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Vessi Shoes Review: I Tried Their Most Popular Styles

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William Barton

Style, Grooming, Fitness, Boots, Workwear

William has been covering men's style, grooming, and fitness topics for The Adult Man since 2018 as both a writer and photographer. Based in North Carolina, he's also the face of premier men's boots website BootSpy.com and the popular BootSpy YouTube channel. If William could only wear one outfit for the rest of his life, it'd be slim blue jeans, a green fitted oxford shirt, Chelsea boots, and a nice watch. Read full bio.

Last Updated: Feb 23, 2024
8 min read
Vessi Review waterproof sneakers

Are Vessi sneakers really waterproof? Let’s get to the core of it: is a waterproof sneaker actually worth buying?

I rocked a pair of Vessi shoes through spring and summer showers and our review tells you everything you need to know before buying.

Dry socks for life
The Adult Man Image/Icon Image source: Vessi

Bottom line: Vessi shoes are unique in that they’re waterproof but still breathable. If you’re in between sizes, choose the next largest option available. Otherwise, I found the Weekend Sneaker to be an excellent, stylish and comfortable everyday shoe.

Ratings: The Adult Man Image/Icon  Design The Adult Man Image/Icon  Quality of Materials The Adult Man Image/Icon  Value for Money The Adult Man Image/Icon  Craftsmanship The Adult Man Image/Icon  Customer Service
  • The sneakers are 100% waterproof and very comfortable
  • Standard color options are classy and cool, plus several rotating limited editions
  • Free shipping on most orders (anything over $80 USD) and free returns within 90 days
  • For waterproof sneakers, they’re extremely breathable, which makes them a good fit for spring and summer
  • No half-sizes available (though the next size up should still fit well, if a bit relaxed)

It’s the last time. 

Never again.

I finished my workout and I’m standing outside the gym. Water is pouring from the sky. It’s raining on an epic scale. 

I have a mile walk ahead of me. And I’m not looking forward to it. 

Since moving from California to North Carolina, I’ve noticed that it actually rains on a fairly regular basis pretty much everywhere that isn’t the west coast. And I’ve soaked my sneakers far too many times before learning to equip myself with the right gear. 

But what’s the right gear? Well, I decided to pick up a pair of Vessi Weekend Sneakers, which the brand claims are 100% waterproof shoes. 

My top three considerations: style, comfort, and weather protection. 

So how did Vessi do? Keep reading to get the lowdown.

What Is Vessi?

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Vessi is a young shoe brand founded in 2018 by three Vancouver natives who’d had enough of walking into work with a pair of squeaky, soaking sneakers. 

The brand’s sneakers are made with a special knit and fabric that makes the material itself waterproof—no chemical coating that wears down over time. 

This allows heat and moisture to escape your feet while still keeping rain, puddles, and snow out. 

vessi sneakers with socks

Honestly, that’s been my biggest issue with waterproof boots and shoes—the amount of foot-sweat that goes on basically negates the purpose of the shoe as my socks are still soaking after a long day of wearing.

But is the same true of Vessi shoes? 

Vessi Waterproof Sneakers

If you spend a lot of time on your feet and you live in a climate that can shift from sunny to absolute rain deluge within the span of 20 minutes, you’ll appreciate Vessi sneakers.

Shop Vessi

Things to Consider Before Buying

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There are lots of interesting facets to the Vessi brand—they use all vegan materials and they’re certified several times over for their sustainability and recycling efforts. 

But if I’m being real, I think the most important thing you need to know when buying sneakers from Vessi is that they don’t currently offer half-sizes. 

I’m usually a 10.5 in sneakers, and after looking through the sizing chart, I opted for a size 10. The sneakers fit, but in hindsight, I would’ve gotten the 11 instead. 

So if you’re a half-size like me, order the next size up and you should be good to go. 

