A few decades ago, haplessly googling “Salomon sneakers” would have yielded surprisingly few results—and not because Google was still in its infancy. Since 1947, the French alpine brand has carved out a niche selling performance-oriented footwear designed to help you conquer the slopes, but its first foray into sneakers didn’t happen until the start of this millennium. In the late ‘90s, Salomon introduced the Air Wind, a sneaker-boot hybrid that helped ultra-marathoners speed through the mountains of New Zealand, but it wasn’t until 2001 that they released the XA Pro, their first shoe explicitly designed for trail running.
Salomon might not boast the pedigree of giants like Nike, Adidas, or New Balance, but in the time since the brand has made a concerted effort to launch itself squarely into the fashion conversation, catering to its unlikely new audience by reissuing influential Y2K-era styles and drumming up innovative new silhouettes inspired by its archives.
All the while, Salomon has continued to pour gasoline on the fire by collaborating with a cavalcade of the most sought-after brands in the world, from buzzy London skate imprints to zeitgeist-y Parisian boutiques. So if you’re finally ready to add a pair to your rotation, we rounded up a few of the most relevant—and stylish—Salomon sneakers you should know about right now. Whether you’re dead-set on hitting the trails or just want to see what all the hype is about, any one of these will guarantee you blaze your own path to street style glory.
The Speedcross 6
Before Salomon even properly acknowledged the fashion world via its “Black Edition” pack in 2016 or teamed up with runway designers, the Speedcross was the shoe of choice that stylish guys were scooping up to wear with their hoodies and sweats (or in the case of Ralph Lauren, double-breasted blazers). The Speedcross 6 is the newest iteration of this influential style, and it’s a little more chiseled than prior iterations—though, especially when talking about the shoes in their GTX form, we wouldn’t exactly call them sleek.
First released in 2012 as, what else, a best-in-class trail running sneaker, the XT-4 features what’s now the brand’s hallmark nylon upper, heavily-treaded sole, one-pull lacing system, and is available in a full range of muted to technicolor iterations. One version of the XT-4, released in 2018 with Parisian boutique The Broken Arm (which for what it’s worth, was also the very first fashion outpost to collaborate with Salomon on a shoe, period), is also credited as one of the models that kicked the brand’s covetability into high gear. It is mostly differentiated from the slightly newer XT-6 by its relatively bulkier shape, but truth be told, you really can’t go wrong with either.
If there were one shoe to define Salomon’s rise through the sneaker brand ranks, it would be the XT-6. Ten years after its debut, it’s become the one that everyone wants because it perfectly captures everything the brand does well: a tech-age, lightweight upper that promises to lock your foot in place, its signature one-pull lacing system, and a sole that delivers all day comfort while being built to withstand miles upon miles of heavy-duty wear. (Did we mention they basically look good with everything from baggy jeans to tech-y cargo pants to shorts?) Point is, whether you want a pair that demands attention by way of some rarified collab done up in neon-heavy color scheme or would rather let the shoe’s now-iconic silhouette shine on its own via something more muted, there’s an option out there to pique your interest.
The ACS Pro
Just when you think you’d had enough gorp-adjacent exposure to last you a lifetime—the kids on TikTok are showering in their Arc’teryx jackets!—the genre pulls you back in. The ACS Pro is the rare mountaineering shoe with plenty of city-ready appeal. It’s packed with uber-functional tech—bungee-style lace-up closures, a heavily-padded collar, treaded rubber outsoles—to help you dominate the trails, but will look just as at home anchoring a pair of wide-legged cords. Dressing like a swerve-y woodland-bound nomad never looked so damn cool.
The Speedverse PRG
Much like the ACS Pro, the Speedverse PRG is a re-interpretation of one the brand’s aughts classics, in this case its trailblazing Speedcross. Like its elders, the Speedverse PRG features the same mountain-ready, running-focused silhouette as other Salomons, but the upper has been smoothed out for a more futuristic look, even by 2023 standards.
The XT-Wings 2
Before there was the XT-4 or XT-6, there was the XT Wings—which was itself the sequel to Salomon’s first entrant into the trail running space via the XA Pro. Today, the XT Wings 2, which first hit shelves and trails in 2011, is the one to get thanks to its relatively minimal design compared to the XT-4 or XT-6.
The RX Slide
Not even the most die-hard, athletics-first brand like Salomon could resist the temptation to mule-ify their shoes, and frankly, we’re glad they didn’t. The RX slide is a freaky, laceless slip-on shoe that combines the ease and wearability of a slide with the ruggedness the brand is famous for, down to the trail-ready tread should you need to skedaddle from your campsite at a moment’s notice (or, you know, head outside to grab the Sunday paper).
The RX Snug
For die-hard runners, a good recovery process can often be as important as the hours spent racking up miles, which is why brands like Salomon make shoes specifically designed to give maxed-out feet some rest. For the rest of us whose futures do not involve 100 mile jaunts through the forest and hills, the RX Snug is a lightweight sneaker with a faux fur lining that will usher in glorious, stress free days doing absolutely nothing.
The XT-Quest 2
Planning to wear your Salomon’s beyond the city limits for a weekend of hiking, bonfire-making, and good old fashioned roughin’ it? The XT-Quest 2 is for you. As the name implies, this sneaker is built for the great outdoors, drawing its inspiration as much from Salomon’s true-blue hiking boots as it does its vintage runners. It’s still got the durable tread to keep you from rolling an ankle on the trails, but a bulkier nubuck upper and hardy toe cap will also keep your feet dry if the weather decides to do, you know, weather things.