*spits* New Shoes!
June 6, 2011 1:07 PM   Subscribe

How long will (these particular) Børn shoes actually last?

For years and years, I've exclusively worn Adidas Sambas...It's come to my attention however, that I destroy these shoes every 5-6 months or so. Sometimes i can find them on sale, sometimes I can't. So I'm already spending 100+ dollars a year on shoes. I'd much rather spend the same dollar amount on something that might last me a couple years...My wife and I are striving to consume less-but-better quality things, and after picking a pair of these Børn shoes up at my local higher end shoe store. They felt comfortable, and sturdy, but I couldn't help but wonder if they'd really hold up all that much better?

I'm really comfortable buying something that will wear well, and last at least a couple years. If not these, what? I'd even be willing to retrain my pansy-ass feet into wearing boots.

About my shoe abuse:
My typical week is about 30 hours a week on my feet, walking around for work, I commute on my bike a couple miles everyday rain or shine, and I walk a dog for about an hour each afternoon. All this makes for some beat to shit shoes after about 4 months time (and another 2 months of me denying they're beat up, and avoiding shoe shopping)
posted by furnace.heart to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (23 answers total)
Ah, i should have previewed more carefully: I picked up, and tried on the shoes...I didn't purchase them yet.
posted by furnace.heart at 1:09 PM on June 6, 2011

I've had Borns, but not those particular Borns, that lasted a long time so it might be worth a shot. I also had a pair of leather Keens that I wore for about two years straight before they got a hole in the bottom. I don't walk nearly as much as you do so they probably wouldn't last as long but it's worth a shot to see if they'd last more than 5-6 months.
posted by dawkins_7 at 1:12 PM on June 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

Are you wearing the same pair of shoes every day? You need to maybe get two or three pairs and rotate so they can air out and have a rest. They last longer that way.
posted by elsietheeel at 1:12 PM on June 6, 2011 [6 favorites]

Elsie is right: having two pairs of identical shoes and wearing each pair no more than every other day should mean they together last more than twice as long as one pair.

So, two pairs of high use shoes (different style or same style) should mean both last longer.
posted by bluedaisy at 1:14 PM on June 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

Standard AskMe advice in this situation is to buy more than one pair of shoes at a time, and rotate them. Specifically, why not just keep your work shoes at work? You can wear some other shoe to/from work. I do that in the winter when I don't want my good shoes getting ice and salt on them.

Specifically about Born shoes, my boyfriend had a pair of slip-ons that lasted a good year, worn every workday.
posted by cabingirl at 1:15 PM on June 6, 2011

My experience with shoes is that having two pairs and alternating gives more than 2x the life of one pair worn constantly - the shoes have time to dry out / de-sweat between wearings and the sole has a chance to spring back a little bit (the sole obviously compresses over time whatever you do). Damp materials tear and stretch more.

Although I am a chronically cheap person in most respects, I drop a mint on shoes - my feet are hard to fit and I walk and bike a lot every day. What about Campers? I've had really good luck with them. They sure do cost more than Born, but they hold up very well and are nicely lined and finished. You can get many models from Zappos/Endless, although I've successfully ordered from their website.
posted by Frowner at 1:18 PM on June 6, 2011

I have pretty much the same shoe, (though in brown) that has been my default work shoe for the last two years, and they are still pretty much the same as when they were new. Definitely worth paying a bit more.
posted by Flashman at 1:26 PM on June 6, 2011

Also, I doubt that you're going to get anything that's glued-sole and non-leather that will last for several years of the use you describe. If I wanted shoes to last for several years of daily wear in all weather, with lots of standing and walking and biking, I would get a pair of work boots as sturdy as I could afford, expecting to drop a minimum of $250 and probably more like $350 on up. I might try the Allen Edmonds Bayfield boot or these expensive boots from Baker Shoe.

If I were alternating, I'd probably invest in two pairs of Pelotas from Camper.
posted by Frowner at 1:28 PM on June 6, 2011

I've found Born shoes to hold up really well, even with daily use. I've bought three pairs of them, the oldest is probably three years old and doesn't really have any serious flaws that I can see.

