Crocs Santa Cruz vs Sanuk: Which Has Better Loafers?

The major difference between Crocs Santa Cruz and Sanuk shoes is the shape of their outsoles. Crocs Santa Cruz loafers are with regular outsoles but Sanuk shoes (or sandals) are loafers with outsoles of sandals.

The outsoles are so distinct on Sanuk shoes that you aren’t sure if they’re really loafers or just flip-flops with canvas uppers. It’s like how you feel when you see a bat for the first time. They look like a mouse that flies.

Sanuk was founded in Jeff Kelley, a southern Californian native in 1997. The idea grew from making sandals out of indoor and outdoor carpets and inner tubes to becoming a million-dollar business in 2011 when it was sold to Deckers.

Sanuk is a Thai word for fun.

Crocs was founded in 2002 in Boulder Colorado Lyndon Hanson. Crocs is now a household footwear and brand.

These two brands just happen to have footwear that looks alike. The Crocs Santa Cruz line of loafers and Sanuk’s sandal-looking loafers.

Why compare this two footwear?

The simple answer is because they look alike. I don’t want you thinking Sanuk is a knockoff of Crocs Santa Cruz Loafers or vice versa.

Two: preference is a huge deal when it comes to making a choice between two footwear. To help you make a choice that suits your lifestyle and budget it is important to be equipped with the right information about the footwear.

In this article, I’ll be letting you in on the features of the two footwear, their pros and cons, and why you should buy them.

At the end of this article, you should be able to know the two footwear well enough to make an informed decision to buy.

Let’s move along.

What are the pros of Crocs Santa Cruz Loafers?

The loafers in the Santa Cruz line vary so these pros cover them all. The pros for the Crocs loafers are as follows:

  • Lightweight
  • Versatile
  • Comfortable
  • Cheap


Crocs are known for lightweight shoes and clogs. These loafers from Crocs feature this pro. The uppers are made of canvas, the soles are lightweight rubber.

Crocs are a deliberate combination of materials designed to deliver weightless enjoyment, as casual shoes should be.


Crocs Santa Cruz allows you to wear whatever suits you, from shorts to slacks for work. They can be worn anywhere too; the Crocs Santa Cruz 2 lux can be dressed in formal clothes like slacks for work.

Crocs Santa Cruz 2 Luxe

The Crocs Santa Cruz Linen slip-on is more suited for beach activity, hiking, or walking. They are designed with frayed edges that go around the front of it which gives them an informal look.

Crocs Santa Cruz Linen slip-on

Crocs Convertible Leather loafers are even easier to style formally. They have leather uppers, are slip-on, can be stepped on to turn them into slides.

Crocs Santa Cruz Convertible Leather loafers


All Santa Cruz Loafers come with soft footbeds that are about an inch thick. Crocs take the comfort of their customers seriously.

You only have to pull the removable footbeds out to see how thick they are. They feature ergonomic Croslite material from Crocs.


Crocs are some of the cheapest pairs of shoes or loafers you can find on the market.

You can get Crocs at really unbelievable prices.

What are cons of Crocs Santa Cruz Loafers?

  • Frequent washing
  • Colors fade over time

Frequent washing

You have to wash your Santa Cruz Loafers frequently because they get dirty so easily.

One of the reasons for this is frequent use. You are tempted to wear them often because of how intensely comfortable they are.

They also get dirty easily because they are roomy shoes, the dust gets in them easily. And the breathable uppers also attract dirt.

Most people wear their Crocs without socks. The mixture of moisture and dust makes it dirty.

Colors fade over time

Frequent use and wash cause the colors to fade quicker. If you wear your Santa Cruz Loafers often to the beach, the water makes it fade too.

What are the pros of Sanuk loafers?

Sanuk loafers share a lot in common with Crocs. But surprisingly their pros are few:

  • Comfortable
  • Lightweight
  • Functional
  • Versatile


Sanuk loafers are a weird combination of slippers and uppers. They can be worn around the home when you step on the heel, or they can be worn outdoors like loafers.

