REVIEW: Astral Loyak Water Shoe

REVIEW: Women’s Astral Loyak Water ShoeEEAstralLoyakReview 1

Words & Photos by: Sarah BlessingtonEEAstralLoyakReview 2MSRP: $79.95 (BUY NOW)

SPECS:

Uppers- 1000 Denier Cordura Nylon, 2.5mm airmesh

Midsole- 7mm thick, 45C closed cell EVA foam

Outsole- 3.5 mm thick G.15 high friction, non-marking rubber with razor-siping

Weight per shoe- 180gEEAstralLoyakReview 3EEAstralLoyakReview 4Every shoe needs a job. Some jobs are to be ridiculously good looking, others are to be ridiculously functional. Astral went ahead and gave us a shoe that is both, in and out of the water. While I am no pro at kayaking or SUPing, I am a pro at having very terrible balance, which makes me navigating wet surfaces rather comical for anyone within eyesight. I was sure that my fate would forever lay with scraped knees, bruised hips and other battle wounds from slipping and losing my balance. I didn’t realize that I simply had the wrong tool for the job.EEAstralLoyakReview 5 EEAstralLoyakReview 6 EEAstralLoyakReview 7Upon first laying eyes on the Astral Loyak, I was immediately impressed with the low profile, stylish shape, and fabulous colors. Picking the shoe up, I was practically able to fold it into an origami crane. I worried that something that flexible would mean that its life span would be short. However, Hawaii life has put these bad boys through some abuse; hiking on lava fields, swimming and SUPing in the ocean and just everyday wear, and still I have seen very little wear-though on the sole, or on the shoe in general. The shoes also clean quite easily, either being thrown in the wash, or just scrubbed in the sink.EEAstralLoyakReview 8 EEAstralLoyakReview 9The Astral Loyak fits like a glove, the upper fabric conforms to my foot in such a way that when wet, my foot hardly slips inside the shoe, saving me from blisters and overall sloppiness. With the added control of laces I am able to adjust the tightness of the shoe for every day use, or for water activities, while remaining super comfortable. Your foot is positioned on the foot bed in much the same way it would be if you were barefoot. With the thin sole, this gives you the added balance and precision when walking on slick rocks or other treacherous ground. With the shoe being ultra flexible the rubber is able to grab so much more on uneven surfaces than a stiff shoe, letting you focus on carrying your unwieldy water craft of choice down to the water instead of the rough trail at your feet.EEAstralLoyakReview 10I like being able to feel what I’m walking on. I find that the pressure receptors in my feet are able to give my brain more valuable information regarding my next step, when I can feel what lies beneath. Compared to my Chacos, which turns my foot into more of a blunt object with exposed toes, I can better articulate the muscles in my foot with faster response time with the Loyak’s thin flexi sole. Add the powerhouse of non-marking sticky rubber, and you’ve turned this super uncoordinated girl into a trail hopping ninja.EEAstralLoyakReview 11The Astral Loyak is a champion adventure water shoe while still maintaining the guise of a simple attractive street shoe. It doesn’t get more awesome than that!

PROS: Super light and flexible, cute, comfortable

CONS: Doesn’t come in half sizes

(Disclaimer: Exploring Elements was provided with these shoes from Astral for review consideration.)

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