Flip flop failure | Sandal setback
August 18, 2017 6:31 AM   Subscribe

I bought Birkenstock Gizeh sandals at the beginning of the summer. They are cute, stay on my feet, and have a fantastic footbed. However, I can't stand the bit that goes between my toes.

I was assured by several people that I'd get used to having something in between my toes, but I've taken the sandals on several test walks and ugghharrhgghh I hate that feeling! It makes me feel nauseated for some reason. To alleviate the sensation I crab up my toes and walk on my heels, which is not comfortable. Will I ever get used to them? How long did it take you? Can I do something to make it better? Halp.
posted by Stonkle to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (13 answers total)
I received some as a gift a couple years ago and, while I do wear them a lot because they're easy to throw on, generally comfortable, and they go with everything, I don't love them. I think you'll get used to it a bit more but I can tell you it does still bother me and this is the third summer of mine. (And honestly, this question is making me consider: why the eff do I still wear these shoes?)
posted by something something at 6:42 AM on August 18, 2017 [1 favorite]

Try wrapping the toe post with yarn or cloth. It should get better.
posted by jgirl at 6:45 AM on August 18, 2017

if it's the feeling of ANYTHING between your toes and not just THIS SANDAL POST between your toes, i think flip flops/thongs are not for you.
posted by misanthropicsarah at 6:46 AM on August 18, 2017 [1 favorite]

not only will it not get better, but changing your gait like that in reaction to the sensation can be very bad for your feet, ankles, and even the leg muscles that attach to your feet.

I'm sorry the money's wasted, I know those aren't cheap.
posted by fingersandtoes at 6:57 AM on August 18, 2017 [1 favorite]

I also thought I hated something in between my toes and held off on buying Gizehs for a long time because of it, but I did find that I got used to them. It took me about a week of wearing them almost every day before the sensation disappeared. I still can't wear other brands of flip-flops, particularly if the toe-thing is made of a cheap material.

It sounds like you are having a much stronger reaction than I ever did (I never felt nauseated or changed the way I walk) so YMMV.
posted by cpatterson at 7:12 AM on August 18, 2017

I have tried Birkenstocks for YEARS and can't get used to the damn thong. Sorry.

I wear Teva Oluwahu flip flops for about 6 months out of the year and they are the most comfortable shoe in the history of shoes, but unfortunately they are definitely not swanky.
posted by lydhre at 7:12 AM on August 18, 2017 [1 favorite]

I have owned these sandals. I HATED that toe thing at first but after a few weeks of daily wear, it was fine. I usually hate toe-split shoes but found these to be super-comfy shoes once I was used to them, and I'd buy them again.
posted by pseudostrabismus at 7:32 AM on August 18, 2017 [1 favorite]

Flip-flops and Birkenstocks both require a little time for my feet to get used to them, but Gizehs are especially tough for me. That little part between the toes is really hard; it seems like a bad design move on Birkenstock's part. (The only reason I buy Gizehs instead of other styles is they have all the good colors.) I have an adjustment period at the beginning of sandal season: I wear them only on short walks and never two days in a row, and after a couple weeks I build up calluses that stay there for the rest of the summer and I can Gizeh all day.

I haven't had as much trouble with other between-the-toe Birk styles, like Mayari. If your Gizehs are practically new you might have some luck reselling them and recouping some of your money.
posted by Metroid Baby at 7:41 AM on August 18, 2017 [3 favorites]

I am one of those people who has never been able to get used to those ... *shudder* ... things between my toes. [And I say this as a person who loves Birks, wore nothing but Birkenstock Arizonas her entire freshman year of high school, and for whom those were the most comfortable shoe I've bought, ever.]

Don't do that to your feet, and especially don't walk funny just to try to keep wearing these, you'll give yourself significantly more expensive chronic foot problems. Maybe you can sell them to one of your friends, or in a local for-sale group? I'm sorry.
posted by Pandora Kouti at 8:27 AM on August 18, 2017 [2 favorites]

I own these shoes and this also bothered me a lot. My first pair was too small and the post felt like it was jamming me all the time. I felt like the footbed was "correct" but I was getting jammed.

I got a larger pair and the post was still slightly bothersome but after a bit of wear it wasn't an issue. The footbed may seem a bit big but I think with these shoes, you're really meant to have a wall with a bit of space around your foot. Now I wear them almost non-stop.
posted by ancient star at 8:33 AM on August 18, 2017 [1 favorite]

I can't deal with things between my toes. I 100% commiserate with the nauseous feeling that comes with having something rub between my toes...ugh! I've had thongs before and I've tried wrapping them in moleskin, wearing a bandaid between my toes, all sorts of ideas. I'm sorry. Sometimes there's just no way to fix a thing that won't work.
posted by Elly Vortex at 8:44 AM on August 18, 2017 [3 favorites]

Count me in with the folks who totally (toe-tally??) get it. I finally had to say absolutely no more shoes, no matter how cute and otherwise comfortable, that had anything between the toes. I grew up in the 70s, and those toe socks were all the rage, and I HATED THEM. It's just the way it is for us, I fear.
posted by thebrokedown at 1:09 PM on August 18, 2017 [1 favorite]

Chiming in to report that, as a person with a very sensitive "toe crotch" (someone else's phrase, not mine ...) I can't even look at the Gizeh, but the Mayari are great. I wear them almost daily, and I have them on right this minute as I type. :)

I would encourage you to try a pair. I don't understand why these don't bother me, because there is definitely something in-between the toes, but I don't really feel it and it is completely a non-issue. I think Mayari has some cute colors, too.
posted by mccxxiii at 1:41 PM on August 18, 2017 [2 favorites]

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