They have extremely soft footbed, soft uppers that feels comfortable. The uppers have breathable material with holes on the side for air.


They are just a couple of ounces in weight (0.7lbs). You can wear them all day and not feel the extra weight. They are some of the best for casual walks and outings by the beach.

One of the beautiful things about Sanuk, especially the pair called Sanuk vagabonds is that they are easy to pack when traveling. A pair of vagabonds can be collapsed into your travel stuff and it will be so flat and invisible.

Sanuk vagabonds


Yes, Sanuk loafers are very functional. Take the vagabonds which you can collapse on the back of the foot, step on and convert into a sandal – because the Sanuk is actually a sandal.

They can be styled with almost all casual outfits. They are made for beach sides, casual walks, and everyday life at home.


By versatile, I mean being able to wear a shoe to fit multiple areas and activities of your life. A couple of Sanuk loafers meet these criteria.

Sanuk Pair O Dice is one of those loafers that can be styled with slacks for work. They have outsoles life true loafers and can be worn with a variety of trousers and shirts, will take you into formal gatherings too.

Sanuk Pair O Dice

Another really versatile Sanuk is the Men’s Vagabond Tripper Slip-on Loafer which looks a lot like Crocs Santa Cruz Loafers. It is an upgrade of the vagabond loafer.

The flip-flop bottom is replaced with a more versatile outsole which allows you to wear them with jeans and trousers. They give a stylish, classic look than most of the other Sanuk loafers.

Sanuk Men’s Tripper loafers

What are the cons of Sanuk loafers?

Sanuk loafers suffer the following cons:

  • No arch support
  • Flat outsoles
  • Slippery outsoles
  • Sweaty feet

No arch support

You wear shoes with no arch supports and you realize just how important arch supports are after a while. There’s a reason the natural foot has them. And wearing shoes without an arch kind of causes muscle problems.

Flat outsoles

Sanuk soles are flat in the vagabonds, You Got My Back, Chiba, Donna Hemp, and Hemp Natural.

This cons leads to the lack of arch support. This flatness can lead to flat-footedness with continuous use.

Slippery outsoles

The outsoles in the aforementioned loafers lose their treads quickly since they are essentially sandals. Then they become slippery on wet surfaces.

This loss of traction is a result of the foamy outsoles which isn’t a big deal when you remember these are sandals with loafer uppers.

Sweaty feet

Your feet get sweaty because the loafers trap air hot air in the toe area filling it with moisture.

This sweatiness makes the footbed slippery too and neutralizes the stability in the loafer.

What similarities do Sanuk and Crocs Santa Cruz Loafers share?

A lot of similarities can be found between the two loafers. Let’s break it down in the following ways:

First glance: Features

  • Breathable uppers
  • Hemmed Moc design
  • Loafer silhouette
Sanuk Men’s Tripper loafer
Crocs Santa Cruz 2 Luxe

Overall Quality

Both loafers exhibit great quality and are at par in this area. You can count on Crocs for quality shoes, and Sanuk customers rave about how durable the shoes are.


The soles on both shoes last long, and are lightweight. Sanuk has a high rebound EVA footbed and salvaged tire rubber. Crocs offer the Croslite outsole.


Both loafers offer removable insoles that can be cleaned, washed, and left to dry in the sun. They offer soft materials in their insoles for comfort.

Sizing and fit

This isn’t a problem for both loafers as you can order your natural size. They come true to size. Crocs come big which means you may have to size down.


Prices of the loafers vary from one merchant to the other. However, they are both in the cheap shoe range. You can purchase Crocs Santa Cruz Loafers here for $55.18.

Sanuk loafers are within the range of $50 if you buy here on Amazon.

Final thoughts: my verdict

If you want a more comfortable shoe that you can style for formal or informal occasions, then I recommend Crocs Santa Cruz Loafers.

If you want highly functional loafers that are flexible for use in the home and outdoors without losing much of their integrity then go for Sanuk loafers.


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