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47 of 48 people found the following review helpful
on November 19, 2013
Color Name: CharcoalSize Name: 11 D(M) US
I've owned a pair of these Sensori Venture's for about a month now, and have used prior models of Xero Shoes for about two years before that. The short version of my product review is that these are a great and AFFORDABLE minimalist footwear option, especially for walking, hiking, and casual use. I've found them to be quite comfortable, versatile, and durable. The fact that they can be personalized and customized to fit your feet is a nice touch, too. Not to mention being able to walk around with a natural gait, as if (almost) barefoot. They also make a superb replacement for flip flops, and in all seriousness, I think this is reason enough for investing in them.

The newer Sensori Venture model has incorporated some design improvements - some good, and some unnecessary in my opinion. But overall, this is a superior model to former versions. The most important design improvement is the rear strap system that avoids holes in the sole (of which, two of mine had torn with the earlier Xero Shoe models). So, the laces will presumably last longer and the soles won't be as likely to tear where the ankle holes used to be.

A couple of things you should know before you buy Xero Shoes are that they don't do well in wet conditions - traction goes downhill fast when you introduce moisture (be it from sweat, rain, morning dew, flash flood, etc.). Also, some hiking trail conditions aren't the best for Xero Shoes either. Sandy terrain and loose soil/gravel pose a bit of difficulty, and this is made much worse when conditions are wet and/or steep, as the sandals have a tendency to slip and slide either on the ground or off of your foot. Those are the only major issues I've had, though - apart from not favoring Xero Shoes for running.

But the bottom line is that if you're looking for an affordable minimalist footwear sandal for recreational or casual use, then Xero Shoes are definitely worth your consideration. And between you and me, the low price point makes them well-worth an initial test drive - even if you're skeptical like I was. These days, most minimalist footwear - even sandals - are easily double or triple the cost of a pair of Xeros. And if I may say so, you'd be crazy NOT to buy a set of these to compare to your favorite flip flops. You'll never go back!

So, overall, these are a fairly high-quality, and especially high value product for your dollar, and I'll be wearing mine until I find something better.

I hope this review was helpful for you! Please let me know by hitting the handy-dandy button below.

John Sifferman
Northeast USA

P.S. Also, I will try to remember to update this review after some more time has passed to tell you how this newer model holds up.

P.P.S. If you'd like more information, I wrote up a much more detailed product review where I discuss a few more of the Xero Shoe quirks in more detail. It's on my website here: [...]
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on December 30, 2013
I am a barefooter. As in a real barefooter that doesn't wear shoes of ANY kind if I can help it. I have walked thousands of miles of wilderness trail in my own feet, and so I'm quite used to this idea.

Unfortunately, going barefoot in the urban environment is fraught with issues. Not the stupid things that people say like, "You might step on broken glass!" or "Aren't you afraid to step in dog mess?" Because frankly, those things never happen to barefooters because we actually pat attention to where we step. The real issue is that people FREAK OUT when you walk around barefoot. Sometimes you'd think you were walking around naked. "You can't come in here without shoes!" Even my local zoo has a NO BAREFOOT policy, and they won't let you in the gate without shoes.

The Xero shoes fill the (ridiculous) social obligation of wearing shoes and satisfy all the 'minimalist' requirements. They are very much like going barefoot. Following the sizing recommendations proved to be satisfactory, and after several adjustments I finally have them just right and they seem to be made for me. My only rub is that I'm not used to having something between my toes, but I think I shall get used to that eventually.

They are easy to slip on and off, and once in place don't flop around like a flip-flop. The are good for walking, and I can run in them. I am not much of a runner because I'm not really afraid of anything, so almost never run unless I'm late to a free buffet...

I do not like them for driving. While they don't flap around, I find they don't make a good driving shoe. I prefer to drive barefoot anyway, so this isn't a problem for me.

One thing I notice is that I don't pick up my feet very much when I walk, and I will catch the front edge of the Xero's sole on the rug sometimes. That's not really so much a problem with the shoe as with the way I walk. Crunching around in the yard through the acorns proves that the Xero shoes provide adequate protection against sticky things - so that whole 'broken glass' paranoia is satisfied.

I have been through a lot of other 'minimalist' shoes. Vibram Five Fingers, etc. I have mostly used Teva Hurricanes for the last few years when I want any real protection from terrain - like walking on coral beaches, walking on sharp gravel, etc. While I find the Xero shoes excellent for urban environments, I am less keen on them in the wilderness context. They pick up bits of gravel, twigs, etc., much worse than my Tevas do. This is, again, perhaps a function of how I walk, but it's annoying none-the-less. They aren't any good for walking on sand - but they slip off easy enough, and clip to my pack so that's not a problem for me.

So my primary use for the Xero shoes is navigating urban terrain like grocery stores, restaurants, and malls. They're OK in manicured parks, and otherwise around town. They're even OK for some good trail walking.

