Adidas Gazelle vs Samba [Comparison to the Last Detail]

Written By Mahia

With the “Blokecore” TikTok trend, and being inspired by the sporting style of celebrities, I found myself torn between the iconic Adidas Samba and Gazelle last year.

As a seasonal soccer player, I ultimately ended up buying both. But after wearing them extensively, I noticed their actual feature differences.


If you’re in the same boat and struggling to decide, Keep reading!

Because, here, I’ll break down all the key differences between the Gazelle and Samba shoes to help you make the right choice.

A Quick Overview of Adidas Samba and Gazelle

Originally released in 1966 as indoor soccer shoes, the Gazelle has been popular as casual wear for decades now.  The shoes are known for their simple yet versatile design, making them a great option for casual wear or dressing up for a night out.

However, through the ongoing sport-look trend in social media, the decade-old shoe has again made its way into today’s fashion.

On the other hand, the Adidas Samba was released in 1950 and is one of the brand’s oldest models.

Originally designed for soccer, the Sambas has now become the most popular casual sneaker model of Adidas. From celebrities wearing them to the newest collaboration with Wales Bonner, this timeless design never goes out of style.

What’s The Difference Between Adidas Gazelle and Samba?

Being two classic yet popular models of Adidas, both the Samba and Gazelle offer stunning features. As both of them were designed for playing indoor soccer, their attributes are quite similar. Yet, they have apparent differences in their material, sole, cushioning, and fitting.

So, let’s find out how Adidas Gazelle and Samba compare:

1. Material

Both the Gazelle and Samba are made from high-quality materials, but they differ in their construction.

The Samba is crafted from kangaroo leather with a nubuck suede T-toe reinforcement. This combination of materials gives the shoe extra durability while maintaining a soft feel.

As you know, many Adidas shoes are vegan, and Sambas offer some vegan sneakers as well. The shoes use a combination of synthetic and recycled materials, which is why they are a lot cheaper than other models. material

The Gazelle, on the other hand, is entirely made of high-quality suede leather. The suede provides a luxurious feel and a more flexible fit.

However, they were actually the first Adidas sneaker to feature a suede upper, making it a trendsetter in the world of sports footwear. And unlike the Sambas, they don’t have any vegan Gazelles to offer.

2. Outsole Design and Traction

Another notable difference between the Gazelle and Samba is their outsole design and traction, The Samba has a grippy gum sole, which makes it perfect for indoor sports and cycling.

The Gazelle, on the other hand, has a sticky gum rubber sole that provides excellent traction even on slippery surfaces, making it an ideal choice for outdoor activities like skating.

3. Overall design

When it comes to the overall design, both the Gazelle and Samba have classic look that has stood the test of time.

The notable design differences are-

  • The Samba features the iconic three stripes on the side and comes in a range of colors, while the Gazelle has a sleeker design with various color options.
  • Gazelle features a sticking-out tongue that is different in color than the upper. Side on, Sambas typically come with a shorter tongue, except the Samba Classic with a really long tongue. Also, in these shoes, the tongue comes in a color similar to the upper.
  • The tongue that Adidas Samba comes with is wider than that of the Gazelle.

I personally like the short tongue design of the Sambas, and their overall design is more versatile than the Gazelles.

4. Arch Support

If you’re someone who requires more arch support, the Gazelle is the better choice.

Gazelle features a cushioned insole and a padded heel cap that provides more support than the Samba.

However, for me, even with the usual cushioning, Sambas held out well while playing indoor basketball or soccer. But the extra padding of Gazelle was more comfortable while gaming.

5. Size and Fit

Both shoes are available in men’s and women’s sizes, but their fit can vary.

It’s said that both Samba and Gazelle run true to size. But in my experience, I found Sambas quite narrower, when compared to Gazelle, especially around the midfoot.

I usually wear the US size 11 for other sneakers, but for Sambas I had to go with a half-size up for a better fit. But if you have wide feet, Adidas Sambas won’t be a good choice for you. Even after going half-size up, you may find them a bit tight.

Conversely, the Gazelles feature a wider midfoot and toe box than the Sambas. And to get a snug fit from my Gazelles, I had to go half-size down from my usual size.

6. Color and Style options

Lastly, color and style options are always important when choosing a new pair of sneakers.

The Samba offers more color options, making it easier to find the perfect match for your style. Often, the Sambas feature crests of popular football clubs on the tongue.

So, if you wanna make a more clear statement with your sporty casual look, just go with Adidas Samba. color-and-style-options

The Gazelle, on the other hand, has a more minimalist design and is available in classic colorways that go well with any outfit. They offer the most colorways you will find in Adidas. And their newest released styles, in collaboration with Gucci, made the shoes more popular among fashion lovers. several-styles-of-gazelle-shoes

However, I’ve worn my pair of Gazelles on several casual occasions, from my friend’s birthday party to go out for lunch.

7. Price

Both Samba and Gazelle sneakers are pretty expensive, as it costs a lot to make Adidas shoes.

However, if compared, Gazelles are quite pricier than the Sambas. The price range for Adidas Samba is from $50 to $120.

On the other hand, Gazelle offers shoes in the $80 to $120 price range. However, the newest expensive collab model, Adidas X Gucci Men’s Gazelle sneakers come at a hefty price of $850!

Overall, along with all their differences, both shoes have many great features to offer. So for a better understanding, I’ll now give you some heads up about the pros and cons the shoes come with.

Pros and Cons of Adidas Samba and Gazelle

Besides their top-notch benefits, you should also know what drawbacks these shoes come with.

So, let’s find out the pros and cons of Adidas Samba and Gazelle shoes:

Adidas Samba

  • »Durable leather upper.
  • »Vegan options are available.
  • »Highly grippy outsole.
  • »More versatile design.
  • »Wide range of colors and designs.
  • »Narrower construction.
  • »Not suitable for wide feet.
  • »Less cushioning.

Adidas Gazelle

  • »Good arch support with extra padding.
  • »Comfy suede upper.
  • »Wide toe design gives a roomy fit.
  • »Non-slip shoes with the sticky gum outsole.
  • »A lot of colors and styles to choose from.
  • »Less durable.
  • »Don’t have vegan options.

Which One is Better Between Gazelle and Adidas Samba?

Which one to choose between Samba and Gazelle depends on your liking and what you plan on using the shoes for. If you want a sporty sneaker for everyday use, Gazelle might be the one for you.

But if you want a pair that you can use both for athletic purposes and casual wear, just go with the Sambas. Also, most Samba colorways are somewhat cheaper than the Gazelles. So, you can go with them for a more affordable pick.

However, as Gazelle offers more cushioning and support, they are a better choice if you have any foot condition like leg fatigue.

Final Thoughts

Adidas never falls behind, when it comes to reliable yet practical sneakers. Samba and Gazelle are just two examples of that.

And I hope with all the detailed info that I’ve given here, now you can make a hassle-free decision between them.

For further queries about Adidas sneakers, just leave a comment here.

Happy shopping!

About The Author
Since childhood, Mahia is a shoe freak. And this is what lead her to do more research and gather knowledge about shoes.Mahia has always wanted to share her skill and knowledge about footwear with a mass audience, which ended her up in this amazing workplace.When Mahia is not writing, you can almost always find her in the kitchen experimenting with different recipes to upgrade her catering menu.

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