I bought my first pair, which were light beige, in late 2019. After I had worn them for a month, I was so happy with them, I ordered two more pairs, another of the same, and a blue pair, suitable for wearing with jeans.
What is so special about them? Those of you who know me personally know that I am rather round at the waist. This can make tying shoes more troublesome than normal. I am fine at home, either seated with my foot on a stool, or in the hallway with my foot on a stair. But when out, if my lace becomes untied or (more often) a stone or something gets into my shoe, taking it off and putting it back on and retying needs me to look around for something to lean on. If I just kneel to tie them like anyone else, there is a danger I’ll not get up again.
All of that is on a good day. When I bought my first pair, I was also suffering from severe lower back pain, which meant bending down at all was very difficult.
An option is slip-ons, but I have a wide foot with a high-instep, and find getting a good fit a problem.
Zeba shoes come in a wide fit, suitable for me, and have normal tied laces. But it also has a metal sprung hinge in the heel. So you can perfectly adjust the shoes for your feet, using the laces, but after that, you use them like slip-ons. The hinge means that the back of the heels goes down and springs up *without* breaking the backs of the shoes.
Anyway, I have been wearing one of the beige pair and the blue ones for the last 2 years or so, and they have kept really smart. Apart from some rubber gardening shoes and some bedroom slippers, I think they are the only shoes I have worn in that time. The beige ones have had the most wear, as I wear a lot of brown, and they have just got to the point where they are a bit scruffy – still fine for the garden or a trip to the shops, but not going out. The blues are still looking good.
So I was going to break out the spare beige pair I had, but then I noticed they now do a nice tan leatherette, which I really liked. So I was going to order a pair of those, and while I was at it, I ordered a pair in black – they are still sneakers, not formal shoes, but still pretty smart.
They are not cheap – $140 a pair – but given my first pair has lasted well over 2 years, I don’t think that is bad at all.