I’ve been traveling the world with a pair of Luna barefoot sandals for over 7-years, wearing them for trail running, easy hikes, and the beach. Here’s why I love them!
For the majority of human history, people haven’t needed sneakers on their feet. In fact “sneakers” have only been in use for the past 70 years.
It’s a modern product, created to solve a problem that never really existed.
Research is starting to show that heavy, overly-padded footwear actually contribute to shin splints, knee injuries, and back problems.
Which is why more and more people are re-discovering barefoot sandals for the first time. Including me!
What Are Barefoot Sandals?
You may or may not already know about the barefoot running movement. But it’s really taken off in the last few years.
A barefoot shoe or sandal is one with very little padding on the sole.
Without all that extra padding, so called “barefoot” sandals allow you to feel the ground while strengthening and toughening up the foot naturally.
Walking and running the way humans were made to. Striking the ground with the ball of your foot rather than with the heel.
I got into the action a few years ago with a pair of Vibram Five Fingers. While I enjoyed the benefits of the funny-looking Vibrams, they would get smelly quickly, and stood out a bit too much for my tastes. Especially in foreign countries.
You kind of looked like an alien while wearing them…
Traditional Huarache Design
Huaraches are simple leather sandals worn by native peoples in Latin America, traditionally by Mexican farming communities.
Constructed with braided leather — more modern versions also use strips of rubber tire as soles.
The Luna Sandals Experience
A friend of mine, and fellow long-term traveler, recommended I check out a pair of Luna Sandals. They were created by a guy named Barefoot Ted.
He based his design on the traditional huarache sandals worn by Mexico’s native Tarahumara people for centuries.
You may have read about the Tarahumara in the famous book Born To Run.
I’ve been wearing Luna Sandals for over 7 years now — while traveling around the world to places like Greenland, Turkey, Thailand, Mexico, Afghanistan, and Costa Rica.
So what do I think of them?
- Incredibly Lightweight: At about 4.5 ounces, Lunas weigh next to nothing. Made with a thin piece of high-tech rubber sole & a leather strap.
- Easy to Pack: They take up very little room in my backpack.
- Great for Running: The strap system keeps the sandals on my feet very well, letting me run & scramble up rocks without them slipping off.
- Decent in Water: While not ideal for walking long distances in water, they work great for most water activities like kayaking, rafting, short river crossings, etc.
- No Smell: Because it’s a sandal, I don’t have to worry about sweaty feet.
- Super Comfortable: Once they wear in and mold to the shape of your foot, it really does feel like you’re barefoot.
Very Few Disadvantages
While I really love these sandals, nothing is perfect. Here are some of the issues I’ve found with them.
- Tighten Often: You need to remember to re-tighten your sandals every so often, especially if you are running or hiking. They’ve improved the design over the years though, and stay on very well.
- Cold Weather: Because it’s a sandal, it doesn’t keep your feet warm in colder weather. Which means I carry a pair of shoes with me too. I usually want shoes with me for nights on the town or serious hiking trips anyway.
If you’re looking for comfortable barefoot huarache sandals to provide minimalist protection for your feet while running, walking, or on easy hikes, a pair of Luna Sandals is the way to go.
I’m a huge fan! They’re a great lightweight and multi-use addition to your adventure travel gear. ★
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I hope you enjoyed my review of Luna Sandals! Hopefully you found it useful. Here are a few more wanderlust-inducing articles that I recommend you read next:
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