Feelgrounds is a slightly younger brand among the barefoot shoes. Many people might know it from banners, Instagram or Facebook. This made me curious and I took a closer look at the shoes. Besides good marketing, Feelgrounds can do even more – good barefoot shoes. I can say in advance that the barefoot shoes from Feelgrounds made a very convincing picture in the test.
Are Feelgrounds barefoot shoes?
Yes. Feelgrounds are a real barefoot shoe. You should know the criteria of barefoot shoes:
- Thin sole
- Flexibility in sole and shoe
- Light weight
If we look at the barefoot shoes from Feelgrounds we see that all points are met. Of course it is not. There is no official classification for barefoot shoes, which is why some manufacturers wrongly call their shoes barefoot shoes.
Sole and barefoot feeling of Feelgrounds
The sole is the heart of every barefoot shoe. Here Feelgrounds makes a very good and convincing picture. Of course we have a zerodrop. The least that a barefoot shoe must offer. The sole, as well as the complete shoe, is also completely flexible in itself. The shoe can be bent and turned in any direction. This also makes the classic photo of barefoot shoes possible.
The thickness of the Feelgrounds sole is 5 millimetres. Under barefoot shoes this fits very well into the standard. Maybe you already own barefoot shoes of the Vivobarefoot brand. There too, the thickness is often 5 millimeters. The sole is also soft, which makes the underground clearly noticeable.
Here Feelgrounds also differs from Vivobarefoot. The sole is significantly softer and feels less like plastic. The sole is made of recycled and special TPE (thermoplastic elastomers). Don’t worry, I didn’t know what it was from the start. It is plastic, which is flexible and elastic – as a very short explanation. Despite its soft texture, the foot is protected from sharp objects, shards or even chemicals on the ground. This is also one of the reasons to wear barefoot shoes instead of barefoot.
The barefoot feeling of the Feelgrounds convinced me very well. The underground can be really well perceived. The soft sole has an enormous influence on the comfortable wearing comfort as well as the barefoot feeling. From my point of view, Feelgrounds gets full points in the sole, meets my expectations and convinces me in quality and barefoot feeling.
Upper shoe and fit of Feelgrounds
The upper shoe of the Feelgrounds is made of a soft material. More precisely, it is made of recycled polyester mesh. This is very advantageous because the upper material can expand a little. I myself have a damn wide foot, so I benefit from this feature. Normal feet have no problem here anyway. Wider than normal shoes, the Feelgrounds are definitely. As a small suggestion, maybe a slightly wider model would be nice. But I know from experience that I belong to a minority here with very wide feet.
The material is also breathable. Also a criterion for a good barefoot shoe. The barefoot shoes are not waterproof. The shoe should also replace a sneaker and thus offer a barefoot shoe for everyone. Because the appearance is often a big problem with barefoot shoes. Fortunately, the increasing demand also increases the choice. Feelgrounfs has definitely done a good job on this point! If you still want to get the Feelgrounds waterproof, you can take a look at waterproof socks.
From my point of view the Feelgrounds are more a shoe for everyday life. I would not use the shoes in sports. However, this is more due to the look than quality.
Optics of the Feelgrounds
As already mentioned the Feelgrounds are in my opinion more a shoe for everyday life or to go out. This is exactly what the manufacturer wanted to offer and in my opinion it has succeeded.
The Feelgounds are (currently) only available in one version. These for it in seven different colors. You can have a look at the selection on the manufacturer page.
My taste is for the Feelgrounds. In comparison to many other brands, you cannot see the barefoot shoe here. Even with Vivobarefoot I often find that they are barefoot shoes. The reason for this is probably also the material of the upper shoe. It looks like fabric and therefore quite conventional.
I also like the fact that there are slightly different colors. I am a great friend of something different style. I find the red sole and the blue tones very interesting and successful. Of course there are also classics, like the completely white or black shoe in the assortment. For the ladies there is also a model in pink, which I personally also find very chic.
Weight of the Feelgounds
In weight the Feelgrounds can definitely keep up. Already during unpacking you notice: The Feelgrounds are a lightweight. In size 41 a shoe weighs about 177 grams. This is definitely something to see and contributes to the barefoot feeling. Because the lighter a barefoot shoe is, the more comfortable it is to wear. Therefore the Feelgrounds also convince in this aspect.
