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Vivobarefoot Ra Reviews

38 reviews
total

Overall Rating:

60%Rated 5 stars

16%Rated 4 stars

20%Rated 3 stars

4%Rated 2 stars

0%Rated 1 stars

Customer Fit Survey:

81% "Felt true to size"

75% "Felt true to width"

89% "No arch support"

32 are "Favorable"

Most Helpful Favorable Review

Posted 3/26/12
Overall Rated:3 stars!
Comfort Rated:2 stars!
Style Rated:1 stars!

Vivobare's Ra is intended to be a compromise item that allows people to wear barefoot-style shoes while maintaining an office-appropriate look. Unfortunately it's barely passable as a dress shoe. In the words of both my boss and my girlfriend they look like clown shoes. I think this is the first and only time my boss (a 60 year old government beurocrat) and my girlfriend (an edgy 20-something fine artist) have ever had overlapping fashion commentary. Technically, these will probably be accepted as officewear, but you'll also be the least stylish person in your office, even if you work amidst mid-level government drones. The soles are thin and tough and the lack of heel really lets toe-walkers enjoy their stride. The leather is very rigid and will cut severely into your heel, even with good socks. Be prepared for a few weeks of blisters.

vs

6 are "Critical"

Most Helpful Critical Review

Posted 8/19/11
Overall Rated:2 stars!
Comfort Rated:5 stars!
Style Rated:5 stars!

These shoes look and feel great. I've received many compliments. I give them only two stars because within a week the red color of lining began to bleed onto the suede. This is still hidden under the panel with the eyelets. One of the eyelets however has come out. I'm hoping that this is a fluke and that the replacement pair will hold up. I will raise the number of stars if that is the case. Great design with questionable quality.

Additional 18 Ra Vivobarefoot Reviews

1 2

2 people found this review helpful  

August 10, 2011

Anonymous

from Alfred, NY

It has been a very positive experience that of dealing with Zappos. We ordered the wrong size. Zappos immediately sent out another pair before I even had a chance to put the originals in the mail. We were very grateful for such consideration.

Brands I'd also recommend: I can't say- don't know.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

2 people found this review helpful  

July 29, 2011

Anonymous

from Chicago, IL

I walk a roundtrip of about 2½ miles on a given workday - from/to train station, from/to bustop. These shoes worked out great and I think will work out excellent in any business casual setting. I keep a pair of higher grade shoes in my desk for meetings. They are also great in the summer, surprisingly they breath really well.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

2 people found this review helpful  

January 25, 2012

Anonymous

from United States

These are nice, but I much prefer the Vivobarefoot Oaks in both style and comfort. These look very nice and are fairly comfortable except the heel rubs a bit. One thing - the red/brown is kind of chestnut in color and is much harder to match than a more traditional dark brown shoe. I am a size 10.5, and the 43 fit me perfectly.

Brands I'd also recommend: Stem, Merrell

Overall Rated:4 stars!

Comfort Rated:4 stars!

Style Rated:4 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

2 people found this review helpful  

August 13, 2011

Chris P

from Albuquerque, NM

Initially, I followed the advice of Vivobarefoot themselves and purchased these shoes a size larger than I normally wear. Fortunately, Zappos really stepped up and allowed me to return them, even though I had worn them twice. The first day I wore these to work, I got no fewer than five compliments on them! They are great if you work in a semi-casual environment. If Zappos starts carrying the black pebbled leather ones, I will probably buy them for more formal occasions. They are a bit on the pricey side, especially for a minimalist shoe (the only reason I gave them four instead of five stars), but they seem well constructed, and they are dead flat and very soft, so they really do mimic being barefoot while allowing you to look presentable in public or at work.

Brands I'd also recommend: merrel barefoot

Overall Rated:4 stars!

Comfort Rated:4 stars!

Style Rated:4 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

2 people found this review helpful  

March 31, 2012

Anonymous

from Portland, OR

I really wanted to like these shoes because I like the styling, but they felt flimsy and the insole felt flimsy, especially for the price. Maybe that is what "barefoot" shoes are about, but they were not comfortable to me. The back of the shoe also cut into my heel a bit. With the insole out (as Vivobarefoot suggests), I could feel everything under my feet as I walked around the house. Seems that would be uncomfortable when walking outside on hard and uneven ground (I didn't try them outside since I planned on returning them). Maybe our ancestors did walk around barefoot, but they were walking on soft grass or mud, not concrete.

