Comment from: Nick Hoffman [Visitor]  
Nick Hoffman

Great article. Thanks for sharing this, mate. How warm do you think one's feet will be if a pair of waterproofed Bormios are worn in the winter?

I have a couple of pairs of KSO Treks, and find that after 20 minutes of being outside in 32F or below, my toes go numb. Thus, I'm looking for a minimalist shoe before the snow hits.

Thanks again,

10/20/11 @ 15:55
Comment from: [Member]

I would say they do quite well with retaining heat. The lining inside feels almost like a pair of socks would. The leather and the lining combined do a fantastic job of trapping your foots warmth. The lining is not around the side of the toe pockets so that is the one spot there is a little heat loss. That is kind of to be expected with the toes around the VFFs though. The Bormio is still significantly warmer then many of the other styles. In comparison to the KSOTrek the toe pockets are all leather. For that reason it is much warmer around the toes then the KSOTrek. You can also wear a pair of Injiji or Smartwool toe socks inside and that helps keep you feet even warmer.

10/20/11 @ 16:23
Comment from: David [Visitor]

The Bormios look so cool. No wonder you're pictures always look so good... didn't know you were a photographer!

10/20/11 @ 19:16
Comment from: rks [Visitor]

Being an avid snowmobiler, I use McQuires leather cleaner conditioner on all my leather snowmobile suits to clean, condition and water proof. Seemed a perfect product for my Trek LS shoes. Yes it did darken the brown leather some what, but also makes them more ply-able/supple over time, still allowing the leather to breathe. I would highly recommend for waterproofing the Bormio. Easily obtained at any automotive store, WalMart, or McQuire car care dealer.

10/20/11 @ 19:39
Comment from: jimmydot [Visitor]  

I can recommend NikWax for leather. I dipped them and massaged it in to the leather on cloth of the original Treks. It keep my feet dry in the snow and slush all last winter.

@Nick, with a pair of wool Injinji socks I could stay out in the snow (as long as I was moving) for about 2hrs. If i stood around for more than 15minutes my toes would start to get cold, start moving again and i was good.

also for icy or snow pack i recommend stabilicers Sport they wrapped best around VFFs.

10/20/11 @ 22:11
Comment from: Talonvaki [Visitor]

How does the waterproofing affect the Bormios when you wash them in the washing machine? Anything bad happen, do you just have to reapply the waterproofing, or do you just not wash them in the machine (even though they are machine washable)? I have a pair - and I LOVE them, but I haven't washed or waterproofed them yet.

10/21/11 @ 00:17
Comment from: [Member]

I can only speak to how AquaSeal will do in the wash. The bottle says it lasts over 2 months before you may have to reapply the solution. You can wash the boot as you normally would but if you do you will have to reapply the Aquaseal again.

I used about a quarter of the bottle to waterproof one pair of boots and it cost me a little over $5 a bottle. The rainy season here in Seattle is around 8 months. So a bottle lasts me about a year I guess.

10/21/11 @ 00:34
Comment from: MickeyMouse [Visitor]

I bought the Borimos about 2 weeks ago, and brought them back the very next day! I usually get a great fit with my fivefingers (god I must own at least 10 pairs), but I found the leather on the top of the foot to be too tight, the top ankle opening very loose, and overall it was just uncomfortable to me. I took my refund and bought a pair of the tan Trek LS and love them!! I generally take a 43, and found that the big toe on my left foot was a bit tight, but that sorted itself out after a few days' wear.

I wore my KSO Treks all of last year, every day I knew it wouldn't rain. They lasted the entire year, as my primary footwear for work or a run to the store. I found the leather to be very comfortable and durable, and the Trek LS has more than met my expectations. Definitely my favorite pair so far!

Also, I'm a huge VFF fan, but I think the Borimos look a bit on the creepy side - their smooth surface makes them look less like footwear and more like a foot! TRUE gorilla feet!

I'm glad I brought mine back.

10/21/11 @ 13:45
Comment from: [Member]

Like I said at the end of the article. They loose up quite a bit after you wear them around some. Mine were tight around the top of the foot the first day or two but they loosened up quit a bit since then.

The more I wear them the more comfortable they become actually. I have the TrekLS as well but I don't like the fit of that shoe as much as the Bormio. It also takes so much longer to put on that I usually grab the Bormio because they go on so quick.

10/21/11 @ 17:22
Comment from: Yeti [Visitor]

Hi, I tried yesterday applying shoe wax (kind of horse grease) to trek LS, and it worked like a charm. Yesterday it rained and they kept my feet dry and warm. I specially applied the grease on the seams in order to seal them. The leather got a bit darker, more or less like the bormios with aquaseal, but less shiny. It also helps keeping the leather flexible (I have tried on several pairs of leather boots).

10/24/11 @ 07:48
Comment from: August [Visitor]

Nice post! I just waterproofed mine and the color didn't change much at all (which I'm happy about.) Thanks for the tips!

