Well, I did it. I have been eyeing Rothy's online for what seems like forever. I don't know about you, but when I have my eye on something expensive, I spend weeks (sometimes months) going back and forth. Checking out the website, reading up on all the details, looking at product photos, and reading reviews – then closing my web browser and walking away to mull it over a little more. People sometimes ask why saving comes so easily for me. Honestly, part of the reason is because I hate to waste my money on expensive things that I won't get the full value out of. You might not obsess over big purchases as much as I do, but you probably think twice about dropping $100 or more on a pair of shoes. Which is why I am sharing an honest Rothy's review with you today – so you can make an informed decision about whether or not Rothy's are right for you and know how to properly take care of them so you can get years of use from your shoe investment.
This post contains affiliate links. We earn a small commission each time someone makes a purchase through one of our links, which helps support the blog and our family. We only support brands and products that we use and absolutely love and Rothy's are no exception. I have fallen in love with my Rothy's and I sincerely hope that this review is helpful to you. Click here to save $20 on your very first pair of Rothy's. If you sign up using my special link we both get $20 off our next pair of Rothy's – so everybody wins! (When you click the link, a pop-up window should appear on the Rothy's site inviting you to save $20. If for some reason it doesn't work, leave a comment at the bottom of this post and I will email you a link directly.)
Rothy's: What all the Fuss is About
Maybe you've heard all about Rothy's and are just want to know if they're worth the expense. Maybe you're wondering why people love them so much. And maybe you've never heard of Rothy's and just want to know why I decided to dedicate an entire review to a pair of mystery shoes. Regardless of which category suits you, you'll find everything you need to know in this review. Here are the basic facts about Rothy's at a glance.
- Rothy's are a stylish, comfortable, sustainable flats for women and girls.
- All Rothy's are constructed from post-consumer plastic water bottles and other sustainable materials.
- Four styles of Rothy's are available for women – The Flat, The Point, The Loafer and The Sneaker.
- Rothy's are machine washable and feature a removable insole (which is also machine washable.)
- Rothy's women's shoe prices range from $125-$165, depending on the style.
- Rothy's now offers shoes for girls! Their children's loafers cost $65 and are available in sizes 10-4.
I've been a loyal Tieks customer for several years and I kept hearing people rave about their Rothy's. It was time for me to finally see what all the fuss was about.
Selecting a Style
After several weeks of stalking the Rothy's website, I finally decided to pull the trigger and order my very first pair of Rothy's. The only question was which style to select? That was a huge question. I ultimately left that choice to our followers on Facebook and Instagram with a quick poll on each platform. I personally had my eye on The Point since I already own a few pairs of super-comfy round-toe Tieks, but it was apparent that our readers are all about the comfort (and who can blame them?). With such resounding interest, I decided to satisfy everyone's curiosity and order a pair of The Flat style – the only question that remained was which color?
Selecting a Color
If I'm spending my hard-earned money on a pricey pair of shoes, you better believe that I want to get a ton of use out of them. So I had my eye on colors that would coordinate with plenty of my fall clothes. I discovered the Eggplant Metallic flat in the “Teacher” section of the website and fell in love. The deep purple color could practically be considered a fall neutral and who could resist the ombre effect of metallic rose gold fibers woven in near the toe?
(For a limited time educators can save 20% off select styles of Rothy's. If you're a teacher, click here to check out the discounted styles. You'll have to verify that you're a teacher, but that is super fast and easy to do. If you're not a teacher, you can purchase shoes from that page, too – you'll just pay full price. It's definitely worth a look because the styles listed on the teacher page can't be found anywhere else on the website.)
These shoes were just too good to pass up! So I took a leap of faith and finally decided to give Rothy's a try. I fell instantly in love, but held off on writing a review for several weeks so I could really test them out and give you a thorough review, rather than a quick rundown of my first impressions. I hit a few minor speed bumps along the way, as you would expect with any new pair of shoes, but I can assure you that the issues were either temporary or because of something I did.
Do Rothy's Fit True to Size?
