If there is one major thing that has changed since becoming a runner, it is the way that I treat my feet. Even while trying out new clothes, training to increase my times, and utilizing technology to get the most out of my runs, if my feet are hurting it doesn’t really matter what else I have going for me. I have had two significant injuries in my running “career” – plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendonitis – that were some of the most depressing times in my lives. While these aren’t always preventable (though admittedly the risk can be lessened), they have made me increasingly in tune with ways to keep my tootsies safe and comfortable.
One such way I have done this is by ditching dollar store flip-flops for arch supporting sandals, as well as forgoing bare feet for comfortable and supportive slippers. My feet thank me every day as a result. We recently received a pair of slippers from Bill Ringa – the Fold – which is produced in Portugal by the Dutch company.
We actually first made contact with Bill Ringa back in July 2016 when they were working through a Kickstarter campaign. Since that time, they have grown and, though they are mostly centralized in Europe, they can and will ship to the US as well.
Bill Ringa describes their slippers as “proof that comfort, aesthetics, and functionality do not exclude one another”. I would have to agree with this statement. The Folds (and their other styles as well) are made from 100% soft, yet form fitting lambs wool that looks great and operates more like a shoe than any other slipper I have worn. The insole is polyurethane (similar to many running insoles) and covered with the same lambs wool felt top layer. The latex rubber sole provides ideal strength and support and allows you to run out to the garbage or mail in the rain without being destroyed. I have actually worn these out a couple times with a pair of jeans and it looks completely normal. Wearing slippers in public is vastly underrated. While they are definitely functional, they are also comfortable enough to wear while kicking back in front of the fireplace and sipping on some wine after a long day. I literally can’t wait to get home after work and slip these one – and I highly anticipate loading these into my car for immediate post-race relief.
The sizing piece was probably the hardest part. Given that they are a European company, we worked through finding the optimal size. These are meant to be worn a little snugger and stretch with wear. We did some measuring with pencil and paper and, given what my foot checked in at, we went with a smaller size. This proved to be too snug and, after sticking with the standard conversion metrics (12M = 46Euro), it was determined that this was a fantastic fit. Long story short, consider using the regular conversion, if you are concerned.
They do run around $107 USD (not including shipping to the US), but they are definitely worth it. If you wear slippers a lot, want some footwear that can be worn in a variety of settings, or just need to do a better job at keeping your feet supported, I highly recommend Bill Ringa. They have a few different stylings available, so if the Fold aren’t your style, make sure you check out their other options.
- Sold online via www.billringa.com (full collection) and www.huckberry.com
- ~$107 + $30 shipping to US
- Dutch design (Roderick Pieters)
- Optimal wearing comfort as wool felt fully adapts to the form of your feet
- Wool fibers are naturally water and dirt repellent (more on wool benefits)
- Suitable for inside and outside the house due to flexible lightweight cup sole
- Shock absorbing polyurethane insole with wool felt top layer
- No laces, easy to slip on
- Made in Portugal, Europe
- Uppers made of 100% natural lambswool (felted)
- PU rubber insole with a wool felt top layer
- Unique rounded latex rubber cup sole
Thank you to Bill Ringa for providing us with a sample pair. Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.