About BirthdayShoes

This site was created in mid-April 2009 to be a central hub for reviews, pictures, ideas, experience

Spoiler: it’s a pun for “barefoot shoes”

This site was created in mid-April 2009 to be a central hub for reviews, pictures, ideas, experiences, activities, and everything else relating to Vibram FiveFingers. It has since evolved into a site that covers all minmialist shoes or “barefoot shoes” including footwear from manufacturers Vivo Barefoot, Merrell, Xero Shoes, and more.

What’s the big deal about FiveFingers and other minimalist or barefoot shoes? Simply put, they are footwear built to do less so your body can do more.

Vibram FiveFingers and other minimalist footwear are perhaps best understood by describing what they are not rather than what they are: they are not thickly padded, high heeled, motion-controlled shoes that prevent your feet from being feet. The more shoe you get, the more your ability to move naturally gets blocked.

A quick tour of some of what you’ll find at BirthdayShoes

If you’re new here, be sure to check out:

In short, take a look around and welcome!

Who runs this site?

BirthdayShoes is over 15 years old and has been visited many millions of times by people around the globe. It’s been cited by CNN and Inc. magazine and even been spotted on TV on occasion.

Most of the reviews here have been written by Justin Owings (founder) and Jarvis Chen (long-time contributor and champion!).

BirthdayShoes is not a retailer of shoes though it does have relationships with various online retailers through which the site generates some revenue to support ongoing operations. In the course of building this site, we’ve also made contact with various shoe manufacturers who have usually been pretty helpful and always hands off — we’ve gotten some free shoes to review out of these relationships but never been directly compensated nor would we take any such compensation from manufacturers were it offered! We want BirthdayShoes to be a legit, authentic source of useful information on the web — if you ever question our veracity, do not hesitate to email me directly at justin [at]!

Justin Owings
Founder of BirthdayShoes

You’ll also find Justin at:

», his marketing consultancy
» Justin, a short site including his work portfolio

By Justin

Justin Owings is a deadlifting dad of three, working from Atlanta. When he's not chasing his three kids around, you'll find him trying to understand systems, risk, and human behavior.

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