You wouldn't wear the wrong size shoes and expect no discomfort, so why do we do that with sandals? 3D-printed custom fit flip-flops may be the answer.
Breaking news: Regular flip-flops aren’t the most comfortable of footwear. It’s a pain to wear them all day, they can hurt your feet, and they turn out to be really bad for our biomechanics.
Thanks to the good folks at Wiivv, however, we’re not doomed to wearing our bespoke lace-up work shoes during the hot summer months. That’s because the foot-based startup, which previously introduced custom fit insoles for our regular shoes, is now back with its latest venture: the world’s first custom fit, 3D-printed sandals, as digitally mapped from your smartphone.
All you have to do to take your measurements is load up Wiiv’s smartphone app (available for iOS and Android) and then take various photos of your feet from an assortment of angles. Using these images, Wiivv engineers then map more than 200 unique data points per foot, and use these to create a bespoke 3D model from which your new sandals can be created — via its manufacturing facility in San Diego.
“We believe the Wiivv Custom Fit Sandals are one of the biggest leaps in footwear technology in the last 50 years, as we transition from mass-manufactured products to custom made products that are functionally designed to support your unique body,” the team behind the campaign told Digital Trends. “While other footwear makers offer aesthetically customizable products, we’re creating custom fit products that you can also personalize aesthetically, with a vision of adding active meaningful years to people’s lives — and locally manufacturing near you.”
Pre-order prices for the sandals start at $70 on Kickstarter, with higher price points offering a variety of combinations, including extra straps and more. That does mean that you’ll be paying a bit more than you would for a pair of ultra-low-cost sandals from your local general stores, but the campaign creators say their prices compare favorably to existing high-end sandals.
“There are high-end sandals in the market that sell for between $80-$120 and are marketed to offer improved comfort over typical flip-flops and sandals,” they continued. “Wiivv custom fit sandals include a lot of the comfort features competitive sandals offer, like our triple-density supportive foam foot bed. We then add the ability to have the sandal custom fit to you in three ways: custom arch support, adjustable straps fit to you, and custom toe thong placement — all at a similar price point.”
In other words, stop being a tightwad and buy the damn shoes already. Your feet will thank you for it!