About Me

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A full body image of a woman posing in white leather sneakers from Belenka barefoot outside with a blue sky and wind in her hair

Hi! I’m Anya! I am a barefoot shoe wearer who loves personal style.

I first discovered “barefoot shoes” after a long bout of foot issues. They were a lifeline thrown to me when everything else I tried was a dead end. Thanks to the incredible work by people like Katy Bowman I could finally see a clear path toward freedom of movement.

But I lamented my amazing shoe wardrobe and felt like I would never be chic again. Healthy shoes are ugly, right? I’ve always been a shoe person (and always had foot problems), so it was a pretty mixed bag of emotions.

But it wasn’t long before I realized that with some extra research (and a whole new set of standards) I could curate shoes that made me feel amazing and didn’t require any compromises. It didn’t take much digging to realize that a lot of people were out looking for the same thing, so I decided to use my hours of research to create something that didn’t exist yet. This blog is the result of my efforts to share with the world the many ways a person can be true to herself, both in body and spirit.

To read more about how I began my journey click here. And for an in introduction to barefoot shoes, check out my Best Brands for Beginners post and Best Brands of All Time post.

Oh, and I do children’s and men’s reviews as well! If you are interested in a collaboration please email me at info@anyasreviews.com

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52 thoughts on “About Me”

  1. Hi Anya,

    I’ve recently started my barefoot journey and your reviews have been incredibly helpful.

    I’m experiencing some issues though with finding the correct shoe to fit my foot shape. I would say I’m mountain shaped and measure ~26 cm in length and ~10.1 wide. I’ve purchased shoes based on X brand’s size chart and make sure I have at least 12mm of space in front my longest toe (2nd toe), however, I’ve noticed that my outer toes (3rd & 4th) are lacking space on the insole and touch the front of the shoe a touch. I’ve read I should have space in front of all my toes, but when sizing up and the shoes either still did not give me the space and was way too long for my other toes, more than a thumbs width of space, or the shape just did not work for me. I don’t consider my foot as extra wide, but am probably a bit wider than average from my understanding. I don’t know which brand/style I should focus on or is this OK? I’d appreciate any advice you can provide! πŸ™‚

    1. Sounds like you need a shoe with more of a square shape to it. Have you looked at Freet or Barebarics? You also might like Lems Primal 2 or Chelsea.

      1. So far Barebarics and Lems seem to work best, but I’m interested in a thinner sole in a similar shape as those brands. Do you have any other brands in mind? It’s been a somewhat difficult start in finding the right shoe fit, but learning what works for me!

        So far I’ve tried:
        Freet – too narrow, sole did not feel right on the tanga
        Origo – too narrow
        Peerko – OK, can make work, tried the celebrate
        Belenka – depends on sole; bean shape did not work, active sole is OK
        Vivo – a bit too narrow and slopes a bit too much to pinky toe
        Splay – slopes too much to pinky toe
        Bohempia – wide fits well, still looking at different styles
        Crupon – Nomade; works well
        Zeezoo – boot; OK
        Lems – works well; primal zen
        Barebarics – works well; zing

  2. Isabelle Brosseau

    Good morning,
    I really like your website.
    But I would to know if you have heard of fraudulent canadian websites of barfoot shoes.

    Today, I have ordered 2 ballerina pair of shoes from the Groundies canadian website but they were half the price of the American site. And then, while I continuee looking for boots, I saw a Canadian website of be lenka that just looked like the Groundies web site. Again the price is more than half of the price of the European web site.

    Also, after ordering, I finalky noted that the delivery of the shoes would take 30 days ampnd they mentioned that the charge in my credit card will be COMETINBOX and not Groundies.

    In addition, the delivery tracking does not even come from a delivery company.

    If you could confirm if you heard similar stories that would be great.

    Thank you for the information,
    Isabelle

    1. Hi Isabelle, I am sorry to tell you that I have heard of such sites and they are indeed fraudulent. I would contact your credit card company or bank immediately. We are doing our best to inform readers in our articles, but they continue to pop up (it might be belenkacanada one day and then it’s belenkausa the next). Here we only link to the brand’s website directly (they don’t have variations with regions as part of the name) or to authorized retailers.

  3. Hi! I am new to barefoot shoes as of this year, and I am still navigating the sizing learning curve πŸ™‚ I was hoping you could give me some pointers on possibly which size would be best to order of the VIVO Chelsea boot. I printed out their size guide according to the correct measurements and my longest toe comes right to the size 8 line. In regular shoes I have always been a size 8 cross the board, but should I size up to a 9 to accommodate more space , I know this is probably a difficult question to answer in an email, it would be ideal if I can try them on first, I have considered buying both an 8 and a 9 and just sending back the one that didn’t fit, but I was trying to avoid that if possible πŸ˜€ I know you’ve tried them and was hoping you had some size tips . Thank you!

    -Kara

    1. Do you have high arches or thick feet in general? If so then sizing up seems wise. If you have a slimmer foot with narrow heels than the 8 could be perfect. But you’re right, it’s impossible to know for sure without trying them on!

  4. Hi Anya, I am new to the barefoot shoe concept and your site has so much information, I can’t decide on what I need. I was diagnosed with a neuroma on my left foot between the 3 &4 toes. I am a runner and invested in toe spacers which have helped a bunch. But I am trying to find a show that wont require spacers. I run on both trails with rocks and dirt and on roads. Also if you have neuroma idea for dress shoe I’d take that.
    Thank you for your time.

    1. I don’t have much personal experience with neuromas but I’ve heard from other podiatrists and foot experts that a bit more cushioning in your shoes than most barefoot shoes have is usually wise. Also metatarsal pads can be very helpful (just make sure you place them correctly, they go right behind the metatarsal heads not underneath them). I really like the Primal 2 and Primal Zen from Lems shoes as a more cushioned option that still has a wide toe box so your foot can really spread out. Altra also has some good options, I like their Escalante and Solstice models.

  5. Hi, do you recommend any textured shower mats? Seems like a good place to put a mat that would encourage feet use

    The ones in your review didn’t mention any water proof ones

    1. I’ve never tried that before! But I feel like if you searched specifically for textured shower mat or reflexology shower mat you might find something designed for it.

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Hi. I'm Anya.

Hi. I'm Anya.

I first discovered barefoot shoes after a long history of foot issues. By changing my footwear and strengthening my body I was able to completely transform my life. Anya’s Reviews is my way of sharing with the world that healthy feet are happy feet!

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