Adidas Samba OG vs Vegan: Which Samba Should You Get?

Written By Sunny

Adidas Samba OG and Adidas Samba Vegan are two iconic shoe models with distinct designs and features.

While the Samba OG represents the classic design, the vegan version offers a sustainable twist.

Last year, I was confused between the two, as they seemed the same. As an Adidas fan, I ended up buying both on sale.

In this article, I will compare the design, materials, comfort, etc., of the Adidas Samba OG and Vegan to make a suitable choice for you.adidas-samba-og-vs-vegan

Let’s dive in.

Overview of Adidas Samba OG and Samba Vegan

Initially designed as a soccer shoe back in the ’50s, the Adidas Samba gained popularity everywhere. Over the years, it has become an iconic sneaker. It holds a special place among fashion enthusiasts.

As the vegan trend is widespread, there’s an increasing demand for cruelty-free options from various manufacturers.

So, are Adidas shoes vegan? Yes, and the Samba series is one of them.

Adidas Samba Vegan, made with synthetic materials, is entirely animal-free. For those who are animal lovers but still want to enjoy the classic Samba style, this model is an excellent choice.

While Sambe Vegan maintains the same iconic design elements of the OG version, it’s also cruelty-free

Conversely, Adidas Samba OG represents the original Samba design.

It maintains the timeless silhouette and heritage details that have made it so popular.

The iconic T-toe, low profile, and lightweight design stands as a versatile option for any casual outfit.

Key Differences Between Adidas Samba OG vs. Vegan

While they both seem similar, they have some differences here and there. Below, I will explain the key changes I found between the Adidas Samba OG vs. Vegan.adidas-samba-og-vs-vegan-comparison-factor

Here are the key differences between Adidas Samba OG and Samba Vegan:

1. Upper Design and Material

The upper of both shoes looks similar. On both the lateral and medial sides, you will find the classic three stripes. The gold-colored Samba name on the lateral side behind the three stripes is also appealing.

However, there are slight changes in materials and designs.


The Adidas Samba OG with the iconic T-toe overlay and contrasting three stripes on the sides appears in minimalistic design. These combinations give the Samba OG its unique appearance.

The Samba OG has an upper with a combination of full-grain leather and suede material. It ensures durability and also a touch of luxury.

Over time, the soft leather adapts to your feet and offers a comfortable feel.

But beware of the water. Even though the material is good, one of my pal’s suede was damaged due to light rain.adidas-samba-og-vs-vegan-upper

In contrast, the Samba Vegan also keeps its iconic design intact just like the Samba OG.

Adidas Samba Vegan goes for synthetic alternatives to create a cruelty-free shoe that stays true to the original design.

It includes a synthetic leather upper designed to replicate the aesthetic and feel of genuine leather. The vegan leather may feel slightly stiffer initially, attributing it to its 50% recycled plastic composition.

Using synthetic materials contributes to lowering the impact of animal farming and tanning process.

So, you can express your style along with making an ethical statement with the shoe.

However, the leather creases are harder than the OG. So, they may not be durable at the same level as the OG.

Another of my main criticisms lies in the fake suede they use. It looks and feels fake.

But, it is when you get so close. It is tough to distinguish which one’s a vegan or a leather one at a distance.


The tongues are pretty similar in design on both shoes.

Samba Vegan has a more typical classic tongue and is slightly shorter than the OG version. The tongue is also not padded in both versions. However, it’s always been that way.adidas-samba-og-vs-vegan-tongue

The classic Adidas trefoil sits on a blue square on the tongue’s front.


If you are a classic black-and-white fan like me, both Samba OG and Vegan have covered you.

For a more vibrant palette, the Samba OG presents a range of color options to suit your style.adidas-samba-og-vs-vegan-colors

However, Samba Vegan disappointed me in the color choice sections, which offer only two color options.

2. Outsole, Midsole, and Insole

The outsoles in both shoes have sturdy rubber material.


Adidas Samba OG has a Gum rubber cupsole outsole or bottom.

The grippy gum sole makes it perfect for slippery surfaces and indoor sports. It also offers a firm grip on the soccer field.

The Vegan model also has a rubber outsole with a cool design similar to the OG. In my test, they provided a lot of grip.adidas-samba-og-vs-vegan-outsole

Also, the Adidas branding is in the middle of the outsole in Vegan and OG shoes.


Both Samba Vegan and OG have Gum rubber midsoles.

The cushioned midsole offers stability and comfort, making it a reliable choice for casual wear or light physical activities.


Samba OG is equipped with a cushioned footbed, accompanied by the EVA insole. The EVA material provides a bouncy feature that is crucial in the soccer game.

The OG’s insole displays regular Adidas branding with a black color.

On the other hand, the insole prominently showcases Adidas and vegan branding in a vibrant green hue on the Samba Vegan shoes.adidas-samba-vegan-vs-og-insole

Adidas used white vegan leather for the sock lining and base layer.

