Skateboarder's Guide: Choosing the Best Skateboard Brands for Your Ride
When it comes to skateboarding, choosing the right skateboard is crucial for a smooth and enjoyable ride. With so many options available, it can be overwhelming to figure out which best skateboard brands are the best fit for your style and preferences.
In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the world of skateboarding to help you discover the top 10 best skateboard brands. From their history and innovation to their most popular products, we've got you covered.
What is a skateboard brand?
Skateboarding is not just a sport; it's a culture, and at the heart of this culture are the top and best skateboard brands, that have been pushing the boundaries of design and performance for decades. The best skateboard brand is one that aligns with your skating style, skill level, and personal taste.
These brands are known professional skateboarders for their quality craftsmanship, innovative technology, and their commitment to providing skateboarders with top-notch gear.
What are the factors to consider when choosing a skateboard brand?
There are a few factors to consider when choosing a skateboard brand. These factors include:
Skateboards vary widely in price, usually ranging from about $50 to well over $500. This variation is largely due to differences in materials, build quality, and brand reputation. While more expensive skateboards typically offer better performance and durability, they may not be necessary for beginners or casual skaters.
It's crucial to determine how much you're willing to spend and then find a most used skateboard brand that offers the best quality within your budget.
Some popular skateboard brands are known for their premium products and higher price tags, often associated with professional skaters, while others cater more to budget-conscious consumers.
The appropriate skateboard for you largely depends on your skill level, be it beginner, intermediate, or advanced. Beginners should explore skateboard brands known for producing high quality boards with features conducive to learning.
These quality skateboard brands typically offer wider skateboard decks for better balance and softer wheels for smoother rides.
As you advance in skill, you may prefer skateboard brands known for performance-oriented features like lightweight decks for tricks or harder wheels for speed and agility.
Some popular and best skateboard brands have a strong reputation in the skateboarding community for catering to specific skill levels, making them preferable choices for certain skaters.
Different skateboarding disciplines necessitate various types of skateboards, and this is where understanding the strengths of different skateboard brands becomes crucial. For street skating, you would typically lean towards skateboard brands known for producing shorter skateboard decks with lighter construction, as these qualities facilitate tricks and jumps.
Conversely, in vert skating, skateboard brands offering wider, more stable and high quality boards are preferred, as they enhance performance on ramps.
Longboards are distinct from these styles and are ideal for cruising and longer-distance rides, often chosen for their stability and smoothness. Each brand often specializes in certain types of skateboards, so it's important to choose one that aligns with your preferred skating style.
Best skateboard brands in 2023
Now that we've discussed the essential qualities that define the best skateboard brands and explored the key considerations in selecting a skateboard brand suited to your needs, let's delve into the top ten skateboard brands that have been making waves in the skateboard industry since.
These brands represent the pinnacle of skateboarding excellence, each with their unique contributions and loyal followings.
These skateboard brands have consistently produced high-quality skateboards that have earned the trust and respect of professional skateboarders worldwide.
1. Santa Cruz Skateboards
Oh, Santa Cruz, the granddaddy of skateboards, where each deck is steeped in more history than your high school textbook. These guys have been rolling since before the internet was a twinkle in technology's eye.
With graphics louder than a rock concert, Santa Cruz decks are like a badge of honor, a nod to the old school in an age where skateboards are getting more high-tech than a spaceship. It's not just about nostalgia with Santa Cruz; it's a lifestyle. Ride one of these, and you're not just doing kickflips; you're flipping through pages of skateboarding history.
Santa Cruz skateboard decks aren't just wood and wheels; they're time machines on grip tape, taking you back to the days when skateboarding was the coolest rebellion you could have.
Bold, loud graphics
Price Range: $60 - $150 for a complete skateboard.
Santa Cruz embodies skateboarding history with its vintage-inspired designs and high-quality decks. Ideal for those who appreciate the blend of tradition and modern skateboarding.
2. Girl Skateboards
In the diverse world of skate brands, Girl Skateboards stands out as a name that might initially evoke an image of sugar, spice, and everything nice. But that's a misleading first impression. These boards defy expectations with their rugged toughness - the sort that scoffs at challenges.
As a pivotal member of the skate brands family, Girl Skateboards melds sass and style almost skateboards, offering a unique blend of unexpected resilience and flair. It's like they're saying, 'Yeah, I can ollie higher than you. And what about it?
With designs that pop more than bubble wrap, Girl Skateboards is for those who want to stand out in a sea of sameness. It's not just about being different; it's about being daringly, unapologetically you. Skating on a Girl board is like saying to the world, 'Here I am, wheels and all, ready to conquer.'
Stylish, eye-catching designs
Suitable for street and park skating
Price Range: $70 - $160 for a complete setup.
