I Need New Birkenstocks…But Which Ones?

30
12261

I don’t necessarily buy a new pair of Birkenstocks every summer, but this year I found myself wanting to try a bunch. I’ve lived in my silver Arizonas and my white big buckle Arizonas for the last few summers, but now I’m ready to mix it up a bit and try a few other shades. I love my sneakers so much, but when it comes to summer, Birks are what I’m living in.

I Tried 5 Cute Pairs Of Birkenstocks. Which Style Should I Keep?

So, I’m trying five pairs of Birkenstocks on to see which ones will be my summer sandals. I’m checking out the feminine Madrid Big Buckle, the classic Arizona Big Buckle in an updated style, the pretty Siena Slide, a bold black and white pair, as well as an earthy colorblock pair. Without further ado, let’s get into it.

The Feminine One: The Birkenstock Madrid Big Buckle

at Revolve | at Nordstrom | at Zappos

This pair is so, so pretty (yes, we believe Birks can be pretty — check out Kat’s search for a sexy pair) and readily available. I’ve linked to the places I think are easiest to order from and return to. The Madrid Big Buckle was the style that got me to do this try-on. They were such a great update to the classic Birks…but. They don’t stay on my feet. Le sigh.

I'm trying the feminine Madrid Big Buckle, the classic Arizona Big Buckle, the pretty Siena Slide, a bold black & white pair, plus an earthy colorblock pair.

Birks | Tee | Pants

I’m not sure if it’s due to my wide toe box area (hereditary bunions, no less) combined with my narrow heels? No idea. But they just aren’t secure enough, and they flop quite a bit. Maybe my feet are too long for this style? I wear a 38 though, so not like they’re super long. Idk. Frustrating, but I moved on. If you consistently wear flip flops and slides, maybe these will work great on you. I know Shana loves hers and they look adorable, as does one of my best friends here.

Do please note the fabulous pedicure job my seven-year-old did for me…first time. Not bad, eh? Just in time for the sandal try-on 😉 This color isn’t my typical go-to, but she insisted. Yes, you guessed it, I typically choose black, white or gray haha.

I'm trying the feminine Madrid Big Buckle, the classic Arizona Big Buckle, the pretty Siena Slide, a bold black & white pair, plus an earthy colorblock pair.

Birks | Tee | Pants

Outfit Notes: A couple of notes about the tee and pants: fav thin tee ever, true to size, perfect sleeve lengths, it’s the Madewell perfect vintage tee…somewhat delicate and doesn’t last as well as my James Perse tees, but it’s at a much lower price point. The pants are the PAIGE Mayslie Jogger (lighter green fully stocked at Nordstrom) and they are THE go-to right now while jeans feel some uncomfortable on my midsection. I got my IUD replaced recently and just feel puffy. These make me feel cute and put together, but they’re insanely soft and comfy. Run true to size. I’m wearing a 28.


The Classic, Updated: The Birkenstock Arizona Big Buckle Sandal

at Nordstrom | at Revolve | at Zappos

I’ve worn Birkenstock Arizonas for-ev-er and well, I still adore them. They fit my foot best and are the chunkier style I just seem to love. They magically mold to your feet and hold up so well (even in white, y’all.)

I'm trying the feminine Madrid Big Buckle, the classic Arizona Big Buckle, the pretty Siena Slide, a bold black & white pair, plus an earthy colorblock pair.

Birks | Tee | Pants

For some reason, Nordstrom calls these the Arizona Hex Slide, but from what I can tell they’re just the Arizona with a big buckle…which has become my go-to over the last couple of years. That bigger buckle just refreshed this style that so needed refreshing!

I'm trying the feminine Madrid Big Buckle, the classic Arizona Big Buckle, the pretty Siena Slide, a bold black & white pair, plus an earthy colorblock pair.

Birks | Tee | Pants


The Pretty, Pink Criss Cross Style: Birkenstock Siena Slide

at Bloomingdale’s | at Free People

I thought the Birkenstock Siena would perhaps fit better than the Madrid…and they sorta did. They’re also so, so pretty. I love that they do come back on the foot a bit more, but I think I would want them in a darker shade for my wardrobe, and those seem to be sold out. If you wear a lot of lighter colors though, these would be so gorgeous. They look a tiny bit more blush in person but don’t read super-pink at all. They’re just lovely.

I'm trying the feminine Madrid Big Buckle, the classic Arizona Big Buckle, the pretty Siena Slide, a bold black & white pair, plus an earthy colorblock pair.

