10 Best High Top Running Shoes Rated
Searching for the best high top running shoes? Take a look at the top choices for 2018, Pros & Cons and what to be aware of before buying a pair in a store!
We have created this buying guide to focus on a style of running shoe that is becoming increasingly popular for several different reasons. High top shoes are on the rise in terms of fashion. They look like sneakers but function as running shoes-- they are in a world of shoes all their own and, trust us, this is a world you want to explore. Not only is the design outstanding but the features are too. In this guide, we will be looking at a few of the highest rated models that are currently available, with many of them being pretty new to the market.
- Nike LunarEpic Flyknit
- Nike Free Train Instinct
- Merrell All Out Terra Trail
- Nike Zoom All Out Flyknit Runner
- Adidas Adizero XT Boost
- Salomon Snowcross 2 CSWP Trail
- PUMA Ignite Evoknit Cross-Trainer
- Nike Air Presto Ultra Flyknit
- Adidas Tubular Doom
- Adidas Ultra Boost All Terrain
- Criteria Used for Evaluation
- Other Factors to Consider
- Frequently Asked Questions
Top 10 Picks
1. Nike LunarEpic Flyknit
Uppers have one-piece Flyknit construction
Contoured and layered midsole
Flexible and breathable
Laser cut outsole provides traction
Good combination of stretch and support
Close, sock-like fit
Almost built like a sock with a sole, these scream secure, conforming fit and a cushioned ride. The flyknit line has really taken off among many runners, offering a sock-like fit with the security and stability of a running shoe. Nike's Lunarepic has that high collar which wraps the ankle with added support for a confident run. Open up the full review to see what else this one has to offer.Read more
The innovations begin, but don't end with the upper Flyknit construction which conforms to the user's foot, while delivering breathability and support in a very lightweight package. Further enhanced by Nike's no fear approach to new and unique shoe designs, this model almost fits like a sock with laces.
The contoured Lunarlon foam midsole, laser cut pods, and Flywire cables only help to offer even greater comfort and support to the user. The layering of soft and firm sole construction makes for a plush surface to plant your feet on while you're running.
This one does run high with regards to price range, but it is a newer model form Nike which also incorporates a unique design with some already proven technologies. The contoured design of the sole also helps with promoting natural running motion for a better and more efficient stride.
2. Nike Free Train Instinct
Higher collar provides some added ankle support
Secure yet flexible fit
Durable rubber compound targeted on high wear areas of the outsole
Dual density midsole
May run small
Another new model from Nike, this is the Train Instinct. This one is built in more of a chukka design and is intended for cross training, but will get you down the road in comfort and style as well. From the Nike Free line, this shoe has features such as breathable knitted upper, Flywire fit adjustment and a Phylon midsole. Let's take a closer look and see why this one is doing so well.Read more
The overall low profile of the shoes allows good ground contact, which then allows good balance over various types of surfaces. The upper features Nike's Warp Knit material that gives the wearer multidirectional support, which make this model ideal for multiple uses.
This neutral runner Is built with a minimalistic design, yet still provides adequate cushioning for longer runs at faster paces. The upper, as you can see, appears similar to a chukka boot, which is an interesting concept for a lightweight runner. The dual density Phylon midsole offers cushioned shock absorption with excellent responsiveness. The flexibility of the Train Instinct gives the foot more natural motion and a less constricted run.
Not really a quality issue, but many wished that there was padding of some sort around the collar to make the shoes just a bit more comfortable above the ankle. There are some reported issues with these running about a half size smaller than many expected. These are reasonably new, so we haven't seen much regarding overall durability, but they seem to do pretty well.