10/24/11 @ 13:58
Comment from: Ted_S [Visitor]

I tested the Bormio in a dishpan, holding one underwater so that I could see what was happening with the zippers. Immediately a stream of water came through. This was with water only an inch deep!!!

Rubbing beeswax into the zipper might be of some help. This is what is done with drysuit zippers used for SCUBA diving.

Waterproofing the flaps inside the zipper might also help a bit.

For water less than two inches deep, the Trek LS would be more water resistant as it doesn't have the zipper slits. Above two inches, water would come in around the tongue which lacks a tongue gusset.

10/25/11 @ 09:26
Comment from: [Member]

Keep in mind you have your feet in the shoe which helps hold the zipper flap flush up against the zipper. This helps to hold the water out. If you don't have the pressure on it though it will just leak through. It is not %100 waterproof though I would not go standing in puddles for extended periods of time.

10/30/11 @ 21:54
Comment from: don [Visitor]


Thanks for the Aqual Seal write up. Just received my size 41 Bormios but they feel too short. Big toes are touching the ends of the pockets. I'm wondering if they will stretch lengthwise? My concern is that full leather toe pockets might not be as pliable nor stretch as much compared to the leather/material combo toes found in the KSO Treks. In the past year I've bought KSOs, KSO Treks, Trek Sports and Bikilas, of which fit well in size 41. I bought the AquaSeal water proofing, but will hold off until I can verify a good fit. Also, these Bormios appear to be built better than AWFUL craftsmanship of my other VFFs which were all purchased in 2010 during Vibram's massive inventory shortage.

11/03/11 @ 19:23
Comment from: Ted_S [Visitor]

I had the same problem with the toes being tight on the very similar Trek LS (I had a pair of Bormios but returned them after deciding that I liked the Trek LS so much that I'd hardly ever wear the Bormio). The first couple of weeks I almost gave up trying to wear them when I felt some pain and noticed some bruising under the toenails of both of my big toes.

Eventually the stretched out and now they are by far my favorite VFFs. They fit like a glove and work much better for me than the Speeds, Bikilas, Bikila LSs, KSO Treks or Trek Flows.

Part of the problem, I reasoned, was that my feet are wide across the metatarsal heads and there is a significant bunion on the outside of each big toe. This tightness across the forefoot pulls on the leather around the big toe, effectively making it slightly shorter.

To speed up the stretching of the leather, I modified a pair of shoe stretching devices to fit the shape of the VFF. I was able to stretch the area just behind the toes enough to mostly eliminate the induced shortness of the big toes.

11/03/11 @ 22:06
Comment from: Lawrence Evans [Visitor]
Lawrence Evans

I am so sad... VIBRAM HAS DISCONTINUED "BORMIOS" (say they're not selling). So buy wherever you can find them. I cannot believe they do not see the economy of hanging in there for dedicated customers who need a waterproofable winter shoe. I LIVE in VFF's (own 19 pairs). My Bormios are my favorite in this cold, wet weather. I just ordered 2 more pair because they're going out of stock. Robert's advice above is SUPERB (atKenco has the cheapest shipping). And unless you want to wear Injinji Toesocks, buy the correct size. (All my others are one size up).

11/29/11 @ 13:19
Comment from: M [Visitor]

OMG! Lawrence, thank you so much for the tip! I've just confirmed (at 978-318-0000) that they won't be bringing them back to the US (still in Europe, I guess?).

12/01/11 @ 14:34
Comment from: Yara [Visitor]

Thank you for such an informative post. So happy to find a way to wear five fingers in the winter time.

Would it be possible to waterproof bikilas with this method too? Or is it only doable on leather?

Thank you in advance for any tips!

12/03/11 @ 09:34
Comment from: [Member]

I do not think you could do this with a Bikila. The Aquaseal has a thicker oily substance. I don't think it would be able to be applied properly. Then you would end up feeling a oily constancy on your skin I would imagine.

12/03/11 @ 15:12
Comment from: Jimmydot [Visitor]

Nikwax has a waterproofing wax for tents that might work on the Bikilas.

12/03/11 @ 23:19
Comment from: Spencer [Visitor]

Mens Bormio are available on the website as of today. Are they actually available?

12/09/11 @ 22:41
Comment from: Yara [Visitor]

Thank you all for the replies. I bought Nikwax for fabric and I am now the proud owner of waterproof Bikilas! I tried sprinkling some water on it after it dried and it beads and run offs. Have not had an opportunity to do a real test yet, but happy so far.

12/10/11 @ 09:50
Comment from: ganya [Visitor]

Dear Robert,
I just saw the foto of your bominos, and i fell in love with the blue pair! Where can I get those????
With best reagards from Mallorca/ Spain!

08/26/12 @ 10:52
Comment from: Don [Visitor]


I think you looked at black Bormios, and I'm not certain, but I'm pretty sure Bormios have been discontinued.

I love Bormios and bought 2 extra pairs last winter while they were still available.

08/27/12 @ 14:08
Comment from: Jarrod D. Johnson [Visitor]  
Jarrod D. Johnson

Where did you get those? I want a pair.

12/21/17 @ 10:10

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