Loafers have long been one of my favorite styles of shoes. They’re fashionable, practical, dressy and casual. But most are really pinchy in the toes, so loafers and I never got along well because of my big toe issues. Until I discovered barefoot shoes that is. Now I don’t need those tapered loafers anymore! I’m in a long term relationship with NATURAL footwear, and regular shoes and I are never getting back together. 😉
Welcome to Episode 6 of Wear This, Not That!
If you’re interested in getting the loafer style without the bunions, check out this list of completely flat, foot-shaped barefoot loafers.
- Why Most Loafers are Bad For Your Feet
- My Favorite Barefoot Loafers
Why Most Loafers are Bad For Your Feet
I have some strong opinions about what makes a healthy shoe (read this post for more on that). But the two biggest beefs I have with the loafers you’re most likely to see are they have a pointy toe box and a heel.
- Pointy Toe Box: Most shoes no longer look like feet at all. The pointed tips on your shoes prevent your toes from spreading out which can lead to the formation of bunions AND prevent your body from moving well (did you know we use our big toe to balance?)
- Heel: No, they’re not stilettos, but even that small heel on traditional loafers throws your center of gravity forward and forces your body to compensate in awkward ways. When you wear heels (even small ones) the effects are cumulative: back pain, knee pain, even headaches can result. Completely flat shoes are such an easy solution to some of our most common ailments.
And the crazy thing is, you find these unhealthy features even on brands considered “comfort” brands, such as the Naturalizer flats you see in the photos above. I purchase the WIDE width of their shoe, and yet it still pinches my toes painfully.
That’s what makes barefoot shoes so amazing (and such a no brainer when you think about) – they are not only good for your feet in ways that most shoes aren’t, but also don’t look like nursing home orthopedic shoes! Ready to dig into some fashionable healthy barefoot loafers? Read on for my top picks.
My Favorite Barefoot Loafers
1. Lisbeth Joe London
Lisbeth Joe London | $114 after code
ANYASREVIEWS | Leather | Sizes US W 5-12/EU 35-44
This is my top barefoot loafer pick! The Lisbeth Joe London loafer has a classy design that works with all my favorite outfits, but still fits my wide toes comfortably.
It does have wonky sizing (most people size up a full size) and it fits a medium to high volume foot best. Once I added in a tongue pad for my low arches I have had no issues with the open fit and I wear mine often! Check out my full review of the Lisbeth Joe London for all the details on fit, sizing, and styling.
2. FeetSutra Khussa
FeetSutra Khussa | $116 after code
ANYASREVIEWS | Leather | Sizes US W 6 – M 13/EU 36-47
The FeetSutra Khussa loafer is made of a rich, shiny leather and has a simple sleek design. It comes in black and brown, and in 2 widths (women’s and men’s). I’ve been waiting for this barefoot loafer for a long time! For some reason not many barefoot shoe brands use shiny brown leather, so I’ve had my eye out for something with this level of richness to it. The rubber outsole is 3.5mm thick with decent ground feel, and good flexibility.
This shoe fits VERY high volume and loose around the ankle. I have to add in an extra insole, a tongue pad, and a heel grip and even then they are not as secure as I would like. I also have some reservations about the rubber wearing away and the leather scuffing.
Read my full FeetSutra Khussa review for all the details
3. Vivobarefoot Opanka
Vivobarefoot Opanka | $130 after code
ANYAVB | Leather | Sizes US W 5.5-11.5/EU 35-43
The Vivobarefoot Opanka is a barefoot loafer style that fits a low to medium volume foot! So if you think the first two options will be loose on you, this one is worth a gander. It is 3mm thick, made of a super soft leather, and has a thin flexible sole: this is the first loafer we’re looking at that has excellent ground feel. It looks like a loafer, but it feels like a slipper. I have worn these on long travel days with no regrets whatsoever.
For more, check out my full review of the Vivobarefoot Opanka. And don’t forget, the code
ANYAVB get you 10% off any Vivobarefoot purchase.
4. Zeazoo Cheetah
Zeazoo Cheetah | $150 after code
ANYASREVIEWS | Leather | Sizes EU 35-42 | Ships from Bulgaria
The Zeazoo Kids Cheetah loafer comes in a bunch of different colors, some with a draw string and others without. They can be dressed up for more formal outfits or casually with denim. The blue suede color I have has a Sperry’s boat shoe vibe.
