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Of all the items of clothing and travel gear I’ve used over the years, shoes are by and far the thing I most go through. Wearing the same pair of shoes all day, everyday for weeks or months on end while exploring cities and nature trails will do that it seems. So finding shoes that can survive my travels has been a bit of a goal of mine. It’s for this reason that I was excited to try and review these Loom waterproof sneakers when they reached out to me.
I’m usually of the belief that you don’t need special clothes or gear to travel well. But there are some scenarios where dedicated gear can be super helpful or make life easier, and I feel like footwear is one of them. If you’re travelling long term or living nomadically, having one reliable pair of shoes that works in multiple settings, and also happens to be waterproof is a huge win.
After testing them out here and there, as well with a walk up the Lyrebird Track in the Dandenong Ranges, I must say I was really impressed by how Loom’s waterproof shoes meet each of those needs. Read on for my review of these comfortable and versatile travel shoes.
Versatile Style and Design
When it comes to packing shoes for a trip, versatility is a big deal. Packing one pair of shoes instead of two saves space and weight, and if you’ve ever backpacked before you’ll know how valuable that is. This is why I really like the look of the Loom shoes, as they work both as streetwear and trail shoes.
Sneakers for men and women come in two colours, black and white, both of which are sure to work with your wardrobe. The shoes have a casual look that’s nice without being flashy, which I think is perfect for everyday use and sightseeing in urban settings. Not dressing too boldly when you travel just makes it easier to get by I find. But these shoes are also perfectly suited to outdoor activities as that’s what they’re designed for.
Some aspects of the shoes’ design is less obvious. The Loom sneakers are very lightweight, which will help save your feet when walking for long periods, but also make them easier to pack. They’re also made from a breathable material that you’ll be grateful for after a long day wearing them.
Ready for the Outdoors
To me, the real test for these Loom travel shoes was how well they worked in the outdoors. There just aren’t too many demands on shoes when you’re exploring a city. Heading out into nature though requires reliable footwear that are going to be able to cope with almost anything you encounter.
During my time wearing them on the Lyrebird Track, I barely even noticed how good they were on the path. That’s a good sign in my books, because they felt just as good underfoot on the gravel and muddier paths as they did on the made path. I even felt confident to walk back down the steep gravel path at pace, which is something other shoes I’ve had lacked.
The reason the Loom shoes felt so good on the trail is their all-terrain design. Good tread has always been a problem with sneakers for me. Over and over again I’ve had the soles of big-name brand sneakers smooth out to the point where I’d be skating about on them. But the rubber soles on Loom’s shoes look like a real step up, even compared to my Skechers which had become my go to shoes.
Loom’s biggest selling point is clearly that their shoes are designed to be waterproof. Over the last few years I’ve begun to appreciate how useful that feature could be. The last year alone there were several times hiking in Tasmania where this would have been good, from the flooded fields of Narawntapu National Park to visiting waterfalls like Montezuma Falls and Strickland Falls.
So naturally, this was a feature of the shoes I was keen to test out. Since my hike in the Dandenong Ranges was clear of water, I had to find another way. You never have to wait long for rain in Melbourne but none of the puddles in my neighbourhood really worked. Ultimately, I went for the extreme approach and dipped my foot into one of the local ponds. And yep, my feet remained bone dry after submerging my toes, then heel, in.
According to the website, the shoes are waterproof because of the “multi-layered fibers” and not just some coating. Now, don’t ask me how a shoe can both be waterproof and let your feet breath, but these somehow are. Regardless of how, I think I’ve found my shoes for future outdoor activities.
Comfort and Fit of Loom Footwear
Comfort is clearly a priority with Loom. They make the shoes from 100% merino wool and the sole is nicely cushioned compared to a lot of the runners I’ve bought. That the shoes are also made from socially-conscious materials sourced from eco-friendly farms offers a different kind of comfort.
One of the main quirks of Loom footwear is the sizes. Loom advise you order shoes the next US size larger than you usually would. I followed that advice and am glad I did. Even with the right size, the shoes were a tight fit at first, but certainly not uncomfortably so. But after wearing them a little, I have to say they’re actually the ideal size as I’m normally an in-between size kind of person. Had I gone the next size up, they likely would have simply been too large.
Now as I said, the shoes may be tight, but they are actually a good fit. I took the time to break them in as you need to with all shoes, and I never came away with blisters or sore feet. That, in my books, is a good sign. So just be mindful of that sizing advice when you order and you should be fine.
Have you ever bought shoes specifically for travel like these? Are waterproof shoes something you think you’d find useful? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.
*Disclosure: I received a pair of waterproof shoes from Loom for review purposes. As always, opinions are my own.