Overall Rated:3 stars!

Comfort Rated:3 stars!

Style Rated:3 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

2 people found this review helpful  

December 26, 2011

Anonymous

from Charleston SC

These seemed like great shoes until I wore them a few times. One of the insoles is too short and there is a 1/2 inch at the front where my toes hang over the insole.

Brands I'd also recommend: joseph seibel

Overall Rated:2 stars!

Comfort Rated:2 stars!

Style Rated:2 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt wider than marked

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

1 person found this review helpful  

July 7, 2012

Anonymous

 

Great shoe. Feels amazing and I can wear it all day. I wear a 11.5-12 and got a 45, fit great. It looks great too. Can hardly tell it's a minimalist/barefoot shoe. Wouldn't recommend it for a suit, but great with khakis, etc. And Zappos is great...ordered on Tuesday and had it by Friday. Great service, great company.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

1 person found this review helpful  

June 15, 2012

Will

 

I love these! These are a great minimalist shoe for work. Looks great and feels great too.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

1 person found this review helpful  

May 23, 2012

Kaj B

from United States

This is more of an initial impression than a full review. I got the Vivobarefoot Ras in black, and unfortunately did not purchase it from this wonderful website (though I would have, had they been in stock in size 43!). I hope to drive more business here with this review to make up for it. These are really great minimalist shoes, whether for the office or for everyday wear. That said, they are painful to wear barefoot. These shoes' chafing inner demands socks unlike most minimalist footwear. However, I imagine that will change as the leather softens up. Initially, the leather was tight and pinched rather painfully right below the toes. It can be alleviated by sliding your heel all the way back into the heel cup, and tightening the top lace to keep your foot from sliding forward. After some initial discomfort, and a two mile hike, the leather has become more pliant. Once you soften up the leather, they are very comfortable. The heel is very snug, and comes up quite far which may feel strange at first. They are a full size smaller than marked, so order a size up. The toe box is wide and allows the feet to spread naturally. They are great shoes for people with wide feet. The sole is super-thin, flat and flexible, with no cushioning to hinder your natural walking style. You can feel the texture of whatever is under your feet, a feeling similar to walking barefoot. They are so light you barely notice having them on. They look quite formal, and would be appropriate for business settings, a rare quality in a minimal shoe. The soles appear to be stitched rather than glued, which should ensure durability in the long term. I received them as a gift, but considering how they perform now that they're broken in I would call them reasonably priced. I highly recommend this shoe.

Overall Rated:4 stars!

Comfort Rated:4 stars!

Style Rated:4 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt a full size smaller than marked

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt wider than marked

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

1 person found this review helpful  

May 23, 2012

Anonymous

from California

They are bit higher in the back than I expected and pinch just a bit on the ankle. The forefoot is a bit wide looking but I can live with it. With a bit of polish, no one really says much about them being different. I will get a lot more wear out of them.

Brands I'd also recommend: love the merrel barefoot--a bit expensive though

Overall Rated:4 stars!

Comfort Rated:4 stars!

Style Rated:4 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt narrower than marked

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

1 person found this review helpful  

July 2, 2012

Mark B

from Burbank, CA

I wanted desperately to like these. But as others have reported I found the heel uncomfortable. This improved when I removed the insole, but even though I have been a minimalist runner for over nine months, wearing these around the house was just downright uncomfortable. They look OK, if maybe a bit plasticy. The leather is tough and unforgiving. I imagine you might be able to break these shoes in and soften them up a bit over time. I just do not want to go through that. Thanks, Zappos, for a great return policy. I will be looking for another solution!

Overall Rated:3 stars!

Comfort Rated:3 stars!

