Adidas Gazelle vs Stan Smith: Battle of Iconic Sneakers

Written By Sunny

Iconic designs filled the sneakers world, and the Adidas Gazelle and Stan Smith are one of them for their aesthetics and rich heritage.

While the Gazelle has a slimmer silhouette, textured upper, and a signature on the side, Stan Smith comes with a leather upper without the Adidas stripe.

From my experience, I will thoroughly show the unique characteristics and performance features of Adidas Gazelle and Adidas Stan Smith that will perfectly fit you.adidas-gazelle-vs-stan-smith

Let’s dive in.

Overview of Adidas Gazelle and Stan Smith

The Adidas Stan Smith and Gazelle offer slim profiles and clean designs. With a diverse range of color options, they provide a wide range of tastes.

Adidas introduced the Gazelle as a lightweight training shoe in 1966.

Over the years,  this shoe swiftly became a timeless favorite in streetwear.

Though initially designed as a training shoe for various sports, it became a casual fashion for its striking design and comfort.

On the other hand, Adidas Stan Smith, named after the famous American tennis player, made their debut in the early 70s.

Initially, it was designed as tennis shoes.

However, with its clean leather upper and unique green heel tab, they gained immense popularity in the sneaker community on and off the tennis court.

Over the years, both the Gazelle and Stan Smith have undergone design updates and collaborations, enhancing their appeal.

Attribute Comparison Table: Adidas Stan Smith vs Gazelle

Whether you are a sneaker enthusiast or collector, you must have eyes on these renowned sneakers from Adidas.

I love these gorgeous shoes for their unique features, designs, materials, etc. The table with highlighted comparisons is a quick and easy way to help you choose between the sneakers.

Here’s the attribute Comparison Table between Adidas Stan Smith and Gazelle:

AttributesAdidas GazelleAdidas Stan Smith
HeritageIntroduced in the early '60s as an athletic training shoe, it became famous in the '90s streetwear scene.Named after tennis player Stan Smith that was introduced in the early '60s.
DesignClassic suede or leather upper.Clean and minimalistic leather upper.
Iconic 3-stripeSymbolic three-sided stripes.Perforated 3-Stripes.
Signature DetailsGold foil branding on the side.Signature Stan Smith portrait on the tongue.
MaterialSuede.Leather, Cup Sole, OrthoLite.
BreathabilityNot satisfactory.Better than Gazelle.
ComfortPadded collar and tongue.Cushioned insole and soft leather lining.
OutsoleTextured rubber outsole.Durable rubber cupsole.
StyleClassic, Sporty, Minimalist.Classic, Sporty, Minimalist.
Closure SystemLace-up design.Traditional lace-up.
WeightAround 13 ounces.Slightly lightweight than Gazelle
Price RangeAround $80-$120Around $80-$160

Now, let’s dive into in-depth comparisons.

Key Differences Between Adidas Gazelle and Stan Smith

The Gazelle and Stan Smith from Adidas are vastly popular. To align a perfect match with your style, I have explained in-depth comparisons of the sneakers regarding designs, comfort, performance, etc.adidas-gazelle-vs-stan-smith-key-differences

Here are the key differences between Adidas Gazelle and Stan Smith:

1. Design and Aesthetics

While the sneakers prefer simplicity, they differ in design aspects.

With a more rounded toe, the Gazelle provides a sportier look, whereas the Stan Smith maintains a sleeker shape.

The Adidas Gazelle gives a classic vibe that has withstood for a long time.

With a suede upper and straightforward design with the iconic three stripes on the side, the Gazelle comes with classic black and white to vibrant ones.

So, are Adidas Gazelles still fashionable?

The slim silhouette and lace-up closure provided an adjustable fit. It elevates your styling options and makes them more relevant today than ever.

My casual outfits matched nicely with the deep-cut design of the shoe.

Though the suede upper and T-toe add an elegant touch to the shoe, they can get damaged in rainy or snowy weather.adidas-gazelle-vs-stan-smith-design

Conversely, Stan Smith also offers a clean and simple design.

So, what is so special about Adidas Stan Smith?

Unlike most Adidas shoes, there are perforated stripes (punched ventilation holes) on the side above the leather upper instead of the regular three stripes.

As a symbol, there is a Stan Smith portrait on the tongue, while the iconic Adidas trefoil logo decorates the heel area.logo-difference-adidas-gazelle-vs-stan-smith

The casual vibe of the shoe goes with any piece of clothing and appeals to casual sportswear fans.

