Barebarics Review – The Best Foot Shaped Chunky Sneakers

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A row of stylish cool chunky barefoot sneakers from Barebarics

Barebarics makes foot shaped shoes with a modern chunky design and a more durable zero drop sole than we usually see in the barefoot shoe world.

They are the perfect solution for someone who wants zero drop and a wide toe box, but doesn’t want an ultra thin sole! Whether that’s for foot comfort or because you are still transitioning to barefoot shoes, Barebarics is a reliable solution.

Get To Know Barebarics

Sizes EU 36-47 | 6-10mm Stack Height | Vegan & Leather Options | Ships from EU or US

Code ANYASREVIEWS gets you 5% off full-priced Barebarics at any time.

You can also find a variety of Barebarics at Anya’s Shop in the US, including the custom Zing shown on me above!

Barebarics is a new barefoot shoe brand created by Be Lenka (a long time favorite brand of mine). Barebarics shoes are designed with an urban setting in mind – both in their distinctly urban style and extremely abrasion resistant outsole. Never before has a naturally shaped toe box and zero drop sole been combined with such durability and style, it is an exciting step forward. Concrete jungle inhabitants, this is the brand for you!

A top down view of a pair of feet resting on concrete wearing Barebarics Zing white leather wide toe box stylish barefoot sneakers

In fact, Barebarics has become a favorite for the Anya’s Shop crew. Many on our warehouse team wear their Barebarics shoes on the job, where they spend lots of time on concrete. For their line of work and their current comfort level with barefoot shoes they’re perfection. They look damn good too.

Sizing & Fit

Barebarics shoes are:

  • True to size
  • Low to high volume
  • Extra wide in the toe box
  • Good for most foot shapes, even square
  • Fan shaped

For a definition of these terms, head to my Barefoot Shoes by Foot Type article.

a close up of a pair of feet standing on concrete, the left foot is bare and the other foot is wearing a Barebarics barefoot sneaker, Zing model in taupe, to show it's natural foot shape and wide toe box

Barebarics has a fit that should work for most foot types, thanks to its wide, square shape and close fitting (but adjustable) upper. Newer models are also getting more vertical space above the toes, for an even more versatile fit! And you can remove the insole if you need a little more space.

Are they barefoot?

a close up of a hand holding a rolled up barebarics zero drop barefoot sneaker to show its flexibility

You can be certain that every shoe from Barebarics is zero drop with a foot shaped sole. But while the toe box is uncompromisingly wide, I find them to feel more like a transition barefoot shoe.

If you are used to light, flexible barefoot brands like Wildling or Mukishoes you might be surprised at the heft of Barebarics. But despite the extra material on the sole and upper, when the sole breaks in you still get good flexibility.

Compared to mainstream shoes, Barebarics are still minimal with a total thickness of about 1cm including the tread and insole (6mm without insole). And for certain populations this is a great marriage of minimal features with durability. So if you’re someone who is looking for a natural fitting shoe that doesn’t squish your toes, but with a bit of extra cushion, support, and a long-lasting sole – this is the brand for you.

Ordering Barebarics

Barebarics is based in the EU and ships via DHL. To the US one pair of shoes is $15 (it goes up as the weight & dimensions of the package goes up), and arrives within about a week. Returns are accepted on EU and US purchases only on new shoes within 14 days. That means if you live anywhere else your purchase is final sale (unless you order from us at Anya’s Shop). And be sure to check the Discounted Seconds section at our shop for a deal on Barebarics!

Alright, now let’s dig into the individual Barebarics models.

Barebarics Review

All Barebarics shoes have the same sizing and outsole shape, so the differences between models really comes down to style and a few fit differences.

Here are the models we on the Anya’s Reviews team love.


The Zing is a retro sneaker vibe, and they are for sure our top pick. Classic, but just enough details to stand out. You can’t go wrong! The Zing also feels good on our feet, they are less stiff around the ankle and soften up well (this was an issue we had with some of the other models). The leather Zings especially break in and become really comfortable.

And you can now find the Zing in a high top version!

We love the Zing so much we made a custom version with burgundy accents that is only available at Anya’s Shop!


A side view of a pair of feet resting on wood floor wearing Barebarics Wave in green

The Wave sneaker from Barebarics has a retro style with a modern chunky edge. I love the forest green, but tend to wear neutrals most often so I’ve worn my pair with black accents much more frequently. The leather breaks in really well and I just love the style.

We have this model in the US at Anya’s Shop!


A top down view of a pair of feet wearing Barebarics Arise in Raspberry pink barefoot wide toe box sneakers

The Arise has some similarities to the Wave, and also breaks in nicely. I think the colored outsole to match the trim is a fun way to make them pop while still being subtle. They’re a perfect blend of new and fun with classic sneaker.


A close up of the Rebel barefoot sneakers from barebarics in Charcoal black

The Rebel model is discontinued but you can still find some colors/sizes available at Anya’s Shop

This model caught me by surprise. I did not find them attractive on the website, but seeing them in person changed my mind. The detailing makes them interesting without being loud. They also have a bootie construction and can slip on and off, which is good because the lace holders are very stiff and not at all good for threading laces through. And that soft opening makes for a really comfortable fit. Justin and Ian are really liking them as an everyday sneaker!


a side view close up of a pair of feet standing on wood chips wearing Barebarics white grey Axiom chunky dad barefoot sneakers

The Axiom has a classic sneaker design and a leather look. My one complaint with this model is that the heel and ankle area felt extra stiff and rubbed quite a bit at first. I am used to adding moleskin or heel grips to my shoes, but feel like this could be improved. But if you are looking for vegan, these are a cool option.


