Icarus Ascent Review – A Barefoot Shoe That Transitions With You

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The Icarus Ascent is a stylish barefoot sneaker with interchangeable insoles you can swap out for a customizable fit. Use as much or as little cushion as you like!

Whether or not you are working toward barefoot shoes, you can enjoy the great style and wide toe box – learn more in my Icarus Ascent review!

Icarus Ascent Review

Leather | Sizes US Women’s 6 – Men’s 14 | Ships from USA

Use code ANYASREVIEWS for 10% off your purchase.

The Ascent sneakers are able to meet you where you’re at on your foot health journey with their universal fit and 3 different insole options. They function both as a performance gym shoe AND look great for running around town and date nights. And I’d venture to say they are just as stylish for men as for women.

Each order ships with insoles in the following thicknesses:

  • 3mm
  • 4mm
  • 4-9mm (4 at ball of foot, 9 at heel)

The flexible outsole is 5mm, and you can use the insoles in any combination. Or even forego them entirely! This gives you a range of cushion from quite minimal to moderate cushioning with a 5mm heel rise.

Icarus footwear transition to barefoot sneaker being flexed into a tight C shape

Why I Love Them

When worn with the thinner outsoles the Icarus Ascent feels like a true barefoot shoe. They will also work wonderfully for someone who is looking for a more conventional shoe but with more toe space. AND they work as a transition barefoot shoe that evolves with you (no buying multiple pairs of shoes as you play around with different cushioning levels!).

All while capturing excellent style that can be worn with just about everything. Win-win-win! It’s honestly an impressive feat.

Sizing & Fit Type

The Icarus Ascent sneaker is:

  • Medium to wide fitting
  • Adjustable in volume (should fit high to low volume)
  • True to size

I am wearing a size 7 and they fit my feet well with thin socks. My wide pinkie toes only just brush the side, but the leather is soft enough that I haven’t had any discomfort. However I wouldn’t recommend the Ascent for someone with extra wide feet.

White barefoot transition sneaker leather Icarus Footwear with wide toe box
Gen 1 Ascent (slightly different from current version) on Robby

We are excited about this new brand with a compelling barefoot transition shoe. Icarus fills the need for a stylish, mainstream looking shoe that has a wide toe box and a versatile fit for both seasoned barefooters and newbies alike.

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16 thoughts on “Icarus Ascent Review – A Barefoot Shoe That Transitions With You”

    1. They are not super light and thin sneakers, so I think the leather and padding will keep you warmer than some options. I suppose it’ll depend on your climate.

    1. I compared my Vivo Asana sneakers to the Icarus ascent in the same size and the Icarus are longer, but I’m wearing the same size in both. They feel a little roomier overall than my Vivos though.

  1. I live in coastal north west. In winter the issue is rain. I need a genuinely wide toe shoe. What are dothe best possibilities?

    1. Will these work for a AAAA heel transitioning foot with a plateau toe box? Started at an 9.5 length, AA width that looked like your “before” feet and now am probably a scant B at midfoot measuring a US 10/Euro 41, still AAAA at heel. I wear Altra Lone Peak 6’s in 10.5 as the soft heel wraps around my narrow heel perfectly and doesn’t slip. The toe box is huge on me, but it feels great and allows my toes to spread. Tried the Lone Peak 7’s in 10, but they felt constrictive and stiff, slipping at the heel. So, returning those and looking for something nice looking as my LP6’s develop a bit of scruff.

      Is the heel soft? I’ve never been able to get a heel to fit, even in AA running shoes from New Balance or Brooks or any kind of shoe that didn’t have an adjustable heel strap. The Altras are the first closed shoes that hugged my feet ever. Would this hug my heel? I think 11 (42) would be too big so glad these are a bit long running as 10’s in Altras are barely long enough.

    1. Vivo Geo Court has a thinner sole with very little cushioning, so it feels different to use (unless you plan on not using insoles in the Icarus. Otherwise I like both quite a lot!

  2. Hi- On the icarus website, a few people have said that the toe box is not as wide as other barefoot shoes and that as a result they chose to return them as their toes kept rubbing against the sides. Now that you’ve had them for a while, could you please comment on the toe box vs other barefoot shoes? I value your opinion. Thanks!

    1. They are definitely not as wide as some barefoot shoes, but there are so many at this point that it’s too broad of a reference point. I find them wide enough for my wide feet (Vivobarefoot and Mukishoes are borderline too narrow for me), but they wouldn’t be wide enough for Samantha who has an extra wide foot and is limited to brands like Shapen, Be Lenka, Realfoot. Hope that helps!

  3. I have a narrow foot but am needing a wide toe box due to toes rubbing. What is your favorite tennis shoe for this issue? My normal shoe size is an 8 or 8.5 but in tennis shoes I often wear a 9 or 9.5. I don’t run but am on my feet a lot and do a lot of walking. I appreciate your advice!

    1. I think that this one would work! They are not very narrow, but they fit securely so should give you the space you need while still being secure.

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Picture of 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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