baby Jazz H&l-K Kid Shoes

What We Liked: These kid shoes are made out of suede and mesh, providing flexibility, durability and comfort. The shoes are easy to take off and put on, both for parents and kids.


Converse Child Low Top Kid Shoes

What We Liked: These kid shoes sport the classic “lace-up” look, but they easily slip onto little feet with no tying involved. Their textile construction makes them very lightweight, with a flat sole to promote good posture and gait. Great traction on the bottom of the sole makes them ideal for active kids.


Adidas Kid Shoes

What We Liked: These kid shoes replicate the iconic look of full-sized Adidas with their side stripes and signature gold tongue emblem. The uppers are made from full-grain leather for extra protection. An EVA midsole provides ample cushioning for little feet.


PUMA Kid Shoes

What We Liked: As sizes go, these kid shoes are more suited to a narrow foot. This can help tots who tend to find other sneakers too loose. The Velcro “laces” make them easy to secure, and they’re a solid everyday shoe for light play around the house.

Our Kid Shoe Buying Guide

Buying shoes for yourself can be enough of a headache. But picking them out for a toddler whose feet grow seemingly every month and can’t sit still for a fitting? That’s enough to make you want to buy a cheap set of flip-flops and call it a day.

Those of us with kids know that their feet don’t exactly go “pitter-patter.” It’s more like a heavy metal drum solo at all hours of the day. Those feet need shoes with protection, traction, and enough style to make sure they’ll actually wear the things.

But the trickiest part of all will undoubtedly be determining the fit. When buying your little one’s shoes, it’s always best to head to the shoe store and have a trained professional measure them first. If that’s not an option, you can always look up kids’ shoe size measurement charts on the web. Make sure your child is standing up and standing as still as possible while you do the measuring. Wiggling feet can throw off the size by crucial amounts.

Got a size? Great. If you’re buying sneakers, you may want to allow a little bit of extra space for socks, which tend to be thicker for kids. If your child’s feet are in between sizes, you will want to err on the larger side.

It can be tempting to just buy a full size larger than they need, especially when you confront the inevitable fact that those shoes will probably be too small in the relative blink of an eye. Up to their first or second year, you can expect baby feet to grow a size every two months on average. Toddlers will shed a shoe size every 3-4 months. It’s best to just figure that into the cost of living and go for their exact size or slightly above. Shoes that fit too loose can result in slips and falls.

To make sure the shoes fit, ask kids the questions that you intuitively ask yourself when you buy your own footwear. Does your heel slip out of your shoe or slide from side to side? Can you wiggle your toes? If they can, apply the “rule of thumb” to make sure they’re not too big: You should be able to press a half-inch — about the size of your thumb — in between the tip of their toes and the tip of the shoe. Quality children’s shoes shouldn’t have to be “broken in,” which can hurt your kid’s feet, alter their gait, or cause your child to refuse to wear the shoes at all.

Now, what type of shoe to buy? Regardless of whether you’re shopping for sneakers or dress shoes, the material should be a major factor. Avoid plastic or rubber footwear for anything other than beach kicks. They may seem durable in the short term but can be subject to cracking and chafing — and can make active feet sweat profusely. Go for uppers made of mesh or other breathable fabric that will let some air in and be flexible enough for growing feet.

Kids’ shoes get sized out so quickly, parents can be tempted to save a little on hand-me-downs or used shoes. That’s fine — just make sure that the treads are still in good condition. The sneaker bottoms should have a noticeable groove but shouldn’t be too deep on brand new shoes, as those crevices can catch on small playground obstacles.

DWYM Fun Fact

With Velcro replacing shoelaces in most kids’ shoes (and a few adult ones), children aren’t learning to tie their shoelaces quite so early these days. But if your kids need a goal to shoot for, look to Khaled Abdul Aziz Alhosari of the United Arab Emirates. In 2009, he set the Guinness World Record for speed-tying shoelaces by lacing up 31 pairs in one minute. (And yes, he made a complete bow.)

The Kid Shoe Tips and Advice

  • The older kids get, the more you can play around with different shoe styles. But during the developing years, it’s best to stick with sneakers or something with sufficient traction, even when you’re dressing them up for a special occasion. Bear in mind that your child is still learning to walk, and a well-fitting, non-slipping shoe is going to be crucial in that development.
  • When it comes to the look of the shoe, your kids are going to have opinions. And those opinions are often going to involve multiple colors, garish characters and even flashing lights. When they’re in their early toddler years, consider letting them take the reins when choosing a shoe. They’re the ones who have to wear them, after all. And don’t worry about their tastes changing: Your kid may not like Batman in a few months, but by then it will probably be time for their next pair of shoes anyway.
  • For toddler or grade school kids, light-up shoes are a common request. Also known as LED shoes, they incorporate tiny lights (usually in the sole) that light up every time your child takes a step. Some models even have controls built in that let you change the color, pattern or frequency of those lights. For the most part, these fun additions can be a real perk. They will not only entertain your child but make it easier for you to find them in a crowd. Needless to say, you’ll want to buy a non-blinky backup set for occasions like weddings or formal affairs.
  • Another popular feature is the roller shoe. Sneakers with these “wheeled heels” can incorporate a tiny wheel in the back part of the shoe so that nimble kids can glide along on flat surfaces. They are typically retractable or removable, and some even have two wheels in each shoe for added stability. These shoes can be great a starter kit for aspiring skaters, but keep in mind the places they might be wearing them. Certain schools might have restrictions on wheeled heels (as well as LED shoes),  so check your child’s dress code before buying.
  • Lastly, your kid is going to go through shoe sizes at a dizzying pace. Even if they say their shoes are comfortable, it’s best to measure a child’s shoe size every three months or so. Children can get attached to certain shoes and try to hang on to them long after they should be trading up a size.

About The Author

Avatar
Tod Caviness 

Tod Caviness is a professional writer and journalist for the past 20 years. More importantly, he is the father of a 5-year-old boy and an 8-month-old girl, and enjoys curating a library of books for them both. He figures his "dad tour of duty" will be done when they can both beat him at Settlers of Catan.