The Best No-Tie Sneakers for Kids Who Want to Race Out the Door

The Nike Flex Runner 2 sneakers provide kids comfort, freedom, and style

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No-tie sneakers have become more and more popular with kids—and with the grownups tired of begging them to please, tie those laces before you trip! They are quick and easy to get on and off, they stay put, and they can speed up morning school routines. With so many options on the market, we spoke with a podiatrist to understand the benefits (and limitations) of no-tie sneakers, as well as no-tie laces to use on any kids’ shoes.

Reviewed & Approved

The Nike Flex Runner 2 sneakers come in a wide range of sizes and colors and hold up to tons of wear and tear from active kids. Vessi Kids Weekend shoes are comfy shoes that can get wet, so they easily transition from water shoes to regular sneakers (and back again), no matter the activity.

There are so many no-tie sneakers on the market, including slip-ons, toggle-laced shoes, elastic-laced shoes, and even dialed laces. While it’s much more convenient to skip tying bows, and no-tie shoes avoid the danger of tripping over untied laces, you do want to make sure their shoes have some way to ensure a proper, adjustable fit. “The no lace shoes should basically be used for casual wear,” podiatrist Mark J. Mendeszoon, DPM, FACFAS, FACPM, tells Verywell Family. “Shoes that do not have a lace pattern should not be utilized for sporting events or running.” 

We looked at a variety of no-tie shoes for sports, casual street sneakers, and trendy slip-ons to find the shoes that fit every budget while being durable enough to last rough kid wear and tear. 

Based on our research, here are the best no-tie sneakers for kids.

Best Overall: Nike Flex Runner 2

Nike Flex Runner 2

Nike

Pros
  • Wide range of sizes

  • Wide array of colors

  • Pull tabs

Cons
  • Fabric can wear out

These shoes slip on in seconds for active kids of all ages without a moment to waste. Rather than any kind of laces to keep the shoes in place, these Nikes’ flexible fabric hugs feet all around. There are pull tabs on the heel and tongue that are excellent for little hands to grab, and the toe tip is extra reinforced for toe-draggers. We love that they come in a huge range of color options and are available in both little kid and big kid sizing (and adult, if you want to match). If these get dirty, we’ve successfully washed them in the washing machine and air-dried them—it may not be officially sanctioned by Nike, but they got clean and held up well. 

Price at time of publication: Starting at $45

Size range: 10.5 C–7 Y | Materials: Breathable fabric and flexible foam | Cleaning/care instructions: Not listed

Best Waterproof: Vessi Kids Weekend

Vessi Kids Weekend

Vessi

Pros
  • Waterproof

  • Machine washable

  • Toggle lace fastener

Cons
  • Limited sizes for kids

  • Thick material can feel hot

Rain boots can be big and clunky, and they sometimes require a change of shoes at school. Vessi Kids Weekend shoes are a true two-in-one wonder, solving that problem with style. Made of vegan materials, these truly waterproof kids’ sneakers keep socks dry and kids having fun. With stretchy ankle openings, pull tabs, and a toggle lace fastener, it’s a cinch to get kids out the door quickly. Along with the toggle laces, these shoes come with standard laces, so your child can transition if they prefer to tie their own shoes. 

Price at time of publication: $60

Size range: 11 C–4 Y | Materials: Breathable knit vegan materials | Cleaning/care instructions: Remove insoles, machine wash, air dry

Best Slip-Ons: Vans Kids Checkerboard Slip Ons

Vans Kids Checkerboard Slip Ons

Courtesy of Vans

Pros
  • Wide range of styles

  • Wide range of sizes

  • Family matching options

Cons
  • No pull tabs

  • Not super supportive

The original California skateboard shoe has come a long way while still maintaining that classic look as it entered the kid market. These slip-on sneakers are easy to put on, comfortable, and fun for daily play. Super active kids may prefer a running shoe style sneaker, but for every day, these slip-ons are just perfect. We love that they are available in a huge range of sizes and dazzling patterns, including that classic checkerboard, and they can even match with adult sizing. There’s no pull tab on the kid shoes, but if sized correctly, feet should slip right in. 

