Tieks Review (for 2024): Are Tieks Really Worth the Cost?

Reviewed by Elina Ansary
Last updated:

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TL;DR: After testing two pairs of Tieks over the past six years, I recommend Tieks flats if you’re looking for a high-quality pair of ballet flats and don’t need much support. These are the key takeaways from my Tieks review:

  • Many people say they’re comfortable straight out of the box, but I had to break them in—now they’re more comfortable, although I still think Allbirds flats are the most comfortable flats I’ve tested.
  • Tieks don’t offer much support, so they’re not as good for people with foot issues.
  • There’s only one shape to their shoes, the rounded ballet flat look, but tons of fun colors and materials to choose from.
  • They’re foldable, which makes them great for taking on trips.
  • They’re expensive for a pair of flats, ranging from $185-$305, but they’ve lasted me six years now, so they’re high-quality.
  • They mostly come in Italian leather. They have a vegan line now too but it’s limited and not as stylish.

When I first came across Tieks by Gavrieli from one of the many Tieks reviews on the internet, I scoffed. 

$200 for a pair of flats?! You’ve got to be kidding me. 

I was 23, working as a bartender in New Zealand, and although they looked beautiful and versatile, I just couldn’t justify purchasing Tieks on a backpacker’s budget. 

It took me four more years before I finally took the leap and purchased my first pair of shoes from Tieks.

If I’m being honest, I don’t think I had ever spent more than $30 on a pair of flats before I bought my Tieks.

I had also been a budget-conscious traveler for a good six years and rarely purchased material things with hefty price tags because I always wanted that money to go toward my next trip. 

So, when I hit the purchase button on the Tieks website for the Pacific Green Tieks, my budgeting anxiety went through the roof.  

A lot of thoughts went through my head: Are Tieks worth the money? Will I regret spending this much on flats? Are all these reviews I’ve read really honest or are they just sponsored and/or trying to make a commission?

But I was steadfast in my decision and eagerly waited for my Tieks to arrive in the mail.

The main reason I finally purchased Tieks is that I was fed up with cheap shoes that lasted for a few months before getting holes in them or smelling gross.

I had recently fallen in love with the minimalist mindset when it comes to clothes and fashion: quality over quantity and purchasing a few versatile pieces that went with everything else in your wardrobe. 

And since I lived out of a backpack for most of the year anyway, I wanted very few pieces of clothing, but high-quality ones that would last.

If I could find a few high-quality pieces that were versatile and comfortable enough, the investment would be better in the long term with how many cheap pieces of clothing I was constantly having to replace.  

Shoes are my weakness and I wear out shoes like crazy because I’m always walking through various terrains and for hours on end.

It was time for me to invest in a good pair of foldable flats that would last a while and fit nicely in my backpack.  

breaking in tieks flats

Table of Contents

My Honest Tieks Review and Experience

tieks review - wearing my Tiek's in San Francisco, California
Wearing my Tieks in San Francisco.

I received my Tieks in the mail shortly after I hit that purchase button.

The Pacific Green that I chose is no longer available, but there is a slightly lighter Clover Green that I would go for now.

With a first look at the packaging, I already felt slightly better about my investment. 

I found a handwritten card welcoming me to my new Tieks and telling me to enjoy my purchase.

To my dismay, I soon found that my Tieks were not as comfortable as I thought they would be when I wore them around town that first week. 

And they took me longer to break in than I thought they would. 

I know now it was because I ordered a size too small (I blame my half-sized feet).

Even still, it was disappointing after reading so many reviews about how comfortable they were right out of the box.

I really should have returned them and asked for the next size up, but by that point, I had already worn them outside and I wasn’t sure if Tieks would accept them back.

Once I broke them in, they quickly became one of my favorite pairs of shoes. 

I’d say I wear my Tieks as my daily shoes about 50% of the time now when it’s not winter.

This is especially the case when I’m traveling because they’re versatile and easily packable.  

