The 10 Best Elastic No Tie Shoelaces
This wiki has been updated 21 times since it was first published in October of 2016. No-tie shoelaces are ideal for children whose motor skills haven't fully developed and for adults who suffer from arthritis or any other condition that limits their dexterity. This list offers a range of different styles, systems, and materials, all of which allow users to slip any footwear on and off in seconds. And thanks to their elastic nature, they provide for a comfortable fit. When users buy our independently chosen editorial choices, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
October 27, 2020:
At this time, no other elastic no-tie shoelace can manage to unseat Lock Laces from the top spot, since these simple, affordable, nifty laces perform just as promised. The Xpand System and Hickies 2.0 remain popular, as well, although the latter could use an upgrade to make them less likely to snap. Nevertheless, they are different from much of the competition, with an interesting click-to-close construction that makes them a worthwhile choice for some.
As for a reflective model, we replaced the Stout Gears Reflective with Nathan Reflective Run Laces. Runners will probably recognize the brand; Nathan is known for producing quality gear, from hydration packs to headlamps. These Run Laces add an extra touch of safety to your kit, and they come in plenty of colors beyond plain black.
Finally, for something just a little different, we selected the Caterpy Ultimate, which boast an eye-catching bumpy design. You probably wouldn't use them with dress shoes, like you could with the InMaker Dress, for example, but if you want to stand out, they're a good choice. Footmatters Curly are also exceptionally noticeable, although their actual colors aren't quite as bright and neon as the pictures indicate.
November 06, 2019:
When it comes to elastic shoelaces, there are certain names that continue to come to the forefront, and for good reason. Lock Laces, the Xpand System, and Hickies 2.0 all have devoted users of various ages who enjoy their ease of use and styling. Athletes, especially, appreciate Lock Laces, which can relieve pressure or rubbing and offer plenty of adjustability. When it comes to durability, though, the Hickies are probably the least reliable of the bunch; their relatively thin construction means that they can snap. But each package comes with 14 straps, which allows for a few spares when used on many pairs of shoes.
As for competitors, we kept Cool Oumers and Homar Silicone. These aren't necessarily great for running shoes, but for kids and anyone else who has trouble tying standard shoelaces, they are a viable option. InMaker Dress are good for dress shoes, as you may have guessed, but we removed Silkies Dress, as they have become tough to find.
Nike Adapt The electronically adjustable lacing system of the Nike Adapt can provide athletes the custom fit they need, and without even bending over, as the shoes are powered by a handy smartphone app. Of course, this makes them more complicated (and expensive) rather than less, so they're perhaps best for those who are serious about their sports and sneakers. nike.com
The Benefits Of Elastic No-Tie Shoelaces
Imagine running flat out as fast as you can, and then imagine that your sneaker comes untied while doing so.
Thanks to advances in materials and manufacturing processes, shoelaces are not what they used to be — and that’s a good thing. These days, anyone having trouble with traditional laces has an abundance of options, all designed to make the shoe-wearing experience easier. In fact, the benefits to be gained from these nifty items are many and varied, and aren’t just for kids or the elderly.
To begin with, no-tie laces are an excellent choice for anyone with balance or mobility issues. Spry individuals might be able to catch themselves after stepping on an undone lace, but for many, such a misstep means an unpleasant impact with the hard ground. This is one more reason, too, that these laces are excellent for older folks and unsteady toddlers.
Then, consider that a good pair of elastic shoelaces can actually change the way that the shoe feels on the foot. Traditional shoelaces, no matter how carefully you tie them, can create pressure points that push on the top of your foot all day long. But a sturdy pair of elastic laces helps prevent these, and as a bonus, the comfort is lasting, as there's no knot that must be done and re-done. Some elastic laces let you arrange them in various ways, allowing you to add support where you need it.
And don’t forget that for athletes, the elastic shoelace is a boon. Imagine running flat out as fast as you can, and then imagine that your sneaker comes untied while doing so. These laces are even useful when the individual is not actively running. Triathletes, for instance, can shave precious seconds or minutes off their finishing time by not having to stop and lace up their shoes between events.
Finally, the best elastic no-tie shoelaces can step up your style. They come in just about every color you think of, so you could select ones that match your shoes, your outfit, your watch, your mood, or your favorite sports team. So, no matter which ones you choose, your kicks will certainly be more eye-catching than those of your plain-shoelaced friends.
Superstition And Shoelaces
Another benefit to elastic no-tie shoelaces (well, sort of) is that they’ll protect you from the many superstitions that surround these common items. Of course, there’s no scientific proof to back up any of the following fanciful ideas, but in a way, a good superstition needs no proof: for those who believe it, it’s real enough.
Some claim that the superstition is more specific, however, and state that for this to be true, the lace has to come undone on its own without being snagged on something.
For instance, did you know that if your shoelace should happen to come undone, someone is talking about you at that moment? But don’t get too stressed; if it’s the right lace that unknots, it means that the person is only saying good things or that someone who loves you is thinking of you. Some claim that the superstition is more specific, however, and state that for this to be true, the lace has to come undone on its own without being snagged on something. If it’s the left shoelace that comes loose, someone may be bad-mouthing you at the time.
Another superstition states that it’s a bad omen for your shoelace to break. In a way, this might have a reasonable underpinning; after all, a broken shoelace is an aggravation and could cause one to fall. Thank goodness for heavy-duty no-tie shoelaces, which are much harder to break.
It’s also common for the superstitious to claim that a knot in a shoelace is a harbinger of good luck. If you want to ensure that the luck will stay with you, you must leave the knot in your shoelace for the rest of the day. You won’t get any mystery knots in your elastic shoelaces, but you’ll definitely be ready to chase after good fortune at a moment’s notice.
A Brief History Of The Shoelace
The shoelace seems like it couldn’t be simpler — it’s basically just a piece of string, after all — but trying to work out its history is sure to have you tied up in knots. This is because there is a great deal of misinformation floating around about who came up with the idea, some of which persists despite incontrovertible evidence that disproves it.
The basic idea behind the shoelace, using a string-like material to keep other materials on the feet, is nothing new at all.
But let’s examine the facts. Many sources agree that the first true shoelaces can be found on what’s called the Areni-1 shoe, which dates all the way back to 3500 B.C.E. Theoretically, there could be an even older set of laces, as ancient materials were natural, not man-made, and are easily lost to the destructive forces of time. In fact, many experts think that the covering of feet for protection may date back as far as 40,000 years, and it’s not unlikely that these extremely primitive shoes used some form of long, skinny material for tying or binding. The basic idea behind the shoelace, using a string-like material to keep other materials on the feet, is nothing new at all.
Interestingly, however, a persistent myth perpetuated across the internet is that a man named Harvey Kennedy invented the shoelace in 1790, on March 27th, to be exact. It’s hard to agree that Mr. Kennedy should be credited as the father of all shoelaces when the concrete proof that he did not, the Areni-1, is viewable at the History Museum of Armenia. Faced with this proof, many claim that he is the inventor of the modern shoelace, and it does indeed seem to be true that he came up with the idea of adding aglets to the things. Aglets, those little plastic bits at the ends of shoelaces, make doing up your laces much easier, so it’s no question that their invention should be hailed as noteworthy. (And they’ve never been called flugelbinders, despite what the movie “Cocktail” might have you believe.)
As for who invented elastic shoelaces, because there are so many varieties, there are many different inventors and patents. For instance, Eric Jackson developed the idea for Lock Laces, while each other brand and configuration has its own creator.