Stan Smith is also available in a variety of colors, but not on the same level as the Gazelle.

In terms of design, I liked the Adidas Gazelle for its suede upper and slimmer outline compared to Stan Smith.

2. Materials and Construction

Similar to the design changes, the sneakers have some differences in material compositions in the Upper, Insole, Midsole, and Outsole.


The Adidas Gazelle has a Suede Nubuck upper, which gives a cool vintage vibe. It gave me a soft and luxurious feel.

The reinforced toe box, contrast stripes, and gold-colored Gazelle add retro vibes.

However, due to the upper material, it’s a bit sensitive to stains.upper-view-of-adidas-gazelle-and-adidas-stan-smith

In contrast, the Stan Smith features a stylish leather upper made with vegan alternatives to animal-derived materials.

Thanks to Primegreen, their high-performance recycled materials. The construction is pretty water-tight.

Though the upper seemed effective at repelling stains, the soles, laces, and eyelets got easily stained.

Moreover, I was disappointed as the leather didn’t seem sturdy to me. It tends to wear thin with abrasions and develops highly visible creases quickly.

If you have a fear of those, you can find Stan Smith alternatives.


The footbed in both shoes offers comfort.

The 4.3mm thick insole is removable and made of fabricated material. It was not comfortable for prolonged standing.

On the other hand, Stan Smith’s OrthoLite insole was comfortable.

It is made with recycled materials and has Primegreen lettering on it. The footbed also wicks away moisture, keeping the feet cool and dry.


In my test, the sneaker’s rubber midsole provided excellent impact absorption and durability.

Adidas Gazelle has a thicker midsole than the Stan Smith’s EVA midsole. Both were comfortable on my feet.


The rubber outsoles come with the Gazelle and Stan Smith providing excellent grip and durability.

Gazelle offers a versatile design featuring a diamond pattern for enhanced traction on various surfaces. It was a comfortable experience on the road.

Conversely, the rubber outsole is even in the Stan Smith, making it suitable for everyday wear.

You can see visible stitching on the Outsole front. The shoe also comes with an Adidas logo, and trefoil leaves emblem printed near the middle of the Outsole.adidas-gazelle-vs-stan-smith-outsole

I found the shoe well grippy from concrete to wood flooring.

Regarding materials and construction, I liked the Gazelle more compared to Stan Smith.

3. Weight and Durability

While the Adidas Gazelle weighs around 13 ounces, Stan Smith weighs around 12 ounces, making it slightly lighter.

The weight can differ based on materials or sizing issues, so take it with a grain of salt.

The difference can appear negligible, but some users prefer lightweight for prolonged periods.

In terms of durability, the suede upper in Adidas Gazelle provides a soft and luxurious feel while being resistant to degradation.

The rubber outsole also provided excellent grip on diverse surfaces in my test, making it an excellent choice for everyday wear.

In contrast, whole-grain leather upper in Stan Smith is resistant to water and marks. The top-notch quality makes it an ideal choice.

The outsole is also flexible and offers outstanding grip.

In regards to weight and durability, Stan Smith takes the win.

4. Comfort, Size, and Fit

When it comes to fit, comfort, and cushioning, both shoes offer a responsive and comfortable feel.


Regarding comfort, both sneakers were comfortable. Their interiors’ soft, breathable lining keeps the feet away from blisters.

The cushioned tongue, collar, and soft suede upper in Adidas Gazelle provide support and a comfy fit.

Other contributors to the shoe’s comfort are the padded insole and slim outline.

In contrast, Adidas Stan Smith’s leather upper is soft and flexible.

The perfectly padded insole enhances overall comfort. Compared to the Gazelle, I found that the Stan Smith has a broader profile, allowing more space for my foot to move around.

In regards to cushioning, Gazelle’s slightly thicker midsole provides cushioned landings and shock absorption.

Stan Smith opts for a minimalistic approach, delivering a lightweight and agile feel without compromising comfort. It felt like walking on clouds with classy charm.comfort-of-stan-smith

Sizing and Fit

The sleek and narrow silhouette in the Gazelle hugged my feet snugly. This shoe can be an ideal choice if you have a narrower foot or prefer a tighter fit.

In addition, I ordered a size 10, and it fits true to size. So you won’t have to worry about the sizing. However, I recommend going half a size up for slightly wider feet.

On the other hand, there was a bit more wiggle room for my toes in the Stan Smith.

The interesting part is, though they are true to size, I found them run big.

