Vivobarefoot vs Vibram: What You Should Know

Last Updated: Jun 3, 2021 @ 12:48 am

We sought to pit two titans against each other—Vivobarefoot vs Vibram. Before we go into it, let us give it some context for the sake of those that may not know what we are talking about.

What are the Vivobarefoot shoes?

Vivobarefoot has been making minimalist shoes for a couple of years now. An increasing number of people are taking a keen interest in the benefits of walking or running barefoot.

Of course, it is difficult to go about your business with no shoes on. Shoes are made to protect us. However, they hamper the natural movement of the foot.

This can have very adverse effects on your posture and stability. Vivobarefoot is one of the shoe companies that make minimalist shoes to mimic the way your feet respond to the ground naturally.

VivoBarefoot shoes allow the wearer to be as close to the ground as possible without having to remove your shoes. 

The soles on Vivo barefoot, are thin and made of puncture-resistant material. The thin sole means the nerves in your feet get the opportunity to feel the ground and send signals to your brain so that your body reacts properly.

The barefoot movement is the reason why most parents leave their babies running around with no shoes on. It is so the child’s feet can get used to grasping the ground firmly and in turn, having the feet support the body adequately. These shoes are extremely lightweight and they are made wide.

This means that your toes have all the freedom they need to splay and give you the support you need. Regular shoes cramp up your toes and you end up in a position where your feet do not know how to “survive” outside a shoe.

Good minimalist shoes like Vivobarefoot shoes do a great job of providing a natural ground like experience for your feet. Because they are minimalist, these shoes do not have a heel or arch support.

What are Vibram shoes?

Vibram shoes are made by an Italian company that manufactures and licenses the production of Vibram branded rubber outsoles for footwear.

These soles were first used on mountaineering boots as a replacement for leather soles fitted with hobnails or steel cleats, which were commonly used in those days. The soles made by Vibram, go by the same name, Vibram rubber or Vibram soles.

Products Overview

Vibram shoes are shoes that have five separate pockets for your toes. They look like gloves for your feet. The design was inspired by the desire to move more naturally when walking, by allowing your toes to be free.

This gives your foot unique stability that comes from walking barefoot. They are also made with a unique sole. The sole used depends on what the shoe is meant to do, the desired performance, and also on personal taste.

You can get Vibram soles built on a sneaker, a classic, casual shoe,a or a more technical model. Vivobarefoot shoes are created to mimic walking as close to the ground as possible. 

They are well known for providing the ultimate barefoot experience. However, Vibram shoes also have the same edge over them, especially with their five finger range.

When shoes have the Vibram sole applied to them, they transform tremendously. Vibram shoes offer the advantage of a healthier lifestyle for your feet, increased performance for runners and they also give the wearer a more natural feel.

Vibram five finger shoes, allow your foot to mold more naturally to the ground beneath them. VivoBarefoot shoes have no arch support.  As always, you will ultimately have to be the judge of whether or not these shoes and their impact are worth their price in your life.

Casual Shoe Picks

Vivobarefoot Borough

Vivobarefoot Borough

The Vivobarefoot is a testament to just how far barefoot shoes have come. The shoes that none of us would want to be seen wearing to what these look like is incredible progress from the Sun.

The untrained eye would be unable to tell the difference between these shoes and any other shoes. They are just like any trainers he may see you in-store. You could probably describe these as a sneaker boot.

They are made out of leather. They have an easy fit apron tongue that makes it extremely simple to slip your foot into the shoe and out. As with other shoes from this brand, they have a laid-back look and feel. They indulge your sensory nerves.

The soles of these shoes are of the hex flex kind. They combine toughness with flexibility that cannot be found in shoes that are not barefoot. The shape of each lug underneath the foot is hexagonal.

It ensures that you have traction on wet as well as dry surfaces. They will do just as well on muddy surfaces. The leather used in this case is camel leather. It is breathable and durable.

They have also made use of recycled RPET mash for the lining. This is a shoe that can be worn all year round. For the cold season, you can benefit from thermal insoles. The only criticism leveled against this one is discomfort in the Achilles region.

