The first ones
Whenever you buy shoes for your first, second, third, fourth, or tenth child, they will always be THE FIRST pair for each child. They will bring them first personal milestones and unforgettable memories.
Are you looking forward to it? We make our living selling shoes, but we will discourage you from purchasing them too early. For stomping around furniture and climbing, slip-resistant socks or pre-walking booties will do the trick (we devoted this article to them). Come, and buy shoes when walking becomes your child’s everyday activity. Barefoot is simply barefoot because a shoeless foot is naturally more stable and sensitive to the surrounding. It helps the feet to gain needed stability for further confident steps. Sometimes, the foot can grow unexpectedly, and other times surprises us how long it stays the same. So, be aware that after breaking in the purchased booties, they can become too small or, on the other side, too big.
Minimalist and barefoot footwear now stretches across generations
In these shoes, your feet will be in heaven. It means healthy walking in barefoot shoes gives you the feeling of comfort, freedom, smoothness, and softness… You can get models that are eye-pleasing and health prospering. We have available camouflage pairs for men and boys, booties in shades of cotton candy for ladies, and simple unisex styles for lovers of minimalism.
Don’t choose just with your eyes, but according to your foot proportions. Some shoes are suitable for really chubby feet, and others for people with slim feet. They differ in flexibility, toe box shapes, firmness of the heel, and definitely in price.
Start by measuring
Every producer has different sizing, so you must accurately measure the real foot length and width. How to measure your foot, and what additional space to choose? You can find it in the short instruction video or in our article.
Comparison of shoe soles
Look at the child's foot and choose shoes that closely copy the foot shape. It's good if the shoe fits around the ankle while providing enough, but not too much, toe room.
We put the shoes in size 21 on a foot of 125 x 58 mm. The boy has a dominant toe, slightly fin-shaped toes, an average instep, and a narrower heel.
2 x Bobux
Bobux Xplorer shoes are one of the best and most versatile first boots. The softness of them is on the level of pre-walking booties. The Eva foam rubber sole is approximately 2 mm high, ultra-light, extra flexible but protects the foot against the cold and moisture. They have anatomically shaped toe boxes and get narrow towards the heel. That is one of the reasons why they are convenient for many children. They are suitable for both the dominant big toe and fin-shaped toe. The height of the instep is average, but we don’t recommend them for chubby feet because the shoes can be restrictive. They are easy to put on, and most of them have a velcro strap for fast and easy tightening around the slim ankle. Bobux brand produces booties in all-leather (Go, Marvel), textile (Scamp), and winter versions with merino wool. The booties are soft in the heel and allow the foot to be in pretty any position, including crawling. Bobux shoes (grey color) with this sole are only manufactured up to size 22, and you can see them in the top row.
Versions Summit, Seedling, and Dimensions have the same sole as the bigger sizes by Bobux - it is more scuff resistant and a bit firmer, but we still talk about soft shoes. The shoe sole by Dimension is as wide in the toes as Xplorer, only slightly gets narrower by the big toe and a bit wider in the heel and around the ankle. Overall, this model is straighter and isn’t suitable for fin-shaped toes but is more convenient for higher instep, chubbier ankle, and fan-shaped toes. We can hardly adjust them around the ankle. In the photo, the gap looks extreme because the child is bending his knees, but in reality, the gap is not so significant. The shoe is looser around the ankle.
Froddo & Fare
Fare shoes are spacious in the toes, and at the same time, the bigger sizes are one of the broadest on the market. The smaller sizes are suitable for the average foot and slightly higher instep, unfortunately not for a slim heel. In comparison to Froddo, they aren't easily adjustable around the ankle. The shoe sole is ideally shaped in the toes and is convenient for a dominant big toe. The booties are very flexible in transverse and longitudinal folds and don’t havereinforced heel counters. The heel isn’t reinforced and is only made from two layers of leather. They are available in all-year and spring versions.
Froddo booties are convenient for many little feet. They have enough space in the toes and are rounder than Fare. If your child has a dominant big toe, there are better options on the market. You can adjust them around the ankle. Although they seem to have sufficient width in the middle point and heel, they are fine for people with narrower ankles. The shoes aren’t so high in the instep, so we don’t recommend them for chubby feet. Overall, they are stiffer and not so flexible, so they are suitable for active walkers and not for the walking-crawling phase. The booties can be a bit stiff because the heel consists of more layers of material. In contrast to Froddo, the Fare brand is firmer. On our e-shop, you can find all-leather models and sneakers that combine mesh with leather.
Koel & Tikki
Tikki (yellow color) has an ideally shaped toe box for the dominant big toe or fan-shaped toes. They are a bit narrower in the toes and heel than Koel. You can adjust them to slim ankles. Because the shoes don’t have a high instep, they can be worn by children with thin or average feet. The flexibility is similar to Fare, and the heel isn’t reinforced but keeps its shape because of more layers of leather. Tikki Harlequeen is also available in a fabric version.
