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May 6, 2023

Xero Shoes Prio vs. LEMS Primal 2 | Barefoot Shoe Comparison & Review

Inside this article:

Introduction 👟

Looking for the perfect pair of barefoot shoes to level up your active lifestyle? Are you torn between the Xero Prio and the Lems Primal 2? Well, you're in the right place, my friend! In this comparison, we'll dive into the nitty-gritty details of these two popular barefoot shoe models, aiming to help you determine which one aligns with your needs and preferences best.

Whether you enjoy running, going to the gym, hitting the trails, or indulging in a casual stroll, barefoot shoes can significantly enhance your experience by allowing your feet to move more naturally. In this one-on-one duel, we've got the Xero Prio - an all-around sports shoe designed for freedom and protection, and the Lems Primal 2 - a minimalist delight suitable for everyday use.‍

In this comparison, we'll analyze the two models' purpose, versatility, design, comfort, fit, price, and their respective brand reputations. So, let's lace up and dive in! 🏊‍

Wondering how they compare in terms of stack height? The Prio rocks a 5.5mm stack height plus an optional 2mm insole, while the Primal 2 offers a slightly chunkier 9mm stack height plus a 3.5mm insole. Learn more about barefoot shoe cushioning from our informative guide.

Purpose and Versatility 🦶

When it comes to the activities that each shoe is designed for, there are some key differences between the Xero Prio and the Lems Primal 2.

A pair of Xero Prio barefoot shoes

The Prio is touted as a great all-around sport shoe, perfect for various sports activities, such as trail running, gym workouts, and even slacklining. These shoes offer a balance of protection and freedom, allowing your feet to move naturally while still keeping them safe from the elements. 😎

A pair of primal 2 barefoot shoes

On the other hand, the Primal 2 is more geared towards everyday use, with a comfortable and minimalist design that helps keep your feet healthy and happy. These shoes may not be the best choice for high-intensity sports activities, given their chunkier build, and their 9mm stack, plus the 3.5mm insole, may make them somewhat difficult for balance-related sports. However, they are still a fantastic option for those who want a stylish and comfy shoe for daily wear. 👟

In terms of versatility, the Prio outshines the Primal 2 when it comes to sports and daily physical activities, thanks to its flatter sole, which provides better stability for gym workouts compared to the Primal 2's more curved sole. The Prio's 5.5mm stack, plus the 2mm insole, allows for a more natural ground feel and enhanced sensory feedback, making it ideal for sports enthusiasts and runners. 🏃‍♂️

While both shoes are suitable for everyday use, you may find the Prio's secure and lightweight feel more suitable for long walks or standing for extended periods, as some users have reported discomfort in their heels when wearing the Primal 2 for long durations. If walking is a primary activity for you, you might consider the Whitins alternative as well. 👣

So if you're looking for a versatile shoe that can handle sports activities and daily usage equally well, the Xero Prio might be a better choice for you. If comfort and everyday wear are your primary focus, the Lems Primal 2 can still be an excellent option. No matter which shoe you choose, you'll be taking a step towards a healthier and more natural way of living with minimalist footwear. 🌱

Design 😍

Let's dive into the design aspects of these barefoot shoes. Whose design reigns supreme, the Xero Prio or Lems Primal 2? Both shoes are designed with barefoot principles in mind, but their differences could influence your decision based on personal preferences and activities.

Xero Prio barefoot shoe sole

The Xero Prio uses a 5.5mm FeelTrue® rubber sole, offering excellent ground feedback and protection. It also includes an optional 3mm insole, allowing you to customize your barefoot feel. Although the Prio is better suited for sports activities, it is still lightweight, with a men's size 9 weighing just 8.8 ounces. Thanks to the Huarache sandal-inspired reflective heel and instep straps, your feet will be securely held with or without socks.

Primal 2 baerfoot shoe sole

Moving on to the Lems Primal 2, as mentioned the sole is thicker, with a 9mm stack plus a 3.5mm insole. This shoe boasts a lightweight design too, weighing a mere 6.9oz. The Primal 2 is less of a sports-oriented option, with its curved sole making it more comfortable for everyday use, but somewhat chunky for running or balance activities (which can be adjusted using transition exercises).

When it comes to materials, both shoes are vegan-friendly, keeping your feet comfortable while also being environmentally conscious. The Xero Prio is 100% vegan-friendly, while the Lems Primal 2 uses vegan materials to 'ensure both health and happiness for your feet'.

In terms of style and aesthetics, we don't want to focus too much on it as it's subjective, but we can say that both barefoot shoes offer a versatile, modern look that can easily transition between various activities and daily life. It's all about choosing the one that best fits your personal style and usage preferences.

Comfort and Fit 📐

When it comes to the comfort and fit of the Xero Prio and the Lems Primal 2, there are a few factors you need to consider.

Xer Prio barefoot shoe top side

Let's start with the Xero Prio. The Prio boasts a lightweight design, weighing in at only 8.8 ounces for a men's size 9 (👌). This means you'll barely notice you have them on. The Prio utilizes a 5.5mm FeelTrue® rubber sole that provides just-right protection, while still offering the ground feedback that barefoot enthusiasts crave. The optional 3mm insole allows you to customize the amount of "barefoot feel" you get depending on your preferences. The Prio's Huarache sandal-inspired reflective heel and instep straps hold your foot securely, whether you're wearing socks or not. As for sizing advice? Just stick to your usual size.