Average Rating 3.2 out of 5.0 stars

Vibram Men’s Furoshiki Black Sneaker 

Vibram Men's Furoshiki Black Sneaker

There are not many shoes that look like this just floating around the streets. Well, at least not in the western world. This is our unique design for someone who has grown up with western fashion.

They are made out of 100% textile. The soles on these shoes are synthetic. You have a shaft that measures a low top from your arch.

It is surprisingly difficult to describe the issue that you have very few things to compare it to. In many ways, I feel that a thousand words that a picture will provide you will be better than any description that I can conjure.

What makes these shoes unique is that the other on these shoes have a sole that wraps itself around your foot. The upper part of the shoe stretches and allows you to have a comfortable fit in your shoe.

The closure is one of a Hook and lock kind. This makes it very easy to get into the shoes and to step out of them. There are not many shoes that you could say can be machine washed and hair dried.

Well, this one can. The only catch is you would need to wash in cold water and on the air dry it.

Average Rating 4.4 out of 5.0 stars

Training Picks

Vivobarefoot Primus Lite 

Vivobarefoot Primus Lite

The Primus Lite is one for favourite shoes from Vivobarefoot. It is a lightweight shoe that is made out of PET plastic bottles that are being recycled.

This makes it incredibly lightweight, as you already know that these plastics are not very heavy. Material is solid. This is probably down to the fact that plastic is difficult to biodegrade. It goes without saying that this is a vegan-friendly shoe.

What you may not realize is that these shoes were designed to be a movement you. As such in that was made to be quite flexible as well as comfortable. There is no sewing that was done during the construction of the shoe.

That’s partly what makes it that little bit more durable. There is not much to the design either it is quite a minimal design. As they say, the fewer moving parts they are to anything, the easier it is to maintain.

It is available in some exciting colours. There is nothing that’s over the top they’re all quite subtle and perhaps pretty is a bit of a stretch but that will do.

I probably didn’t mention that the soles are non-marking the thin but durable. For the colder weather, you benefit from Vivobarefoot’s extensive insoles.

Average Rating 4.0 out of 5.0 stars

Vibram Men's V-Train Cross-Trainer Shoe

The closest and most of us would’ve come to wearing five fingers shoes are these. They are not as explosive as we had always known the five finish used to be.

There is a subtleness to the way that they were manufactured. It is almost as if they bridge the gap between five fingers shoes and regular shoes.

This is something that can be said about – into shape as well as the colours that were used. The black one, for instance, makes it difficult to notice with the toes separate.

The material that is used in the shoes is 95% polyester and 5% spandex. The sole is completely made out of rubber. This is not the first version of the issues that come onto the market. The manufacturer has continued to develop the product and improve it.

This new one aimed to deliver a shoe that provides the flexibility that they’ve always been with but with a bit more structure. This is probably where the bridging between five-finger shoes and regular shoes comes into play.

The lugs underneath the soles are made out of special rope-like traction. They also have circular lugs that provide you with a more lateral grip. This makes the shoes quite versatile and up to any activity, you may put them through. Finally, there is our anti-microbial fabric within the sock liner.

Average Rating 4.3 out of 5.0 stars

Running Shoe Picks

Vibram Men’s KSO-M Trail Runner 

Vibram Men's KSO-M Trail Runner

If you’re looking to run in the Vibram shoe, this is a solid pic. It is made out of 100% textile and synthetic material as you would expect the rob the soles are made of rubber. This, of course, comes in handy when you’re running.

Vibram has always been known to be a great provider of traction, which is key to balance—the shaft of these shoe measures low top from the arch.

And you will be happy to know that these are for the long haul. They are resistant to abrasion. The upper part of the shoe also stretches, making it that little bit more difficult for it to fall apart due to pressure.

You’ll be happy to know that these shoes can be machine washed in cold water and air-dried. They have a straightforward closure system that is made out of the hook and loop without Velcro.

Everyone’s favourite part about these shoes is just how well they fit onto your foot. The term fits as a glove comes to mind. Is a great degree of emphasis placed on the performance side of things. This is even more true of the soles.

