Fashion Editors Put Alohas Shoes to the Test


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A good pair of shoes can be a staple of your wardrobe for many years to come, and eco-conscious brand Alohas has made that mentality its mission.

Founded by Alejandro Porras in 2015, the footwear company focuses on well-made, timeless, and versatile styles that you’ll want to — and be able to — wear for a very long time. The brand is conscious about making every purchase a sound investment for the buyer. 

Beyond being built to last, the shoes are manufactured with eco-friendliness and sustainability as a top priority in every aspect of the process — from the materials used to the production methods to their sales model. “I saw a big problem in the fashion industry: overproduction,” Porras, who also serves as CEO, told Business Insider. “I decided to make a change.”

What makes Alohas’ shoes different

To prevent the accumulation of stock, Porras created a “hybrid [sales] model that combines both ‘on demand’ and ‘in stock’ production.” For new styles, “only what is going to be sold is produced,” explained Porras. (The downside of this is shipping delays of up to a month and a half.) Meanwhile, sales are closely monitored so that best-selling styles are in stock for immediate shipment.

Because so many Alohas shoes are made-to-order and they don’t have to worry about overproduction, they’re able to offer an impressive selection, especially for a brand that’s only eight years young. Even in choosing shoes to review, it was tough to narrow down because there were so, so many beautiful options.

Furthermore, the brand uses sustainable materials, including high-quality vegan leathers from cactus and corn, recycled plastic, and traditional leather from sustainable suppliers only. The shoes are made in Spain, “ensuring local production and promoting environmentally friendly practices throughout the entire supply chain,” said Porras.

The shoes are not cheap (in make or in price), but they’re also much more affordable than many retailers with similar styles. For instance, Alohas’ Hook-Loop leather sandal, which retails for $175, is a budget-friendly dupe for Chanel’s so-called “dad sandals.” (For more on those, read Sally’s detailed assessment below.)

The final verdict on Alohas

Alohas’ made-to-order styles are worth the wait. After reviewing several styles, we found their knee-high boots and women’s dress shoes to be top-quality investments. Each pair was well-made, adaptable to a variety of outfits, and a classic design that would always be in fashion. Plus, we can’t overstate how much we appreciate the brand’s dedication to eco-friendliness, which made us feel even better about sporting Alohas shoes.

Alohas East Croco

A woman wearing the Alohas East Croco in brown

Talia Ergas/Business Insider

It’s rare to find a pair of heeled boots that wears just as well as a flat pair, but Alohas’ leather knee-high boots fit the bill. The East boots made with a sturdy 2.9-inch block heel and were surprisingly easy and comfortable to walk in. I chose the brown croc design (although there are 8 colors to choose from!) because it’s an easy neutral color with a bit of flair. As Alohas promises, I found these boots to be very versatile. They looked equally polished with a cashmere mini dress, a flowing midi skirt and sweater, and worn over a pair of skinny jeans. — Talia Ergas, freelance writer

Alohas West Cape Croco

a woman wearing Alohas West Cape Croco Boots in Brown.

Sally Kaplan/Business Insider

Every time I wear the West Cape boots, I feel like my outfit vastly improves. The brown croc-stamped leather looks rich and feels expensive, while the shape of the boot has a modern feel with some clear ’70s influence. At just under 3 inches, the heel height is walkable but I probably wouldn’t wear these for long days out. If you’re in between sizes, I recommend going down rather than up — I’m a 7.5-8 and I opted to size up to the 8, but I think the size down would have fit me even better. — Sally Kaplan, executive editor

Alohas Dune Leather Sandals

A woman wearing Alohas Dune Leather Sandals in white.

Talia Ergas/Business Insider

There’s so much to love about these elevated mules. The front of the shoe has a wide leather strap and the square-toe sole that’s currently so popular. The real party, though, is in the back, where a 3.3-inch heel offers an unexpected split pyramid shape. I got so many compliments on these shoes. The white I chose is now out of stock, but there’s still a chocolate brown color available. The Dune leather sandals can be worn with nearly any casual or cocktail dress, but they also serve as an effortless way to dress up a t-shirt and jeans combo. — Talia Ergas, freelance writer

Alohas Harper Leather Sandals

A woman wearing Alohas Leather Sandals in Ivory.