It's always tricky to order shoes online because you don't know exactly what size to order. Rothy's states online that their flat style shoes fit true to industry size standards, but my regular size (8.5) felt a little too snug in the toe box. I returned my size 8.5 round toe Rothy's and exchanged them for a size 9 which was much more comfortable.
For The Point, Rothy's recommends sizing up by a half size when they place their order. (I recently ordered a size 9.5 black pair of “The Point” and was glad for sizing up by a whole shoe size. I tried just going up by a half size and my toes were too squished to be comfortable.)
My feet often hover somewhere between size 8.5 and size 9, so it makes sense that I ultimately decided to size up. If you consistently wear one size of shoe, you'll probably be fine to start with that size in The Flat, The Loafer and the Sneaker. Just make sure you go up by a half size in The Point.
Do Rothy's Stretch?
Why does it have to be so complicated to purchase a new pair of shoes? Every time I purchase a new pair, I consider how the shoes fit right out of the box, but I also have to keep in mind the possibility of those shoes stretching over time. I often keep semi-uncomfortable leather shoes in the hopes that they will stretch with wear and ultimately become a comfortable pair of shoes that I love.
Rothy's, however, aren't made of leather. They are made of plastic, which means that these shoes don't stretch. If you order a pair of Rothy's and they feel a little bit too snug, you can confidently exchange them for a bigger size without factoring in the possibility of them stretching. The Rothy's website clearly states that: “Rothy's do not stretch. They will fit the same from day 1 to day 365. There is no break-in period.”
Don't you just love it when it's super-simple to determine if a pair of shoes fits properly?
Do Rothy's Hurt Your Big Toe?
My biggest complaint with most flats is that the toe box is a little too small and/or rigid. As a result, the shoes often put too much pressure on my big toe and I'm in a ton of pain by the end of the day. When I bought my first pair of Rothy's, I was most curious to see how they felt on my big toe. I followed the sizing advice listed on the Rothy's website and ordered a size 8.5, only to feel that all-too-familiar pressure on my big toe. The shoes were mostly comfortable, and I could wear them around the house without any problems, but I was incredibly nervous to wear them out of the house and be stuck with a too-small pair of shoes that I couldn't return.
I decided to size up by a half size and got a size 9 to compare. These were the perfect shoes and fit like a dream! They didn't put any extra pressure on my big toe and I was able to wear them all day without any issues.
If you're like me and often suffer from big toe pressure when you wear flats, try sizing up by a half size and hopefully that will be the perfect solution to your footwear woes, too.
Are Rothy's Really that Comfortable?
That is the big question isn't it? Once I finally had the correct size for my feet, my Rothy's literally felt like a pair of slippers. Slippers! They weren't tight or constricting. They were just super-comfy and easy to wear. I was anxious to test out my new Rothy's and see if they would continue to be just as comfortable after walking for a few miles as they were when I first slipped them onto my feet.
Most people rave about the comfort, but I had read a few reviews where people complained that Rothy's dug into their heel and caused some blistering. I've also had many issues with other styles of flats pushing down too hard on my big toe while I break them in, so I wasn't taking any chances. I started wearing my Rothy's around the house, then went out for a few 20-minute walks around the neighborhood, and kept increasing my time wearing them. On one particularly long day in my Rothy's, it happened – the top of the heels began to dig into my ankles and it hurt. I switched to different shoes for a day, then eased back into my Rothy's with the help of a band-aid across the back of each ankle for a little extra cushioning.
With the band-aids on, I was back in business wearing my Rothy's without a care in the world. Honestly, everything about the fit and comfort of Rothy's is so great, I would gladly wear band-aids with my flats every single day because I was so in love with the comfort and fit of these shoes. Fortunately, it didn't come to that. That one long day of wear was all it took to break in the back of my Rothy's and soften the edge so that they no longer dug into the back of my heel. So long, band-aids!
Since I purchased my black pointy-toe Rothy's, I can feel the same type of rubbing on the back of my ankle. I haven't worn this pair for an entire day yet (since I rarely have a need to wear dressy shoes for an extended period of time), so they haven't had enough time to dig in and hurt too badly, but I'm completely confident that the discomfort will fade over time. I also have a few extra band-aids tucked into my purse just in case I need them.
