Hello and welcome to my Vans Aura review.
In this review I will take a look at the Auras as beginner snowboard boots.
That’s not to say that they are just for beginners. These boots are also awesome as freestyle boots and even all mountain boots – but for the purpose of this review I am rating them as beginner boots.
As per tradition here at SnowboardingProfiles.com I will give the Auras a score out of 100 (based on several factors) and see how it compares with other men’s beginner boots.
Boots: Vans Aura
Price: $249 (USD recommended retail)
Riding Style: Beginner
Other Uses: Freestyle, All Mountain
Lacing Type: Double Boa
Flex: Medium-Soft (4/10)
Rating Score: 83/100
Compared to other Men’s Beginner Boots
Out of all the men’s beginner boots that I rated:
- I analyzed 44 different men’s boots and rated them as beginner boots
- The average price was $194 (USD)
- The average score was 73/100
- The highest score was 83/100
- The lowest score was 61/100
- The Aura’s ranked 1st out of 44!
Who are the Aura’s Most Suited to?
The Aura’s are suited to a wide range of riders. They are particularly good for beginners and freestyle riders.
And they would work well for anyone who likes to ride freestyle but wants to explore the mountain outside the park too.
Probably don’t have the response for freeriders or anyone who wants extreme response and likes to ride aggressive.
I bought these boots as my freestyle/freestyle-all-mountain boots and they’ve done the job really well so far.
The Aura’s in More Detail
O.k. let’s take a more detailed look at what the Auras are capable of.
Boots: Vans Aura 2016, size 10
Date: Numerous (I own them)
Bindings paired with: Various
Board Paired with: Various
These have the ideal flex for beginners – they’ve got enough forgiveness that they are forgiving of errors and work to help the new rider progress, but they’re not so soft that they lack response. They’ve got the perfect balance for beginner boots.
I’ve seen these rated a 5/10 elsewhere in terms of flex but they definitely feel on the softer side of medium so I would say 4/10 is more accurate – 4.5/10 at a stretch.
These boots are really comfortable. This is partly down to some really nice cushioning in the sole – there’s plenty of EVA padding there.
And partly down to the fit and construction. Obviously the fit will partly depend on your foot shape. That’s why you should always try snowboard boots on before buying – whether that means ordering online and making sure the store has a return policy or trying in store.
Another thing that makes these boots so comfortable is the V-Corked footbed. This footbed helps with dampening and arch support.
Learn more about the Aura’s Tech in the Video below
The Aura’s have really great heel hold. This is really important for riders of all styles and ability and for beginners it’s no exception.
I was really impressed with the heel hold of the Auras. My heels don’t lift at all. This means that response is always even and predictable when making turns. Something that the beginner (and any other rider) will be thankful for.
Of course this will partly depend on your foot shape and ankles but I have pretty skinny ankles and they get well held in this boot.
As I mentioned in the comfort section above, there is plenty of cushioning in these boots. And you really notice that going over larger jumps and landing tricks.
But you’ll also notice it just riding the mountain. It’s much nicer to stand on something soft and cushiony all day than it is to stand on something hard and unforgiving.
You can get a good bit of adjustability out of the Auras. They use a speed lace pull in the insert to tighten that around your foot.
Then the outer boot has a double boa system. This means that you can adjust the lower and upper sections of the boots independently.
These are pretty snug fitting boots. So it takes a little bit to get in and out of. Whilst they’re not the easiest boots that I’ve tried for getting in and out of, you get the performance benefits of a really snug fit.
They don’t have a lot of reduced footprint tech going on. So if you’re looking to get a low profile boot that you can use to get on a narrower board or on smaller sized bindings then the Auras probably aren’t your choice.
They are priced above the average beginner boot. That’s because they are so awesome as freestyle/all mountain boots.
But if you’re willing to invest just a little more then you’ll get a quality boot that can stay with you. And you’ll get a much better experience and progress much faster than you would with some of the cheaper options.
Score Breakdown and Final Verdict
Check out the breakdown of the score in the table below.
|FACTOR||RATING (OUT OF 5)||CONTRIBUTION TO FINAL SCORE|
|TOTAL after normalizing||93.0/100|
I’m not a beginner but I love these boots for riding freestyle and riding the groomers.
But they do have the perfect specs for a beginner. And they would rate even higher as beginner boots if they were cheaper. However, if they were cheaper they likely wouldn’t be as good – catch 22!
More Info, Current Prices and Where to Buy Online
If you’re interested in the Aura’s then check out the links below to get some more info, user reviews and current prices or if you’re ready to buy.
If you want to check out some other men’s beginner boot options check out the link below for my list of the top 7 men’s beginner snowboard boots currently on the market.