My Hands-On Review

I always like to pick up a few different options from any brand I’m reviewing, so in addition to Vessi’s Weekend Sneaker, I also picked up their All Weather Hat and a few pairs of their socks

Weekend Sneaker

vessi weekend shoes in

As I mentioned above, I mainly needed a sneaker I could wear to the gym for lifting days, but still walk home during the inevitable North Carolina downpours. 

I ended up getting to test these sneaks a lot more than I thought I would as it basically rained for a full week after my new Vessis arrived. Good timing. 

The Vessi Weekend Sneaker features the same patented knit as other Vessi shoes. It uses their own DYMA-TEX knit which helps keep your feet cool in the summer and warm in the winter. It has a very interesting texture—it’s similar to an athletic knit shoe with a lot of flex and stretch. 

It doesn’t feel like it should be waterproof, but the pictures throughout show I had no trouble keeping water off my feet. 

Even though it has laces, the Weekend Sneaker is a slip on (though the laces help secure the shoes on your feet). 

vessi sneakers knit fabric detail

Style-wise, I like the look a lot. I opted for the white, which has a few teal accents, and I think the sneaker looks better in person than it even does on Vessi’s site. The toe box is fairly rounded, and I think it could be a touch slimmer, but they look fantastic paired with joggers and shorts. 

I can attest that these sneakers are indeed 100% waterproof. This actually proved useful in more situations that I anticipated. Sure, it rained a bunch as soon as I got my new sneakers, but I also wore my Weekend Sneakers after I went indoor climbing for a few beers at the local brewery. 

vessi white sneakers in a puddle

I made the mistake of not sipping the beer down from the bar and had that terrible moment as you take a few steps and watch a glob of golden brew bounce into the air and fall down toward your feet. And oh, yes, it splashed directly onto my right foot. 

Any normal crisp white fabric sneaker would need some immediate bleaching, but I’m relieved to say that the beer rolled off. With a few brushes of my hand, my sneaks still kept their clean white look. 

vessi tread traction detail

I have a few pairs of waterproof boots, and my biggest issue with them is foot sweat: sometimes my socks end up just as wet as if I’d walked in the rain without any waterproofing at all. 

vessi waterproof sneakers with rain coat

I’m surprised and pleased with the amount of breathability in Vessi’s shoes. They stay cool (as much as possible in a humid southern summer). 

For flat footed sneakers, the provided insole has a surprising amount of arch support. The insole is made from a high density foam, and the heel is much thicker than what I’ve seen from most brands standard sock liner. 

This makes for a very comfortable sneaker that’s easy to put in miles with (or km’s if that’s your thing).

vessi white sneakers on white background

If you are flat footed or struggle with foot fatigue or plantar fasciitis, you can still pop the insole out and add your own to suit your needs. 

Overall, I’m really impressed with the Vessi Weekend Sneaker. Even through several rain storms and a lot of wear, they’ve stayed a crisp white and still keep my feet dry. But I most like that they don’t make my feet sweaty and they’re comfortable enough to walk the usual 3-4 miles I put in every day. 

Vessi Weekend Sneaker

Comfortable enough to walk several miles, completely waterproof, but still breathable so you don't sweat through your socks.

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All Weather Hat

vessi waterproof grey cap

Obviously I can’t just focus on my feet staying dry and let my head get soaking wet, so I also picked up Vessi’s All Weather Hat

While this looks like any ordinary baseball cap, it’s fully waterproof and water repellant. 

I picked up the grey colorway, and I like how the bright white logo pops in the front. 

The crown of the cap is a bit shallow—most of my other baseball caps come down on my head another half-inch or so. 

close up vessi cap

This leads to the cap feeling like it might fly off my head at any moment, and it’s not necessarily my style. I had my wife try it on and it looked much better on her. 

You’ll like this hat if you prefer a casual, laid back Sunday afternoon style baseball cap rather than a more structured game time style hat. 

