New Balance 993 vs 990: Which One Should You Grab?[in 2024]

Written By Mahia

Are you planning to buy a new pair of shoes for your morning or evening walk? Or are you a runner who wants to buy new footwear that bears all the excellent features?

You can frankly choose the brand “New Balance” which features comfort, light-weight, premium cushioning, and is on-trend.

It is irritating when you are unable to choose between similar categories of shoes from the same brand.

Don’t worry. I am here to assist you in picking the perfect shoe for a relaxed and comfortable walk and running.

I researched and precisely noted the features of New balance 993 and 990.

So, Let’s take a closer look till the end to know the unknown characteristics of these two footwear.

As a result, you will be able to grab the best one for you.


Brief History of New Balance Shoes

You might be curious to know how New Balance started their journey.

The popular brand “New balance” started its journey in the nineteen century. It was founded by an Irish immigrant William J. Riley.

Riley founds the motivation for designing such a shoe based on “how the chickens are balanced on their three-pronged toes in the yard”.

Doesn’t it sound interesting?

Along with a salesperson named Arthur Hall, Riley launched his New Balance Arch Support Company. The company started to deliver shoes in 1934. Gradually, It started to attract users with its outstanding comfort and iconic shoes.

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You will be amazed to know that “New Balance” has been profoundly conducting its business for over 100 years. The legendary brand continued the tradition of making top-class shoes.brief-history-of-new-balance-shoes

At present, Jim Davis owns the company. He purchased the brand in 1972 on the day of the Boston Marathon.

New Balance has come this far by holding his firm hand!

The talented manufacturers of the company supply premium quality sneakers, running shoes, walking shoes, basketball shoes, and cycling shoes. These shoes are both cozy and stylish.

New Balance 993 vs 990: How are they similar?

Both the shoes ensure sufficient comfort, ventilation, water resistance, and a stylish look. Basically, 993 is the upgraded version of 990.

New Balance 990 was first introduced in 1982 in the United States. This footwear was immensely popular at that time among athletes.

That’s why “New Balance” continued to bring new versions of casual shoes for athletes and regular wear.

Now, Let’s focus on the specific similarities between these shoes:

Ankle Support

As we all know, 993 and 990 are specially made for exercise, running and walking. So it is a must to ensure a sufficient amount of comfort and ankle support.

Otherwise, wearers will deny buying those shoes. Therefore, all the hard work of the manufacturer will go in vain. New Balance didn’t let that happen!

They launched shoes with utmost comfort with premium quality suede, mesh, and leather. Straps near the ankle area and low ankle collar confirm ankle support. So, it will not cause any disturbance when you wear these shoes for a long time as everyday casual wear.


I found almost similar sizing for New Balance 993 and 990 versions. For men, the size is from 7 to 16. Whereas the size varies from 5 to 13 for female users.

In case of fitting, the 993 is a suitable foot because of its narrower and wider shape. But the 990 is a loose fit. Hence it assures certain

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When it comes to flexibility, New balance never compromises. Combining blown rubber and flex grooves in the sole adds flexibility.

As a result, these shoes are always the top choice for runners and regular walkers. It gives a pleasant feeling when you walk or run for a couple of hours with a flexible shoe.


The pricing depends upon the quality of the material. The brand uses excellent quality materials, that’s why these shoes are a little expensive.

You have to pay almost 175 dollars for each pair of shoes. Yet, The price of 993 is a little bit higher compared to 990  in some marketplaces. The shoes are produced in the USA, this is another reason for the higher end price.

Moreover, price depends upon the marketing strategy. We can see different prices for the same shoes in the market.

So, I suggest you buy the actual one from an authentic and trustworthy place.

New Balance 993 vs 990: What are the Differences?

Here are the specific differences you should know before making a purchase. Take a look at this, so you don’t have to make the wrong decision.

Midsole Technology

The technology and materials determine the level of comfort and therefore cushioning.

The manufacturers follow ABZORB Dynamic Transition System technology to prepare the midsole of the 993. This technology ensures immense padding and premium-level cushioning.

On the contrary, ENCAP technology is followed to manufacture the 990’s midsole. It has a standard padding feature and enough cushioning. Users get a moderate level of comfort due to a medium level of cushion.


In the case of 993, The manufacturers make use of mesh, a certain amount of suede, and soft synthetic leather. Basically, platforms of 991 and 992 have been used to create this shoe.

The Upper sole consists of good-quality leather and mesh. Hence, the shoe offers a variety of colors.

The midsole of 993 provides additional cushioning by ABZORB technology.

Primarily, this shoe was designed for professional runners. But due to its attractive color variations and top-grade material, it is a trending one among young

Nylon mesh material in the 990 provides sufficient airflow. So, it is a perfect choice for summer. Superior quality pigskin, nylon mesh, and leather make up the upper portion. The ortholite insole and chunkier midsole of 990 add superb traction

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Color Variation

An interesting fact is that 993 has more color options than 990. You will be glad to know that New Balance launched 13 color variations on the market.