>>My Top 7 Men’s Beginner Boots
Andrew Gerhart says
Just purchased a pair of 2020 Aura Pro online and I am trying to figure out if the sizing is right. I haven’t snowboarded in over a decade and these are the first boots I will own. I usually wear size 11 shoes so I got the size 11, I’m not sure if they are too tight or not. I feel pressure on my big toe but it does go away when I stand in an “althetic” stance. After wearing them around my house for an hour there are some pressure points. I’m wondering how much of this will get better with heat moding/breaking them in or if I should look for another size or boot. Thanks for any advice, love the site!
I find typically Vans fits me in my typical shoe size, but everyone sizes their shoes differently I think! It’s possible that you need an 11.5, but it’s hard to say. Heat molding definitely makes a difference. As does riding them. The thing is that you don’t want to go too big, so that when they pack out, they can feel too loose. I have a 27.3cm foot (my longer foot), and I fit well in the 10. Some boots I fit in a 9.5, but some I even fit in a 10.5. My shoe size is 10.
Ideally when sizing for length your toes should be brushing the edge when you’re standing up in them and pull away ever so slightly when you bend into an athletic stance. I typically find some pressure points in any boot, when I first wear them, particularly before heat molding. So that doesn’t necessarily write them off. Hard to say for sure, but hopefully that helps a little.
I think I’ll stick with the size 11. After wearing them around a bit more they are definitely feeling better, I would rather have them a little tight than a little loose (I think that’s the better way?) I do plan to get out as much as possible this season (COVID depending) since I want to make a trip out west next year and want to get my skills back up. Thanks for the input and the great info on your site. On a side note, what flex binding and board would be a good match for the Aura Pros? I’ve been looking at some high beginner/low intermediate gear (on a bit of a budget) and was wondering what your thoughts were. Thanks again for the advice!
Yeah I typically try to lean on the slightly too tight versus slightly too loose side in the early days of a boot, because they do pack out as you wear them. Better to err on slightly too tight, IMO – so long as they’re not like cutting off circulation or super uncomfortably tight.
In terms of a flex match for the Aura Pros, I would be looking at something around 4/10 or 5/10 flex ideally. You could certainly go up to 6/10 if you wanted, but ideally 4-5.
If you want any recommendations I would be happy to help. Would just need some more information about how you like to ride.
Being on the East coast with small hills near me I’m only on groomers with some small park features. I’ve been looking at the Yes Basic and Now IPO or Proline bindings. Hoping to get something that I can use all over the hill for now and then keep as a freestyle board when I want to get a more directional board for carving when I get more experience.
I think the Basic, given what you’re describing as wanting to keep it as a freestyle board later would work really well. I also found it good in hard/icy conditions, which is a big plus on East Coast. If you wanted other options you could also check out the following, but I think the Basic would be a good option:
>>My Top 10 Men’s Freestyle Snowboards
Between the IPO and Proline it would depend on whether you’d want to keep them for any future board as well, in which case the IPO would be the best choice, IMO, if it would be just for the Basic and you’d get new bindings with a new board, then the Proline would be fine, but you could still go IPO even in that case. If you wanted any other options you could also check out:
>>Top 5 All Freestyle Bindings
>>Top 5 All Mountain Bindings
Thanks for this it help me lean towards buying the Aura pro. They are really comfortable and can’t wait to ride in them!
Thanks for your message and you’re very welcome. Finding comfortable snowboard boots can sometimes be tricky, so it’s awesome that you’ve found something you find comfortable. If you think of it at the time, let me know what you think, once you’ve had a chance to ride them. Hope you have an awesome season!
Enya Mika says
Nate! Im a Girl and i ein the Vans Aura in EU size 42.. now i dont know which bindings i can choose for them as i Need EST for my channel board.. would Burton Lexa or Cartel fit the shoes? What do you think?
Yes both should fit the Aura. But for the Cartel (or any other men’s Burton bindings) you would want to go with a Medium and for the Lexa (or any other of Burton’s women’s bindings) you would need to go for Large. If you let me know the board that you’re pairing with, I can give you my opinion as to which Burton bindings would be best suited to that board.
Hope this helps
John L says
I decided to make a change from the Moto mainly because I was getting pretty bad raspberries on my shins every time I rode with them. I tried on the Aura and they were so comfortable with a narrower ankle bed. The salesman said that they were stiff enough for me to progress for a while without needing new boots, so I’m pretty excited about them. We’ll see after I ride with them in 2 weeks!
I have a pair of Aura’s and love them. Great heel hold, comfortable and responsive enough. Definitely something that you can progress on and I find them great for riding freestyle but also anything really. Let me know what you think once you’ve had a chance to ride them.