Koel sneakers (grey and green color) have perfect proportions for wider feet. The big toe side is very spacious, doesn’t rotate, and provides enough space for fin shape and dominant big toe. In the direction to the heel, they get narrow, so it could seem that they are perfect for slimmer feet. However, you can't adjust them to thinner ankles and heels. They are spacious in the instep but not suitable for very high insteps. They are nicely flexible in all directions, one of the most flexible ones. They haven't got a classical reinforced heel counter, but the layers of leather hold the shape. Fare is softer, and Froddo is stiffer in the heel.
Bobux & Protetika
Protetika shoes (blue color) are perfect for the straight type of the foot, and they don’t get significantly narrower in the heel direction. The toe box provides enough space for the dominant big toe but not for fan-shaped toes. On the big toe side, the shoe is straight. We recommend them for an average and slightly broader heel. They are average in the instep. The heel is a bit stiffer, we would compare them to Froddo. In the same shoe cut, Protetika also offers an all-fabric option.
Bobux (white) has another collection for walking beginners - leather option Step up Riley and Grass Court. They excite us with their design, and they fit on narrower feet with not so high instep. They get tapered in the heel. The toe box isn’t ideal for the dominant big toe, so they are convenient for slim feet. The booties are flexible in length and width but have a tighter fit. In contrast to Xplorer, they are stiffer around the ankle, sole, and behind the heel, so they are suitable for walking children.
Baby Bare & Jonap
Both are among the more spacious shoes that we can recommend for children's first steps.
Jonap shoes have enough space in the toe box but have a non-ideal shape for the dominant big toe. The shoe sole isn’t as soft as Koel's but is flexible in all directions. Unlike other barefoot models, the shoe is stiffer in the heel, and for those who need shoes with a raised heel, the Jonap brand is the right choice. You can adjust them around the ankle, but we don’t recommend them for the high instep. We offer all-leather and leather-fabric models.
Baby Bare booties are more spacious on the big toe side, but the overall room is comparable to Jonap. They have softer soles and outer material and less space in the instep, mainly above the toes. In the heel area and ankle, the shoe is slightly wider. The booties are without reinforced heel counters. Baby Bare company provides people with all year and also spring sneakers.
Camper & D.D.Step
We recommend Camper and D.D.Step for chubbier feet.
D.D.Step shoes aren’t soo wide in the toes but have enough space above the toes and in the instep. They are convenient for chubbier feet, though they get narrower in the heel, and you can adjust them around the ankle. The outsole is exceptionally soft, and in contrast to Bobux Xplorer, they are softer and more flexible than Koel. They don’t have areinforced heel counters but still hold their shape.
Camper are spacious, relatively high in the instep, and broader in the ankle and heel area. They fit on a chubbier foot. You can't tighten the booties with the rubber lace because it is more of a design element. They have a firm outsole, and the heel is stiffer. In contrast to other shoes, the inner sole is padded, more isolating, and shock absorbing.
Beda & Little Blue Lamb
Little Blue Lamb booties are suitable for chubbier feet. They have a roomy toe box and instep, but we would recommend a more appropriate toe box for a foot with a dominant big toe. Although the LBL are round, they rotate inwards. The outsole is soft, the heel reinforced by more layers of material. They can be adjusted to the average ankle by velcro straps, but not to too slim feet with a low instep. We offer all-leather booties, sneakers, and ballet flats on our website.
Beda shoes are spacious in and above the toes. The front and a big toe area are straight, so the shoes are convenient for non-descending toes. In comparison to Beda ankle boots, they aren’t so roomy in the instep, fit on the average instep, and you can tighten them to a slimmer heel. The shoe sole is soft, and the company manufactures a version with a soft heel or a reinforced heel counter (labeled OP). Next to all-year models, you can shop for fabric or mesh styles.
Ricosta & Affenzahn
The heel of Affenzahn shoes is one of the narrowest in our offer (by small sizes), so they can be appropriate for people with bony ankles. In the instep, the booties are higher. The toe box is nicely shaped but not so broad. There is enough space for a dominant big toe and overall slim legs. The shoe sole is flexible, and the shoe doesn't have areinforced heel counter. Next to the all-leather version, we offer models from mesh or fabric.
Ricosta models are the narrowest on the market. By the big toe, they slightly rotate inwards, so there can be a lack of space. The outsole is very soft, and the heel isn’t reinforced. The instep is comparable to average Affenzahn's instep. The Velcro straps ensure a perfect fit around the ankle, but for a bony ankle, we recommend Affenzahn booties. Besides all-year models, Ricosta also offers spring shoe collections.
Bundgaard shoes are soft, flexible, and slightly higher around the ankle. The toe box is anatomically shaped and suitable for the dominant big toe. The rubber overlap is practical and protects the shoe tip. Because of the height of the heel, we don’t recommend them to children who are in the walking-crawling phase. They fit on narrow feet with not so low instep and taper in the heel.
We wish you happy first steps. :-)