As with a lot of things in life, I tend to feel that sneakers are better when they’re simpler. I’m not a fan of logos or flashy colours on my shoes, so an all-white pair without an overt brand showing have been my style of choice for a long time.
Last Thursday, Everlane debuted a sneaker that’s been a long time coming — according to their team it’s been 2 years, to be exact. They come off-white (and six other colours), and are completely logo-less and clean. They also happen to be the lowest impact sneaker of its kind and priced pretty fairly at $98 USD. I’ve been wearing them for a few weeks now, and here are some thoughts!
When Everlane first reached out about this new shoe launch, it was all a little bit mysterious. They’d asked for my shoe size and colour preference, but provided no other information or hints about what they were sending. I was hesitant but my curiosity was piqued and, since I’m a big fan of so many of their shoes, I opted to say yes to receiving them.
When they arrived and I opened the box, I have to admit that I was a bit taken aback: they looked like the grandpa shoes of the 90s — especially the way the brand styled them in their materials. While it’s definitely a pretty hip look for some, I certainly didn’t feel cool enough to pull off a shoe like that.
That being said, I’ve now worn them about five times with different looks and they’ve really grown on me. I especially like the retro/casual vibe they lend to slightly more refined outfits.
Everlane recommends sizing up in these, especially if you have wide feet. I typically take a 7.5 or 8 in their shoes (my Day Gloves are a size 8, for reference), but I actually decided to go with a 7 because I think my feet may have gotten a bit smaller postpartum and my heels have been slipping out of some of my size 8 shoes.
In hindsight I’m still not 100% sure I made the right decision. The 7’s do feel a bit tight in the toe box for me at the moment, but I wear thin socks with them and am banking on the fact that they’ll likely soften and loosen up since they’re leather. Size 8 may have been a better choice, especially to account for swelling that usually happens in the summer, but then again they might also be too loose.
The fact that these only come in full sizes is a bit of a downfall for me because it seems hard to get a perfect fit, though this isn’t uncommon for sneaker brands. If you’re also in between sizes, this is something I’d consider.
Apart from the potential sizing concerns, the Tread sneaker is a well-cushioned and comfortable pair of shoes. They didn’t take any time to “break in” and felt supportive right off the bat. While they’re not as comfy as a trainer (my APL shoes are my go-to for long walks), as far as a casual and stylish sneaker goes they’re pretty good!
The longest walk I’ve taken them on so far is about 30 minutes, but I’ve also worn them for a full day out with no issues.
According to Everlane, part of the reason why they took so long to come out with a sneaker was because the style has one of the heaviest carbon footprints. Sneakers take a lot of energy to make, and are produced mostly from virgin plastic which does not decompose in landfills.
What makes Tread sneakers different? While Everlane says they’re continuing to keep making them better, the shoes are currently made from 54% less virgin plastic; the laces and lining are made from recycled bottles! They’re also apparently made to last so you can wear them daily for years. Lastly, the shoes are also carbon neutral because they offset the emissions through a partnership with NativeEnergy.
As a consumer who’s still learning about the environmental impact of our choices and trying to do better myself, I appreciate that Everlane is bringing sustainable options to a larger group and offering a better made, sustainable option. While I don’t think it’s perfect, I recognize that small steps are necessary and good and commend the brand for striving for more.
Would I recommend them? If you’re in the market for a well-made, reasonably priced, comfortable sneaker I’d say yes. I have the Veja V-10‘s and would say the two are comparable in style and comfort but the Everlane Tread sneaker feels softer and more broken in. It may not be the sleekest option available, but I do think they’ll have longevity in a closet since they’re simple and clean. Ever since I received the Tread sneaker I’ve found myself reaching for them about as often as my Veja’s, and but think I may prefer them later on if they loosen up more around the toe box.
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