Vessi All-Weather Hat

You’ll like this hat if you prefer a casual, laid back Sunday afternoon style baseball cap rather than a more structured game time style hat.

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All Day Crew Socks

vessi shoes and socks

What’s a shoe without a good pair of socks? To finish out my order, I picked up a few pairs of Vessi’s All Day Crew socks and their All Day Low Cut socks. 

The Low Cut fit absolutely perfectly with my Weekend Sneakers. I couldn’t see any of the sock around my ankle, but there’s just a bit creeping out at the heel, which is great for staving off blisters. 

vessi no show socks

As for the All Day Crew, I picked up the grey with black stripes. These are solid, comfortable, and offer decent padding throughout the heel and toe without being too thick. 

The All Day Crew is made with a polyester and cotton blend (with a little added spandex for stretch), so they’re light and breathable. The Low Cut socks are mostly cotton with a little nylon, so they have a bit more padding, though the fabric is less breathable. That said, there’s barely any fabric because it’s a no-show sock, so it’s not like breathability is a big factor here. 

What Do Other Reviewers Say?

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After reading through hundreds of reviews, it’s apparent that most people who picked up a pair of Vessi sneakers are after the same thing: they’re on their feet a lot, the weather is unpredictable, but they don’t want to wear a pair of rubber boots around. 

Most reviewers in that camp loved their Vessi shoes. Some wear them because they have to take the dog for a walk, rain or shine. Others use them for work, where they’re exposed to downpours often 

The most common criticism comes from the sizing, and usually from folks who are half-sizes and sized down. 

Based on what I’ve read, plus my own experience, it’s clear that if you’re a half size, choose the next largest option (i.e. size 10.5s should buy size 11). 

My Thoughts Overall

What I Like

  • My Vessi Weekend Sneakers are indeed 100% waterproof and they’re very comfortable for walking long distances.

  • The standard color options are classic and cool, but it’s worth checking out the rotating limited edition colors, too. 

  • Most orders (anything over $80 USD) have free shipping and free returns within 90 days. 

  • Considering that these are waterproof, they’re extremely breathable, so they’re still comfortable in spring and summer.  

What I Don’t Like

  • There aren’t any half-sizes available. If you’re a half-size like me, get the next size larger. 

Who is Vessi for?

If you spend a lot of time on your feet and you live in a climate that can shift from sunny to absolute rain deluge within the span of 20 minutes, you’ll appreciate Vessi sneakers.

The Verdict

Vessi surprised me. I didn’t expect these waterproof shoes to be as comfortable and breathable as they are.

That’s always the big issue with waterproof shoes and boots: the lining makes them feel like something you’d wear if you were trying to cut down your water weight for a wrestling competition. 

But because Vessi uses a proprietary knit that repels water at the surface, your feet can breathe. 

Beyond that, the insole has excellent padding and arch support, though I like that they’re still removable if you need a little extra support still.

I picked up the Weekend Sneaker in bright white, and I had a scary moment of dropping a big splash of beer onto my shoe. Normally, that would bring any white sneakers to their proverbial knees. 

That’s another fringe benefit of Vessi’s. The brew just wiped off, no problem. And my sneakers are still as white as when I first got them

Now that’s a big win.

Vessi Waterproof Sneakers

If you spend a lot of time on your feet and you live in a climate that can shift from sunny to absolute rain deluge within the span of 20 minutes, you’ll appreciate Vessi sneakers.

Shop Vessi


Do you wear socks with Vessi shoes?

Yes, you can wear socks with Vessi shoes. I also wore my Weekend Sneakers without socks and they were very comfortable.

Is Vessi true to size?

Yes, Vessi shoes fit true to size. If you’re a half size, go to the next size up for more comfort.

Do Vessi shoes work in snow?

Vessi shoes will keep your feet dry in snow (assuming the snow doesn’t get in the top of your sneaker). They don’t have a ton of grip like heavy lug boots, but from a waterproofing perspective, they perform well.