Pimal  barefoot shoe top side

On the flip side, the Lems Primal 2 is built on a zero-drop platform and weighs only 6.9 ounces, making it an excellent choice for minimalist lovers ❤️. The Primal 2 is designed with a natural-shape fit and vegan-friendly materials. However, the Primal 2's 9mm stack height plus the 3.5mm insole makes it a bit more "chunky" compared to the Prio.

Considering everyday use versus sports activities, the Xero Prio seems to be a better all-around sport shoe, while the Lems Primal 2 is more comfortable for daily wear. The Prio's flatter sole makes it an excellent gym shoe, whereas the Primal 2's curved sole may be more comfortable for walking.

While both shoes have their pros and cons, it's important to remember that everybody's feet and preferences are unique. What's most important is finding the shoe that works best for you and your specific needs. If you have any questions or concerns about the perfect fit, don't hesitate to consult our barefoot shoe sizing guide or share your thoughts in the comments below! 😊

Price Comparison 💰

When it comes to price, there is a noticeable difference between the Xero Prio and the Lems Primal 2. The Xero Prio is priced at $89.99, while the Lems Primal 2 comes in at $110. Considering the features of both shoes, it's essential to evaluate what you're getting for the investment.

The Prio, as we mentioned earlier, is a fantastic all-around sport shoe, designed for various activities like running, trail exploring, gym workouts, and even slacklining. Plus, Xero Shoes back their product with an impressive 5,000-mile sole warranty. On the other hand, the Primal 2 is comfortable for everyday use, but a bit too chunky for running and may not provide the balance needed for some sports activities.

Given the difference in price and versatility, it's worth considering what you'll mostly use the shoes for. If you're looking for a reliable, multi-purpose barefoot shoe, the Xero Prio might be the better choice. However, if you prefer a more casual, everyday shoe without as much emphasis on sports performance, the Lems Primal 2 could be the right option, despite its higher price tag.

Before making your final decision, it's always a good idea to check out our minimal-list sales page for unique discount codes and potential sales on these brands. And, if you're still unsure, don't forget to read through other comparisons and user reviews in the barefoot shoe community to help make your choice.

About Xero Shoes and LEMs

Let's take a moment to learn more about the companies behind them – Xero Shoes and Lems. Both brands have established a strong reputation in the barefoot shoe industry and are committed to providing high-quality products that promote natural foot health and movement.

Xero Shoes, the brand behind the Prio, focuses on creating footwear that allows your feet to move naturally and freely. Their shoes are designed with a "Natural Fit, Natural Motion, Natural Feel" philosophy, and they're proud to offer 100% vegan-friendly materials. The Prio, in particular, is a popular model for various sports activities, providing just the right amount of protection and ground feedback, making it a great all-around sport shoe.

Next up, we have Lems. Their mission revolves around designing shoes with a minimalist approach that prioritizes the foot's natural anatomy. Lems' shoes allow your feet to move as if you're wearing nothing at all, making them perfect for minimalist lovers. The Primal 2, for instance, is known for being comfortable and versatile for everyday use.

Returns & Customer Reviews 💬

When it comes to warranty and return policies, both Xero Shoes Prio and Lems Primal 2 have their advantages. Xero Shoes confidently stands by their product offering a 5,000-mile sole warranty. Lems, on the other hand, provides a more standard 30-day return policy and 90-day warranty on their Primal 2 shoes.

As for customer reviews, both shoes have been well-received within the barefoot shoe community. Many users appreciate the Prio for its versatility, making it a great all-around sports shoe. Others enjoy the Primal 2 for its everyday comfort.

While some users have reported mild discomfort during long walks in the Prio, the overall feedback has been positive. The Prio excels in gym activities due to its flatter sole compared to the Primal 2. The Primal 2 is celebrated for its day-to-day use but might not be the top choice for extensive running or sports activities, as mentioned earlier in this comparison.

Both the Xero Shoes Prio and Lems Primal 2 have their own sets of pros and cons as revealed by the experiences of the barefoot shoe community. It's essential to weigh these factors and align them with your unique lifestyle and activity preferences to make the best choice for your feet.

Conclusion ⭐

So, after comparing these two fabulous barefoot shoes, the Xero Prio and the Lems Primal 2, we've come to a conclusion. If you're someone who loves sports activities and wants an all-around sport shoe, the Xero Prio is the better choice for you. Its 5.5mm stack height and great security features make it hard to beat in terms of agility and ground feel, especially if you're a gym-goer or trail runner.

On the other hand, if you're looking for a versatile shoe for everyday use and urban walks, the Primal 2 might be more your style. It's a comfortable and lightweight option but slightly chunkier for running compared to the Prio. The 9mm stack height, as well as the 3.5mm insole, provide a cushiony and cozy wear, better if you're new to barefoot shoes.

Keep in mind, both shoes are excellent picks, but each excels in different areas. Remember, wearing barefoot shoes is about what feels best for your feet, your activities, and your budget. So, before making a final decision, assess your needs and preferences.

Don't forget to swing by our sales page to check for any unique discount codes and sales on these fabulous shoes. Anyone who owns either shoe, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below or ask questions about how they perform. And, if you want to stay updated on the latest and greatest in the world of minimalist footwear, don't hesitate to subscribe to our email newsletter! 📬

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