A pair of feet wear black Barebarics Zoom barefoot sneakers with black socks

Zoom is the model for employees with a dress code. They are wipeable and come in faux leather and real leather, which makes them even better for healthcare and food service employees. They also can be worn as everyday shoes!


a close up of a pair of feet standing on concrete wearing jeans and green Hifly Barebarics hightop barefoot sneakers

The Hifly is a simple hightop with a few details to make them pop. Ian tested these out for us and he found the ankle area quite stiff at first, in contrast with all the room around your toes. Again, it would be nice for this to be softer at the beginning (even though it breaks in).


a close up of a pair of feet standing on concrete wearing blue Revive Barebarics barefoot chunky sneakers

The Revive has a functioning lace plus a cosmetic one, giving it a double lace look. It comes in 3 colorways, each with bright accents and a nylon upper. It’s been really popular with both men and women as a stylish sneaker, there is nothing else like it from other barefoot shoe brands.


The only issue that occurred for us consistently in the testing process was that the heel and ankle area rubbed. While this seems to be getting better with each of their new models, it is still something to watch out for. Besides that, there is nothing I would change about Barebarics! Except maybe more style options…


Barebarics are an exciting addition to the barefoot shoe world, delivering on style, quality, and barefoot features. I highly recommend them if you need just a little bit more cushion under foot for whatever reason, or simply want to participate in current sneaker trends.

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42 thoughts on “Barebarics Review – The Best Foot Shaped Chunky Sneakers”

    1. They’re both pretty padded, so that makes them a little warmer. And the thicker sole helps as well. I didn’t ever wear them in the rain, but I imagine they’d be fine for light rain. They’re definitely not warm warm, but as far as barefoot shoes go I could get away with these in cooler temps.

    2. Do you have any idea if the Axiom are water resistant? I love my Groundies Sydney to death what with the thin soles and water resistance. Also, I’ve tried the Lems Primal Zen, I know these are technically quite thinner, but are they more flexible? You mentioned the build making them stiff…

      1. The Axiom is not labeled as being water resistant, but I think you’d get some natural water resistance with the faux leather. I haven’t seen the Primal Zen in person, so hard to say but they are built on the same outsole as the Lems Chelsea which I have. I would say my Lems Chelsea’s are maybe a little more flexible than Barebarics. With Barebarics it’s the edges of the sole that make almost a right angle – that reduces the flexibility in multiple direction.

  1. Thanks for the review! I just had a couple of questions I was hoping you might be able to help me with:
    Which models do you think cause the least rubbing/discomfort in the ankle/heel area?
    How long does it take to loosen them up?
    Once they’ve loosened up is the rubbing/discomfort in the heel/ankle gone or still a bit uncomfortable?

    1. Barebarics recently came out with a leather version of the Zing and Zoom – I have a pair of the All White Zing and I found that they softened faster than the others. It took about a day and a half of wear before they felt much more comfortable.The Rebel seemed to be the least rubby out of the box (it has that textile opening), followed by the Pulsar. Out of the ones I tested, the Axiom still bothers me and never softened enough for my bony feet.

  2. I love all your shoe reviews and learn so much from them. Would you recommend any of the Barebarics models for playing tennis or pickleball? If not, is there a shoe/brand that you recommend? I have a Plateau shaped foot.

    1. They have a nice grippy outsole so I think they would work well! One of our testers wears Tolos for tennis and really likes them.

  3. I just got the Barebarics Zing as my first barefoot shoes. I love them, I started wearing them little by little and increased the the frequency and duration that wear them for this past week. I agree that they rub at the ankle (so much that it bled). I was wondering if this is just a matter of breaking them in or if it’s because they’re not the right shoe for me?

    1. Oh yikes, that sounds rough! I would definitely get some moleskin in there and maybe manually massage the shoe to try and soften it. Mine didn’t bother me that much at first, but they did soften up. Particularly the newer leather version gets softer with wear.

  4. I just ordered the Zing all leather (size 41) for my daughter and will return them. Not suitable for high volume feet/higher instep and too narrow at her pinky toes (she is about 10-10,2cm /25.5cm; the site I looked said width is 10.2, but Barebarics’s site says width is 9,8cm and due to daughter’s measurements, I can say that’s correct). Too bad, because there are almost no trendy shoes for teens with big/wide feet.

    1. That’s too bad they didn’t work for your daughter. Did you try removing the insole to gain some extra space?

  5. Would you recommend any of the Barebaric models for sports, specifically golf ? In reading their descriptions, the models I read about just mentioned walking… If no, what shoe brands would work for light sports ? Thanks !

    1. Hmm, I don’t think I would use Barebarics for sports except walking. They don’t have that responsiveness in the sole for dynamic movement. But there are lots that are good for lights sports. Anything from this article on the best running shoes would suffice. I personally love my Lems Primal Zens, Xero Shoes Zelens, or Freet Pace.

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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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