Average Rating 4.1 out of 5.0 stars

Vivobarefoot Men’s Primus

Vivobarefoot Men's Primus

No matter which one of the two colours you fancy these in, they are a class act. They are designed to be used both on and off-road. There is a great emphasis on the soles’ design to ensure that they provide ample protection and support when you go off-road.

They have low-profile lugs, which provide you with freedom of movement. The shape of the lugs allows them to give you maximum traction as you move.

The upper part of the shoes has a much clearer emphasis on breathability and comfort. The artistry is quite robust yet flexible. They allow your feet to feel as natural as they do when you have no shoes on.

Those who love the environment will be happy to know that these shoes are made from recycled RPET. This is used for the textile lining. If you were to encounter water with them, you would be happy to find that they have drain zones that allow for water’s quick training.

They are also very quick drying once the water is out the way. Another interesting thing is that the insoles are made out of algae. If you have not guessed already these shoes are vegan-friendly. 

Average Rating 4.2 out of 5.0 stars

Comparison Criteria

In this article, we explore the differences between Vivobarefoot shoes and Vibram shoes. Both shoes are minimalistic. Their construction makes some of the differences, and as the wearer, you ultimately have the final say in the shoe that fits your lifestyle best.

We compare and contrast the construction of the shoes as well as how they fair on the market. 

General Pricing Comparison

The pricing depends on the particular shoe you are interested in. However, most Vibram shoes are generally priced similarly to Vivo barefoot shoes.

General Quality Comparison

Vivobarefoot specializes in quality minimalist shoes. The company has an extensive vegan line and also shoes that are great for triathletes. Vibram shoes are made with a unique sole, and these soles have been known to change the way shoes feel.

To get an accurate quality evaluation, it is best to compare shoes made for the same purpose. For example, hiking shoes will need to be durable, and Vivobarefoot makes quality hiking shoes.

General Durability Comparison

Vivo barefoot can be worn for daily use and they stand the test of time. With proper use, they will serve you well. You must use them for their prescribed use so that you get the most out of them.

Vibram shoes are made to weather the rough terrain you will encounter in any situation. They have been known to last up to 15 years. At the end of the day, durability varies from person to person and according to how the shoes are used. 

General Design Comparison

Some people are not fans of the Vibram design because of the glove-like design. Vivo Barefoot shoes come in various styles, and this means that it is much easier for you to find what you like. 

Key Features of each brand

Vibram five-finger shoes are thin and flexible. The deconstructed sole of Vibram’s five fingers allows the foot to curl and flex. Your five toes are kept separate, and hence this shoe has been nicknamed gloves for your feet.

As you walk in Vibram shoes, your feet collect the necessary data to send up to your brain so that your feet react accordingly.

Vivo barefoot shoes have a wide toe box. The sole is thin and flexible as well. The shoes have an abrasive-resistant TPU and puncture-resistant Duratex layer.

Vivobarefoot shoes also have antibacterial properties that keep your feet odour-free much longer. They have removable insoles as well, and this makes them easier to wash. These shoes allow your feet to remain as natural as possible.

Pros and Cons of each brand

Vivo barefoot shoe Pros

  • They have a thin sole
  • They have antibacterial properties
  • They are made vegan-friendly 
  • They are flexible

Vivo Barefoot shoe Cons

  • They can be pricey
  • Some of the shoes are not waterproof

Vibram Shoes pros

  • They are flexible
  • They separate the toes and allow them to venture and feel the ground in the way they want to. 
  • They are flexible

Vibram Shoes cons

  • They are not the best looking shoes
  • It takes time to get used to wearing them.


When it comes to the shoes you will choose, the decision is yours. You will need to know what you intend to use the shoes for. This way, you can get the best out of the shoes you choose.

Both Vivobarefoot and Vibram make shoes for the minimalist wearer. They both make shoes for different uses, and you have to choose the right pair for the right use.

Hi there. This is Clare. Dave and I manage this site. We are outdoor enthusiasts. Most of the content is about products that we love using or have researched.
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