Style Rated:3 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

1 person found this review helpful  

June 30, 2012

Matt F

from Oakland, CA

If you're trying to retrain yourself to walk/run landing on your midfoot instead of your heel, these shoes may be worth the steep price and rather long wear-in period. If you're just looking for a pair of shoes, don't buy these shoes. I am the former -- and even still, it took a lot of dedication to make it through a few weeks of heel blisters and wear-in discomfort. The back of the shoe, as Zappos honestly warns, is very stiff and un-padded. It took wearing two pairs of socks and bandages, and walking many miles, to finally soften and stretch the heel to be comfortable. They are a sharp looking pair of shoes that let me train myself to walk differently (barefoot style) on a daily basis -- in relative comfort now that they're worn in.

Overall Rated:3 stars!

Comfort Rated:3 stars!

Style Rated:3 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

1 person found this review helpful  

June 28, 2012

Anonymous

 

Very comfortable barefoot shoe. I tried the Merrell brand of barefoot shoes also and these were much more comfortable. Wide toe box and flexible sole. I like then much better with the insole removed. Two concerns. The traction in wet conditions is very poor and the sole shows visible wear after less after only two weeks on daily use. As the small nubs on the sole wear down I expect the wet traction to get even worse. I think the sole will likely wear out within 6 months.

Overall Rated:3 stars!

Comfort Rated:3 stars!

Style Rated:3 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

1 person found this review helpful  

April 16, 2012

Steve

from Orlando

I'm a Terra Plans fan. I have a pair of the older aqua tennis shoes. I was looking for the same comfort-ability. The Ra deliver in those terms but the feel of the shoe is so cheap, it feels so cheaply made that putting it on and looking at it feels less than stellar. Close your eyes and walk (only short distances) and they're fine. But, really, the materials used in making this we way below expectations. Almost sent them back without trying them on.

Brands I'd also recommend: Keen, Chaco, Cole Haan, Frye

Overall Rated:3 stars!

Comfort Rated:3 stars!

Style Rated:3 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

 

March 19, 2013

Alden

 

I heard about these at a Structural Integration workshop. Finally got around to getting a pair, and I am TOTALLY AMAZED! These are easily the best shoes I have ever worn. Walking feels so light. It's a huge difference from all my other shoes. Toe box is slightly wide, but these are good looking man's shoes.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

Moderate arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

 

February 27, 2013

Anonymous

 

This is the most comfortable shoe I have ever worn. I have spent many years looking for shoes that actually fit my feet. I have tried many barefoot shoes, and while they all feel better than conventional shoes, they were not perfect...until now. The Vivo Ra has a wide toe box and a narrow heel. These are a great casual office shoe (they're not dress shoes). I do with the brown color was a little darker though. I will also be purchasing a black pair.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt wider than marked

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

 

February 2, 2013

Nathan G

 

I was looking for a dressy shoe to wear in a business-casual environment. These seem to fit the bill. It's clear that these are not true dress shoes: the lack of a heel-block, the rounded (instead of pointed) front area, and the tiled sole with the red V on the bottom make them look different. That said, these attributes of dress shoes also make them quite non-barefoot, so there's only so much that Vivobarefoot can do to make these look like dress shoes. In a business-casual environment, they fit in just fine. I think they look quite nice. I wear these without the insoles, though with thin dress socks (because of the dress code, rather than need). The inside of the shoes fits and feels a lot like my Neo M of the same size, except that there were a lot of loose string tails inside the shoes that I had to cut. The leather was pretty stiff when I first got them - if I weren't wearing socks, I probably would have gotten blisters on my ankles. They broke in after a couple of weeks, and now are more comfortable, if still stiffer than I'd really like. The laces degraded pretty fast and now look pretty ratty. I'll replace them soon, after about 6 months of wear. The soles still squeak a bunch on the plastic tiles in the working areas in my office. In short, these are not Vivobarefoot's best shoes - I'd recommend other models for any purpose other than office wear - but they get five stars for their intended function. I had a barefoot shoe for casual wear, but still had foot pain after a day of standing at the office. The Ra finally allowed me to go a full day without discomfort, with a pretty stylish (if unconventional) look.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt narrower than marked

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

 