Overall, Girl Skateboards offers a unique blend of style and resilience, perfect for skaters who want to make a bold statement while performing high-level tricks.
3. Element Skateboards
Enter Element Skateboards, the eco-warriors of the skate world. These guys are making skateboard decks while planting trees, talking to squirrels, and probably hugging a few bears along the way. Element isn't just a top skateboarding brand; it's Mother Nature's favorite child, blending environmental consciousness with a passion for pavement.
But don't think for a second that eco-friendly means soft when it comes to Element Skateboards. Their decks are as sturdy as a tree trunk, embodying the kind of resilience that laughs in the face of a ten-stair rail.
Riding an Element skateboards is like whispering to the wind, 'Watch this,' before launching into a trick that makes the leaves cheer.
Versatile, high-performance decks
Price Range: $60 - $140 for complete skateboards.
Overall, Element is the choice for eco-conscious skaters, offering sturdy, versatile decks that balance environmental responsibility with performance.
4. Zero Skateboards
Zero Skateboards is like the brooding poet of the skate park, dark and mysterious with a hint of danger. These decks have more attitude than a teenager at a family reunion. Bold graphics? Check. Uncompromising quality?
Double check. Zero is for those who in skateboarding merchandise, like they've got something to prove and won't take a 'no' for an answer.
Riding a Zero board is like being in an action movie where you're the star. The most popular skateboard brands the world's equivalent of a leather jacket and sunglasses, Zero is for the rebels, the night riders, the ones who treat skate parks like their personal stage for death-defying performances.
Dark, edgy graphics
Durable and high-performance
Bold style statements
Price Range: $70 - $160 for complete skateboards.
Overall, Zero Skateboards caters to those who embrace a darker, more rebellious side of skateboarding, offering performance-oriented decks with a distinct attitude.
5. Powell Peralta
Powell Peralta is the name that whispers legends in the skateboarding world. These guys have been crafting masterpieces since skaters were considered outlaws.
With a mix of innovative design and a sprinkle of skateboarding fairy dust, their quality decks stand out in the realm of skate deck brands, emerging like the Holy Grail in the skateboard accessories world.
Skate a Powell Peralta, and you're not just riding globe skateboards; you're gliding on a piece of history. These decks have seen trends come and go but remain as timeless as the art of skateboarding itself. It's like strapping a pair of wings to your feet and saying, "To infinity and the skate park!"
Classic and innovative designs
Pioneering skate technology
Lightweight and durable decks
Price Range: $70 - $180 for complete skateboards.
Overall, A legendary brand, Powell Peralta combines innovation with classic skateboarding ethos, making their decks a favorite among those who respect skateboarding's roots.
Antihero Skateboards is like that one friend who's brutally honest but always has your back. No frills, no fuss, just straight-up, raw skateboarding goodness.
Their designs are as straightforward as a punchline, yet they pack a wallop in performance. It's the first skateboard brand for those who say what they mean and mean what they skate.
When you're riding an Antihero deck, it's not just about doing tricks; it's about making a statement. A statement that says, "I'm here to skate, and I don't care if that scares you." Antihero is for the skaters who aren't trying to impress anyone but themselves, and maybe their dog.
Straightforward, no-nonsense designs
Emphasis on toughness and reliability
Ideal for straightforward skating
Price Range: $70 - $150 for a complete skateboard.
Overall, Antihero stands out for its raw, unfiltered approach to skateboarding, offering solid, reliable decks for skaters who value function over form.
7. Baker Skateboards
Baker Skateboards is the punk rock band of the skateboarding world. Loud, unapologetic, and with more street cred than a graffiti-covered alleyway. Their boards scream rebellion and freedom, making them the go-to for skaters who view every staircase and railing as a challenge to be conquered.
Ride a Baker, and you're not just skating; you're making a statement. A skateboard deck brands a statement that says, "I live for this." Baker decks are for those who eat, sleep, and breathe skateboarding, the ones who dream of tricks and wake up ready to land them.
Popular among professional skaters
Known for pop and durability
Price Range: $70 - $160 for complete skateboards.
Overall, Baker Skateboards is synonymous with street skating, offering durable decks with great pop, appealing to skaters who thrive in urban landscapes.
8. Real Skateboards
Real Skateboards is like the heart and soul of the skate community. They're more than just a brand; they're a family, a tribe, a gathering of like-minded pavement pounders. Real decks are built for the gritty, the determined, the skaters who push till the wheels fall off.
Skating on a Real board is a nod to the pure essence of skateboarding. It's for the true enthusiasts, the die-hards, the ones who speak in grinds and flips. Real Skateboards isn't just a name; it's a promise of authenticity in a world of pretenders.
