Why I Love The Airy And Stylish Be Lenka Elevate Sneakers

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Be Lenka Elevate Review Collage showing multiple angles and a full body photo of reviewer Adrian

by Adrian Colarusso

I was on the hunt for a stylish sneaker that wouldn’t suffocate my feet this spring and summer, when the new Be Lenka Elevate came into my life. The Elevate sneakers combine a breathable mesh upper in three versatile, handsome colors with a super thin outsole. Keep reading for my experience with the Elevate sneaker!

Use code ANYASREVIEWS for 5% off from Be Lenka

Be Lenka Elevate Review

Front angled view of Be Lenka Elevate in navy with faux laces and breathable mesh uppers

Sizes EU 36-47 | Textile | 4mm Outsole | Ships Worldwide

I’ve jumped feet first into the world of barefoot shoes over the past two years. In any situation, you’ll find me in the least obtrusive footwear I can get away with.

I love hiking in the rocky, rooty New Jersey woods, and kicking off my golf shoes on the second tee box – far enough away from the clubhouse and its draconian dress code (more golf shoes reviews coming soon). But date night out on the town requires footwear and my wife wants me to look sharp, of course. When these Be Lenkas came out of the box, her reaction was “Oooo! I like those!”

When I first put them on, I thought: these are not inhibiting my feet in any way. I might be able to keep them on for an entire dinner.

At $139, these Be Lenkas boast apparently fine construction elements, like the soft microfiber patching in high-wear areas inside – around the heel and behind the laces.

Fit and Function

Elevate Sneakers are:

  • High Volume
  • Wide to Extra Wide
  • Ultra Flexible
  • Run slightly big

The Elevate sneakers accommodate my high-volume, mountain-shaped feet perfectly. Before my footwear transition, I wore a US Men’s 9.5. I switched to a 10 as my feet muscled up and my tolerance for constriction went way down.

These are a size 44 (US equivalent size 10), but since their shape works so well for me, I might have gotten away with a 43 (US 9.5) and still have been comfortable. My pinky toes have about 5 mm to splay before hitting the side wall, and my big toe has a thumb’s width to the front. I don’t mind the extra roominess, but others might have exchanged them for a size down. 

The stack height underfoot is 4mm with a thin removable insole (maybe 1mm). I usually remove all insoles, but don’t feel the need with the extra room I already have. Also, I wear these on concrete, so the touch of extra cushioning is welcome.

The stretchy uppers provide a snug, flexible fit without requiring any tying; they slip on and off easily, but look like lace-up sneakers. 

My only complaint is that the insoles come up a little as you take them off, so I have to reposition them the next time I put them on again.

Close up of a hand holding a Be Lenka Elevate sneaker into a tight roll to show the flexibility

Where I’ll Wear Them

Full body photo of a man in a polo and khakis wearing stylish Be Lenka Elevate, barefoot breathable sneakers on zero drop flexible outsole.

These will be a go-to shoe for clean, urban environments. I’ll wear them with shorts or pants, and dress them up or down with button downs, golf polos, and tee shirts – always without socks. They might be a little casual to wear with a blazer, but in certain contexts you could get away with it. 

I’ll also wear them on casual office days and for coffee chats with business contacts whom I know aren’t expecting a stodgy, suited-up advisor.

I plan on keeping these looking nice, so will use the Elevate casually. And if the white soles do get scuffed, I can use a magic eraser on them!

Ordering from Be Lenka

Be Lenka is located in Slovakia, and you can use code ANYASREVIEWS for 5% off. Be Lenka only accepts returns from the EU and the US, so you might want to check out the following Be Lenka retailers around the world depending on where you live. Many ship worldwide and accept returns, but not all will be carrying the Elevate.

And you can learn more about this brand in Anya’s earlier Be Lenka reviews.


This spring and summer, I’ll be reaching for footwear that will inhibit my feet the least while helping me look my best. I’m thrilled to add the Be Lenka Elevate sneaker to my collection.

Adrian is an independent wealth advisor based in Princeton, NJ. He enjoys hiking with his wife and two boys, and golfing with his clients and friends. Almost always barefoot.

Disclosure: The opinions expressed here are Adrian’s and do not necessarily reflect the views of his firm, Target Rock Wealth Management. None of the above statements should be construed as financial (or fashion) advice.

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4 thoughts on “Why I Love The Airy And Stylish Be Lenka Elevate Sneakers”

  1. Great review for an attractive pair of shoes. However, as I noticed Belenka’s website had not tagged this model as vegan, I contacted them. They confirmed, this model cannot be claimed as vegan per se. It would be correct to amend that part of the article.

    Here’s Belenka confirmation for reference: « Regarding your query about our Elevate model not being classified as vegan, we completely understand your concerns and want to provide you with a clear explanation.

    While the uppers of our Elevate shoes are made from textile material, the lining is made from microfiber, which is not considered a vegan material as it is made from synthetic fibers that are not derived from plants. Additionally, the sole is made from thermoplastic rubber (TR), which is also not classified as vegan due to the fact that it may contain animal-derived components in its production process.

    Furthermore, the insole of our Elevate shoes is made from a blend of recycled PU and cotton, which is removable. Although both materials are vegan-friendly, the adhesive used to attach the cotton to the recycled PU may contain animal-derived ingredients.

    We hope this information helps clarify why the Elevate model is not classified as vegan. However, please note that we are always looking for ways to improve our products and we will take your feedback into consideration for future designs. »

    1. Hi, thanks for sending along that additional information. I have updated it to say “textile” rather than vegan.

  2. I have a couple question about this BeLenka shoe.
    1. Vans Slip-ons are not adjustable in fit, yet they feel secure as long as I have the correct size. Is the elastic security of this BeLenka shoe comparable to that of Vans Slip-ons?
    2. For those of us that want a standard, non-elastic lace, is this shoe designed to accommodate that?

    1. I would say that compared to Vans slip ons, the Be Lenka’s are a looser and more open. Vans slip-ons work well for people with lower or average arches, whereas these Elevate sneakers have space for high arches and thicker feet. You could size down because of the roominess, but if your feet are very slim through the heels and midfoot you might also need an extra insole to take up some extra space. For something that is more comparable to a Vans Slip on, I would go with the Be Lenka Eazy. They have a pretty similar feel and security around the opening, but have the same foot shape as these Elevate sneakers.

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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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