Update: New color alert. Click on to shop the latest colorways in these must-have merino wool shoes: Tui Light Red and Kotare Olive for the Loungers slip-on style, and Kotare Birch, Kotare Plum, Kotare Moss and Kotare Olive in the Runners lace-up style.
Update, May 4, 2017: Your feet are about to thank you. The company that created the much-beloved merino sneaker just launched a brand-new style that's sure to be just as popular as its Wool Runners. Ahead, meet (and shop) Allbirds' Wool Loungers in four colors — a smart-looking, just as comfortable slip-on version of its original silhouette. We won't blame you if you never wear any other shoe ever again.
This post was originally published on March 2, 2016.
Nowadays, we don't just expect our sneakers to be functional, cool-looking, and comfortable — we want to be able to wear them to work just as flawlessly as we would the gym. And while it's easy to stick to the tried-and-true favorites that we know check all those boxes (think Adidas, Nike, and Puma), every now and then a new brand of kicks comes along that gives our old reliables a run for their money. Especially when they're made from something totally unexpected — like merino wool.
New Zealand-based label Allbirds, which launched Monday, has plans to completely change the world's perception of what it means to be a shoe company. The brand has developed a shoe box and shipper in one (which drastically reduces waste), will donate any used and returned shoes, and is placing an overall focus on minimizing its carbon footprint. And it's shoe debut is a first-of-its-kind "Wool Runner," which, aside from being lightweight and flexible, features odor-minimizing and moisture-wicking properties, ideal for anyone who hates wearing socks. Plus, cleaning these is as easy as throwing them in the washing machine.
Having already gotten our hands on a pair, we can guarantee that there's no rubbing, pinching, itching, or general complaining involved with throwing these on. And for only $95 (plus a 30-day trial period with a money-back guarantee), there's no harm in giving this super-cozy concept a try. Click on to get acquainted with all the color ways, and shop the one (or three) that suits you best.