Strong community support
Versatile for all skill levels
Price Range: $70 - $150 for complete setups.
Overall, Real Skateboards focuses on authenticity and community, providing high-quality, versatile decks that appeal to a wide range of skaters.
9. Creature Skateboards
Creature Skateboards is where horror movies meet the best skateboards in park. With graphics that could scare your socks off and durability that could survive a zombie apocalypse, Creature is for the skaters who like their decks with a side of adrenaline.
When you step on a Creature board, it's like entering another realm, a place where the gnarly meets the nightmarish. These decks aren't just about skating; they're about making a bold, monstrous statement. Creature is for those who skate hard, fast, and with a flair for the dramatic.
Robust and durable construction
Suitable for aggressive skating styles
Price Range: $70 - $160 for complete skateboards.
Overall, Creature Skateboards is for those who dare to be different, offering sturdy decks with unique, horror-inspired designs for a thrilling skating experience.
10. Plan B Skateboard
Plan B Skateboards is a popular skateboarding company known for its high-quality skateboards and skateboarding accessories. Founded in 1991 by Mike Ternasky, it quickly became one of the most respected brands in the skateboarding community.
Plan B Skateboards sponsors a team of professional skateboarders and produces decks, wheels, and apparel. Their products are well-regarded for their durability and performance.
Superior maple wood construction.
Innovative design tailored for high performance.
Endorsed by professional skateboarders.
Wide range of designs that appeal to various styles.
Price Range: $50 - $70 for skateboard decks, approximately $100 - $160 for complete skateboards.
Overall, Plan B is known for its commitment to quality and innovation, making it a top choice for skaters seeking high-performance, professionally endorsed decks.
What are some other factors to consider when buying a skateboard?
In addition to choosing a best skateboard and other brands, you will also need to consider the following factors when buying a skateboard:
This isn't a one-size-fits-all situation. The size of your skateboard deck should be like picking a good pair of shoes – it needs to fit! If you're taller or have bigger feet, you’ll want a wider deck. If you're on the shorter side, go for something narrower. It's all about finding that sweet spot where your feet feel right at home.
Ah, the eternal debate of skateboard widths! This choice is all about personal style, like choosing between baggy jeans or skinny fit. Wide decks offer more stability, perfect for cruising and vert skating. Narrow decks, on the other hand, are great for street skating and tricks. It's like choosing between a limousine and a sports car.
These bad boys are the metal parts of flip skateboards that connect your wheels to the deck, essentially the skateboard's axles. They determine how well your board turns. If they're too tight, your skateboard will handle like a tank. Too loose, and you might feel like you're steering a runaway shopping cart. Choose wisely!
Skateboard wheels are made of polyurethane and they vary in size and hardness. Smaller, harder wheels are great for street skating and tricks – they're like the high heels of skateboarding: stylish but not always comfortable. Larger, softer wheels are like your favorite sneakers blind skateboards: perfect for cruising and a smoother ride.
These little metal rings might not look like much, but they're what make your wheels go round. Good bearings mean a smoother, faster ride. It's like the difference between riding a rusty old bike and a sleek sports car.
Remember, skateboarding isn't just about looking cool while you do ollies and kickflips (though that's a big part of it). It's also about finding the right gear that suits your style and needs.
Tips for buying a skateboard on a budget
Buying a skateboard on a budget can be a bit like treasure hunting – you need to know where to look and what to compromise on. Here are some tips to help you get rolling without breaking the bank:
Go for Complete Skateboards
If you're new to skateboarding, consider buying a complete skateboard. These are pre-assembled boards that come with everything you need. They're often cheaper than buying individual parts and assembling them yourself. It's like buying a meal deal instead of à la carte.
Shop Sales and Clearance Items
Keep an eye out for sales at local skate shop, shops or online stores. Clearance items can be a goldmine for finding quality skateboards at a discounted price. It's like finding that hidden gem in a thrift store – quality at a fraction of the cost.
Don't shy away from used skateboards. Websites like eBay, Craigslist, or even local skateboarding groups on social media can have some great deals. Just be sure to check the condition of the board carefully – you don't want a skateboard that's been through a war.
Focus on Essentials
If you're tight on budget and looking for the best skateboard deck brands, prioritize the deck, trucks, and wheels. These are the heart and soul of your skateboard. You can always upgrade bearings or other parts later. Think of it like buying a good used car – it might not have all the fancy features, but it gets you where you need to go.
There are off-brand skateboards that are significantly cheaper than the big names. While they might not have the same street cred that most popular professional skateboard brands do, many are decent quality and perfect for beginners.
DIY Repairs and Upgrades
Learn to do basic skateboard maintenance and repairs yourself. This can save money in the long run and also gives you a deeper understanding of your board. It’s like cooking at home instead of eating out – saves money and you learn a skill.