3. Sizing and Fit

When it comes to the Adidas Samba OG sizing, I ordered my usual size 10, and I must say they fit perfectly, as I have a narrow and normal arch foot.

However, one of my friends with wider feet and high arches found it challenging and uncomfortable due to the shoe’s flat and low-to-the-ground nature.

If you have wider feet, I suggest you go a half size up for a more comfortable experience.

On the other hand, size 10 was out for Samba Vegan at the moment when I purchased it. I went with Size ten and a half as it looked long in size to me initially.

However, I was happy that it was a perfect fit.

I also didn’t experience any heel slippage. So, if you go with true to size, it should properly fit you.

But, if you are worried about the slightly narrower toe box, opt for a half size up from your typical size to avoid any discomfort.

4. Performance and Comfort

Both Samba OG and Vegan are great in terms of performance and comfort.


In my test, the Samba OG’s gum rubber outsole delivered impressive traction and grip on various surfaces.

The supportive structure and midsole ensure stability and comfort. So, it is easily a reliable choice for casual wear or light physical activities.

On the contrary, Samba Vegan delivers the same performance as the OG.

I like the style and how smoothly I can use it casually. You have versatility when it comes to this shoe, whether you’re strolling through the city or hitting the dance floor.


In my test, the cushioned midsole was good enough to absorb impact. So, it definitely minimizes foot fatigue and enhances overall comfort for daily wear.

As this shoe lacks arch support, it can become uncomfortable if you have a high arch. Moreover, the shoe walls snugly hug my foot edges.

So, if you have wide feet or bunions, it can be a potential problem.

Conversely, Adidas Samba Vegan lacks a genuine leather upper.

However, the synthetic materials mimic the flexibility and softness of genuine leather, ensuring a comfortable fit.

I have spent extended periods with these shoes, which delivered satisfying comfort.

The heel collar is slightly higher in the Vegan version compared to the OG. But they both ensure a good fit.adidas-samba-vegan-vs-og-heel-collar

5. Pricing and Value

Regarding price, Adidas Samba OG and Vegan fall into the mid-range category.

Adidas priced both sneakers at a sweet spot between quality and affordability. The $100 price tag makes the Samba OG and Vegan popular among sneaker enthusiasts.

When it comes to comparing the value for money of the Samba OG and Samba Vegan, it’s a tough call.

They both provide excellent quality, comfort, and style at the same price.

Samba Vegan holds more value for an animal-friendly lover, whereas Samba OG is a better choice for a traditionalist. Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference.

Pros & Cons of Adidas Samba OG and Adidas Samba Vegan

Adidas Samba OG and Vegan offer unique features and priorities that appeal to diverse users. It is best to find their strengths and potential drawbacks for the decision-making process.

Here are the pros and cons of Adidas Samba OG and Adidas Samba Vegan:

Adidas Samba OG

  • »Stylish design.
  • »Can be used as daily wear.
  • »Lightweight.
  • »Comfortable fit and easy maintenance.
  • »Great Summer footwear.
  • »Narrow toe box.
  • »Not ideal for high arch feet.
  • »Suede Upper can get damaged in light rainy water.

Adidas Samba Vegan

  • »Little to no break-in time.
  • »Comfortable Upper.
  • »Timeless design.
  • »Lightweight.
  • »Non-animal derived materials.
  • »Durable Outsole.
  • »Thin tongue padding.
  • »Can show wear and tear signs quickly under intense skateboarding conditions.
  • »Vegan leather may not be as durable as non-vegan leather.

Adidas Samba OG or Vegan: Choosing the Perfect Adidas Samba

The Adidas Samba OG and Samba Vegan offer unique characteristics.

Samba OG maintains the timeless design and heritage, while Vegan provides a sustainable and eco-friendly choice.

For classic style lovers who don’t mind the use of animal-derived materials, the Samba OG is an excellent choice.

The Samba Vegan is the way to go if sustainability and vegan-friendly materials are important without sacrificing style or comfort.

I liked the Samba OG because the fake leather used in Samba Vegan was not attractive to me.

You can’t go wrong with either of these iconic Adidas sneakers.

So, take your preferences into account and make the purchase decision.


Can I use Adidas Samba OG or Adidas Samba Vegan in sports?

Adidas Samba OG and Vegan are versatile. Though you can use them on the streets, you can wear them for indoor or casual sports.

Is it entirely vegan-friendly material used in the Adidas Samba Vegan?

The Samba Vegan does not use any animal products or by-products. It is made of entirely vegan-friendly materials, making the perfect footwear for cruelty-free users.

Does Samba OG have arch support?

Adidas Samba OG has a flat sole and lacks significant built-in arch support. It is focused on style and versatility for casual wear and indoor sports. Samba Classic shoes or custom insoles can improve the situation.

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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