3. Merrell All Out Terra Trail
Vibram outsole with deep lugs
Snug uppers keep out debris
Breathable and lightweight
They run a bit large
You probably won't want to try running on the road with these, the tread is a little too aggressive for that
It's easy to tell right away that these are made by Merrell. They just have that high speed trail look. With lightweight upper construction, plenty of trail protection, fairly aggressive tread, and that sock-like collar that looks like it is able to keep the debris out pretty well, There is no doubt what the All Out Terra was built for. That's right, they were meant to conquer those off-road runs. Let's dig a bit deeper and check out a little more about these high top trail runners from Merrell.Read more
The upper construction is a combination of different materials and technologies, all intended to work as a unit to protect the feet and carry the user through various types of off-road terrain. Mostly made of mesh and thermoplastic polyurethane, the upper offers some decent breathability as well as wrapping support which keeps the feet where they are supposed to be in the shoe.
The footbed is removable so if you use custom orthotics, you'll be able to easily do so with these. This model also uses their UniFly midsole. It also offers great impact absorption. Some added underfoot protection is provided by Merrell's TrailProtect pad.
The details on this shoe are reflective, making them a good choice for low visibility running. Ultra-defined rubber treads give that extra traction trail runners are looking for, but it might also make them a little too aggressive for treadmill or indoor running. We've looked through real user reviews and weren't really able to find any major durability issues. The only repeated concern is with the sizing. They seem to run a bit large.
4. Nike Zoom All Out Flyknit Runner
Designed with extra midfoot support
Durable rubber outsole
True to size
Flyknit uppers give a sock-like fit
Depending on color and size, may get a bit pricey
Another great design from Nike. The Zoom All Out Flyknit is a design that features the extremely breathable Nike Flyknit upper. They boast a lightweight design working together with very obvious stability features. The sock style collar is similar to that of Nike's LunarEpic, however these are not really a minimalist design.Read more
This shoe features a durable runner sole and mid-cut collar that provides a snug fit. The Flywire cables in the design work with the laces themselves for extra support in the midfoot.
The Flyknit upper material allows excellent airflow, keeping the feet dry and comfortable. Inflated heels provide an extra bounce and cutouts on the outsole allow greater flexibility for a much more natural running experience.
A textured rubber outsole provides good grip and flexibility. The Zoom Air design is results you can see, providing great responsiveness while running. We haven't seen any reports of durability issues, and even the sizing seems to be spot on. Reviewers have stated that they like the inflated heel and that the rubber outsole is very durable.
5. Adidas Adizero XT Boost
Close fit collar keeps out debris
Non-slip outsole meant to help grip even in wet conditions
This is the Adizero XT Boost, a high top shoe that is really intended to be used off-road. The high collar, designed much like a sock, helps to serve a couple of purposes. One is to provide a bit more support to the ankle, the other is to help keep trail debris out the shoes. They have a sporty, high-speed appearance and an outsole with treads that make it clear, these are not road running shoes. These were obviously designed to dominate rugged paths and off-road obstacles.Read more
These are ideal for neutral runners and really meant for trail use. There are a couple of synthetic overlays that wrap around, connecting through the laces, which provide an extra bit of support. Moving down to the midsole, these sport the Boost cushioning system that allows a more explosive launch, as well as premium comfort and shock absorption. The aggressive lug design of the TRAXION outsole allow the runner to maintain a confident grip, giving more stability to the run.
The upper has the sock-style fit that seems to be picking up in popularity among some runners. This design serves really well as a trail shoe, with the ability to keep rocks and other debris on the outside. Although these are fairly protective, they still remain pretty lightweight. The mixture of mesh and fabric for the upper offers pretty decent breathability, even with the weather resistant properties that this shoe boasts.
The only issues that we found is that the heel seems to be a bit large for many users. So, there may be a minor sizing issue there. It also seems that a trail runner like this should have some sort of underfoot protection pad, but this model doesn't.
6. Salomon Snowcross 2 CSWP Trail
Protective toe cap
EVA molded midsole and footbed
Contragrip rubber lugs
Great for wet conditions
Snug fitting uppers keep out debris
2-year limited warranty
Not for all seasons or terrain
These high-top kicks keep you warm and dry in cold, wet weather. The nylon upper mesh provides great air circulation and provides waterproof protection.Read more
The midsole and footbed are EVA and are molded for your comfort and provide good stability. There's also a toe cap that will help protect your feet while you're running in more rough terrain. The close fit of the uppers and shielding ankle padding helps to support and stabilize your ankles.