Price at time of publication: Starting at $35

Size range: 0–6 weeks–3 Y | Materials: Canvas upper, vulcanized rubber outsole and sole | Cleaning/care instructions: Not listed

Best With No Laces: Adidas Lite Racer Adapt 4.0

Adidas Lite Racer Adapt 4.0

Adidas

Pros
  • No laces to worry about

  • Wide range of sizes and colors

  • Breathable mesh upper

Cons
  • Fit can’t be adjusted

Easy to slip on and off, these shoes are great for active kids since there are no laces to bother with. The heel pull-tab helps kids slip these on, and then they’re ready to run! The mesh uppers are ideal for warm weather climates (or hot feet), and the material is quite durable, even with super active kids. Use the size guide to find the best size, especially since there’s no way to adjust the fit of these shoes. 

Price at time of publication: $60

Size range: 10.5 C–7 Y | Materials: Mesh upper, EVA compound midsole, rubber sole | Cleaning/care instructions: Not listed

Best Budget-Friendly: Weekstep Lightweight Running Shoes

Weekstep Lightweight Running Shoes

Amazon

Pros
  • Affordable

  • Gender neutral styles

  • Lightweight

Cons
  • Design elements not durable

Little kids' feet grow so quickly that it can be wise to buy something inexpensive that you won’t mind swapping out in a couple of months. Available in a range of sizes and colors for toddlers and little kids, these have a breathable mesh upper that keeps feet cool. Flexible and lightweight, these sneakers have front and back pull-tabs, so older toddlers can probably put them on all by themselves—a major milestone! 

Price at time of publication: Starting at $22

Size range: 10 C–4 Y | Materials: Breathable mesh upper, EVA sole | Cleaning/care instructions: N/A

Best Machine Washable: Hey Dude Wendy Toddler

Hey Dude Wendy Youth

Hey Dude

Pros
  • Gender-neutral styles

  • Machine washable 

  • Can be worn without socks

Cons
  • Not suitable for athletic activities

For a less-athletic, casual sneaker, pick these low-top shoes. They’re easy to put on, lightweight, and ultra-comfortable. Available in a wide range of sizes from toddler, big kid, and even adult, they can fit the whole family. Choose from gender-neutral styles, awesome prints, or even sparkling options. The moccasins look a little more formal than running shoes but are just as comfortable and can be worn barefoot or with socks. All styles and sizes have elastic laces that come knotted and can be tightened a bit if needed. When they get dirty, simply machine wash, then air dry, and the shoes will be good as new. 

Price at time of publication: Starting at $40

Size range: 5 C–6 Y | Materials: Cotton canvas and rubber outsole | Cleaning/care instructions: Machine wash and air dry

Best for Toddlers: See Kai Run Ryder Knit Flexirun

See Kai Run Ryder Knit Flexirun

Amazon

Pros
  • Lightweight

  • Flexible

  • Removable sock liner

Cons
  • Pull tab is small

Some toddlers still have those chubby, wide baby feet that can be tricky to stuff into shoes. These stretchy shoes are so helpful since the textile upper of the shoe easily expands around your little one’s foot, providing both support and easy access. Available in a range of gender-neutral colors, these mesh shoes are lightweight and machine washable, so bring on the mud! While there is a pull tab on the back to help put the shoes on, it’s small (perhaps toddler-sized), so it may be helpful for your kiddo but less helpful for adults. 

Price at time of publication: $45

Size range: 4–13 C | Materials: Textile upper, EVA and phylon outsole | Cleaning/care instructions: Machine washable

Best Classic: Nike Air Force 1 Toggle

Nike Air Force 1 Toggle

Nike

Pros
  • Classic style

  • Toggle laces adjust sizing

Cons
  • Expensive

  • Runs small

If the iconic Nike Air Force 1 sneakers are your jam but tying shoelaces isn’t, have no fear. The toggle version of these classic kicks looks just as cool and is easy for kids to put on and off. Made with Nike’s FlyEase adjustable closure, the lockable toggle laces can be adjusted for a perfect fit, and the built-in pull tab helps kids get their shoes on themselves. Available in a few color options, these shoes are on the more expensive side, so be sure to measure your kiddo’s feet prior to purchase, especially since they run small. The toggle model is only available up to size 3 Y, so older kids will need to go for bigger sizes with regular laces. 