Set a Budget
Know how much you can spend and stick to it. This helps to narrow down options and keeps you from overspending. It's easy to get carried away with cool designs and brand names, but remember, it's the skill that makes the skateboarder, not the skateboard.
Ask for Advice
Don't hesitate to ask more experienced skateboarders or visit your local skate shop for advice. They can often point you to the best deals and what to look for within your budget.
Remember, while having a flashy, expensive skateboard can be nice, it's more about the fun and experience of skateboarding. A budget board can bring just as much joy and excitement!
Skateboarding is not only a fantastic form of exercise and a fun activity, but it's also a creative outlet. As you venture into the world of skateboarding, I strongly advise you to do thorough research to find a skateboard that aligns with your needs, including exploring the offerings from the top skateboard brands.
Pay special attention to the 'skateboarding brand' of your choice, as each brand offers unique features, styles, and qualities that can significantly impact your skating experience.
It's crucial to select from the best skateboard brands, as these brands are known for their quality, innovation, and the ability to enhance your skating experience.
Choosing the top skateboard deck brands, including the 'best skateboard deck brands,' ensures that your skateboard is not just a tool, but a reliable companion in your skateboarding journey.
Embrace the quirks of each brand from the most popular skateboard brands, whether you're whispering to the wind on an Element board or making a bold statement with a Creature deck.
Skateboarding is more than a sport; it's an expression of who you are. And when you find the right skateboard among these renowned brands, it's like finding a new best friend – one that's ready to roll with you on every twist, turn, and trick along the way. Happy skating! 🛹
What is a recommended skateboard?
A recommended skateboard often depends on the skill level and style of skateboarding you're interested in. For beginners, a complete skateboard from a reputable brand like Element, Plan B, or Santa Cruz skateboards can be a great choice.
These boards come pre-assembled with quality components. For more experienced skaters, customizing a board with specific deck, trucks, wheels, and bearings to suit their style (street, park, or vert) is advisable.
Is Santa Cruz a good brand?
Yes, Santa Cruz is a highly respected brand in the skateboarding community. Known for its quality and durability, Santa Cruz has been in the skateboarding industry for decades.
They offer a wide range of skateboards, from beginner-friendly completes to high-quality decks for experienced skaters, and are famous for their iconic designs and graphics.
How do I choose a skateboard deck?
When selecting a skateboard deck, there are several key factors to consider. The size of the deck is paramount; wider decks, typically around 8.0 inches or more, provide greater stability and are ideal for vert skating or beginners, whereas narrower decks, less than 8.0 inches, are better suited for street skating and technical tricks.
The concave, or the curve of the deck, also plays a significant role in performance. A deeper concave allows for more precise control over flips and tricks.
The material of the deck is another important aspect, with most decks being made from maple wood for its combination of durability and flexibility.
Lastly, while it does not affect performance, the graphic on the deck is a matter of personal preference and offers a way for skaters to express their individuality.
How do you know if a skateboard is good?
Determining the quality of a skateboard involves several factors that collectively contribute to what can be considered the 'best skateboards'. The materials used are a good initial indicator; look for decks made from durable maple wood, trucks crafted from high-grade aluminum, and wheels made from quality urethane.
The reputation of the brand can also be a reliable guide, as established brands are known for their higher quality standards. The ride feel is crucial – the skateboard should offer stability yet be flexible, and the bearings should enable the wheels to rotate smoothly.
Additionally, feedback from other skaters, particularly those with experience, can provide invaluable insights. Ultimately, personal comfort is key; the skateboard should feel right under your feet, offering a balance of control and comfort that suits your specific skating style.
Can Beginners Use Professional-Grade Skateboards?
Beginners can technically use professional-grade skateboards, but they might find them more challenging than starter boards. Professional-grade skateboards are tailored for specific styles and advanced tricks that may be overwhelming for novices.
Therefore, it is often recommended that beginners start with more stable and user-friendly boards to build their skills before transitioning to professional-grade equipment.
How Long Does a Skateboard Deck Typically Last?
The lifespan of a skateboard deck depends largely on the frequency of use, skating style, and the quality of the deck. For regular skaters, especially those performing lots of tricks or skating on rough surfaces, a deck might last anywhere from a few weeks to several months.
Beginners or casual skaters might find their decks lasting longer, possibly up to a year or more. The material and build quality of the deck also play a significant role; high-quality maple wood decks tend to last longer.
Signs that indicate the need for a new deck include visible cracks, significant wear in the middle or tail, and a noticeable reduction in pop. Regular inspection and proper maintenance can help extend a deck's life, but eventually, replacing the deck becomes necessary to maintain performance and safety.