After six years of wearing my Tieks and taking them around the world with me (and getting a second pair of Tieks three years ago), this is everything you should know before buying your own pair of Tieks flats.

This honest Tieks review will go through the main questions most people have about Tieks and whether Tieks are really worth the cost. 

Let’s dive in!

A Look at My Tieks

most comfortable ballet flats for walking - tieks
Walking around Kew Gardens all day in London. My Tieks are my go-to travel shoes.

In November 2017, I purchased my first pair of Tieks ballet flats.

I went for the Pacific Green Classic Tieks because I loved the color, and I thought they would be versatile but still add a subtle color pop to my wardrobe.

I was right.

I’ve been able to wear these Tieks with pretty much every outfit, from dresses to jeans and everything in between. 

And after six years, they’re still going strong.

Pacific Green is no longer available, but there’s a similar Clover Green. Or, if you like a little shine, there’s also the Emerald Patent and Blue Patent.

In March 2020, I got my second pair of Tieks, going for a slightly fancier pair—the Rose Gold Glam

I went up to a larger size for these, and they fit right out of the box with no breaking-in necessary. 

My Rose Gold Glam Tieks are now my go-to fancy flats for date nights and when I want an extra pop of glam with my usual work attire.   

Tieks Fit and How They Should Feel

Are Tieks Comfortable?

rose gold tieks fit
Finding the perfect fit with my second pair of Tieks – Rose Gold Glam.

How comfortable are Tieks?

Tieks are the most comfortable ballet flats I’ve come across, but it took a while to be able to say that with my first pair of Tieks. 

Let me explain.

I made the mistake of not exchanging my first pair of Tieks for a size up once I first tried them on and found them to be tight around the toes.

Because of this, it took me about a month or so before I could wear them all day without feeling uncomfortable pressure on my big toe.

I’m used to this problem since I wear a 9.5 in women’s, which is a hard shoe size to find sometimes. 

I usually have to decide to either go a half-size down or up and hope for the best.

This was the case with Tieks as well since they don’t offer half sizes.

From what I read in their FAQ and from other reviews, it seemed like it was better to size down if you’re in between sizes.


At least for the Classics, I would definitely recommend sizing up if you’re a half-size.

However, since they use different materials for each style of Tieks, it really depends on which style you purchase (e.g. the patent leather Tieks are meant to be a slightly tighter fit than regular leather Tieks). 

Once I broke them in, they quickly became my favorite comfortable slip-on shoes that I wear all the time, from running errands to jaunting around the world in new cities.

I’m now able to throw them on and wear them for hours on end during long travel days with no issues. 

They’re also great no-slip flats.

Meaning even when I was walking on those slippery tiles around Lisbon, they saved me from falling on my ass in public a number of times.

And I’ve never had issues with slipping out of the flats. They’ve always been snug around my feet and heel area. 

The only other thing I’ll note is when I walk in them constantly for over five hours (yes, I sometimes take that long of walks when I’m exploring a new city), the soles of my feet sometimes feel sore.

But that’s more my bad for walking in flats for five hours instead of actual walking shoes. 

And even still, I can count on one hand the number of times my heels have felt sore after wearing Tieks.

If you’re prone to sore feet and need a lot of support, I would look at getting thin insoles for additional cushioning to put into your Tieks.

The Tieks heels have a nice cushion to them, but after years of wear and long walks, they become thinner. 

How Long Does it Take to Break In Your Tieks?

most comfortable flats for walking - tieks by gavrieli
Now I’m happy with how my Tieks fit, but it took a while to break them in.

As I mentioned above, I went a half size down from my usual 9.5 and ended up with Tieks that squeezed my big toe uncomfortably.

Because I made the mistake of not testing them out properly before wearing them outside, I accepted that I was going to have to take some time to break in my Tieks. 

It took me a good month or so to be able to wear them for a long day and still feel comfortable. 

With that said, there are plenty of people who have purchased Tieks and have been able to wear them out of the box with no problem.

