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Treads school shoes review: Treads vs supermarket shoes

Treads school shoes review: Treads vs supermarket shoes

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Is anyone else in mild disbelief that Christmas is just around the corner? It feels like only a few days ago that I was packing snacks into new school bags and helping the girls on with their pristine uniforms. They looked super smart…but for how long? Two months on from the start of the autumn term I thought it was a good time to share an update on how the kids’ school uniforms are faring. Particularly the Tread school shoes that we were sent to review in August. Here’s our Treads school shoes review and how we think they compare to cheaper supermarket footwear.

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Treads girls' school shoes
Treads school shoes

Treads vs supermarket shoes

Back in September the girls skipped off to join Year 2 (Tot) and Year R (Baby). 

I’m not ashamed to admit that Baby’s uniform included hand-me-downs that her sister had warn in the previous two years. Apart from a little fading from twenty thousand spins in the washing machine, there wasn’t anything wrong with the half dozen cardigans, gingham dresses and pleated skirts we already had in the wardrobe. Tot had just outgrown them.

One thing that both girls wore new on their first day was a pair of shiny black school shoes. There was no way that the tatty, worn pumps Tot had worn in Year R could ever be passed on to her little sister.

So on day one Tot wore a pair of Treads that we were sent to review and Baby, whose feet were too tiny for the smallest size offered by Treads, had a pair supermarket shoes.

Tin Box Traveller kids on the first day of school
Ready for the first day of school in Treads and supermarket shoes

I hadn’t thought about it at the time but it was an interesting experiment to see whether the Treads were as indestructible as claimed, and how the cheaper shoes fared in comparison.

Treads have done their own research about the true cost of school shoes and why buying cheap may cost you more in the long run.

Treads school shoes review

Tot’s Mary Jane style Treads shoes cost £45 and Baby’s supermarket brand shoes cost £15. 

Both pairs of shoes were subject to the same rigorous test conditions: dashing around the school playground, muddy lunchtimes on the field, daily carpet time, and being thrown off, wily nilly in all kinds of environments.

The difference in how they have fared in the first half term of the academic year is remarkable. Take a look for yourself (and please excuse the fact that neither pair are very clean!):

Soles of school shoes

The supermarket shoes look scuffed, the hook and loop straps flap around, and they no longer look very smart at all.

Worn fronts of supermarket school shoes
Supermarket school shoes (£15)
Worn sides of supermarket school shoes
Supermarket school shoes (£15)

In contrast the Tread school shoes look like they were new on yesterday. There’s just a few minor scuffs on the leather upper and the sole still has plenty of grip.

Treads school she's review: front of shoes after eight weeks
Mary Jane style Treads school shoes (£45)
Mary Jane style Treads school shoes (£45)

Treads’ research found that its school shoes last more than twice as long as other popular brands, and three times as long as chain store and supermarket school shoes. As someone who has tested both simultaneously I am not at all shocked by this.

Here’s a bit more about what I think of the two pairs of school shoes and how they’ve lasted:

Treads’ are so confident in the quality of their footwear that they offer a 12 month guarantee on their school shoes. Read more about this and their home measuring kit.

There’s no doubt in my mind that the cheaper shoes have not been value for money. They have worn out long before Baby has grown out of them. Whereas Tot’s Treads will keep on going as long as her feet fit them. 

Sisters wearing school uniform

Disclosure: we were sent Treads school shoes for both the girls in exchange for coverage on the blog and Treads are supplying the giveaway prize. I was given a fee for my time spent creating this content.

Tot and Mr Tin Box standing with a 10'8" Ride inflatable stand up paddle board

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Friday 30th of April 2021

Nice Work on School Shoes

Avah New York

Friday 30th of April 2021

That's a great review, tread shoes looks quality.


Saturday 16th of November 2019


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