• barefootshoereview

Episode 62: Feelgrounds Seaside Twill



Introduction:


I was looking forward to trying the Seaside Twill since it had a simple one heel strap Velcro system and I was curious how it would compare to other barefoot sandals I have tried that have more complex strap systems. Additionally, the thong part of the sandal is positioned perfectly vertical to the foot and I wanted to see how it felt in comparison to thong sandals that are positioned diagonally. The rubber sole is super minimalist and without lugs and was keen to find out if the tread would be non slip. The cork foot-bed and cotton fabric upper has an organic, natural look that I really like especially with the Biscut Beige color option which I will review here. Sean tried the Burgundy Red color option. Note to avoid confusion until recently the sandal was just called the seaside, due to the new addition of their luxe models they renamed this the Seaside twill.


The Seaside met my every expectation. The strapping system was so simple to use and adjust and my foot felt like one with the sandal instantly. My foot felt like it was hugging the sandal perfectly without having to fiddle or adjust at all. The vertically positioned thong strap felt so right between my toes, almost as if it's not even there. The cotton upper was such a pleasure to wear against my skin and the cork foot-bed was so freaking comfortable. When I first tried it, I was messing around with the basketball in my Parent's back yard and decided to shoot some hoops with Sean. Boy was I surprised how good the tread was on concrete. Its flexibility and the way it moved in unison with my foot's natural movement made me fall in love with this sandal.


The Seaside Twill is Unisex and available in Women's US 5-7,7.5,8-11,11.5. and Men's US 8-12,12.5,13-15 in a variety of colors. They are priced at $89.


Click Here to access the Feelgrounds website.


Disclaimer: These shoes were given to me to review, however my opinion is my own. By purchasing from an affiliate link, I will receive a small commission which doesn't cost you anything.




Company Overview:


After making a huge splash in the barefoot community in 2019 -- Feelgrounds continues to make noticeable strides, by providing their customers with a range of ever-evolving and stylish barefoot shoes, at a competitive price. Owning much of their success due to their excellent online marketing approach - they've successfully crowdfunded $250,000 to assist with production, released their much loved "Original" model, followed by the "Highrise", the Droptop and their fourth; the Patrol & the Lite version. They are releasing a Chelsea boot, and kids shoes as well.


"We are a young team of innovators. Our mission is to make barefoot shoes available and appealing to more people.


We launched our first sneakers model in April 2019 on Indiegogo and raised over $250,000 due to the massive support of our amazing backers. Feelgrounds™ was funded within 48 hours.


We're planning to expand our range of models and styles in the future, while continually striving to build better footwear."



Manufacturing and Sustainability:


"At Feelgrounds, we believe that footwear manufacturing can be done responsibly, so we decided to use mainly recycled materials. Our shoes are also 100% animal-free. Our goal is to create shoes that are better for your feet and better for the environment than traditional shoes.


Feelgrounds shoes are manufactured under fair conditions in Vietnam. All workers are of age and benefit from social, medical, and accident insurance. The workers' salary is above the regional average. Sustainability, fairness, and transparency are important values to us.


All materials, used for Feelgrounds, are responsibly sourced. The upper and laces fabric comes from recycled PET bottles. We use a special footwear TPE material for the outsole. This material is extremely flexible, durable, and fully recyclable."




Shipping and Returns:

  • Ships to various countries around the world for a set fee.

  • No additional customs fees or taxes for shipments within the EU

  • "If you're not 100% satisfied with your purchase, we're happy to let you know that you may apply for a refund/exchange within our return policy of 30 days. The shoes have to be clean and undamaged to be eligible for a return. Shoes that were worn outside are not eligible for a refund/exchange. Any returned item not in its original condition or packaging, damaged or missing parts for reasons not due to our error may be applicable only for a partial refund."

Click here for more shipping info. Click here to view the refund policy.




First Impressions:


  • Organic natural look

  • Super minimalist 7mm stack height

  • Comfy cork footbed

  • Vertical thong strap that feels like it's not even there

  • Simple one hook and loop Velcro heel strap system

  • Simple rubber sole without lugs that has surprisingly excellent traction on concrete

  • Cotton fabric upper

  • Elastic band on the instep allows for excellent fit on different foot types

  • Breathable

  • Super flexible and moves so organically with your foot

  • Zero chaffing

  • Zero break-in time

  • Feels perfectly attached to my foot



Sizing and Fit:


**My foot is 25cm long and 9.5cm width. I generally wear a US 8 / EU 39. My biggest toe is the longest and have medium/regular volume feet**

**Sean's foot length is 26cm and 10.1cm width. He generally wears a Men's US 8 or 9 and EU 42. He has high volume feet.**


I tried the Seaside Twill in a Women's US 8/ EU 39 and Sean tried the Men's US 8/ EU 41.

My sandals fit me perfectly, literally felt like a glove. Sean's fit him as well but due to his high volume feet he felt that he could size up and it would fit his foot slightly better.


According to Feelgrounds:

  • fits true to size and is perfect for medium to low volume feet

  • The Seaside sole is slightly shorter compared to our other styles, as having a wiggle room of 0.5 - 0.8 cm (0.2 - 0.3 inches) in front of your toes is usually sufficient for sandals.

