• barefootshoereview

Episode 56: Wildling Manul





Introduction:


I was really stoked about trying the Wildling's Manul handmade all natural material shoe. The earthy toned color and linen fabric upper called to me and I was really pleasantly surprised at how organic they looked and felt on my foot. Nothing compares to the feeling of wearing a shoe for the first time and feeling like it's just meant to be there, just an extension of your foot. The feel is so natural, the linen fabric so breathable and shoe so light and wonderful. Additionally I really dig the shape of the toe box, almost mimicking the natural curve of the toes instead of the usual rounder shape. It gives the whole shoe a very unique and cool look.

The shoe felt great with or without socks and required zero break-in time. Overall first impressions was that this is a fantastic casual spring/summer shoe.


The international website can be accessed here. Whilst the US website can be accessed here.


Disclaimer: These shoes were given to me to review, however my opinion is my own. This page uses affiliate links, and by purchasing from an affiliate link, I will receive a small commission which doesn't cost you anything. Thank you, and enjoy the read!





Company Overview:


Anna and Ran and their three children are the starting point and inspiration for this exciting journey. This is their story: “We lived in Israel for 12 years and our children were born there. They grew up barefoot in their first years of life and have always impressed us - with their agile, confident and powerful movements. In 2013 we moved back to Germany. The first shoes had to be bought in autumn, but we could not find a pair, even among the most expensive children's shoes, that our children could continue to walk with and that they wanted to wear with their usual feet. There seemed to be something fundamentally wrong with traditional children's shoes. A look at the statistics confirmed our fears - 98% of all children are born with healthy feet, but only a few adults still have healthy feet. This is usually due to poorly fitting and incorrectly designed shoes. High time for a new concept and a new generation of children's shoes! As a sports therapist, trainer and passionate barefoot runner, Ran has always been a fanatic when it comes to natural movement and biomechanical backgrounds. Anna loves the challenge of implementing new ideas and giving Wildling Shoes its very own identity through appropriate communication. Together with last builders, shoe designers and modelers, we have developed a shoe that offers a completely new concept from the fit over the materials to the sole. In contrast to conventional approaches, which assume that the foot must be held, supported and guided, we are convinced that the foot is naturally healthy and only needs the opportunity to develop vigorously. That is why our shoe leaves the foot as undisturbed as possible - like a second skin that protects against injuries and weather influences, but otherwise has no influence on the foot and its functions.”





Manufacturing and Sustainability:


Wildling have a strong ethos when it comes to having a transparent supply chain. They have close relationships with their suppliers to ensure they have the best quality and sustainable manufacturing.

  • Their shoes are made to EU standards

  • They often used recycled materials

  • They have a transparent supply chain understanding where each stage of supply occurs

  • They strive to be a low impact and uphold corporate responsibility to the environment

  • Their shoes are handmade and therefore made with precision and care

See more information here.


Shipping:

  • Shipment to: Germany Shipping costs: €4.90 inc. VAT

  • Shipment to: International Shipping costs: €8.90 inc. VAT

  • Shipment to: USA/Canada via the US wildlings site: Shipping costs: $9.90

  • From €200/200USD shipping is free.


For more information about shipping via the international site, click here.

For additional info via the US site, click here.


Returns:


Extended return period of 30 days as of now, with your first return to us being free of charge. For each additional return we charge a shipping fee of €3.50 for returns from Germany and €8.90 worldwide. This fee will be retained from refunds. If you return the complete order the shipping costs of €4.90 (Germany) or €8.90 (international) paid in the webshop will be refunded.

For more information about international returns, click here.

For additional info for returns via the US website click here.