Birks | Tee | Pants

The Siena have a white insole like my white big buckle Arizonas do, and while they do get dirty with wear, it doesn’t ever bother me because my foot is covering that part. The upper on this would worry me a bit though because unlike my white leather pair, I’m not sure I could clean this with a Magic Eraser like I usually do. You could treat these with a suede treatment though, and that helps with resisting stains.

I'm trying the feminine Madrid Big Buckle, the classic Arizona Big Buckle, the pretty Siena Slide, a bold black & white pair, plus an earthy colorblock pair.

Birks | Tee | Pants


The Bold, Graphic Pair: The Black & White Arizona Split

at Zappos | at Foot Locker

Pardon the complete departure from the rest of the photos, but I tried this black and white pair in early March not knowing I’d eventually crank out a full post. I thought I would adore them. Now looking back, they are cooler than I thought, but I honestly wish they were swapped…the black strap in front and the white at the ankle. For my particular skin tone I think that wouldn’t cut off my leg length as much.

I'm trying the feminine Madrid Big Buckle, the classic Arizona Big Buckle, the pretty Siena Slide, a bold black & white pair, plus an earthy colorblock pair.

Birks | Similar Sweatshirt | Shorts

These are definitely rad though and really set off the leopard in the bike shorts…heh. There are some crazy outfit combos when I’m just willy-nilly trying stuff on, friends.

The black and white pair is selling quickly it looks like, and lower in sizes. Ooh…I just found a gold and white version of these at Anthro! SO cute.

I'm trying the feminine Madrid Big Buckle, the classic Arizona Big Buckle, the pretty Siena Slide, a bold black & white pair, plus an earthy colorblock pair.

B&W Split | Madrid in Black


The Earthy One: Arizona Split Color-block

at Nordstrom | at Bloomingdale’s

I keep eyeing all these color-blocked Birks and they’re so cool…but this color combo just probably isn’t best for my wardrobe either. If you wear a lot of earthy neutrals, these would be great. They’re super-soft and just a cool update, too. I do think I would have preferred the Mineral/Light Rose colorway in these. It’s a soft blush, gray and black combo.

I'm trying the feminine Madrid Big Buckle, the classic Arizona Big Buckle, the pretty Siena Slide, a bold black & white pair, plus an earthy colorblock pair.

Birks | Tee | Pants

I'm trying the feminine Madrid Big Buckle, the classic Arizona Big Buckle, the pretty Siena Slide, a bold black & white pair, plus an earthy colorblock pair.

Birks |Tee | Pants

Shop More Birkenstock Styles

There seem to be lots of the Arizona big buckle styles available in most sizes. The Siena and the Split styles are the ones I see selling out most, so if you love those, I’d hop on them before we get into actual summer! The EVA style is the next on my list for slipping on and off for the backyard, pool, beach, etc., Loving the turquoise color!

We probably all have a favorite Birkenstock style (see our TME favs here), if you’re a Birkenstock lovah. Oh fit notes on Birks…I’m a true US 8 and typically wear a 38 in Birks. So I would say don’t size up if you’re between sizes in Euro sizing. The soles magically do mold to your feet, so you don’t want them too long.

If there’s a style you adore that I didn’t try, do share in the comments! I hope they continue to come out with fun updated styles each year! Birks forevah…

xo,

L

Would love to have you follow all my daily mom musings, more fashun, donut pics and dance parties over on IG @laurajansenstyle Hailing from sunny Portland, OR. 😉

30 COMMENTS

  1. Of the styles you tried, my vote goes to the arizona big buckle. I love the look of the madrid most, but don’t buy anything that won’t stay on your feet (annoying and you’ll end up not wearing them). My favorite style is the gizeh (for look and for staying on my foot best, and this year I got the gizeh big buckle. That being said, I own a ton of gizehs and arizonas alike and my favorite in BOTH of them is the soft footbed version. It makes such a huge difference in comfort. (oh and my shearling arizonas I live in inside the house).

  2. My favorite style is Mayari. Love the more asymmetrical straps. I also found the Madrid to slip on my feet and not feel secure and I wear a 36 in Birk sandals.

  3. whatever else you get…get the black big buckle. i’ve had mine for 2 years and they are practically summer black tie lol! This year (even tho i too said “no new birks this year” ) i’ve got almond in big buckle on their way 😉

    • ooooh yes I think those are the ones I’m sticking with! I keep putting them on so you know that’s the pair!

  4. Gizeh big buckle! I got them in cognac (they’re really popular and selling out everywhere) and they are amazing.

    • Anything between the toe is just not flattering on my foot but I know loads of ppl adore that style! I stick to ones with some straps that cover my ugh…bunions.