I have a theory that the heel/ankle pain is most likely to happen when women purchase a roomy pair of Rothy's (like I did when I sized up to have more room in the toe box) because there is more room for the back of the shoe to rub against the wearer's heel. If someone wears a pair of Rothy's that fit more snugly on the foot, I think the chances of heel or ankle discomfort are significantly lessened.
How do Rothy's Hold Up?
I started writing this review after wearing my Eggplant Metallic flat Rothy's for about six weeks, but I've gotten so much use out of them in that time. I've worn them around the house, out running errands, taking Dessa for long walks in the neighborhood and even long walks through the mall when I wanted to try and get some extra steps in – anywhere and everywhere that you could possibly imagine.
One of the things I love the most about my Rothy's is how incredibly low maintenance they are. These shoes are made from woven plastic – which means I really don't have to think twice about where I wear them or what I do while I'm in them. They're also incredibly flexible and hold their shape no matter how much you bend, twist, or otherwise misuse them. I crammed my Rothy's into the corner of my suitcase when we took our trip to Mackinac Island last month and they sprang back into shape the moment I unpacked my bag. How many shoes in your closet are that low maintenance? Probably not very many.
Rothy's are such a great, low-maintenance shoe that look just as amazing after six weeks of regular wear as they do on day one. I have no doubt that my Rothy's will continue to look fantastic for many months to come.
Can I Wear Rothy's in the Rain?
YES! Another thing I absolutely adore about Rothy's is that I can wear them in any kind of weather. A little rain's got nothing on my Rothy's. They're made of plastic! I can't tell you how many times I've decided not to wear a particular pair of shoes that would perfectly compliment my outfit because they are leather and I wouldn't want to risk ruining them in the rain or snow. Weather woes have become a thing of the past now that I have a pair of Rothy's. It doesn't matter what the weather is because I know that these shoes can stand up to rain, snow, or salt covered sidewalks in the winter.
I have worn my Rothy's in the rain and then stepped nervously onto tile and other slick surfaces (often with Dessa in my arms) fearing the worst. All of those cautious steps and fears have proven to be unnecessary because Rothy's also have a rubber sole that easily grips onto any slick surface. They have amazing traction that performs like a sneaker.
Are Rothy's Washable?
As if the ability to wear Rothy's in any weather wasn't enough, they went and added another amazing feature to their shoes. You can throw your Rothy's right into the washing machine when they get dirty. This is especially valuable to me because my sweet girl is enamored with all of Mommy's shoes. She is always finding my shoes and carrying them around the house. Usually, I cringe each time she discovers a new pair. Not because I didn't want her touching my things – but because I get so much use from my shoes and how disgusting they can be. Sometimes, when Dessa is teething, she even tries to put my shoes into her mouth for relief. Which is one reason why I especially love my Rothy's – they are machine washable. Just make sure you only wash your Rothy's on a cold water cycle and let them air dry. Never throw your Rothy's in the dryer or wash your Rothy's in warm water. Any heat will make them shrink.
We recently had a little laundry miscommunication in the Gavin household and my gorgeous Eggplant Metallic flats were accidentally washed in warm water. And, yes, you guessed it – they shrank. They didn't shrink dramatically – in fact, it took a while for me to realize that they had shrunk. I wore them on a particularly long walk with Dessa after they were washed and noticed that they felt a tiny bit different when I first slipped them on. My poor toes were in serious pain by the end of the walk, which was an entirely new experience with the super-comfy shoes that I had been comfortably wearing for weeks. Later on, when I was trying to figure out what went wrong with my super-comfy shoes, I eventually figured out that they were actually washed in warm water.
Ladies, if you choose to purchase a pair of Rothy's be sure to always wash them cold water. Otherwise, you'll have an expensive pair of too-small shoes that can't be returned in your closet.
Do Rothy's provide enough support?
I get asked this question often. The support in Rothy's suits my needs perfectly. My feet are never sore at the end of the day when I wear my Rothy's (other than that short-term ankle discomfort). I don't have particularly high arches or suffer from very much foot pain due to a lack of support, so these shoes provide enough support for my needs.
