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Wide toe box (like Merrell Barefoot) in skate shoe look?

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  • Wide toe box (like Merrell Barefoot) in skate shoe look?

    SHORT VERSION:
    I'm looking for something that fits like the Merrell Barefoot shoes, but in a skate shoe style. Or any casual tennis shoe style, but the Merrell Barefoot running shoes are too loud.

    LONG VERSION:
    I am not a runner. My first and only "barefoot" shoes are Merrell Barefoot Life Reach Gloves. I love them. I've worn them nearly every day for months. Really love the ways my toes can stretch out.

    I'd love to find something that fit just like them, but more of a casual tennis shoe, ideally a skate shoe look. Merrell makes some Barefoot running shoes in loud colors. I'd try the running shoe style, but I can't get past the color selections. I'm looking for white or a subdued, light gray, green, or brown. There's also a Canvas version of the Life Reach Glove, but the gray is very dark.

    While I like the ground feel and zero drop, what's suddenly critical is the wide toe box. Because today I wore my previous wore-them-every-day-for-over-a-year shoes, some Sketcher's skate-style shoes and they were crushing my feet near the base of the fifth metatarsal. I've never needed wide shoes in the past -- in fact I've been told I have a narrow heel. Did I spread my feet out by wearing roomy shoes?

    I've seen old school Chuck's recommended for a skate look. But I assume that's for the minimal sole, not a wide toe box.

    Suggestions?

    Thanks,
    tlc
    Last edited by tlc; 07-01-2013, 12:07 PM.

  • #2
    I need a wider toe box and I love my Chucks for when I can't wear my Vibrams. It wouldn't hurt to see if they'll work. Everything else crushes my pinky toe.
    Every moment of life does not have to be perfect to be of value --Winnie Dalley

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    • #3
      I have similar problems with wider feet (after wearing barefoot shoes for a few years) and I do pretty okay with Feiyue shoes. It's a Chinese martial artists shoe for about $20.

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      • #4
        I hear you on this! A lot of the casual shoes that are recommended to minimalist-seekers are recommended on the basis of having flat, flexible soles, but if you have a wider foot, they are still squishy in the toes. I can't wear Chucks, but I have a couple pair of Simple brand shoes that are pretty good. Not as good as my "real" minimalist shoes (Vibrams, Merrells, Softstar), but workable. Can't tell gender from your post, but if you've been wearing women's sizes, you might see what's available either in men's or kids' shoes, which both tend to be wider. You could check the New Balance minimalist shoes or Vivo Barefoot as well.

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        • #5
          True wide toe boxes are just not going to look like skater shoes. That's all there is to it. You might check out Otzi shoes though. I love what I've gotten from them.

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          • #6
            Vivobarefoot has a couple

            Mens
            Aqua Lite Mens - Mens

            Women's
            VIVOBAREFOOT | Lucy Lite Ladies |

            You can get great deals on them from time to time at Left Lane Sports and the Clymb

            I have a pair of grey Lucy Lite's and they look like skate shoes. Don't know if the above links portray that very well.
            My journal: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/forum/thread82833.html

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Huarache Gal View Post
              Vivobarefoot has a couple

              Mens
              Aqua Lite Mens - Mens

              Women's
              VIVOBAREFOOT | Lucy Lite Ladies |

              You can get great deals on them from time to time at Left Lane Sports and the Clymb

              I have a pair of grey Lucy Lite's and they look like skate shoes. Don't know if the above links portray that very well.
              Doesn't look very wide to me. It's kind of a compromise between having a narrow enough toe for fashion and a slightly wider toe than a Converse.

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              • #8
                The vivo's are very wide in the toe box. Lems, are low profile looking. I also really like the Patagonia advocates.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by slowcooker View Post
                  The vivo's are very wide in the toe box. Lems, are low profile looking. I also really like the Patagonia advocates.
                  They're not wide compared to Vibram Five Fingers. Maybe they're slightly wider than Converses, but look at the toe box shape; it's not a natural shape for the foot.

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                  • #10
                    The widest for me have been Lem's, not skater's but wide

                    Men
                    http://kitoikitchen.blogspot.com/

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                    • #11
                      Thanks, all. I'm checking out your recommendations.

                      BTW, I mentioned "toe box" before, but that may be the wrong terminology. My pain point is the bump on the outside edge of my foot well behind the little toe, most of the way to the ankle. I looked on wikipedia and it's the base of the 5th metatarsal. Anyway mine stick out. I can reach down and feel them sticking out, overhanging the sole, in my Merrells. On my Sketcher's (last year's every day shoe), the rubber from the sole extends up over the upper and there's no give. Apparently the Merrell's let my feet spread.

                      feetsolemarked.jpg

                      And I'll gladly give up the skate shoe look if needed. But I need something more subdued than the vibrant stripes of Merrell running shoes.

                      Thanks again.
                      Last edited by tlc; 07-01-2013, 11:58 AM. Reason: lined image didn't work

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                      • #12
                        I just did almost 30 miles in Yosemite backcountry, bushwacking through forest, boulder fields, and meadows. Climbed to the top of a 10,000 foot summit too. The shoe held up beautifully, and I came home with just some tight calves. Within a day, I had no pain left. Oh, I was also carrying about a 30lb pack, so they supported even more than my bodyweight. About 205lb in total.
                        OTZShoes

                        I bought those about a year ago. As I went to their website to grab that link, I found they upgraded their soles! These look even more hardcore.
                        OTZShoes


                        For you TLC, I would say these should satisfy.
                        OTZShoes
                        OTZShoes
                        OTZShoes

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by slowcooker
                          Have you ever tried a pair on or just speaking from your impression of the picture?? These are barefoot shoes with a wide toebox
                          I have a very sharp eye for looking at shoes with wide toe boxes. I've tried just about everything, and shoes done correctly almost don't exist.

                          Keep in mind that I have pretty good toe splaying. If your feet don't widen like mine, then you will obviously like different shoes.
                          Last edited by wiltondeportes; 07-02-2013, 01:16 PM.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by wiltondeportes View Post
                            They're not wide compared to Vibram Five Fingers. Maybe they're slightly wider than Converses, but look at the toe box shape; it's not a natural shape for the foot.
                            Have you ever tried a pair on or just speaking from your impression of the picture?? These are barefoot shoes with a wide toebox

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by slowcooker View Post
                              Have you ever tried a pair on or just speaking from your impression of the picture?? These are barefoot shoes with a wide toebox
                              +1 for vivo's
                              The toe box is great (and I'm a big VFF fan), nice and wide with plenty of space.
                              I wear a 41 in VFFs and a 42 in vivos.
                              If you're interested in my (very) occasional updates on how I'm working out and what I'm eating click here.

                              Originally posted by tfarny
                              If you are new to the PB - please ignore ALL of this stuff, until you've read the book, or at least http://www.marksdailyapple.com/primal-blueprint-101/

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