Best Lace Climbing Shoes

Climbing is all about finding the right fit and feel in your gear, and choosing between laced and velcro shoes can be a bit of a puzzle. We’ve climbed in different climates and tested different rock surfaces, and in our experiences we liked that velcro shoes are quick to put on, but laced shoes often give a snugger, more secure fit, especially for people with narrower or wider feet . We’ve often felt more connected to the rocks with laced shoes, like they are a part of us. So, we’ve put together a list of some of the best laced climbing shoes out there to help you find the perfect pair. Let’s jump in and find the right shoes to make your climbs even better!

Best Lace Climbing Shoes

What are the Best Lace Climbing Shoes?

Below you’ll find the list of the top 5 Best Lace Climbing Shoes. We compiled this list from lace climbing shoes we have used, asked others about, and researched further to give you the best possible roundup. With many years of experience with climbing shoes with laces you can be assured that this article will give you what you’re looking for.

We also wrote a buying guide and answered some of the frequently asked questions (FAQs) at the end of this article.

1. La Sportiva Men’s KATAKI Climbing Shoe

La Sportiva Men's KATAKI Climbing Shoe
Price: 💲💲💲💲 (fewer 💲 = cheaper)
Sole Material: Rubber
Closure Type: Lace-up
Shoe Material: Microfiber
Shape: Moderate downturn

This La Sportiva KATAKI model has an S heel construct that allows for precision climbing on aggressive indoor and outdoor routes. The laced design provides a very snug fit and great for those big roof routes where the Kataki serves well for overhangs or heel hooks. Definitely a great all around performance shoe


  • Comfortable downturn design
  • Great for crack climbing
  • Laced design makes for a snug fit
  • Great for heel hooks


  • More suited for gym climbing and bouldering
  • Laced design makes it harder to slip in and out

2. Evolv The General Climbing Shoes

Evolv The General Climbing Shoes
Price: 💲💲💲 (fewer 💲 = cheaper)
Sole Material: Rubber
Closure Type: Lace-up
Shoe Material: Leather
Shape: Low-Moderate downturn

Known as a great all rounder shoe, the Evolv General Climbing shoe is versatile on a big wall climb, or even just a longer trad route. The robust, padded shoe and sole design ensures your feet are both protected and comfortable as you ich and smear up the wall. The slight downturn tip allows for attempting trickier boulder problems or technical cruxes on your outdoor climb.


  • Easy and flexible lace-up construct
  • Vibrant colors
  • Good ankle support due to show design
  • Versatile shoe overall


  • Odor may build up with time due to the material
  • Premium pricing

3. Black Diamond Momentum Lace Climbing Shoe – Men’s

Black Diamond Momentum Lace Climbing Shoe - Men's
Price: 💲 (fewer 💲 = cheaper)
Sole Material: Rubber
Closure Type: Lace-up
Shoe Material: Microfiber
Shape: Neutral

Black Diamond’s Momentum Lace Climbing Shoes are designed to be a good quality beginner shoe. These shoes are also very reminiscent of the La Sportiva design. The use of a lace system provides the climber with the additional ability to adjust the shoes to the perfect snug fit. Made from a durable rubber, and a breathable upper, these shoes are a good option for a climber that values comfort.


  • Breathable
  • Long lasting sole
  • Attractive design
  • Snug yet comfortable fit


  • Longer break-in period
  • Not designed for wide feet

4. La Sportiva Miura Men

La Sportiva Miura Men
Price: 💲💲 (fewer 💲 = cheaper)
Sole Material: Vibram rubber sole
Closure Type: Lace Up
Shoe Material: 100% Leather
Shape: Large downturn

La Sportiva is a powerhouse brand for rock-climbing shoes, and the Mirua’s live up to the reputation. What can we say, even Alex Honnold rocks a pair of these bad boys. The shoes are a great workhouse, that will help you develop as you keep ticking off routes at the gym. It is a moderate to aggressive shoe, with a slight toe downturn, allowing you to get a better grip on slight footings. Hot tip: The women’s model came in second place in our Top 9 Best Women’s Climbing Shoes


  • Velcro straps
  • Durable rubber
  • Excellent edging ability
  • Slight downturn for efficiency and comfort