The uppers are completely waterproof and have mudguards to help keep out moisture and mud. They have a close fit to keep out debris and the ripstop fabric holds up great to anything you'll encounter on the trail.
The outsole is made of rubber which is a very durable, long-lasting construction. It's molded with heavy-duty Contragrip lugs to give you extra traction in wet conditions. Some users reported that the sizing runs a little small, but it seems to be more of a preference issue than a quality control issue.
7. PUMA Ignite Evoknit Cross-Trainer
Support straps on the midfoot
Super comfortable knit uppers
Durable rubber sole
Unique and trendy design
Many colors available
Poor arch support
Runs narrow in the arch
Puma is one of the most leading brands in the world when it comes to the sports, lifestyle and fashion industry as it crosses our streets with great class. Gives a great knitted upper for form-fitting great comfortability and bold collar heights for a new fresh look.Read more
These shoes have a stylish strap on the heel that isn't just for aesthetics. Attached to the heel and the mid-foot, they add extra support to your foot and to the construction of the shoe itself. The evoknit uppers don't offer as much support as a textile build, but they are very comfortable and less restrictive than other high tops. You can easily fit sole inserts and may want to consider investing in a pair if you're a fan of these shoes because they are definitely lacking in arch support.
The knitted uppers are snug and form-fitting all the way through the collar, offering great comfort.
The outsole is made of rubber and is fairly durable with flexible gripping. These shoes have good return with a decent amount of bounce. Users loved the fit and the comfort, but unfortunately, they aren't the best for those with wide arches and may run a little small for some.
8. Nike Air Presto Ultra Flyknit
Extra midfoot support
True to size
This is a fairly new model so there aren't many customer reviews available that may highlight long-term issues
he Nike Air Presto Ultra Flyknit is a revamped version of the Nike Presto, which originally released in 2000. This ultra comfortable model has a breathable Flyknit upper, mid-cut collar, signature TPU cage, heel pull tab, and a Waffle-inspired outsole.Read more
The shoe has some very obvious features such as a TPU cage that wraps around the midfoot for security and added support. That cage goes around the back of the shoe, forming and external heel counter which clutches the heel, holding the foot securely in place. The higher collar not only looks cool, but it also serves to provide a little more support for the ankle.
The Flyknit upper material allows great airflow, keeping the feet dry and comfortable. Cutouts on the outsole allow greater flexibility for a much more natural running experience.
We haven't seen any reports of performance issues, and even the sizing seems to be spot on. This is a new update from the previous Nike Presto, so this version is still fairly new. For that reason, the customer feedback is limited. With that being said, the feedback that we are seeing is all positive.
9. Adidas Tubular Doom
Reviewers loved the sock style
Flexible ripple-textured sole
Leather and Synthetic materials
Available in many different colors
May not be supportive enough for all athletic activities
The Tubular Doom is a contemporary high top sneaker from Adidas. It features a slip-on silhouette with a breathable melange knit upper and unparalleled comfort.Read more
The rubber sole is lightweight and flexible, providing excellent cushioning and lasting durability. Some high impact athletes found that this shoe can be lacking in support, depending on the intensity of activity. The synthetic straps over the knit uppers do provide a little extra support, but these are definitely for less aggressive use as far as support goes.
This shoe features a super comfortable knit upper that offers a decent amount of breathability.
Overall, quality reviews have been positive however some reviewers found that the outsole wore down quickly for avid runners. Buyers thought they fit true to size.
10. Adidas Ultra Boost All Terrain
Great for low archers and plantar fasciitis
Stylish with wide color variety
Depending on size and color, can become expensive
Size runs slightly small
Some had problems with the liner staying in place
The Adidas Ultra Boost was designed to give you an unparalleled custom fit. It provides a sock-like design with a dynamic adaptive fit for optimal freedom of movement, endless comfort, and superior support.Read more
The arches on these shoes are dynamic and adaptive, making a great combination for personal comfort and stability when paired with the STRETCHWEB rubber outsole. The outsoles have decent grip while also being flexible.