In true terrain, though, I prefer to be actually barefoot than to wear the Xero shoes. While they are close to barefoot, they are still something that is between my foot and the ground. In some ways, being a minimalist shoe makes that more aggravating and not less.

The bottom line is that I would buy them again if I ever wear them out. I'm even thinking about buying another pair now just in case they become unavailable one day, or if Xero decides to go like Vibram did and start actually building 'shoes' instead of sticking with a more honest philosophy.

I hope what I have written helps you decide if these are right for you or not. If you are already a barefooter, I believe these will be useful to you - at least around town if not in real terrain.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on November 17, 2013
Color Name: CharcoalSize Name: 12 D(M) US
Huarache inspired minimalist foot protection is not just for the Tarahumara ultra runners of the Copper Canyons in Mexico. If you walk, the Sensori Venture can help you strengthen your body from the toes up. If you run, huaraches can help you run further, and faster too. IF you take the time to train and learn effective motion techniques, you could find yourself running ultra marathons, injury free, nearly barefoot. With less on your feet providing more sensory input from the environment, it's easier for your body to react to that feedback in a lighter, healthier, more natural way.

My pragmatic side loves the low cost, long wear features of Xero Footwear. This new model is ready to wear, out of the ENVELOPE with simple heal strap adjustments. No box needed for shipping. This is a "green" solution. With my new Sensori's, I'm up to 5 pair of Xero sandals, or, 25,000 miles worth!! Xero's keep you cooler in the summer heat and I've run in sub 20 degrees with Xero sandals, sans socks with long sleeves, legs covered, hat and gloves and still my hands were cold, while my feet were fine.

The service and expertise from the staff at Xero have been extraordinary. I've been using the 4MM and 6MM kits, and worked my way up to ultras, including a couple 50 mile runs at a slow pace, relatively quickly. For a "do it yourself" full iron distance triathlon on my 50th birthday, I ran the marathon leg in 4MM Xeros. They are great for grocery shopping too.

Since reading Born To Run and experimenting with the ideas to prove they work, I realize people need this product. It's not just a convenient widget. Hopefully Xero's will become a "hula hoop" type success. Several of my youtube videos are about running in Xero sandals. My channel is Randy Kreill.

Slip them on and Feel the World as their slogan suggests. With bare toes, enjoy the extra sensory input with nominal ground feedback deprivation to the soles. Barefoot might be an ideal, but with Xeros, you can keep your skin on and blood in! Athleticism is ultimately about strength and AWARENESS. Become more aware by going barefoot, or "bare toes" in Xero Footwear!

I also enjoy driving barefoot. With the easy to slip on/off Sensori, this is very convenient.

Randy Kreill, Beavercreek OHIO
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on November 17, 2013
Color Name: CharcoalSize Name: 12 D(M) US
I received my ventures a few days ago, and they fit pretty well out of the box. The past 3+ years I have done all my hiking in VFFs, and have enjoyed them a lot. For me the one major downside if the VFF is they are not rugged. My first pair did not last very long. My next few pairs have been KSO treks. I need to reinforce between the toes to keep them from wearing out here. This works, or should I say it delays the rest of the shoe breaking down. 250 miles or so and they are toast. Not a lot of miles for the $$, but I do like them.

Now enter the Venture. My first day hike in them was 8 miles, with 2800 feet elevation gain and loss. Going up was fantastic. I got maybe 1 pebble between my foot and shoe that I had to shake a bit to get out. I wondered all the way up how down would be, as that is always harder. The first 2 miles down I got several more pebbles between the sole and my foot, but other than being a bit annoying no big deal. What was more of a big deal was the rubbing of dirt/dust between my toes and between the sole and my foot. By the end of the first 2 miles do down my feet were beginning to get a bit tender. Again, more of a minor annoyance than anything. Those 2 miles of trail are pretty descent, but plenty of small rocks/dirt balls and dust on the trail. The last two miles are beneath trees, and my feet welcomed the change of scenery. No more pebbles, but for the last two miles my heel cords slipped down multiple times on both feet. After a minor adjustment of the sliding know in front, this greatly reduced the sliding of the heel cords.

Probably hiking 8 miles the first time in sandals was a bit much to ask for my feet. All in all I really like the sandals, I have worn them again on shorter. less technical hikes with 0 issues. The cost, fit, weight, traction, and freedom are great. Now i am working toward seeing if I can complete multi-day backpacking trips in the Ventures.

So what was my old favorite shoes? My Xero shoes kit I got about a year ago. Either way you can't go wrong. The two have pretty much eliminated the VFFs from getting worn. I can see the VFFs having a niche still when it is a bit colder, maybe.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on November 17, 2013
Color Name: CharcoalSize Name: 11 D(M) US
My feet feel so free in these, they fit nice and secure to the soles of my feet if I decide to go for a run, hike, walk or just cruising around town. The toes get to relax, stretch and breathe, allowing for overall foot to move with the most natural feel. Well designed, flexible and built tough to last. So happy to have these and get a chance to feel the world.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on May 2, 2014
Color Name: Royal BlueSize Name: 9 D(M) USVerified Purchase
Please read all the way through, I left the original review, and I have updated since then.