I'd try it. I haven't bought their flats, but shoes are a really good area to experiment with buying quality merchandise because you can really see and feel the difference.
posted by A Terrible Llama at 1:28 PM on June 6, 2011

...also, consider the type of wear you get on your current shoes. My feet are wide but high-arched (with powerful toes!) and this seems to put more stress on my shoes; if your feet are an average fit, maybe you'll get longer wear out of your shoes.
posted by Frowner at 1:31 PM on June 6, 2011

I love my Børns! They hold up really well. But your problem is that you're wearing the same pair of shoes every day. You need to have at least two pairs that you rotate. They need to completely dry out and breathe between wearings. It will more than double the lifetime of your shoes. I've been wearing the same three pairs of Børns pretty much daily for the last two years and there's no sign of needing to replace any of them. Rotate your shoes.
posted by stoneweaver at 1:31 PM on June 6, 2011

I don't know about daily use, but I bought a pair of Born boots that have about a 3 inch heel. They have put up with terrible abuse (being used off road, in the desert, in the mud, in the rain) and are STILL more comfortable than any other pair of shoes that aren't sneakers, even with the 3" heel. I am amazed by this pair of boots.
posted by small_ruminant at 1:38 PM on June 6, 2011

I have virtually the same shoe. I don't wear them much anymore, but when I got them about 6 years ago, they were my daily work shoes for about a year. They're still comfortable.
posted by mkultra at 1:39 PM on June 6, 2011

Nthing that Born shoes are high quality and are likely to last a good long time, particularly if you can get two pairs and alternate them. I've had good luck getting "last year's model" Borns from Zappos and my local DSW. So, I've paid a lot less for high quality, and the idea of last year vs. this year is unimportant to me.
posted by BlahLaLa at 1:41 PM on June 6, 2011

My wife has almost that same pair of Born shoes. She wore them almost every day for 2.5 years. She stopped wearing them because they look very worn, but they are still comfortable and functional to this day (5 years).
posted by 2ghouls at 1:42 PM on June 6, 2011

I don't know about that particular shoe, but I can definitely recommend the brand. Very well made and super comfortable. My experience with my last pair was very similar to 2ghouls wife's above. I finally bought a new pair and I am wearing them right now. They are the most comfortable shoes I own.
posted by mkim at 2:09 PM on June 6, 2011

My Borns and my Campers last longer than any other shoes I've worn. Current Borns are 3 yrs and going strong, though I've got a pair of sandals I've had at least 7 years that are still in great shape. Campers, I wore a pair of sneakers into the ground in 4 years. It is so worth it to buy good shoes.
posted by fiercecupcake at 2:11 PM on June 6, 2011

I have a pair of Børn shoes very similar to those (in brown) that I bought six years ago, wore almost daily for three years (on 15 mile hikes and in a high-usage living situation where I walked everywhere), and still wear fairly frequently. They look like they're nicely broken in and *maybe* a year old, and have held up better than any pair of shoes I've ever owned.

I would totally spring for another pair of Børns after this experience.
posted by annathea at 3:11 PM on June 6, 2011

Also, you can totally get them for about half that price. I get mine at a local place that sells last year model shoes and paid about $30.
posted by stoneweaver at 3:38 PM on June 6, 2011

i know they aren't what you're looking at but they do have them at imelda's/louie's, is blundstones. i bought my first pair to work in (at bullseye glass, since you're here in town), hmm, like 4 or 5 years ago and i still wear them. concrete. standing. all day. they rule. a while later i bought another pair for home wearin'. i love them. i have the 500s and 510s.

it seems like everyone upthread loves those børns but they look horribly uncomfortable to me. there is no sole! and they look waaaay too eurotrashy/hip to me. ha! sorry! your shoes, your feet, go for it. i don't care!
posted by rainperimeter at 4:07 PM on June 6, 2011

I've actually been disappointed with the durability of Born's but the ones I had problems with were completely different from the ones you're looking at (flip flops).
posted by mskyle at 4:13 PM on June 6, 2011

Børns don't actually have a thin sole. They're just designed to look that way. I've got a pair of flats that look like they must have tissue-thin soles, but really have nicely padded soles with a steel shank. I'm not sure why børns look that way, I guess it must be a style thing.
posted by stoneweaver at 4:43 PM on June 6, 2011

You could save a bit of money by purchasing some Borns from 6pm, which is the Zappos outlet. Usually they have overstocks, last year's models, etc.
posted by bluedaisy at 4:53 PM on June 6, 2011

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