The Primeknit upper is extremely comfortable and has a snug, sock-like fit with a high collar. The entire construction is seamless and water-repellent to keep your feet dry.
Reviewers liked that the high collar helps keep water and debris out. The Primeknit waterproof material really keeps water out. Users rave about the comfort of this shoe and were impressed at its gripping ability and superior arch support.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
When it comes to shoes, support is everything.
You will need a shoe that gives you the support you need and require especially if you have a condition on your feet. High top shoes are known for giving great support, often sporting features that will provide extra stability and a snug fit. The insole is made just perfect to take care of you, the arches are made to ensure that your feet will not have any injuries but on the other hand, it will make your feet feel relieved and improve with time. It relieves stress on your feet, great support will reflect on how your performance will be at the end of the day. Ensure you get a shoe that has the great support you'll need.
Comfort is something you should you simply cannot compromise when it comes to running shoes.
Plenty of the high top shoes on our list prioritize comfort, from the insole to the extended top that gives you a sure fit. With different combinations of features like knit uppers, molded EVA midsoles, sock-like fits, and waterproofing, our selection has a little bit for every season and every situation.
Always ensure that you get the right shoes for the right purpose.
Although all of the shoes on our list our high top running shoes, they are definitely all intended for different uses. Some of them are great for trail running while others are better for indoor jogging. Be aware of what you'll be using your shoes for most and how they'll best fit your needs. Think about features like reflective details, breathability, and extra protective pads or caps. There are lost of other factors that may affect their use or performance as well, so make sure you check real user reviews. For each item on our list we combed through real customer reviews for common sizing issues, quality-control failings, and durability problems so you know what to expect while using your high tops.
Other Factors to Consider
We have very many different materials and we can all agree that they are not same either one is better than the other in one way or the other but it depends on what the owner is looking for in each and every one of them. When going for shoes we have them in different materials, some are made from leather while others are made from nylon and polyester among other materials, we can all select materials depending on their durability and in this case, we often pick leather as the number one priority. Having leather will not only give you quality but it will also ensure the durability of the product in question is achieved accordingly, you will need to have the right type of material for the right type of activity. In this case, we would like you to pick a material that will be breathable as well; one that will ensure your feet are dry and cool to avoid having odors that will make you uncomfortable. With these high top shoes, you will need to ensure that you get enough ventilation in the shoes.
This is a factor that cannot be ignored at any cost. When it comes to any wearable, who would want loose or too tight shoes or clothing? Well not us because we know what it means to be comfortable, we cannot trade that for anything. The fit of these shoes are outstanding you have to get your size and the right fit, no need to worry about whether to take a size bigger or a size smaller since it comes with the right size, all you need to work on is getting what fits you right, well you can decide to negotiate on the material of the shoe but you can never debate on the fit of the shoe, it either fits or not. The high top shoes have another advantage to them and that is the fact that the extended top gives a nice fit to any wearer, which means you do not have to worry about it being loose to the point of falling. Even without tying the shoe laces tight you will still get the fit you need.
High tops have become a classic look in the fashion world and high top running shoes are the perfect combination of style and function. While the high collar look is trendy and adds a nice flair, it also can prevent debris from getting in your shoes and offer a little more in the way of support. Some shoes are definitely more trendy looking than others (the Salomon Snowcross 2 CSWP Trail running shoes might be sleeker than most trail shoes, they definitely won't be breaking through in the fashion world any time soon) but the high top design brings a great touch to each item in our selection.
Frequently Asked Questions
Although high tops do offer some added ankle support, they absolutely will not replace the function of a proper ankle brace.
Every shoe model is different in comfort and fit. Some brands may fit tighter than others, while some may be looser. It is a really good idea to try on a pair before buying them, especially if you plan on purchasing from a site like Amazon. Even though they have a pretty good return policy, it will still save the hassle of waiting again for the correct size.
These models typically fit similar to a sock near the top. Most even have laces for further adjustment. We really have to go back to our “try it on first” answer for this one. The fact is that, although shoes come in different sizes, they may not all work well with different body types.
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