If you find yourself in need of additional support, there is a silver lining that might work well for you! All Rothy's come with a removable insole. You can always take out the insole that comes with your Rothy's and replace it with a supportive insert. Rothy's shoes aren't rigid and the body of the flat should be able to shape itself around your foot with the added insert. You just might have to size up by a half size for a little extra space.
How Can You Afford Your Rothy's?
If you read the blog on a regular basis, you know that Rob and I are very money-conscious. We make a budget every month and stick to it. We account for every dollar in our budget and we don't take household expenses lightly. We are also determined to pay off the mortgage on our house as quickly as possible, while also saving for retirement and college. So how, exactly, do Rothy's fit into our budget?
I view Rothy's the same way that I do any item I want to purchase that costs over $100 – I look to see if there is room in the budget and if there isn't any room yet, I start saving. I had to save for several months before I finally had enough money set aside for my first pair of Rothy's. While I was busy saving up, I dreamt about the perfect color to add to my wardrobe. I also sold items from my closet to help me reach that goal faster. When I finally had enough money set aside to purchase a pair, I saved $20 on my first pair of Rothy's by using a friend's referral link.
Once I invested in my first pair of Rothy's, I gained access to my own referral link that I could share with my friends. Each time someone bought their first pair of Rothy's using my link, they saved $20 and I earned $20 in credit toward my next pair of Rothy's. (You can save $20 off your first pair of Rothy's, too. Just click here to start shopping and we both get credit! When you click the link, a pop-up window should appear on the Rothy's site inviting you to save $20. If for some reason it doesn't work, leave a comment at the bottom of this post and I will email you a link directly.)
Do Rothy's Make Your Feet Sweat?
I know this is a big question for a lot of people.
No, I don't think Rothy's make my feet sweat. Yes, my feet sometimes sweat while I am wearing my Rothy's. It's not really that the Rothy's are causing the sweat. When my feet get hot in any type of shoe, they are prone to sweat and my feet seem to sweat the exact same amount in my Rothy's that they do in any other type of shoe.
I did notice that my feet were especially prone to sweat when I wore my Rothy's during the heat of the summer. Which makes sense, since they are made from plastic. Fortunately, the woven nature of the shoes seemed to help a tiny bit with ventilating and relieving the heat/sweat. But only the tiniest little bit.
Do Your Feet Smell When You Wear Rothy's?
I can honestly say that I haven't noticed any odors coming from my Rothy's more than any other pair of shoes in my closet. I don't consider plastic to be a particularly odor-absorbant material and that may actually help in the foot-odor department.
If you are particularly prone to smelly, sweaty feet; there are some really great options to help manage the problem with a pair of Rothy's. Don't forget that Rothy's are washable! Any time you start to notice an unpleasant odor coming from your shoes, you can always toss them in the wash and they will come out smelling extra fresh (just be sure that you only wash your Rothy's in cold water so they don't shrink!)
You can also look into Gekks shoe liners. They're made for a variety of shoe styles (including ballet flats) and help to dramatically reduce foot odor. I haven't used Gekks myself, but I would absolutely give them a try if foot odor was an issue for me.
Can I buy Rothy's in a Store?
You can purchase Rothy's in-store if you live in San Francisco. Their only retail location is located on Fillmore Street. For the rest of us, Rothy's are only available for purchase online at Rothys.com. I know how intimidating it can be to take the leap and invest in expensive shoes without trying them on first. I had a hard time with that, too. The good news is that Rothy's offers free shipping on all orders greater than $30 and free returns. Which means you can purchase a pair risk-free and see how it goes. If you love your Rothy's, keep them. If you don't, send them back free of charge for a full refund. That makes it less scary, don't you think?
How Do Rothy's Returns Work?
I can tell you from my own personal experience that Rothy's makes the return process super easy! San Francisco natives can return their Rothy's in-store. The rest of us who don't live in the San Francisco Bay area can use one of two convenient return options offered by Rothy's.
