Verdict from 40 experts and 100+ user reviews

8 reasons to buy

  • The Z-Trail garnered so much praise from experts for being exceptionally light.
  • Numerous sources spoke of the sandal’s amazing level of comfort.
  • Professional gear pundits applauded the footwear’s minimalist yet fashionable look.
  • Its otherworldly flexibility impressed many reviewers.
  • According to some testers, the Xero Shoes Z-Trail runs true to size.
  • This hiker floored critics with its highly adjustable straps.
  • About a handful of wearers admired the footwear’s fantastic versatility.
  • A few users couldn’t deny the outstanding effectiveness of the Z-Trail’s outsole on wet surfaces.

4 reasons not to buy

  • Some owners found the footgear’s footbed too slippery when wet with sweat.
  • The Xero Shoes Z-Trail’s hydrophilic and difficult to dry straps sent a bad signal to a couple of users.
  • A number of consumers thought that the sandal was a little too time-consuming to wear and remove.
  • A considerable number of displeased verified purchasers commented that the strap of the Z-Trail broke after a few miles of use.

Bottom line

It shouldn’t take a lot of effort to figure out that the Xero Shoes Z-Trail has lightness in great amounts. There is also no need for much convincing that the sandal has A-grade comfort in its simple yet eye-catching strappy form. Unfortunately, the sandal may not be the best option for folks whose feet sweat a lot. Overall, despite these reported drawbacks, the Z-Trail still has a lot going for it to keep it afloat on most people’s radars.

Tip: see the best hiking sandals.

Good to know

  • The Z-Trail from Xero Shoes is a vegan-friendly sandal built for trail adventurers who wish to move with speed and flexibility in their travels. It is designed to help hikers get a feel of the ground with as much terrain protection as possible.
  • Its sole unit, the 10-mm FeelLite sole, provides comfort and security on the trail. It consists of three layers: BareFoam as the footbed, TrailFoam as the midsole, and FeelTrue as the outsole.

An adequately true-to-size multi-sport sandal for men and women is the Xero Shoes Z-Trail. It is offered in a number of whole sizes in standard width. Its straps, which conveniently form the letter Z, may be adjusted to give wearers a precise and secure lockdown.

This sandal uses a company-owned rubber outsole, called FeelTrue. It provides adequate surface traction on different types of terrain thanks to its low-profile lugs and grip pods. Its forefoot and heel lugs are patterned in such a way that improves movement control on ascents and descents.

Offering enough comfort, force absorption, and stability over unpredictable ground is the footgear’s TrailFoam midsole. Resting on top of it is an integrated footbed, called BareFoam. This non-removable top layer offers extra cushioning. It also provides a level of rearfoot security with its cupped heel.

The Xero Shoes Z-Trail’s strappy upper is made of a lightweight synthetic material. It uses Velcro fasteners to adjust the fit around the heel. The remainder of the strap may be secured using the upper’s rubber loop. The hardware used in this gear (a.k.a the strap buckle) is made of nylon.

  • To clean the Z-Trail, users may wash it by hand in warm water with some mild soap. It must be air dried and should not be exposed to direct sunlight.


How Xero Shoes Z-Trail ranks compared to all other shoes
Bottom 46% hiking sandals
All hiking sandals
Bottom 1% Xero Shoes hiking sandals
All Xero Shoes hiking sandals
Bottom 40% multi-sport hiking sandals
All multi-sport hiking sandals


The current trend of Xero Shoes Z-Trail.
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Paul Ronto
Paul Ronto

Over the past 20 years, Paul has climbed, hiked, and ran all over the world. He has summited peaks throughout the Americas, trekked through Africa, and tested his endurance in 24-hour trail races as well as 6 marathons. On average, he runs 30-50 miles a week in the foothills of Northern Colorado. His research is regularly cited in The New York Times, Washington Post, National Geographic, etc. On top of this, Paul is leading the running shoe lab where he cuts shoes apart and analyses every detail of the shoes that you might buy.