Vivobarefoot Primus Lite II Recycled Review
We tried out the Vivobarefoot Primus Lite II Recycled vegan minimalist shoe to see where it stands
The Vivobarefoot Primus Lite II Recycled is a super-lightweight ‘barefoot’ shoe that’s designed for everyday use.
Product website: www.vivobarefoot.com
We’ve been fans of the Vivobarefoot brand for a couple of years now, so we were excited to be given the chance to try out one of their latest offerings.
In this review, we’re going to bring you everything you need to know about the Primus Lite II shoe as we take a look at it from all angles.
Specifically, we’re going to be focusing on the look and style, along with the fit and feel of this multi-use barefoot shoe.
So, with the introductions out of the way, let’s begin taking a closer look at the Vivobarefoot Primus Lite II Recycled.
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Vivobarefoot Primus Lite II Recycled – The Basics
The Vivobarefoot brand was founded in 2012 with a mission of reconnecting people and the planet “through feet”.
The company was founded on the principle that the health of people is intimately connected to the health of the planet and the closer people are connected to nature, the more they will do in their everyday lives to protect it.
Vivobarefoot produce a number of different types of products including lightweight running shoes, as well as slightly more bulky climbing and walking boots.
The Vivobarefoot Primus Lite II is the brand’s most lightweight shoe on the market at the moment.
Shaped for the foot (the shoe looks wider than the average trainer when viewed from above), it promises to help you to put your feet in control of every step.
As you may have guessed by the name, this vegan shoe is also made from recycled PET plastics.
According to the company’s mission progress report on their official website, up to 50 per cent of Vivobarefoot’s vegan shoes are made from recycled polyester.
The shoe is designed to be an everyday active shoe, which according to the official Vivobarefoot website, can be used for everyday walking, running and working out.
We tried out the Bright White colour version of the Vivobarefoot Primus Lite II Recycled, but it’s also available in Obsidian, Deep Sea Blue and Vivid Blue.
Like most of the Vivobarefoot range of shoes, it comes with a premium price tag, but there is something comforting about the fact that the shoe is made from a large portion of recycled materials.
The product description on the official site goes on to say that the shoe can provide “lightweight and breathable movement, while treading lightly on the planet”.
So, now that we’ve covered some of the basic things to know about this impressive shoe, it’s time to focus on our experience of having used it for a few days.
The Fit, Feel and Style
The first thing you’ll notice when you pick up the shoes out of the box is how light they are.
They are made from a breathable material which means there are lots of holes and vents in the main outer parts of the shoe to ensure maximum ventilation. Although this is great for keeping the shoe light and your feet cool, they’ll not fare very well in wet weather.
In general, barefoot shoes will probably not suit everyone’s taste, as the minimal padding and cushioning under the sole may feel uncomfortable for some.
Essentially, barefoot shoes are designed to mimic the feeling of walking barefoot on the earth, but without the downsides.
Generally speaking, barefoot shoes feature a wider ‘foot shaped’ design and minimal padding and cushioning on the sole.
If you’ve never tried barefoot shoes before, then it’s usually a good idea to start with a basic pair (like these) and try using them for walking every now and then.
Whether barefoot shoes are good for running on hard surfaces such as road or concrete is a subject that’s up for debate a little bit.
Some of the potential pros of running in barefoot shoes are said to be that they can help to encourage a mid-foot strike rather than a heel-to-toe strike, which may help to reduce the stress on the hips and the lower back.
However, the reduced cushioning on hard surfaces may potential present some other problems, so it’s certainly worth speaking to an expert to get their take on what’s right for you.
We found the Vivobarefoot Primus Lite IIs to be very comfortable indeed. They are a little tough to get on for the first time, but once your foot is inside, it really feels as though your toes have space to ‘breathe’ – the opposite of the cramped feeling you can get from some shoes when you put them on for the first time.
When walking around, you certainly get much more of a feel for the ground under your feet than you would with a standard pair of trainers. However, there’s enough padding to ensure that it doesn’t get uncomfortable.
As mentioned above, we went for the Bright White colour. They look very stylish and we had no problem wearing them out and about in London with shorts during the day.
To the undiscerning eye, they actually look like a regular stylish pair of trainers. The slight giveaway, as mentioned above, is that you can see the ‘foot-shaped’ wider design of shoes when looking at them directly from above.
Overall though, we loved the look and feel of these shoes. They are great for everyday use in the summer in London. And if you’re already a barefoot running fanatic, they would probably also tick that usage box too.
As mentioned above, Vivobarefoot market this shoe as their most lightweight active option.
When you try them on for the first time, the light weight is one of the first things you’ll notice when walking around in them.
Obviously, the precise weight of each shoe will vary a little bit depending on what size you are, but one of our shoes (size 11.5 UK) weighed 272 grams.
We’ve only had these shoes for a few days so we cannot yet comment on the long-term durability of the Vivobarefoot Primus Lite IIs.
However, having owned two other pairs of Vivobarefoot shoes that are still going strong after more than a year, we’re confident these will last.
The only thing we noticed is that because of the bright white colour of our pair, they do tend to show more dirt than our other (black) pairs, but that’s nothing some regular cleaning with a damp cloth cannot solve.
Price And Where To Buy
As is the case with most of Vivobarefoot’s shoes, they are a premium priced product, and so they may not fit into everyone’s budget.
Our pair cost £110, which certainly makes these one of the more expensive options out there.
The best place to buy Vivobarefoot’s shoes is from the official website.
If you’re based in London, they also have a shop on Neal Street in Covent Garden, where you can try on a few pairs for yourself.
Pros and Cons
Let’s now weigh up some of the pros and cons of the Vivobarefoot Primus Lite II Recycled.
• Super lightweight (one shoe weighs 272g)
• Excellent barefoot accuracy
• Stylish design
• Made from recycled plastics and vegan
• Good multi-use shoe
• Premium price tag
• May not be suitable for everyone
• White colour showed dirt quicker than we’d like
Anything Else To Consider?
If you’ve never tried barefoot shoes before, then it’s worth starting small and experimenting to see whether they’re for you or not.
However, bear in mind that this type of shoe may not suit you.
What’s great about Vivobarefoot’s products is that they offer a 100-day trial with every order placed from their official website. If you change your mind within the 100-day trial period, you can return your shoes for a full refund. Check the website for the full terms and conditions.
Also, as we mentioned above, although we loved Vivobarefoot’s shoes for everyday use, we were a bit more hesitant about using them for running on concrete/roads due to the reduced padding and cushioning.
Wrapping Things Up – Our Verdict
So, that brings us to the end of our review of the Vivobarefoot Primus Lite II Recycled.
Overall, we were highly impressed by this multi-use, lightweight shoe. They are both stylish and light, and they are underwritten by the fact that they are made from recycled plastics.
If you’re looking for a lightweight barefoot shoe for everyday use, and potentially running too, we think they’re a great option.