In fact, this was the case for me with the second pair of Tieks I ordered—my Rose Gold Glam Tieks

This is why I stress really testing them out at home for a good week before deciding whether they fit well enough.

Tieks will stretch a little over time if they’re slightly too small, but it’s not worth it when the exchange process is so easy.

Each style also fits a bit differently, so even if you’ve purchased Tieks before, a new pair might have a different fit. 

Always do the one-week test at home with a new pair of Tieks before deciding to keep them or send them back. 

How Should Tieks Feel When I Try Them On?

are tieks comfortable - best ballet flats for walking
Taking my Tieks for a walk in the park.

How are Tieks supposed to fit? Tieks should be snug but not too tight. 

As I mentioned above, if you feel any kind of tightness, walk around the house with them for a week before deciding to send them back or not. 

You want to make sure there isn’t any kind of uncomfortable rubbing on your feet when wearing new Tieks. 

If they don’t fit properly, you’ll probably feel this, especially around the big toe area. 

It’s pretty easy to tell if your Tieks are too loose. 

Basically, if your heel slips out easily when you’re walking, you should probably order a size down. 

You might hear some squeaking sounds as you walk in brand-new Tieks, but as long as it’s not deafening and you don’t feel your feet moving around too much, this will go away with time. 

If you’re in between sizes like me and you’re not sure which size to get, I’d recommend ordering two sizes.

This will allow you to try on both sizes side by side.

Then you can simply send back the size that doesn’t fit as well with the easy Tieks returns and exchange policy.   

Do Tieks Provide Enough Support?

Tieks are not going to offer as much support as traditional walking shoes since they’re roll-up flats, but they are some of the most supportive flats I’ve come across that aren’t orthopedic. 

The heel cushioning does wear down over time, but it’s easy to get thin insoles to remedy the reduced support.

The main issue with Tieks is the lack of ankle support.

If you have weak ankles and you’re walking long distances, it’s probably better to grab a pair of good-quality walking shoes that support your ankles.

With that said, these are one of the best ballet flats with support and some of the most comfortable women’s flats I’ve come across so far. 

Are Tieks Good for High Arches?

I don’t have high arches, so I can’t speak from personal experience about whether Tieks are some of the more comfortable flats with arch support.

However, according to the Tieks website, Tieks ballet flats don’t have built-in arch support.

With that said, they are designed for comfort, durability, and molding to the unique shape of your feet.

They can also accommodate various orthotic inserts for additional support. 

One thing to note is that you might want to order a size up if you want to wear your Tieks with insoles. 

Are Tieks Good for Wide Feet?

Yes, Tieks are perfectly fine for wide feet.

It’s just recommended that you order a half size or full size up since the shape of Tieks can be on the more narrow side. 

Can You Wear Tieks With Plantar Fasciitis?

Yes, you can wear Tieks if you have Plantar Fasciitis, but you should definitely wear them with supportive insoles for more comfort. 

These are the ones I recommend that work well in flats.

Can You Wear Tieks With Bunions?

Yes, you can wear Tieks if you have bunions.

However, you will probably have to take some time to break them into the shape of your foot.

Wear your Tieks with thick socks until you can wear them comfortably without socks and not have them rub against your bunion. 

Tieks Sizing

How Does Tieks Sizing Work?

roll up flats - tieks shoes
Color pops on a cloudy day in San Francisco.

One of the most important parts of purchasing the perfect pair of Tieks is making sure you get the right size.

If you’re a whole size, Tieks are generally true to size.

If you fall into half sizes, Tieks, unfortunately, doesn’t have any half-size options, and you’ll have to decide whether to size up or down.  

Read my full Tieks sizing guide here.

Sizing Up or Down

For my classic leather Tieks, I decided to size down since that is what the Tieks website recommends, and I found myself with flats that were slightly too small.

If you’re going for one of the classic leather Tieks, I would recommend ordering a half size up (or your usual size if you’re a whole size). 

The patent leather flats are meant to be even more snug, so a lot of Tieks customers recommend ordering a full size to a size and a half up. 