  • Not designed for wide feet

5. Scarpa Helix

Scarpa Helix
Price: 💲 (fewer 💲 = cheaper)
Sole Material: Vibram Rubber, Synthetic sole
Closure Type: Lace Up
Shoe Material: 100% Suede
Shape: Neutral

The Scarpa Helix is perhaps one of the better shoes on this list for climbing instead of bouldering. The lace design and flexible materials make them one of the more comfortable shoes to wear for longer periods of time, a point only augmented by the flat profile often found on beginner and intermediate shoes. They come with that signature Scarpe inner edge to help you stand on small holds in peculiar positions. They are a truly versatile shoe, particularly good for slabs and when you have to wear them for a long time.The toes on this particular shoe seem to wear through quite quickly, and while the rest of the shoe is completely unhindered, it will still need a complete resole frequently. Furthermore, if you try to use these in a bouldering gym, you will likely get frustrated at how long it takes to put them on and take them off.


  • Another great beginner/intermediate shoe
  • Sharp rubber edge for standing on small holds
  • Comfortable to wear for longer periods
  • Versatile
  • Flat profile


  • Laces take a long time to put on and take off
  • Toes wear through quickly


Based on all of our experience with climbing shoes with laces, we found that La Sportiva Men’s KATAKI Climbing Shoe is the best lace climbing shoe available today.

Our Premium Option is Evolv The General Climbing Shoes with all the best features and high-quality materials, but that’s only if you have more money to spend.

However, if you are on a slightly tighter budget, you can also consider the Black Diamond Momentum Lace Climbing Shoe – Men’s as an affordable alternative.

Our other reviews you may find useful in your research:

What You Should Know Before Buying lace climbing shoes

Velcro vs. Laces

Velcro or laces is an age-old debate between climbers, and not many people can agree. So, let’s try to explain the benefits of either style. Velcro shoes are easier to take off and put on, which is a massive benefit with bouldering shoes. You see, it’s hard to keep bouldering shoes on for long durations. In general, laces provide a better and more customizable fit. For example, you can have the toe fitting loose while the heel is tight. You’ll also experience less roll in the shoe, which is essential when you’re edging. The downside is it takes a lot longer to take on and off. At the end of the day, the choice always comes down to personal preference.


Okay, before committing to your purchase, there are a few precautions you should take into account. The best bouldering shoes provide you with excellent assistance on more brutal climbs.

The most important thing to consider is comfort. All rock climbing shoes have a different fit. Some bouldering shoes can feel pretty painful, especially when you first get them. The easiest way to see if the shoe fits is by trying it first. You’re looking for a snug fit, so it doesn’t roll, but not so tight you feel in physical pain. Another thing you should consider is durability. Bouldering shoes take a hammering due to the aggressive nature of the climbing. Bouldering shoes with poor durability won’t make it past a year. To avoid this problem, check out user reviews on amazon.

Questions and Answers About lace climbing shoes

How much should I spend on climbing shoes?

You can expect to spend anywhere between the $60 and $140 is the beginner climbing shoe market. Much of the design that goes into the higher priced shoes aren’t what a beginner needs. You need a simple stiff soled shoe.

How can I make my climbing shoes more comfortable?

Having a new pair of climbing shoes is a great experience, but getting them to be more comfortable can be tricky. There are a few ways to make your shoes more comfortable. My favorite tip is to soak them in warm water to soften them. Then wear the shoes for 10 minutes, and then take them off to dry. This helps them stretch and mold them to the size of your feet a little quicker. Here are a couple more tips to make your climbing shoes more comfortable.

Why are climbing shoes designed to fit tight?

Climbing shoes need to be tight as you need your toes at the edge of the toe box in order to maximise the transfer of power from your foot to the wall. In addition, they require a firm, snug fit to minimise movement that may cause you to slip off a hold.

Should you wear socks with climbing shoes?

As a general rule, you don’t want to wear socks while climbing. This is because the added layer of a sock can make your shoe slightly slip, causing you to lose valuable traction. However, if you are borrowing a pair of shoes, or renting a pair that are slightly too big, socks can help to create a more snug fit. Some people also prefer to wear a thin sock for hygiene purposes, though again, this can cause you to lose traction or make you slip slightly in your shoes.

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