Price at time of publication: $70

Size range: 2 C–3 Y | Materials: Leather and synthetic upper, Rubber sole | Cleaning/care instructions: N/A

Best for Winter: Keen Kids Howser Chukka

Keen Kids Howser Chukka

Amazon

Pros
  • Warm and waterproof

  • Textured sole provides traction

  • Toggle closure

Cons
  • Not sporty

For active kids in cold climates, these no-tie chukka shoes are like a cross-breed between boots and sneakers. Warm and waterproof, they’ve got an insulation rating of minus 4 degrees. The slim profile and round-toe silhouette makes them comfortable enough to wear all day long. Kids will appreciate the locking toggle closure, so they can be tightened for a secure fit. Parents will appreciate the non-marking rubber sole that is textured to provide lots of traction on all outdoor adventures. 

Price at time of publication: $80

Size range: 8 C–7 Y | Materials: Breathable textile upper, non-marking rubber outsole | Cleaning/care instructions: N/A

Best With Elastic Laces: Skechers Twist Fit

Skechers Twist Fit

Sketchers

Pros
  • Wide range of sizes

  • Dial closure for secure fit

Cons
  • Limited color options

The elastic laces on these cool shoes are attached to a dial closure, so kids can simply twist the dial and make their shoe tighter or looser. There are no laces to tie, and your kiddo will be out the door as quickly as they can slip these shoes on. Available in both little and big kid sizes, they’re attractive and comfortable. Because of the mechanics in the dial closure, it’s recommended that these be washed by hand. 

Price at time of publication: $59

Size range: 11 C–6 Y | Materials: Mesh upper, rubber sole | Cleaning/care instructions: Hand wash only

Best No-Tie Shoelaces: Lock Laces No Tie Shoe Laces

Lock Laces Elastic No Tie Shoe Laces

Amazon

Pros
  • Fit into any shoes with laces

  • Wide range of colors

  • Affordable

Cons
  • Cord gets cut, so measure carefully

Turn any pair of lace-up shoes into no-tie shoes with innovative Lock Laces. To use them, simply remove your standard shoelaces and relace these into your shoes. Once you’ve achieved a good fit, cut the laces and secure them into the closed cord clip. The locking toggle helps keep shoes on and can slide down the laces to loosen them to put on. Available in a wide range of colors, each pack comes with two laces. Since you cut them, measure carefully and make sure you loosen the laces prior to cutting to avoid making them too short. 

Price at time of publication: $10

Size range: One size fits all | Materials: Elastic, plastic | Cleaning/care instructions: Waterproof

Most Customizable Laces: Caterpy Run No Tie Shoelaces

Caterpy Run No Tie Shoelaces

Amazon

Pros
  • Three size options

  • Can thread laces a variety of ways

  • Lots of color options

Cons
  • May be hard to slip into some shoes

Another option that’ll help you transform sneakers into no-tie shoes is these elastic bumped laces. To use them, simply replace your standard shoelaces with these, and you can create your own custom fit. The bumps allow you to control the tension at each lace hole instead of just at the top. They come in a wide range of colors and three sizes, including a small size that will fit most kids' shoes. These are probably better for older kids and tweens, who may love how choosing their own laces will make their shoes one of a kind. 

