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- Synthetic sole
- Shaft measures approximately 2.5" from arch
- Classic alpargata style, canvas upper, elastic gore for easy fit, suede footbed^With every pair of shoes you purchase, toms will give a new pair of shoes to a child in need. one for one^Classic alpargata style, canvas upper, elastic gore for easy fit, suede footbed
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Classic alpargata style, canvas upper, elastic gore for easy fit, suede footbed. with every pair of shoes you purchase, toms will give a new pair of shoes to a child in need. one for one
TOMS Shoes was founded in 2006 by Blake Mycoskie. The shoe is a unique slip-on design comprised of clean lines and lightweight fabrics in vibrant colors and prints. TOMS was founded when Blake was inspired on a trip to Argentina by the traditional, rope-soled Argentine "alpargata." He was struck by the poverty and health issues of the country, and set out to reinvent the alpargata for the U.S. market, and in doing so to accomplish one goal: Making life more comfortable for those without shoes. To realize this purpose, Blake made a commitment to match every pair of TOMS purchased with a donation of a pair to a child in need. It's simple: If you buy a pair of TOMS, the company will give a pair to someone in need on your behalf. During its first year in business, TOMS sold 10,000 pairs of shoes, and Blake returned to Argentina to lead his first annual Shoe Drop during which he donated to the children who had inspired him. TOMS Shoes are now available in multiple colors and fabric combinations for men, women and a recently introduced line for children, aptly titled Tiny TOMS.
- Product Dimensions: 5 x 5 x 0.7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- ASIN: B078TSP8KY
- Item model number: 001001B07-RED
- Date first available at Amazon.com: June 9, 2009
- Domestic Shipping: Currently, item can be shipped only within the U.S. and to APO/FPO addresses. For APO/FPO shipments, please check with the manufacturer regarding warranty and support issues.
- International Shipping: This item is not eligible for international shipping. Learn More
- Average Customer Review:
Top customer reviews
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-hole in the front where my toe sticks out
-ripped in the heel where stitching came undone
-leather insole is shredded and disintegrated in parts
The top rated review says the construction is durable after having the shoe for a week. For the price paid, these shoes should last longer than 5 months. I actually like them, they're comfortable and don't have the complication of laces or velcro straps. But I haven't played sports in them or gone rock climbing and they're falling apart.
One for one. For every pair you buy, a pair is given to a child in need. From their website "In 2006, American traveler Blake Mycoskie befriended children in Argentina and found they had no shoes to protect their feet. Wanting to help, he created TOMS Shoes, a company that would match every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes given to a child in need. One for One. Blake returned to Argentina with a group of family, friends and staff later that year with 10,000 pairs of shoes made possible by TOMS customers."
I have mixed feelings about this shoe. I love the idea people wanting to help others. It's such a nice change from what we usually hear. Unfortunately, I'm not sure that giving away free shoes is helping, in fact, it may be hurting (as I will explain later in this review)
The top part of the shoe is made of VERY thin cotton/canvas. Not a sturdy canvas, but more like the very, very cheap canvas slip-on shoes you might see at a dollar store or something. Very thin, thin weave that you can see through if you hold it up to light. The insole is cardboard covered in some material and glued to the sole, which looks like a very thin packing foam. Not sturdy foam like on the bottom of even the cheapest type of flip flops you've ever seen, more like if you took some foam egg cartons and then painted them with some sort of glue to make them a little harder. It'd difficult to explain but it's very thin, very lightweight. I understand they were modeled after the same shoes people actually wear in Argentina. I don't know if it's true, but that's what has been said.
From the photos, it looks like people here wear them everywhere, it's a big campaign right now that I would hazard a bet that 99% of the people who have bought the shoes haven't really investigated the "why behind". They hear the "Buy a pair, give a pair" and imagine some poor little kid somewhere walking around without shoes because they are all very poor in his village and no shoes are available anywhere. Then the American shoe truck arrives and suddenly, shoes!!! And they feel good so they do it. I think that part is great - that people want to help and are willing to help. But you're not a helper if you're not helping!