Original
I was very disappointed with these sandals. While I received quite a few compliments on the looks, one of the rubber loops that holds the strap broke during the third wear. I had not run in them, and had the sandal let go while out on a walk. Overall, for the price paid vs lifespan, not a great purchase.

Updated 6/6/14
I left the original review, but I wanted to update the review. I did not contact Xero Shoes regarding my experience with their product. I simply assumed like most warranties, I would call in and be told I had misused the product, and therefore the warranty did not apply to my situation. I simply pitched the shoes and wrote my review. A few weeks later, I received an e-mail from Mike with Xero Shoes. He said he was sorry to hear of my experience, but that they really do stand behind their 5000 mile warranty. I was very impressed by this. I am used to the opposite treatment. An American business concerned with customer satisfaction, not just turning a profit? I could not believe it.
I have been on the road since the new pair arrived, so this review, and the addition of 2 stars, is simply for the level of customer service I received. I thought that if someone is thinking of trying these, they are a safe bet. Xero Shoes does mean it when they say they stand behind their product.
I will update the review again, once I have had a chance to wear the new shoes.

Updated 7/15/2014
I have had a chance to wear the sandals about every other day for the last three weeks, and wanted to update my review.
This pair has held up very well. I had the sandals adjusted by the third wearing, so that I could wear them all day without any comfort issues. I have now ordered a pair for my wife, and she is looking forward to receiving hers.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on November 17, 2013
Color Name: CharcoalSize Name: 13 D(M) US
I have been a fan of Xero Shoes for a few years now. I started running with Vibram Five Fingers a few years ago, branched into many other minimalist shoe options over the years, and have also done a lot of barefoot running (no shoes or protection at all except my own skin) and I found Xero Shoes to be a powerful tool in my running shoe arsenal. I have used my Sensori Venture's for walking, hiking, and running and they work great for all of the activities I have put them through. The Sensori Venture model is one of my favorites because I don't have to worry about lacing and they adjust very easily and hold securely. For me, the sole of these shoes offer just enough protection from most surfaces (and temperatures), but it is thin enough for me to keep close contact to the ground so I can still feel the surface (to adjust my gait.) I have worn them in colder temperatures (down to about 35F) and have had no problems because I keep moving. Your body will generate more heat than you might expect. I now prefer the Sensori Venture over my flip flops because they stay on my foot and don't require constantly gripping a toe lug, They are also significantly lighter in weight than most sandals, which means they are easier to travel with. When I am not using them, and am running barefoot, these shoes will usually be in a pocket or in my bag so I can have them on me for protection when needed.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on May 30, 2014
Color Name: lime greenSize Name: 10 D(M) USVerified Purchase
First let me say that I was very excited to try this out. Barefoot running is something I truly enjoy but many of the trails I run on have gravel or sharp rocks littered haphazardly in my path, so running shod is nearly a requirement to save my feet. That being said, xero shoes do not perform as advertised.

The issue is not sizing. It fit comfortably enough when I slipped it on, but I quickly realized when I started running that it wasn't going to work. The back brace does not hug your heel enough to keep the sandal firmly on your feet. In fact the back slipped over my heel, and next thing I know, I'm stepping on the sandal and gravel with only the thong between my toes remaining in place. Normally this is where you'd think, Okay, try tightening it then. Which I did. As soon as I did the back brace remained on my heel while running (hurrah!) but the pressure exerted on the sensitive skin in between my toes by the thong became quickly unbearable. I ran about a quarter of a mile before I had to take it off, due to bruising between my toes that took a couple of days to heal.

I would not recommend these as running shoes, nor would I recommend them as casual wear for sandals. It is uncomfortable and I caused less damage to my feet running barefoot on gravel and shells. I would recommend to the interested barefoot enthusiast to go with the traditional lace system if they are still interested in trying a running sandal.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on November 21, 2013
I've bought many pairs of the DIY Xero shoes kits and now the Sensori Venture for family, friends, and myself and they are truly different. It's hard to explain why but they are SO comfortable the first time you try them on. They hug your feet and don't flop around or slide on your feet (you may need to do some adjustments but mine pretty well fit as delivered). They look like they're indestructible. I plan to run a half marathon in them next year but will gradually work up to that distance in these shoes; they do work your feet and leg muscles differently, in a good way.
For the best fit measure your foot, don't go by your "usual" foot size. Xero shoes has a good website for tips and articles regarding barefoot running and minimalist shoes, although the Sensori Venture would be good for just about anyone. And the Xero people are friendly, helpful and accessible - good people to deal with. I highly recommend these shoes.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on March 17, 2014
Color Name: CharcoalSize Name: 11 D(M) USVerified Purchase
I walked around my house and they felt great, then I took a step in a little creek and the top cord ripped a huge hole through the shoe rendering them inoperable... F-
Would not buy, better to buy flip flops from Longs or Walgreens
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