First Impressions:


  • Airy linen fabric

  • Very organic and natural feel (off-white)

  • Almost featherweight, extremely light

  • Color gives off cool spring vibe

  • Earthy tone

  • Extremely flexible

  • Zero break in time

  • Wears great with or without socks

  • Excellent shape toe box

  • Off-white rubber sole gives off a cool accent touch

  • True to size

  • Looks and feels like a quality shoe




Sizing and Fit:


**My foot is 25cm long and 9.5cm wide, with my large toe being the longest.**


I am typically a size US 8 and EU 39. I was honestly a bit confused with their sizing guide printouts, so I found it hard to determine what size to order. The site recommends the shoe is true to size, but since I fit the size EU 40 according to the sizing guide printout, I ended up ordering a EU 40. The shoe is a tad bit roomy so I would recommend sticking to your usual size like the site recommends. I generally wear my shoe with socks and it makes up for the extra space since I sized up.


Wildling have a thorough sizing guide with a a sizing print out, which you can use to measure your foot against and work out your size. Head to this page for a comprehensive size guide, they even have Youtube tutorials on how to follow their size guide.





Performance:


The Wildling Manul is the perfect casual shoe for every day wear. The neutral color goes with almost every outfit and the super light and airy linen upper will add a nice flair to your style. They can be worn to work, to run errands, or just a stroll around the park. They are very versatile and a great wear for so many occasions.


Upper and Lining:


  • Upper/edging: Canvas (100% linen) - Off White

  • Interior lining/mid-sole: 100% certified organically grown cotton

  • Insole: Hemp-flax fleece (50% hemp, 50% flax) [removable]

  • Manul is undyed both inside and out and completely dispenses with print of any kind. The embroidered eyelets add an extra special note.

  • Made from 100% European linen, the upper is breathable and also regulates moisture while keeping feet comfortably cool, making Manul an ideal summertime companion.

  • This model draws on the power of nature all the way down to its lower edging, foregoing any use of microfiber. Sewn there in its place, you’ll find the same rugged linen canvas that doubles as the fabric for the upper.

  • Vegan


Sole:

  • Outsole: 60% synthetic rubber from roughly 33% recycled material, 25% silica, 15% recycled cork – off-white

  • Rubber comes up the edges for a esthetically pleasing look while also protecting the perimeter of the shoe.




Weight and movement:

  • Extremely light weight shoe (180g for EU 40)

  • Zero break-in time

  • Wildling have an extremely unique Tabi sole making it flexible in all directions and allows for your foot to move naturally when walking.

  • Very organic feel, you almost forget you're wearing shoes.

Specs:


  • Upper/edging: Canvas (100% linen) – off-white

  • Interior lining/mid-sole: 100% certified organically grown cotton

  • Insole: Hemp-flax fleece (50% hemp, 50% flax) [removable]

  • Outsole: 60% synthetic rubber from roughly 33% recycled material, 25% silica, 15% recycled cork – off-white

  • Available sizes: EU 36-48 Unisex

  • Adult price 99€ incl. VAT (where applicable)

  • Vegan

  • Stack height: 4mm


Care:


We recommend thoroughly waterproofing the shoes before first-time wear as well as periodic follow-up treatments. The best way to clean soiled shoes is by knocking them together when they are dry, brushing them carefully as needed when dry, or by wiping them carefully with a damp cloth. Not machine washable. You can find shoe care products for your Wildlings here. Video tutorials explaining how to waterproof, cleaning and care, and how to insert the elastic laces are available on the Wildling Shoes YouTube channel.


Future Improvements:


I really enjoyed the organic feel of this shoe and the uniqueness it gave off. I truly have no critique on the shoes. It's just so breathable, flexible and natural feeling.




Where and How to Wear:


Very versatile casual shoe that can be worn to many different occasions. I enjoy wearing them with light earthy tones to compliment the natural vibe it gives off. I almost forget I'm wearing them since they're so light and breathable. Great to wear for a long day at work or a walk around town.


Conclusion:


The Manul shoe is based on entirely natural materials and true to its makeup it has a very natural feel. The shoe is just a pleasure to wear and a great complement to your outfit. I love the lightness of it and the color is personally a great addition to my closet since it goes so well with so many of my outfits. These shoes just give off great vibes and calming energies, I really enjoy wearing them!