  • Therefore, most customers have the same size in Seaside Twill as in other Feelgrounds styles. For customers who are usually between two sizes, we recommend choosing the size according to their foot volume. If you have a high-volume foot, choose the larger size. If you have a low-volume foot, choose the smaller size.

I agree with their sizing recommendations from their site, it is quite accurate and easy to figure out.


The sandal is just so effortless to wear. It's so simple to put on and doesn't require any fiddling. The thong strap is so comfortable and highly recommend it for people who may have experienced chaffing from thong straps on other sandal models previously. The vertical positioning of it just makes it so comfortable to wear and you don't even feel that it's there. The elastic band on the inset allows it to move organically with your natural foot movement and the cotton upper is flexible, breathable, and soft. The cork bed is comfortable and has the right amount of space to allow your toes to splay and still maintain an aesthetically pleasing shape. The 7mm rubber sole has great traction and surprisingly non slip since its without lugs.



Performance:


This sandal is perfect for every day wear, to work, school or a stroll in the park. And if you find yourself playing a light sport in them you won't be disappointed. I thoroughly enjoyed shooting hoops while wearing them and was so surprised at how well the traction responded to my change of direction and shuffling movements. I also enjoyed playing frisbee with them and just running around the park. They're the perfect silent companion that you don't even know is there. That's how natural and one and attached they feel with my foot. I really enjoy wearing this sandal. Oh wait, I might have repeated myself a bunch of times but again I really enjoy wearing them! LOL


The company does not recommend them for sports wear since the thin sole may get damaged and the cork footbed will experience discoloration due to sweating. I nevertheless tried them with light sport on multiple occasions and they're still in great condition. The footbed did get a bit sweaty and discolored but it doesn't bother me since it's covered while wearing them.




Upper and Lining:

  • Breathable cotton upper

  • Natural cork footbed/insole

  • Adjustable heel strap - hook and loop Velcro fastener

  • Elastic band on the instep

  • Vertical thong strap

  • All fabrics and materials feel soft and supple without compromising on quality. Thus no chaffing.

  • Super flexible

  • Instantly feels attached to your foot

  • Eco-friendly

  • Vegan


Sole:

  • 7mm zero drop, has excellent ground feel

  • The sole is flat and completely free of any contours - allows your foot to move naturally without any restriction

  • Rubber outsole and without lugs. Has really decent traction.

  • Eco Friendly

  • Vegan


Weight and Movement:

  • Extremely lightweight 153g / 5.4oz (W US 11.5)

  • Very natural feel

  • No movement restriction

  • Feels instantly attached to your foot

  • Just one heel strap for easy adjustment



Technical Specifications:


  • Cotton (upper), cork (insole), rubber (outsole)

  • Weight per sandal: 153 g / 5.4 oz (Size US W11.5/M10),

  • Sole thickness / stack height: 7 mm / 0.27 in

  • Drop: Zero drop

  • Available sizes: US W/M 5-15

  • Price: $89

Care Instructions:


You can easily clean the sandal's cotton twill straps with a soft brush, a little bit of water, and a gentle cleaning product (e.g. our Cleansing Kit Eco & Cleansing Foam Eco). For cleaning the sole, we recommend a soft, dry brush to remove any loose dirt. Afterward, you can use a light coat of disinfectant spray (e.g. our Shoe Deodorant Eco) to neutralize potential odors.

Note: Cork is a natural material and may change its look when getting in contact with moisture. Therefore, discoloration over time, e.g. due to sweat, is entirely normal. The sandals are not suitable for practicing sports or wearing in the water

Note: The shoes are not suitable for activities that cause a lot of friction on the sole, as this can damage the soft sole.




Where and How to Wear:


The Seaside Twill will be your favorite summer go to sandal for every day wear. You can even dress them up for casual dressy wear. They look super cute with jeans, cotton pants, a cotton dress, or shorts. I personally like the Biscuit Beige since it's the perfect neutral that goes with anything.


Future Improvements:


The only improvement I would recommend is figuring out a way to prevent discoloration on the cork insole. I understand it's something natural that occurs to cork overtime as it mixes with sweat, but perhaps Feelgrounds can figure out a way to "sweat proof" it to minimize discoloration.



Conclusion:


This sandal ticked every box for the perfect every day sandal. It's natural and organic feel and look makes it such a pleasure to wear. The cork foot bed is comfortable, the cotton upper is supple and soft, and the vertical thong strap rests so perfectly between your toes that you don't even notice it's there. The elastic band on the instep gives room to fit different foot shapes and types. The 7mm rubber outsole has great traction for everyday wear and has an enjoyable ground feel. Best of all, the one adjustable hook and loop fastener Velcro heel strap makes it so easy and quick to put on and adjust.

Highly recommend these, I'm certain you will enjoy them as much as I do!


Improved version:


Seaside Twill now features a slightly larger hook and loop fastener area on the back strap. That's especially useful for those customers wearing the sandal with a tightly pulled back strap. They are also launching the lux later in the month, a slightly dresser version with a faux leather strap.


Can purchase Feelgrounds Here.