Even still, it’s important to keep in mind that everyone has different feet.

Just make sure not to wear your Tieks outside until you’re 100% sure they’re the perfect fit for you. 

Why Do Some Tieks Fit Differently?

Tieks sizing can get confusing real quick due to the fact that some styles of Tieks fit differently than others. 

The reason for this is that there are so many options for Tieks, and many of them are made with different types of materials. 

From patent leather, to classic leather, to vegan flats.

There’s a whole range and everything in between when it comes to the materials used for Tieks, which also means slightly different fits for each style. 

There are some styles that are known to run small, such as the patent leather and the vegan Tieks, but sometimes it’s best to just try on a couple of pairs to figure out the correct size you need for a specific style. 

The Tieks Boutiek also gives you a good idea of how each style usually runs, but another option is to contact customer support and ask. 

Tieks customer support is next-level helpful, and they’ll usually get back to you within a few days.  

Do Tieks Stretch?

Yes, Tieks stretch, but only a little.

If your Tieks are a half size or less too small, it’s possible to stretch them using a few different techniques.

If they’re off more than a half size, though, it’s going to be hard to stretch your Tieks to the right fit. 

These are the best ways to stretch out your Tieks if they’re slightly too small:

  • Put corks or golf balls in the toes – If your Tieks are especially tight around the toes, place wine corks or golf balls in the toe area every night before you go to sleep. Do this every night, and then wear the shoes as long as you can during the day until they fit comfortably to your feet. 
  • Socks and hairdryer – Blow a hairdryer on the part of the shoe that is tightest (e.g., toes)—make sure it’s not too close to avoid heat damage. The heat will help soften the material up. Next, slip on some thick socks and put on your Tieks. Blast the hairdryer at the tight section again (and maybe some Lizzo while you’re at it). Wear the shoes around the house until they’re completely cool. Repeat the process until they’re the right fit. 
  • Use a Shoe Stretcher – Use a leather stretching solution to prepare the shoe, then put the shoe stretcher inside the shoe. Twist the knob until you see pressure on the outside of the shoe. Don’t overstretch. Usually, 3-4 turns is fine. Leave the stretcher on overnight and try on the shoes in the morning. Repeat the process until the shoes are the right fit. 
  • Go to a Shoe Repair Shop – If you want a professional to stretch out your shoes for you, shoe stretching usually costs between $10-$25.

Choosing the Right Tieks Color and Style For You

How to Choose the Best Color and Style of Tieks

most comfortable women's flats - tieks
My Tieks at trivia night. My Pacific Green Tieks fit my feet perfectly now.

If you decide to take the leap and purchase a pair of Tieks, the hardest decision is figuring out which style and color you want.

There are over 60 different types of Tieks at any given time, with specialty limited-time Tieks that are only in stock for a few months and then are gone forever once they’re sold out.

When choosing the right color and style, it all comes down to how you plan to wear your Tieks.

Do you want them to be a statement piece in your wardrobe or a versatile flat that you can literally wear with anything?

For my first pair of Tieks, I wanted a mixture of both.

This is why I went for a subtle green Tiek that had some pop but was still neutral enough to go with most of my outfits.

I decided to go with the Classic Tieks because I thought the Patent Tieks would be too shiny.

I chose to pass on the Patterned Tieks because they’re usually more expensive and I didn’t think they’d go with as much. 

For my second pair of Tieks, I was ready for more of a statement shoe and I wanted a pair that looked a little fancier, so I went with the Rose Gold Glam

But that’s just me and what worked for my current wardrobe. Everyone has different styles and tastes.

And when you’re making this big of an investment in a pair of shoes, it’s worth it to spend some time thinking about what you really want from these shoes. 

best foldable flats - tieks
I love my Pacific Green Tieks because they add a little color but are still subtle enough to go with most of my outfits.

