Feel Good About Your Choices with Vegan Shoes!

Animal products do not always have to be part of your shoes. For some folks, having vegan shoes is important to them. But what’s a “vegan” shoe? It’s a shoe made with all man-made materials; no animal products of any kind are used in the manufacturing of the shoe at all. The comfort properties of leather shoes (softness, breathability) are indisputable, but is it possible to have these properties in a vegan shoe? Absolutely!

Do vegan shoes look like they’re made for hippies? Absolutely not! In fact, Footwear etc. carries over 100 styles of vegan shoes in assorted brands, both for athletic wear and casual wear. Your choices aren’t limited in this genre of shoes at all! They’re available for both men and women, depending on the model. Here are a few examples of stylish and comfortable vegan shoes:

Dansko, known for its superior comfort and support, makes several models of vegan shoes. In its flagship Professional line, there are five different patterns you can choose from while obtaining that fabulous feeling of support. I love my Professionals; they are my shoe of choice if I know I need to be standing a lot during the day, or if my feet hurt in general. Somehow they always make my feet feel better. And the vegan models have happy-looking fabrics; I particularly like Vegan Blue Tapestry. I could wear that one with about 85% of my wardrobe! Other cute choices outside the Professional line are the Volley Vegan and the Veda Vegan – both of which have canvas uppers and are perfect for casual wear.

Interested in Barefoot Technology? These shoes emulate the feeling of walking without shoes, yet protect your feet from rough, hot asphalt, etc. Both the Vibram Fivefingers and the Merrell Barefoot Pace Glove models are made with all man-made materials and are washable, durable, and breathable for your comfort. These are fabulous shoes for running “barefoot.”

Birkis makes some terrific clogs that are perfect for wet, sloppy conditions. What I love best about them, however, is that they contain a cork and latex insole that molds to the shape of your foot. This is a great shock-absorbing shoe that you could wear all day long. And if the cork insole were to wear out after prolonged use, you can always pop it out and replace it, thus saving the price of an entirely new shoe. They’re economical AND eco-friendly!

Looking for a cute flip flop you can feel good about? Try the Olukai Amo. The water-resistant, synthetic leather straps are lined with jersey knit that dries quickly. The EVA footbed and midsole are anatomically-designed for superior comfort. The gum rubber outsole provides great traction as well. This is a great vegan shoe for anytime you want to wear a flip flop.

Don’t want to wear animal products? No problem – try out some of the many vegan shoes offered by Footwear etc. You can feel great about your choices without sacrificing style and comfort.


Multiple Looks from the UGG Cardy Series!

Sometimes I just get bored with shoes. Maybe that’s why I love to peruse what’s new and exciting, or switch around shoes from my collection frequently. But getting shoes as frequently as I’d like can sometimes be a little cost-prohibitive, so I love it when a single shoe can provide a couple of different looks. That’s why I really love the Cardy series from UGG Australia.

How many ways do I love the Cardy? Let me count them….I love how soft the merino wool looks and feels. I love how if I feel like wearing an ankle boot, I can fold over the the top to create a cuff. I love how I can have a casual look by slouching down the top of the boot. I love how I can wear the boot all the way up to keep my legs warm. I adore the versatility of this boot!

Not only do the Cardys come in a variety of colors, you can even get them in two different styles: the Classic, and the Lattice. And as with all UGG boots, they are durable, have a cozy sheepskin sockliner that helps keep your feet warm and dry, and a flexible EVA outsole.

I can’t wait for the cool, fall weather to kick in so that I can break mine out! For sweater-like comfort in a stylish boot, check out the UGG Cardy series from UGG Australia. They’re the perfect boots for maximum versatility!

Introducing MBT’s Most Technologically-Advanced Shoe: The Ari!

There’s a new kid on the block, so to speak. If you’re a fan of MBT shoes, you’ll find the newest addition to the family fascinating. It’s the Ari, and it’s truly in a class by itself.

