Freet Vibe: Best Hybrid Barefoot Shoes For Road and Trail

July 5, 2023Barefoot shoe with a 4mm sole, wide toebox, and semi-aggressive tread for roads and trails.

Hello, my name’s Andrew, and these are the Freet Vibe, the best hybrid barefoot shoes for cross-training on roads and trails.


Ever since I switched to zero-drop six years ago the Vibram V-Trek’s have been my favorite hybrid barefoot shoes, but it’s been hard to find a normal looking trainer that works as well.

So I asked Freet for a pair of their new Vibe’s to test, and call me Brain Wilson, because all they’re giving me is good vibrations.

Freet Vibe Side Desk


For starters the Vibe’s have a wide, foot-shaped toebox with a breathable mesh flyknit upper than’s made from, get this, “recycled bottle yarn.”

Over that you’ve got a wraparound sole and reinforcement panels to prevent tear-outs, plus a padded heel and tongue, soft sock lining, and removable Ortholite insole for a bit of extra cushion.

Freet Vibe Lace Locks Desk


Underneath there’s a thin 4mm sole that’s ultra flexible in both directions and a semi-aggressive tread that’s flat enough for roads yet tough enough for trails.

Freet Vibe Flex Diagonal Desk


Slipping them on my first impression of the Vibe’s was that they had a great combo of the BeLenka Dash’s stretchy toebox and the Xero Shoes Prio’s durable sole.

Road Running

So going out for a road run they felt like zooming around on a pair of cozy slippers, and like my Vibram V-Trek’s the rubber had this grippy/bouncy effect that made the pavement seem soft, which was ideal for long runs.

But the Freet Vibe’s also turned out to be one of my favorite barefoot shoes for speed work at the track.

Freet Vibe Track Start

Hiking & Trail Running

One of the things I love about hybrid barefoot shoes is that you can just impulsively turn a regular road run into a spontaneous adventure on the trails…

…and the Freet Vibe’s do it seamlessly with enough sole protection for zipping over gravel or clambering up hills, but still tons of flexibility for diving under dead branches.

Freet Vibe Front Trial Run

“So I’ve been hiking around picking wild mulberries and it’s like 80º out, but my Vibe’s are dry as a bone. Really impressed with the mesh, good job Freet!”

Walking & Work

While the Vibe’s are technically a training shoe, they also know how to chill, because the heel has a nice curve for beginners and anyone going on long city walks.

Also, if I was still working long hours on concrete as shoe salesman, it would probably be a tossup between Freet and the BeLenka Dash, because they’re both soft enough to wear barefoot.

But if you want to keep them clean, you can always use a thin pair of Injinji merino wool toe socks.

Freet Vibe Front Bedroom Floor Style

Gym & Lifting

Finally, if you want to go low-key barefoot at the gym, the Freet Vibe’s are great, because they just look like a normal shoe…

…and while the 4mm sole gives you a solid platform for weightlifting, the double lace loops create a nice lockdown for dynamic movements like lunging, jumping, or going out for a bike ride.

Freet Vibe Pistol Squat Track


Overall the Freet Vibe’s are some of the most versatile, eco-friendly hybrid barefoot shoes I’ve ever reviewed.


Because the recycled flyknit upper is wide and stretchy, the inner lining is soft enough to wear barefoot, and the 4mm sole is flexible and durable enough to handle thousands of miles on roads and trails.

However, the toebox might be a little narrow at the tip if your feet are more square-shaped, the mesh upper doesn’t have as much protection for rough terrain, and the tread isn’t aggressive enough for muddy hills.

Freet Vibe Sunglasses Voiceover


In terms of similar barefoot shoes…

  • Vibram V-Trek: lightest option with a wide toebox, wool upper, separate toes, and thin 4mm hybrid tread for max flexibility.
  • Softstar Primal RunAmoc: mid-weight with an extra-wide toebox, customizable leather upper, and 5mm vibram hybrid tread.
  • Xero Prio: bit heavier with a wide toebox, 5.5mm hybrid tread, and more side support.
  • Resources

    If you’d like to support the channel, you can shop with the referral links above/below, or watch my Zero-Drop video to learn more about barefooting.

    Finally, if you have a question about the Freet Vibe, or about barefoot shoes in general, let me know in the comments.

    Thanks for reading. Catcha ya next time. Peace!

    Andrew Folts

    Andrew is a writer/filmmaker who creates video guides and reviews for a community of 25K+ creative rebels on YouTube.