November 21, 2012

Seth O

from California

If you are familiar with Vivo athletic shoes (e.g., EVO): this shoe is stiffer and very slightly tighter and more padded. I ordered two pair; one was cut wrong and too tight in the heel. Minus one for quality control. But the product itself is "quality" in that materials feel premium, sticking appears solid and design is good. You could wear this shoe with almost any outfit and fit in. They are a barefoot shoe and demand more thought to be comfortable but also provide more flexibility so you can maximize your foot's potential. If you are not familiar with barefoot shoes, try an athletic one first. Size note: I always wear a 43 but in Vivo I wear a 42.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt a half size smaller than marked

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

 

October 30, 2012

Danimal

from Milwaukee

Let me first start by saying that I own 5 pairs of Vivobarefoot shoes and my wife an additional 4 herself. I have had the black leather Ra's for over a year now, and they are probably my favorite pair. First of all, these have a nice wide toe box. Not the largest in the Vivobarefoot line, that would be the Oaks, but certainly wider than the Offroads. They have a very flexible sole that allows for great proprioception. They leather is top notch. A little stiff on the part that touches your Achilles tendon initially, but breaks in quickly. The included foot bed is almost a must wear. Without it, your feet will likely over heat in hot weather and get very cold in winter. As for looks, well, they aren't gonna compare to your uncle's Allen Edmonds, but outside of the strictest board room should be more than adequate as dress shoes. They have held up well. My only complaint is that the slightest moisture causes the black dye to bleed onto your socks a little.

Brands I'd also recommend: Merrel True/Road/Sonic Gloves

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

 

October 10, 2012

Anonymous

from chillicothe, ohio

These shoes provide a true barefoot feeling. It is a shame that more people have not discovered how comfortable shoe like these are, and how you can rid yourself of knee and back pain. These shoes require the foot to be activated all day long. I can stand comfortably for extended times more now at 39 than I could when I was 16. The icing on the cake is that these are a good-looking, well-made pair of shoes. By the way, these have no support at all, which is a very good thing!

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt a half size larger than marked

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

 

September 7, 2012

Anonymous

 

I just got these shoes and like them a lot. My feet where my toes are are kind of square, so I wish the toe box didn't taper narrower by the pinky toe. I wear a 9 and got the 43s. If the toe box didn't taper I'd probably get a 42. (But I don't know European sizes, only US.) About the previous clown shoe comment, while I respect everybody's right to an opinion, I'm a therapeutic bodyworker, Structural Integration, and I can't tell you how many people have smashed in pinky toes from shoes that are too narrow. Narrow shoes might look more fashionable, but are hell on your feet and you ll notice it when you hit 50 or 60 and start having foot problems. And from what I've seen, not being able to walk right sucks. This shoe is designed to fit and feel great, and to be wonderful for feet, ankles, knees, pelvis, back, etc. It s designed wide to promote foot health. (And the Merrell Barefoot's are too narrow for me.) Once I started wearing barefoot shoes the challenges I'd had with my adductor and knee stopped. I wouldn't go back to cramped shoes with a heavy sole and heel if you paid me.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt a half size larger than marked

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

Moderate arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

 

September 5, 2012

Emmanuel S

from Puerto Rico, USA

Excellent shoe. This is one of the best shoes I've ever had. Very comfortable. I've been using minimalist shoes for one year and have 2 pairs of Ras, one Black and the other Dark Brown. Would recomend them to anyone.

Brands I'd also recommend: Vibram Fivefingers

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

 

August 8, 2012

Anonymous

from Carlsbad, CA

These are unique dress shoes. I like them. The only issue is that if your pants were sized to regular soled shoes than the pants will be dragging on the ground. That is something to think about when wearing these.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

 

August 4, 2012

Anonymous

from United States

Stylish shoe that can be worn to the office, with Chinos, or around the house. Very pleased with construction, materials, and fit. Easy to walk in. A real minimalist, barefoot concept, so be sure that's what you want. I'm delighted with their elegant simplicity.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

Moderate arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

 

August 4, 2012

Anonymous

from Eugene, Oregon

Very well made and comfortable shoes. Similar in fit and feel to other VivoBarefoot shoes.

Overall Rated:5 stars!

Comfort Rated:5 stars!

Style Rated:5 stars!

 

Was this review helpful? Yes

Fit Rating

Felt true to size

 

Runs Small

Runs Large

No arch support

 

Poor Support

Great Support

Felt true to width

 

Runs Narrow

Runs Wide

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