I am on the slender side, do not drag my feet when I walk and take good care of my shoes. These shoes lasted about 5 weeks, wearing them a couple of days a week just doing things like getting groceries, walking the dog down to the end of the street and back, walking around the house. I didn't walk on any dirt or gravel roads (like the people who will be given these shoes will be) Then I was caught in an unexpected rain storm and they got wet. The glue that held the fabric to the foam came undone and then the fabric immediately begin fraying beyond repair. I hope they are biodegradable because they're now in the landfill.
If you are young and healthy (no foot structure problems, not a runner or athlete with feet that are already over-taxed, not overweight where more stress is going to be put on your feet - these shoes have ZERO support) and think of these as fun, temporary shoes that will last a couple of months at the most, you might be happy with them and if you don't think too hard about what's really going on behind the scenes of the Buy One Give One program, you might feel good about yourself too.
The Not Good Part:
From what I understand, they are meant to be given to people in countries who don't have any shoes. So for every pair we buy, they send a brand new pair to someone else. And the reason they need shoes are for things like if they have no shoes, they can't attend school because shoes are part of a uniform, keeping them from cuts and getting disease from soil-borne illnesses.
However, what isn't being said is that all of these countries have shoes available for purchase! And when we come in with free shoes, that undermines the market that is already there and makes everyone even poorer. Because of the free shoes coming in, suddenly everyone stops going to the local shoe seller and buying his or her shoes, she and her family are now starving. Sort of the same way everyone complains about Walmart...swooping in and taking the mom & pop shops out of business. That's not good. There are some people who want everything given to them, but most people find their dignity in hard work and caring for themselves and the people in these countries are no different. They want jobs, they want to work, they want the chance to provide for themselves. They want the proverbial "hand up, not hand-out" If instead Tom's had donated the shoes to be sold at a certain affordable price by families who are struggling and without work, that would have been a win-win. Families would have jobs, people would have shoes, win-win.
The "Whites in Shining Armor" concept does not work. Doing thing FOR people instead of WITH people does not work. Shipping in goods for free that outcompete local goods, it's a short-term solution that could create long-term problems, that's not going to work. Along with thousands of other concerned people, I challenge anyone to find a single country in the world where there are not shoes for sale in the marketplace. There are many better and cheaper ways to get shoes on the feet of the poor.
These shoes, supposedly modeled after Argentina shoes, they're not actually manufactured in Argentina. Therefore they're not creating jobs for any of the parents of the shoeless kids Blake saw on that trip. It appears TOMS produces shoes in Ethiopia and China.
But the biggest thing to consider: Is more harm being done than good? If so, how can TOMS's change that? Obviously people want to help. This campaign is very successful. TOMS is a great company with GREAT people running it and working for the company. Bottom line is the practice of giving away shoes in developing countries isn't a great idea. If TOMS only sent shoes to disaster torn countries on the heals (no pun intended) of natural or political disasters I would be a HUGE fan of the endeavors, but when they send shoes to developing economies they undermine those local economies...period. This shouldn't even be a point of consideration. If you really want to buy a pair of these shoes, then opt out of the Buy One-Give One program. If TOM's shoes does what it says, it will use the profits from the sale of the shoes you buy to help the people in these countries help themselves and you won't be undermining their developing economy by giving something free that would normally have been bought by local people from local people.
If they carry on with the BOGO model, yes the kids will have shoes but they still won't be able to go school, because their parents won't have the money as no jobs have been created. They now become dependent of companies like Toms for everything instead of being free and in control of their own destiny.
I'm sure Toms have a good heart but they need to be honest and ask themselves if this model is really solving social problems in a long term way. They are not the only company that does this `Feel Goodz' flip flops is another company that just uses marketing as a ploy.