Price at time of publication: $12

Size range: Small, Standard, XL | Materials: Nylon and rubber | Cleaning/care instructions: N/A

Best Adaptive Shoe: Billy Footwear Classic Hi Rise Sneaker

Billy Footwear Classic Hi Rise Sneaker

Amazon

Pros
  • Inclusive design brand

  • Unobstructed footbed for easy entrance

Cons
  • May need help with sizing if child wears orthotics or braces

Billy Footwear is specifically made to assist kids and adults with mobility impairments put on their own shoes. Parents appreciate that each pair of shoes has zippers that go all along the side of the shoe and fully around the toe. This allows the upper of each shoe to open completely. Kids can put their foot directly onto the foot shoe bed without any obstructions. Not only are these shoes adaptive, but they look great too! Choose from a wide range of styles, including high tops and low tops and all kinds of color options. There’s sizing for toddlers through big kids. While they use regular sizing, you may need to try a few sizes if your child wears braces or orthotics. Thankfully, both Nordstrom and Amazon have easy shipping and free returns. 

Price at time of publication: $45

Size range: 11 C–6 Y | Materials: Synthetic and textile upper, synthetic sole | Cleaning/care instructions: Not listed

How We Selected the Best No-Tie Sneakers for Kids

We aimed to find shoes that offered a variety of sizes and styles, worked for different age needs, and were affordable. Other factors included our expert recommendations, shipping and return policies, and availability. User reviews (and complaints) were also helpful to find shoes that live up to their promises of quality and customer service.

What to Look in No-Tie Sneakers for Kids

Type of Closure

Consider your child’s dexterity and meet them where they are at. Putting on shoes is usually the last step in getting out the door, so pick a closure (laces, slip-on, Velcro, etc.) that is doable for your child. If they’re not going to be participating in sports, slip-on shoes like Vans are fine. But if it’s a gym day at school, we recommend something. While you probably don’t want your child to grow up not knowing how to tie their shoelaces, choosing no-tie shoes can ease the stress of getting ready for school in the morning.

Fit and Support

“Properly measuring a person’s foot, including children, would require [allowing] a thumbnail from the longest toe to the end of the shoe,” Dr. Mendeszoon says. “Also, to make sure that the shoe is wide enough for the child’s foot so that proper support will be provided.” He recommends that “once the shoes are secured with laces or non-tie laces, have the child lift their heel up and make sure it does not pop out of the shoe.”

Material

Find a material that fits your lifestyle. Most kids will wear their sneakers in the park, at school playgrounds, on the street, and in plenty of dirt, so washable shoes can be helpful. 

Value

“It is not uncommon for children to grow out of several sizes of shoes in one year. Purchasing a shoe that is financially cost-effective would be recommended as expensive shoes or shoes with a fad will be outgrown very quickly,” says Dr. Mendeszoon.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do I make sneakers no-tie?

    To make sneakers with laces no-tie you can relace the sneakers so the laces end up tucked into the shoe. While this may work for adults, the hanging laces can bother kids. Another option is to remove existing shoe laces and rethread the eyes with specialized no-tie laces. 

  • When do kids learn to tie their shoes?

    “Children normally start walking like an adult at 4 years old,” Dr. Mendeszoon says. “Between the ages of 4 and 5 would be ideal that children are taught how to properly lace and unlace their shoes.” Some kids may have the manual dexterity to do this, while others may not. Gauge your child’s skills and interest in learning, and then decide what type of shoes work best for them.

  • How do you teach kids to tie their shoes?

    This can be fun or frustrating, depending on your kid. Some may learn quickly on their own shoes, while other kids may benefit from watching videos, using a practice book with laces, or working on a DIY station like an egg carton with shoelaces. No matter the technique, it’s all a matter of practice.

  • How much do no-tie sneakers for kids cost?

    The prices for no-tie sneakers are about the same as sneakers with laces. For children, you can find shoes at discount stores for as little as $20 or less if they’re on sale. The majority of quality shoes for kids cost about $35-$60 these days, before sales and discounts, and some high-end specialty shoes can cost $80-$90.

Why Trust Verywell Family

Maya Polton is a former marketing manager and current freelance writer who covers food, home, and parenting. She’s also the mom of a 12-year-old son, 9-year-old son, and 5-year old daughter. Two of her three kids know how to tie shoes, and one out of three does it at a pace that allows them to leave for school on time. They all have no-tie sneakers and wear them very frequently.