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Tip-Toeing into The Modern History of Barefoot Shoes

Vibram FiveFingers

Happy Go Barefoot Day! Yeah, really! While the concept of being completely sans footwear might sound like the complete antithesis of a publication like Sneaker Freaker, it’s impossible to ignore the growing alternative to wearing – in essence – strips of leather, foam and rubber. The chorus of footwear-free followers rings louder and louder, with various health benefits touted as the main reason to make the switch to a form of transitional footwear known as barefoot style shoes. This alternative type of footwear aims to replicate the feeling of walking with no shoes on at all. However, they’re still yet to achieve mainstream acceptance. As such, let’s indulge in the relatively taboo toe-wriggling world of barefoot shoes.

The Future of Barefoot Shoes

Brands like Vibram and Vivobarefoot, the New Balance Minimus line, plus a host of smaller companies like Xero and Altra, certainly make a compelling case for why barefoot and minimalist shoes are the best purchase people can make for their feet. However, considering the current shift towards ultra-cushioned sneakers, unless barefoot suddenly becomes ‘cool’, then this alternative genre of footwear will remain a nipping – yet fascinating – niche category.

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