Sally Kaplan/Business Insider

Wow, these might be the most comfortable leather sandals I’ve ever worn, and that is no exaggeration. A couple things set these apart from any other pair I’ve tried. First, the arch support in the molded footbeds is impeccable — the shoes cradle my feet perfectly and make it easy to walk long distances. Second, I love that each strap is adjustable with Velcro rather than buckles so you can get exactly the right fit. The rubber platform soles are very sturdy, but there’s just enough give that the shoes don’t feel super clunky or overly rigid. 

I tend to be in between a 7.5 and 8, but I opted to size down in the Harper leather sandals to test out the recommendation from Alohas that you should size up if you’re in between. After testing this pair in size 38 (equivalent to a 7) and another pair in size 39 (equivalent to an 8) I found that sizing down to the 38 was better for me. If you’re not sure what to do, though, you can email Alohas, and a specialist will help you figure out exactly the right size for you. — Sally Kaplan, executive editor

Alohas Marshmallow Black Leather Shearling Lined Sandals

A woman wearing Alohas Marshmallow Black Leather Shearling Lined Sandals

Sally Kaplan/Business Insider

These are the perfect sandals for transitional weather days as the shearling lining keeps your feet just warm enough when paired with cozy socks. I also imagine I’ll be wearing these a ton in the spring when it’s just the right temperature for sandals with jeans and a sweater! As with the Harper style, I found the Marshmallow leather sandals’ molded footbeds to have excellent arch support, and I like that the heel strap is fully adjustable. I haven’t experienced any pinching or digging with the buckle on the heel strap, which was my biggest concern when I chose this style.

As I mentioned in my blurb about the Harper sandal, I’m usually a size 7.5 to 8 in shoes, so I opted to size up to the 39 (size 8) in these shoes based on Alohas’ sizing instructions. They fit me just fine, but I actually think I would have preferred to size down to the 38 (size 7). — Sally Kaplan, executive editor

Alohas Bellini Leather Sandals

A woman wearing Alohas Bellini Leather Sandals in Neon Magenta.

Talia Ergas/Business Insider

The hot pink heeled Bellini leather sandals added such a fun pop of color when I wore them with a more muted outfit consisting of a silky black midi skirt and camisole. There are 11 colors to choose from, ranging from black to gold to seafoam green. The lace-up design adds a bit of customization possibility in that you can tie them to the front or to the back for a different look. I liked that the 2.9-inch heel was wide for extra stability. The only downside I found was that the thin laces had a bit of give when I walked, causing my foot to slide out of the shoe slightly. I’d probably wear these to an event where I do more sitting and standing than walking any distances. — Talia Ergas, freelance writer

Alohas Cinderella Crystal Black Leather Pumps

A woman wearing Alohas Cinderella Black Leather Pumps

Sally Kaplan/Business Insider

These pumps are a dream come true for people like me who hate wearing sky-high heels but still love to make a fashion statement with their shoes. The toe box doesn’t squish my feet like I thought it would, and I love that the height is still walkable for a night out. Something I noticed when trying the Cinderella pumps on with a full-length gown is that the crystals can catch on the dress material, so I’d steer clear of wearing them with any super delicate maxi dresses — otherwise this is a perfectly danceable shoe to wear to a wedding or evening event! There are also lots of other colors both with and without the crystal detail. — Sally Kaplan, executive editor

Alohas Track Black Leather Loafers

A woman wearing Alohas Track Loafers with gold accents

Talia Ergas/Business Insider

Chunky loafers are having a strong resurgence, so I couldn’t wait to get my feet into Alohas’ embellished version, which boasts a gold chain across the vamp. I found these very comfortable, although I had to wear them with socks the first few times to keep the back from digging into my heels. While the shoe offers almost 2 inches of height, they were still easy to walk in thanks to the flat footbed. The brand recommends pairing the Track leather loafers with a white T-shirt and cropped jeans to reveal a bit of your ankles. They also look good with mid-calf socks and a short dress. — Talia Ergas, freelance writer

Cons to consider

Alohas is not the best place to do your last-minute emergency shopping. Production times for certain styles can be up to a month and a half if they’re being sold on demand. However, in-stock selections (which are their best-selling designs) will arrive within a week from the purchase date.

The bottom line

Alohas offers well-made shoes that are designed to last a very long time. We found the versatile and timeless designs easy to mix and match with various ensembles, and we appreciate that they won’t go out of style. We especially loved the brand’s eco-conscious mission and found Alohas’ selection a worthy investment as the brand goes to great lengths to ensure sustainability and ethics at every level of the production process.


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