When the company launched in 2006, TOMS sold just one shoe: The Alpargata, based on a canvas slip-on shoe popular in Argentina. Since then, the company’s lineup (and commitment to giving back) has expanded significantly, and now it’s revisiting the model that started it all with the launch of Rover. The kicks reimagine the Alpargata. If you like the ease of a slip-on shoe but need something a little more durable and comfortable for everyday wear, like a sneaker, this is definitely worth considering.
The TOMS Rover has the same overall silhouette as the Alpargata, but it’s a bit chunkier and comes with some notable upgrades. Let’s start from the bottom: It features a thick, dual-density sole made from a blend of rubber and EVA. The forefoot is optimized for high rebound, so you get a springy feel with each step, while the heel is packed with high-density cushioning for a plush ride. On top of that, each pair comes with high-rebound OrthoLite X40 insoles for added energy return. The outsole has been “sneakerized” (aka beefed up) for added grip and durability. Bottom line: These will provide a much cushier experience for your feet than the base model Alpargatas.
TOMS made some significant tweaks on the upper, too. The Rovers come with a rib-knit collar for a snug fit, and when you need to un-snug that fit, TOMS provided two pull tabs for easy on and off. For a little extra cash, you can upgrade to a water-resistant upper—a nice perk compared to the traditional canvas found on the brand’s other shoes.
As you’d expect from TOMS, every Rover purchase supports the company’s charity initiatives. One third of the company’s profits are donated to various grassroots organizations working to promote mental health, end gun violence, and increase access to opportunity. Supporting those good causes should also make you feel a little lighter on your feet.
[Starting at $70; toms.com]