I ordered my regular size 10, and after getting the shoe, I realized size 9.5 would be a better fit. I recommend going a half-size down for regular feet.

The regular size will be shiny for those with slightly wider feet or who prefer a relaxed fit. The lace-up closure backs up for a tighter fit.

Comfort-wise, Stan Smith is slightly ahead. But regarding sizing and fitting, I prefer the Gazelle.

5. Performance and Stability

The Gazelle has a sleek appearance without compromising any good features. It looks great when I wear them casually.

The rubber outsole, with its tread pattern, provides exceptional traction. It was a secure grip and comfort with every step.

It’s great for walking and light jogging.

The Adidas Stan Smith, on the other hand, also gives remarkable traction and stability. Moreover, the lightweight feel can support you when wearing the shoes for extended periods.

It is also more breathable than the Gazelle, so sweating should not be a problem.

CharacteristicAdidas GazelleAdidas Stan Smith
All day wearNot suitableSuitable
SupportGood for walking and joggingGood for casual activities

Performance-wise, Adidas Stan Smith is better for me, as I like more lightweight and breathable shoes.

6. Price and Value

Generally, Adidas Gazelle is priced from $80-$120, whereas it is around $80-$160 for Stan Smith.

They both offer cost-effective solutions.

Due to changes in material, stretchable upper, and different patterns, prices can vary.

Overall, considering the quality, styling, and longevity, both Gazelle and Stan Smith provide value for bucks.

Price- and value-wise, they are both a tie.

Pros & Cons of Adidas Gazelle and Adidas Stan Smith

Both sneakers have earned their place in sneaker history. While they offer unique advantages, they also have some potential drawbacks.

To make an informed decision, let’s take a look at the Adidas Stan Smith and Gazelle’s pros and cons.

Adidas Gazelle

  • »Classic and fashionable aesthetic.
  • »Budget-friendly.
  • »Built with genuine suede.
  • »Available around 18 color options for men.
  • »High-quality materials ensure long-lasting durability.
  • »Flexible and stylish design.
  • »Unsatisfactory breathability.
  • »Not suitable for wet conditions like rain, mud, or snow.
  • »Uncomfortable for all-day wear.
  • »Inappropriate for wide feet.

Adidas Stan Smith

  • »Timeless and iconic silhouette.
  • »Over ten color options.
  • »Versatile and easy to style.
  • »Suitable in various weather conditions.
  • »Durable construction.
  • »Comfort fit with lightweight design.
  • »Longer break-in period.
  • »Potential sizing issue.
  • »Quick crease issue of the upper leather.
  • »Lacks adequate support.

Which to Choose: Adidas Gazelle or Stan Smith?

With versatile attributes and advantages, Adidas Gazelle and Stan Smith appeal to sneaker enthusiasts worldwide.

The sporty and sleek design of the Gazelle matches broader outfits.

Besides that, Stan Smith’s clean and minimalist design also won’t disappoint you. The unique features it offers, like minimal Adidas branding, Stan Smith’s portrait, and three perforation rows, make it different from other Adidas shoes.

I like the Gazelle for its diverse color offering, snug fit, and comfort.

Regardless of your intention and style, they both are top-quality sneakers with style and ease. So, you can’t go wrong with any of this.


Can I use the Adidas Gazelle and Stan Smith for sports activities?

Initially, the Adidas Gazelle and Stan Smith appeared as athletic shoes. But over time, they transitioned into sneakers. The comfort and support they offer in today’s shoes are ideally unsuitable for high-intensity sports.

Are the Adidas Gazelle and Stan Smith unisex?

Yes, the Adidas Stan Smith and Gazelle are considered unisex sneakers. They come in a broad range of sizes suitable for both men and women. However, some special editions target a specific gender.

Can Adidas Gazelle or Stan Smith get damaged in water?

Due to the suede upper, Gazelle can get damaged in rainy, muddy, or snowy weather. However, the upper leather takes care of the Stan Smith and usually doesn’t get damaged quickly.

About The Author
Sunny is all about action and activities. He finds it difficult to contain himself. Be it motorcycling, playing football, or exploring the great outdoors, he loves to keep his legs busy.Sunny quickly realized the importance of footwear to keep himself going healthily. This was when he decided to share all his knowledge and expertise regarding different footwear and their significance.Now, he’s on a mission with this humble platform by his side. With time he plans on doing bigger and better things.Apart from his writing and other hobbies, he loves spending time with his cat Sophie. He loves to cook for his friends and family too.

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