Quality of the Feelgrounds
Quality is not only a visual aspect but also an extremely relevant issue for barefoot shoes. We are dealing with very minimal footwear, which definitely makes the processing more difficult. Pasting a thick sole onto a thick upper shoe is hardly an art here. There are many more possibilities for stability. Also the thick sole has hardly any problems with abrasion.
Here the Feelgrounds make a great picture at first sight. The processing is clean. All seams on the upper shoe are neatly and stably sewn. No loose threads can be found, which I have already seen with other manufacturers.
The sole is glued to the upper shoe. Not stitched. Nevertheless, no adhesive residue can be found. The work here is very clean, which also contributes to the chic look.
As a small bonus the manufacturer still works with recycled material. This applies to the sole as well as the upper shoe and even the laces. The shoes are also completely animal-free and environmentally friendly. The manufacturer also emphasizes this explicitly on its own website. Therefore the Feelgrounds are also vegan.
The right size at Feelgrounds
Finding the right size for barefoot shoes is usually not as easy as for conventional footwear. Whereby this has also greatly improved. In the ideal case, you do not work with shoe sizes, but with the length of the inner sole (ISL). Then you know that the shoe definitely fits. Many manufacturers in the barefoot shoe sector even state this length. So also Feelgrounds.
Besides the good size chart with the ISL, there is also a template for printing, with which the correct size can be determined. I used this one and it worked perfectly. If you are close to one size, the manufacturer advises you to choose the bigger one.
Enclosed is the size table of the Feelgounds:
|Insole length (ISL)
|Insole length (ISL)
Price of the Feelgrounds
At the current date (November December) the Feelgounds are 190 Euro. However, there are more often offers and promotions. Many like to nag about the high price of barefoot shoes. However, when I compare the price with the prices of conventional shoes before my time with barefoot shoes, I hardly see any difference. Even then my shoes cost between 100 and 150 Euros.
Also the point of demand should not be neglected. Barefoot shoes are more and more in demand, but still a small niche. The production costs are higher from this aspect alone. I have all the more respect for manufacturers in this sector who are prepared to cater to a much smaller audience and who are committed to us. At this point I would also like to thank the company Feelgounds.
Besides the demand, the demand for barefoot shoes is also a reason for the price. The shoes are minimal, as I have just mentioned. A big challenge in production is stability in the upper shoe and especially the abrasion of the sole. This also makes the price a bit higher. I have even written in detail about the pricing of barefoot shoes.
There are also cheap barefoot shoes from Asia, which are becoming more and more popular, especially at Amazon. For the entrance these are also not necessarily wrong. In the quality and especially in the optics, however, enormous differences can be seen here.
Opinion on the Feelgrounds barefoot shoes
All in all, the Feelgrounds as a barefoot shoe convinced me. In my opinion the manufacturer has created exactly what he wanted and promised. The Feelgrounds are barefoot shoes for everyday life in sneaker style. The barefoot shoes do not look like barefoot shoes, but really like normal shoes.
The quality and the barefoot feeling convinced me. The Feelgrounds get an honourable place in my shoe assortment and will become my more frequent companions in everyday life. I have only one small thing to say, which I have already mentioned before. That would be the fit for very wide feet like I have. The toe box is a little bit too tight here. But since the upper shoe is flexible, this is no problem.
In my opinion, the Feelgrounds are also excellent for beginners and those who are new to barefoot shoes. The shoes are not too extreme and offer a very chic look.
There are also other models of the brand. These include the Feelgrounds Highrise. The sole is identical, but the shoe is cut high. The upper shoe also differs in the material. You can read more about this in my Feelgrounds Highrise test and have a look at it.
Then there is the Feelgrounds Droptop, a barefoot shoe slipper. Here too, the sole is identical, as you can read in the blog with my Feelgrounds Droptop experience.
Buy Feelgrounds barefoot shoes
Where are the Feelgrounds? The barefoot shoes from Feelgrounds are sold exclusively via the manufacturer’s website. Often the manufacturer also offers special offers with good discounts. On Amazon the brand Feelgrounds is not represented. Not in local shoe shops at the moment either. I suppose this will happen even if it takes a long time or never happens.