On the other hand, there are only 6 varieties of color for 990. Yet, the available colors are mesmerizing and perfect for everyday wear.

So, if you are a person who loves to wear colorful shoes, you can simply go with 993.


New Balance never compromises with quality. Both the shoes are durable due to their high-class materials.

Ndurance rubber material is used in the insole of 993. If you wear this shoe without any disturbances, it provides outstanding durability.

The insole of 990 is durable enough. The outsole is made of synthetic fiber, which is not sufficiently long-lasting.


While considering comfort, one of the most important criteria is weight. Generally, running shoes shouldn’t be heavy because a pair of heavy shoes will not be comfy even if premium quality materials are built for the shoe. Think about the disturbing status while running with weighty shoes.

New Balance didn’t fail in yielding soft and light-weight shoes. The shoes are not bulky to wear. The 990 is around 11 to 13 ounces. Whereas the 993 weighs slightly more than 900. The 900 contains 12–14 ounces for each pair. This is not much heavier, right?


As we mentioned earlier, that pigskin comprises the upper sole of 990.

The pigskin is a tender material. It has perforations. And so, it is not water-resistant.

Premium suede and mesh are combined to prepare the upper wraps of 993. It provides a certain amount of water resistivity.

So when you go for a walk or run, and sudden rain starts, you don’t have to worry about your shoes. Even the shoes will protect your dear feet!


The breathability of 990 is far better than 993. If you are looking for a summer-friendly running shoe, then you can go with 990. Its fabric is sleazy and thinner. Consequently, it provides excellent airflow.

This shoe is favorable for the runner who lives in the middle-east area. As we all know, how much trouble it is to run when feet get so hot and sweaty.

Overview of New balance 993 and 990

New balance 993, the modified version of 992. It is stylish and good-looking. The shoes are produced using  ABZORB DTS midsole technology. It holds more color options, comfort, and longevity.

The shoes are less bulky compared to 990. It is capable of containing more cushioning and is a great demand for the wearer.

Moreover, 993 is water-resistant because of its premium suede upper.

The 990 is able to provide an impressive look to the wearer. The latest midsole ENCAP technology of 990 results in extra padding.

It has five to six color variations. In terms of durability, it is not less than 993.

One of the drawbacks of this shoe is that it is not water-resistant due to perforations in pigskin. But the shoe is capable of providing enough airflow to your feet which is a plus point.

New Balance 993 vs 990: Which One is Better?

New Balance always tries to fulfill its customers’ demands. The brand continuously releasing varieties of footwear with the features of comfort, lightweight, and perfect sizing. They also launched numerous running, basketball shoes, and other athletic shoes.

I briefly discussed New Balance 990 and 993. I mentioned the materials, midsole technology, longevity, water-resistivity, and the things that are essential to provide you with a clear conception regarding these shoes.

It completely depends upon your own taste and preference which one you should choose.

If you ask me to suggest between 993 and 990, then which one should I recommend?

Well, I will recommend 993 for professional runners. The reason behind this is the excellent cushioning, water preventive characteristics, and utmost comfort.

If a professional runner wants to wear New Balance 990, it will not be worth it. Though 990 provides airflow, still its loose-fitting nature will cause disturbance while running.

So, I won’t recommend the 990 as a running shoe.

Individuals who love color variations in shoes should make a purchase of 993 without any hesitation because New Balance launches almost thirteen colors for these shoes. The colors are also quite elegant, like navy blue, ash, dark blue, white, etc.

If you’re looking for a cozy and smart-looking shoe that you would use for your morning or evening walk, then New Balance 990 is the perfect shoe for you.

You can also roam around comfortably for a couple of hours wearing this shoe. Doing this won’t hamper your foot. You will not feel sweaty or uncomfortable.

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Why are New Balance shoes so expensive?

Because the experienced workers of the United States manufacture these shoes. In addition to that, luxurious suede, premium leather, and flourished materials are used in constructing shoes of New Balance.

Does New Balance still produce 990?

The New Balance 990 was first introduced in 1982. It became so popular because of its standard, stability, and supreme comfort. The legendary brand is still manufacturing 990 without compromising the quality.

Is New Balance 993 good for running?

In a word, 993 is one of the best picks as a running shoe. It provides a satisfactory level of comfort for long-running as it has an extreme cushioning facility. The Ndurance rubber heel in this shoe makes it outstanding athletic wear without any doubt.


993 and 990 are among the top lines of New Balance production. Though both of these shoes are considered running shoes, people can easily go for casual walking wearing pairs of shoes.

The strongest feature which makes these shoes the center of attraction is their supreme comfort. These shoes are mass pleasing.

I have mentioned the similarities, differences, and benefits of 993 and 990 for you. If you were with me till now, then you should know the unknown facts concerning those shoes.

Maybe you have already made your decision about which one you should grab after reading this article.

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I strongly believe you have chosen the right one to purchase. If you want to share your selection with me, please/you can comment below without any hesitation.

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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