- Return by mail: If you're not completely satisfied with your Rothy's, just go to https://rothys.com/returns, click the “Start a Return” button, answer a few quick questions and print the return label that Rothy's send to your email inbox. Print the label, slap it on your Rothy's box and reseal the shoe box using the box's built-in pull-tab (the packaging is genius and I love that it's not unnecessarily wasteful) and drop your return in the mail. It's super-easy and you'll get your money back in about a week.
- Return in person: Just because you don't like near the Rothy's showroom, doesn't mean you can't enjoy the perks of a quick and easy in-store return. You can take your Rothy's return to a local Happy Returns bar. I had no idea how this would work, so I tried this method myself when I returned my too-small black pointy toe shoes. It was super easy and I received a full cash refund onto my debit card, even though I cashed in over $100 worth of Rothy's credit from their referral program to purchase those shoes. Pretty amazing, right?!? The return was processed immediately, but it took about two days for the funds to appear in my bank account (I paid with a debit card and sometimes debit transactions take a few days to show up).
Do Rothy's Ever Go On Sale?
I'll be the first to admit that I'm not the longest-standing Rothy's customer. From the research I've done, it seems as though Rothy's occasionally offers a promotion, but sales and promotions are very rare occurrences.
Right now Rothy's is running a limited time offer for teachers. All qualified educators can save 20% off select styles of Rothy's. If you're a teacher, click here to check out the discounted styles. You'll have to verify that you're a teacher, but that is super fast and easy to do.
Rothy's also just concluded a very special promotion in support of Breast Cancer awareness. Each time a customer purchased an eligible pink shoe style (The Flat in Hot Pink, The Point in Petal Pink Solid, and The Loafer in Lollipop), they could gift the same style of shoe to a loved one that was battling breast cancer or a breast cancer survivor. Rothy's gifted 2,000 pair of pink shoes to women affected by breast cancer and it was such a sweet way to share a little Rothy's love.
But what about sales for everyone that's not a teacher? I know that it's very rare for Rothy's to go on sale, so I did a little digging and found an Instagram post from a Black Friday promotion in 2017. It sounded as though Rothy's had offered specials on Black Friday in the past, but opted instead to donate a portion of their proceeds to charity last year. Super-good for the environment, but not exactly the savings that customers were probably hoping to cash in on. It will be interesting to see what Rothy's decides to do for Black Friday this year.
Do Rothy's Come in Kid Sizes?
Yes! Rothy's now makes loafer style shoes for girls size 10-4. Each pair of girl's Rothy's costs $65 (which is on the pricey side, but isn't insanely expensive compared to the cost of Rothy's for women and other high-quality children's shoes). They don't come in toddler sizes, which makes me incredibly sad and also a little relieved. I would love to own a matching pair of mommy/daughter Rothy's with my one-year-old and the fact that toddler sizes aren't available is good news for the Gavin family budget.
Which Rothy's are in Your Closet?
The Flat is versatile, easy to wear and incredibly comfortable. I also love that I opted for a pair with a metallic thread woven in to give my basic semi-neutral flats a fun little pop thanks to the rose gold shimmer.
The Point is comfortable, but they instantly elevate my look so it appears as though I'm really trying to look my best (even if I'm just styling them with jeans and a basic black top.)
Share Your Thoughts and Questions
And there you have it! A very honest Rothy's review with answers to all of your questions. If you are still wondering about Rothy's and didn't find an answer you were looking for in this post, feel free to ask in the comments. I will try my best to answer any additional questions that come my way. I'd also love to hear your thoughts about Rothy's.
Don't forget that you can save $20 on your first pair of Rothy's. Click here to start saving!
(When you click the link, a pop-up window should appear on the Rothy's site inviting you to save $20. If for some reason it doesn't work, leave a comment at the bottom of this post and I will email you a link directly.)
You may also want to save this image on Pinterest so you can refer back to it later.
Thank you to Niki from Niki Marie Photography for the beautiful photos featured in today's post.
This wasn't the first time I shared a complete review of a popular pair of comfy flats. Click here to read my complete Tieks review. I fell in love with these shoes long before I discovered Rothy's and I still get a ton of use out of my Tieks.