  5. My favorites are the Gizeh and the Mayari – I hate flip flops (and the flop flop sound), and I feel like they give me a similar look with more security around my foot. I recently bought a pair of Mayari with a patterned insole and they are SO FREAKING CUTE with the little bit of pattern peeking out.

  6. So, your literal child paints toenails with more finesse than I do as a full-grown adult. If I’m ever in Portland, does she take appointments?

    I am a Madrid lover–although I wish they had more colors with the SMALL buckle, oddly enough? The big one just looks weird on my feet. I’m in love with the classic Madrids I own in white, but they are dying (the sole is wearing down almost to the cork). I bought the gold Arizonas this year, and while I love them, they aren’t quite as comfy as the Madrids for me–the top buckle rubs at the inside of my foot when I walk and so far adjusting the tightness of the straps hasn’t done much to mitigate it.

    I’m dying to try the Yaos, but there just aren’t many colors available in the regular/wide sizes, which I need.

    • Hahaha right?! I’ll ask. She was pretty patient haha. AH yeah gah wish the Madrids worked for me. Yeah the metallic shades in the Arizonas are definitely stiffer than the other colors. My silver pair the footbed is so comfy but the upper I had to loosen a bit more than I do with the other leathers. And yeah totes some of the styles seem to either sell out more quickly or they just don’t offer a ton of options. The searches will always continue here tho! We love our Birks

  7. I have several pairs of the Arizona and absolutely adore them. Wanting to try a new style this year and wondering if the Sienna’s stay on as well as the Arizona or if they tend to slip around like the Madrid. Anyone have input on this?

    • From just trying them they seemed like they’d stay on way better than the Madrid! They didn’t slip when I walked.

    • It’s from Mr. Clean. It’s like a little white sponge of pure magic haha. If yours are leather it should work great! I’d never use is on anything but the leather or EVA. It will probably mess up suede or nubuck.

  8. I have a pair of the EVA Arizona birks. They are the best thing ever for my life in SoCal. I wear them to the beach and in the backyard when I’m watering my garden. They are so comfortable and useful. I don’t really wear them for anything else, because I mentally have relegated them to Beach Shoes.

  9. My favorite is the earth tone Arizonas. Take a look at Birk’s Papillio line- they have some fun colors and even patterns. I have a pair in gold snakeskin that are not as extra as that sounds- they are a fun neutral. Since you usually wear black/gray/white, maybe go for a warm color or a skin tone! Wear alll the Birks.

  10. Longtime lover since my college days at UC Santa Cruz of the classic taupe suede Arizona. But now I get the soft footbed because it’s so much comfier on my finicky feet. The Arizona fits my foot the best of all the styles. I’m a long 8.5 and just fit in a 39. I resoled my old pair last Summer and wore it down again over the pandemic year so this Spring I splurged on a new pair. Resoling is great, but expensive, so at a certain point, it made more sense to replace. I also have silver pair of soft footbed Arizonas that I ordered directly from the Birk website because I wanted the black sole, not white. They were a little stiffer than the suede, of course, but not too bad because they are the Birkoflor not real leather.

    • Ooh a soft footbed I MUST try. I love the durability of the originals, but that sounds lovely to walk about in.

  11. OMG, the number of Birks I have owned since college… Arizonas (in the end, too clunky), Madrids (always blisters. Always.) Sydneys (took to Australia), the fisherman style slide that I walked all over Paris in, soft-bed Granadas that were the only shoe I could tolerate when I was pregnant and had plantar fasciitis, a few other weird, Euro-only styles that I didn’t keep long…. Currently in possession of 2 pair of suede Bostons for house shoes (one regular, one fur-lined), Mayaris that are probably going to get rehomed because a) the color isn’t quite right and b) the Birko-flor strap between my toes keeps rubbing, and 2 pair of EVA Gizehs, which are the best pool sandals ever. I resisted the Gizehs for a long time because I don’t like the weird amoeba shape on the toe post and I actually ended up trimming the ones on my orange pair into diamond shapes with a pair of nail scissors while on vacation in Puerto Vallarta because it was rubbing the top of my toe. (Just call me Ms. McGuyver.) On my newer copper pair neither aesthetics nor rubbing seems to be an issue, so I’ve left them alone.

    One tip: if you are buying cork (as opposed to EVA) be careful not to go too small because if your toes press against the edge they will eventually push it down and break the cork.

  12. I got the Siena slide and on my narrow, flat size 40 feet, they work surprisingly well. I can almost never wear slides or mules because they all slip right off my foot, but the one I have in rose gold (from Nordstrom) works really well.

  13. I don’t like the regular Gizeh but the big buckle has a different fit and it’s been perfect for me. My only problem is I want all the colors!

Leave a Reply