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The Science


How far can you strip back the shoe and still have comfort and protection?
Oliver Taco - designer and founder, asked himself this question.

He came across a tradition of the early Amazonians who dipped their feet in liquid rubber to protect them and move faster on the unsafe forest floor... and that's how iGUANEYE came into being

Why Minimalist Shoes?
The human foot is made up of 26 bones, 30 joints and more than 100 muscles, tendons and ligaments, all of which work together to provide support, balance and mobility.

Common footwear is not healthy for your feet. Thongs offer little in terms of arch support and force your toes to grip and claw to the thong when you walk. A study published in Science Direct has outlined the benefits of flexible, lighter, minimalist footwear, compared to common footwear:

  • common footwear can constrict the structure and function of the foot;
  • short and long term use of common footwear affects your gait; and
  • habitual barefoot walkers show considerable anatomical and functional differences.

  • The study states that “footwear design should focus on finding the balance between ensuring that the foot will be protected by the shoe whilst allowing for natural foot motion and structure to be maintained”.

    This is our Why.

    Made in Portugal, Sustainably

    iGUANEYE shoes are made in Porto, a small city in the north of Portugal which has become synonymous with quality workmanship in the footwear industry. The innovative design brings together the latest technology with traditional wisdom from the Amazon.

    The cork soles in the Freshoe and Jungle LUX have a great story behind them. The trees are not cut down or damaged when the cork is harvested, and they can be harvested every 9 years for the lifetime of the tree (roughly 270 years!). These forests are a unique habitat in the Iberian Peninsula and the refuge of various endangered species. Cork is also easily recyclable. This makes the cork in iGUANEYE shoes sustainable.

    Giving Back

    As the inspiration for iGUANEYE shoes came from the Amazon, you can understand our desire to give back to this unique and invaluable natural wonder. We are also passionate about supporting the local indigenous cultures of Australia and have pledged to give 10% of our profits to Amazon Watch and Children's Ground charities.
    Since 1996, Amazon Watch has protected the rainforest and advanced the rights of Indigenous peoples in the Amazon Basin. They partner with Indigenous and environmental organizations in campaigns for human rights, corporate accountability, and the preservation of the Amazon's ecological systems.

    Their three main priorities are to Stop Amazon Destruction, Advance Indigenous Solutions and Support Climate Justice.
    Children’s Ground works to create a new future for First Nations children that is filled with promise, hope and empowerment. Children’s Ground is an evidenced based approach, designed with First Nations leaders to achieve radical systemic reform.

    Their 5 platform areas are Learning, Family Health, Economic Development, Community Development and Creative & Cultural development, all with an overlay of Wellbeing.

    Children's Ground work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities to ensure all children and families live with dignity, are free from economic poverty and inequity, and realise their aspirations for the next generation of children. They seek to create an Australia that celebrates First Nations peoples and culture.