They are super comfortable for me, I wear them on morning walks and for quick errands and always feel good. Usually slip on shoes slide around on my feet, but these do not! They suit a low to medium volume foot best, I don’t recommend them for high arches. Zeazoo also does custom sizes and color combos by request!
You can also get certain colors of the Cheetah from 100 Barefoot Soles in the UK, and the code
ANYASREVIEWS will give you a discount there too!
Zaqq Loafers | $180 | Leather | Sizes UK 4.5-12.5/EU 37-48 | Ships from Germany
Zaqq loafers come in a couple styles with either lacing details around the edges or a braided metallic band across the top like the photo above. Choose from classic black, light pink, or a striking bright blue! I got a size 37 (I often get a 36 in flats) and they are pretty roomy, so I would say they run true to size. And make sure you read my review linked below for all the info on the Zaqq barefoot shoe brand.
6. Groundies Breeze
Groundies Breeze | $150 | Leather | Sizes EU 36-47 | Ships from Germany
Groundies Breeze is the perfect Sperry boat shoe dupe. They are a classic, popular unisex style available in navy or brown leather. I love Groundies shoes and have purchased several pairs over the years! Note – there is no width difference between Groundies men and women’s shoes.
7. Gaucho Ninja
Gaucho Ninja shoes are exquisitely handcrafted in the UK by a small team of dedicated shoemakers using the finest materials. I don’t have these particular models, but love my Gaucho Ninja boots! If you want to try your hand at shoe making, check out the DIY Moccasin kit.
8. Drifter Leather Slip On
The Drifter Leather Slip On | $175 | Leather | Sizes EU 34-49 | Custom Options | Handmade in Greece
The Drifter Leather slip on sneakers are simple, but able to be made according to your foot tracing and measurements! You can also customize your leather choice for a shoe that’s truly made for you. It’s a process, but I love all my Drifter Leather shoes.
Manitobah Moccasins | $100 | Leather | Sizes US W 5 – M 13 | Ships from Canada
Manitobah makes traditional moccasins in a variety of leather colors and finishes. Available lined or unlined, these moccasins should stretch and form to your foot shape for a glove-like fit. Be aware, they can actually stretch quite a lot! And in general fit a higher volume foot best.
10. Posh Panda
Posh Panda | $101 | Leather | Sizes infant to US W 11 | Handmade in Canada
Posh Panda moccasins are all handmade in Canada and come in leopard, metallic, and a whole lot of other color options! Of course leopard is what I have (obviously) and I love these shoes! Choose from rubber or suede soles for these funky flexible moccasins.
11. Luks Moccasins
Luks Fuego | $107-$132 | Leather | Sizes EU 36-42 | Handmade in Czech Republic
Luks has 2 moccasin styles made from buttery soft leather – Fuego and Cordelia. The Fuego moccasin comes in 8 colors and 1 limited edition print. The Cordelia is available in tan and brown and has a lace tie detail around the opening. Luks is a great brand if you have extra wide toes.
12. Softstar Rogue
Softstar Rogue | $136 after code ANYA | Leather | Sizes 5U-13U | Handmade in the USA
The Softstar Rogue is a slip on leather shoe available in brown or black. The interior footbed comes with a removable, natural suede innersole AND an additional pair of sheepskin innersoles for all-weather versatility.
13. Unshoes Footwear
Unshoes Forager is available in black, gray, and brown and features moccasin style stitching around the toe box. The Primrose is a moccasin/ballet flat hybrid and comes in brown, black, gunmetal, and rose gold. Another model great for extra wide feet! But they can be loose around the ankles.
14. Freet Talus
Freet Talus 3 | $67 after code ANYASREVIEWS10 | Vegan | Sizes EU 37-48 | Ships from the UK
The Freet Talus 3 is a casual vegan slip on made with a breathable mesh upper and a 2.5mm sole (with removable insole the stack height is 5mm). The Talus 3 is only available black, but you can find the previous model, Talus 2 in navy or black in some sizes here. Freet Barefoot is great for wide toes, and they have a lot of vegan options. My husband is a huge fan of the Freet Pace sneaker!
And there you have it! 14 barefoot loafer alternatives to the cute, trendy shoes that smash your toes. I’d still like to see a few more options in this vein, maybe some metal buckles and definitely more smooth leather options. But boy am I glad we have so many stylish barefoot loafers that still let our feet be feet!
For lots more barefoot style, check out below my other “Wear This, Not That” posts and the popular “Fashion, But Make it Barefoot” series!