As of today, Birkenstocks has been dominating the sandal world and has resurged to become one of the most sought-after brands in the shoe industry. However, Birks may not be for everyone.
Some think that Birkenstocks are a bit pricey compared to others. More so, there are some who say that Birkenstocks are the “ugly” sandals and that their style variations are very limited. If you agree, maybe an alternative brand to Birks is what you need. You can try Freedom Moses, Funky Monkey or Gia Borghini.
Birkenstocks may be the leading sandal brand, but they are not the only brand worth checking out. In this guide, I have listed down some of the best alternatives to Birks.
Apart from that, I have also enumerated some brands who offer cheaper options than Birkenstocks. So, if you have the luxury of time, go check them out.
What is so special about Birkenstocks?
Birkenstocks is famous for combining comfort, style, and durability. What made the brand stand out is their specially designed footbed. These are not the normal rubber footbeds we usually have because they are made with three materials: cork, jute, and suede.
Their regular footbed has four total layers sandwiching the above-said material. It is anatomically molded to the feet. The material composition even ensures that the footbed will adapt to its wearer’s foot size and shape. After some time, your Birks will feel like it’s custom-made.
These footbeds are also orthopedic and best worn by people who suffer from foot problems such as plantar fasciitis. Birkenstocks feature a deep heel cup, adequate arch support, and roomy are for your toes.
Birks are also available in many styles: slip-ons, back-strapped designs, criss-cross strap, mules, and even boots. Birks can also come in basic colors or multi-patterned designs. You really have a lot of lineups to choose from.
Moreover, Birkenstocks are built to last. The brand uses premium quality leather and synthetic materials that can make one pair last for many long years. If you want a travel sandal that is worth breaking in and is worthy of every penny, Birkenstocks really are the best choice.
Are Birkenstocks worth the hype and the price?
Despite others claiming that Birkenstocks are pricey, not affordable and overhyped, Birkenstocks, in terms of durability and comfort, are worth the hype and their price. Although Birks’ style is really not for everyone.
In comparison to other sandal brands, Birkenstocks really proved to be highly durable and long-lasting. Many Birks wearers can attest to this. Purchasing one pair is an investment worth doing.
Others don’t prefer Birks because they require a break-in period. However, it can’t be denied that after this short period, everything will go smoothly. The footbeds are built to mold into your feet, like a custom fit.
However, if your heels are really sensitive to friction-causing blisters, know that Birkenstocks have made Birks in synthetic materials and soft fitness. These pairs are less challenging to break in than the regular Birkenstocks.
Aside from durability and high comfort level, Birkenstocks are also greatly flexible and lightweight. A misconception is that due to its four to five layered footbeds, Birks are too stiff. However, it’s actually the opposite.
The combination of the materials allows for flexibility and adaptability. Birks also come with adjustable straps which are also helpful in ensuring that the footbeds may stretch.
What may be the reasons why Birkenstocks are not for you?
There are many factors that you should consider before deciding to get a pair of Birkenstocks. One of which is your financial limitations. You have to assess if you are financially capable of buying one.
You have to know that the starting price for a Birkenstock pair is higher than other brands. You can buy a pair of their best-selling two-strapped Arizona Birks at $34. Although there are other outdated styles that are priced at a lower rate.
Another aspect you should contemplate is whether or not the functionality of Birkenstocks suits your hobbies and work environment. For instance, Birkenstocks need to be worn often to break them in.
If you don’t have the patience for the process and desire for walking, then maybe you really have to check other alternatives. However, almost every shoe really requires a break in period.
Further, the classic Birks style is not water-resistant. Therefore, they should not be left submerged in water for a long period. If you worry about them getting wet in your workplace, then maybe you should consider trying out other brands.
Also, if you are a water athlete or someone who is fond of hiking, mountain climbing or water-related activities and exercises, Birks in corks may not be the best option for you. But if you really want that Birks style, have them in EVA version.
Appearance-wise, maybe you’re also bothered about whether or not Birks suit your fashion style. Also, you could be thinking if you can style them accordingly. If you’re not confident with these, then it’s a no.
Best Alternative to Birkenstocks
If you have already pondered about all the factors mentioned and realized that Birkenstocks are not compatible with your personality and lifestyle, maybe they are really not meant for your feet. But don’t worry because I have listed the best alternative to Birkenstocks which you can check out.
For my ladies out there, here’s one of the most reliable brands for you! Cushionaire has been producing comfy and cozy footwear for women of all ages.
Some wearers even say that Cushionaire sandals are more comfortable than Birkenstocks. You should try their Lane Cork Footbed Sandals. With a crisscross design that is comparable to Mayari Birks, it has a multi-layered footbed and is also available in EVA version.
If you’re not just into the classic Birken design and style but still can afford a high-end premium brand, try browsing through the lineups of Gua Borghini. They offer sandals that are handmade in Florence.
This one’s a luxury brand that has a lineup that can compete with that of Birkenstocks. They provide women with chic and stylish shoes which are kind of similar to Birks except that its designers are not fond of metal buckles.
If you want double-strapped and open-toe sandals, you can check out Gia Borghini’s Double Touch-Strap Sandals. Its downside is that they are double the price of Arizona!
If you don’t want a slip-on type of footwear and want the same design as Gizeh, WTW sandals got your back! Go to their website and search for their WTW Cork Flip Flops.
This pair may not have the same anatomically molded footbed as Birkenstocks but it is equipped with the same material: cork and suede. In between these is a cushion that adds bounce to the pair. It also has an adjustable strap with a buckle.
Another designer brand, Freedom Moses, is also a great alternative to Birkenstocks. Their pairs are made of polycarbonate urethane (PCU) which ensures a high comfort level.
Freedom Moses is waterproof, perfect for your summer getaways. For an Arizona Birks look alike, see Freedom Moses’ two band slides. They are also comfortable and convenient to wear every day.
One popular alternative to Birkenstocks would be the Funkymonkey sandals. If you want an Arizona-like sandal, opt for Funkymonkey’s Double Buckle EVA Sandal.
With the same level of comfort but for a lower price, Funkymonkey’s entry is the best option for those who only have limited budgets. Made of ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA), this double buckle pair is water-resistant and perfect for beach trips.
Apart from that, they are also lightweight. Their footbeds are also equipped with arch support and their soles have excellent grip. You can wear them all day, anywhere!
What brands offer more affordable alternatives to Birks?
Birkenstocks may be worth every penny but there is nothing wrong in trying out cheaper alternatives so that you can save money. Getting the same quality and functionality is what’s most important.
Funky Monkey has the cheapest sandals for someone who has a tight budget. For as low as $17, you can already have a Funky Monkey slide sandals. More so, their EVA versions are even priced at a lower range starting from $13.
Another brand that offers affordable options is the Cushionaire. Their Luna Cork Footbed Sandal can be purchased for between $24 and $59. Price still depends on the size.
Birkenstock Alternatives, Final Thoughts…
Undeniably, Birkenstocks produce sandals that are comfortable, durable, and stylish. Although not as cheap as other brands like Funky Monkey and Cushionaire, Birkenstock is the pioneer of the orthopedic and sustainable sandal made of premium quality materials.
However, they may not be suited for you but that’s perfectly fine. You don’t need to hop on the Birks trend just for the sake of conformity. You should greatly prioritize comfort, functionality, and financial capacity.
So, there’s nothing wrong with checking out alternatives to Birks. I hope that this article has helped you in finding the one!