Available for men and women, the Ari is radically different from other rocker-sole shoes (even other MBTs). It contains a dramatically superior ventilation system. It has a high performance outsole that’s designed to greatly improve traction. And it has biomechanical pillars in the midsole. The Ari has been recognized as a 2011 Red Dot Award  Winner for its innovative technological advancements in shoe design.

Sounds impressive, but what does this really mean?

The new ventilation system contains a highly-breathable mesh upper, lightweight sock liner, and inlay sole. The biomechanically-engineered pillars in the sole increase air flow as you step. (If you look at the shoe from a side view, you can see the pillars in action!). One layer of the midsole, the lasting board, actually contains ventilation portals that allow your feet to stay significantly cooler and drier than in other shoes. If your feet tend to get hot, these are the shoes for you!

Ok, so it will keep your feet cool and dry, but how does it feel? Fantastic! I wore them around the office, and they are phenomenally lightweight. I also noticed that the rocker motion is a little more pronounced than in other MBT shoes; the sole is a little thicker than some of the other relatively new models. As with other MBTs, the natural instability helps you improve your posture and therefore alleviates joint pain, and the rolling motion allows you to strengthen and tone your muscles. The other thing I noticed is that the shoe seems to be cut a little narrow (even for MBTs), so if you have a wider foot, you might consider going up ½ a size.

Yes, these shoes are more expensive than other MBT shoes. But you can feel the difference in comfort. Your feet are worth it! But don’t wait too long, there are only 1,000 pairs of this limited edition shoe available in the country! Give the Ari a try and discover what the best technology in rocker-sole shoes can do for you.

Orthaheel Melissa – a Girly Slide with Outstanding Support!

I am a sucker for any shoes that have girly patterns on them. Flowers, hearts, stars…all of them are wonderful. But to find that in a really supportive shoe is tough to do. Enter Orthaheel with one of the cutest slides I’ve ever seen: the Melissa. This could become my new favorite!

Available in black or brown, the Melissa contains Orthaheel’s patented Tri-planar Motion Control footbed, making this an incredibly stable shoe. The deep heel cups and arch supports make my feet feel rejuvenated! The toe box is wide, so my toes don’t feel confined.

It’s always important to me to try out shoes that are podiatrist-designed, and endorsed by wellness professionals I trust. Orthaheel shoes are recommended by Dr. Andrew Weil, who is a pioneer in the field of integrative medicine. Orthaheel shoes have also received the American Podiatric Medical Association’s seal of approval. I love that I can feel good about cute shoes that are good for my feet!

For a great new slide, check out the Orthaheel Melissa. You’ll love how it looks and feels!

Sandals by UGG Australia – All the Comfort of Sheepskin, but for Warmer Weather

Did you know that one of our favorite boot companies, UGG Australia, makes sandals? They do! You can get sandals with all the outstanding qualities that you find in their boots, right down to a little bit of sheepskin for comfort and softness.

I happen to like gladiator-inspired sandals, and UGG Australia’s Sechura fits the bill! I love how the two straps around the ankle exhibit the gladiator style, and provide adjustable comfort. The soft leather upper feels great as it practically shouts out, “I’m stylish!”  You can even wash the suede insole. There’s great traction from the rubber outsole, so getting caught in the rain shouldn’t be a big deal!

If you love flip flops, check out the UGG Australia Deitra. Not only does it have a cork-wrapped ergonomic footbed with outstanding arch support, the straps are adorned with either gold or silver studs (depending on whether you have the brown or the black shoe). The sheepskin in the heel is incredibly cozy. What’s not to love?

Wedges are also really popular this year. The UGG Australia Lourdes has a beautiful, 3-inch wedge that’s sculpted and studded! The footbed feels luxurious due to the lambskin and sheepskin used, and the comfy leather upper is beautiful and interesting to look at. The Lourdes is easy to wear, easy on the eyes, and easy on your feet!

UGG Australia isn’t just about boots. Check out their beautiful and comfortable sandals. You really can wear UGGs year-round!