Here’s a look at the different options you should think about when deciding on which color and style of Tieks to purchase

Choosing the Right Style of Tieks for You

Different Styles of Tieks 

  • Prints
  • Patents
  • Classics
  • Vegan Collection
  • Girls (Kids’ Tieks)

Patent Leather Tieks vs Classic Leather Tieks

The main difference between patent leather and regular leather is that patent leather is shinier.

It’s usually coated in plastic, varnish, or lacquer.

Patent leather also tends to be easier to clean because of the plastic finish, whereas there’s more upkeep with regular leather.

I haven’t done this with my regular leather Tieks, but it’s recommended to regularly oil, condition, or polish leather to keep it looking fresh.

With patent leather, you don’t need to do this.

It’s usually enough to just wipe it with a cloth and a little water. 

If you’re looking for a shinier shoe that’s easy to clean, go for one of the patent leather options.

If you want a more subdued and classic leather look, go for the regular leather. 

With this said, there are a lot of different options for leather styles with Tieks besides just regular leather and patent leather.

These include full-grain painted metallic leather, suede leather, leather with lace overlay, and more. 

Click here to view the different styles of Tieks in one place.

Vegan Tieks vs Leather Tieks

Instead of being made from the usual fine Italian leather that Tieks is known for, Tieks started offering a vegan line a few years back that is cruelty-free and made from high-quality European textiles. 

There are currently five styles available in the Tieks Vegan Collection that all use natural, paraben-free dyes.

The best-selling Tieks colors are the following: 

Choosing the Right Color Tieks for You

best foldable flats - tieks flats
Wearing my Tieks on a Southern USA road trip. Love how these often pop with my clothes and surroundings.

Unless you’re really set on having a statement pair of Tieks that are bright and colorful, I usually recommend getting a somewhat neutral color for your first pair of Tieks.

Because it’s such an investment, it’s nice when you can wear your Tieks with a lot of different options to really get the most for your money.

A few of my favorite more versatile Tieks colors that you can wear with everything include: Romantic Blush, Lovestruck, Matte Black, Metallic Bronze, Rose Gold Glam (my favorite shade of gold ballet flats), and Silver Lake (vegan). 

If you’re wanting a pair of Tieks for a color pop or to bring out for special occasions, that’s great too!

A few of my favorite unique and colorful Tieks include Cardinal Red, Tangerine, Leopard Print, Aquarella, Mustard Yellow, Emerald, Fuchsia, and Razzleberry.

Click here to view all Tieks colors.

Tieks Versatility and How to Style Your Tieks

Are Tieks Versatile Enough to Wear as Your Daily Shoes?

versatile leather ballet flats - tieks
Wearing my Tieks for a classy night out in San Francisco.

In a word, yes.

Especially if you go for a more neutral color or pick a color that works with most of your wardrobe.

One of the aspects that first drew me to Tieks was their versatility.

I was looking for a good travel shoe that was comfortable, but also not the usual New Balance sneakers that every American tourist seems to own.

I wanted something fashionable, fun, and attractive, but I also wanted something I could walk in for hours.

And if you choose the right Tieks color, they can become shoes that go with everything.

It’s hard to go wrong with comfortable, cute flats that are good for walking long distances during the day, but also great for pairing with a nice dress and going out for drinks with friends at night.

Versatility is SO important when you’re a regular traveler because shoes take up valuable space in your backpack.

My goal when I initially purchased my Tieks was to be able to narrow down the amount of shoes I usually pack for a trip (around 2-3 pairs), and Tieks allowed me to do that.

There have been quite a few trips where I just wore my Tieks the whole time and found they easily matched with everything in my backpack.

I’ve even worn my Tieks to a fancy New Year’s Eve Party paired with a glittery dress because I’m not big on heels.

When I say versatile, I mean it. 

How to Style Your Tieks

As I mentioned above, Tieks can be styled with pretty much anything. 

This is one of the best features of versatile flats in general—they go with almost everything—and this is definitely the case with Tieks as well. 

I often style my Pacific Green Tieks or Rose Gold Glam Tieks with laidback boyfriend jeans and a nice top for work (they also work great with power suits too).

For going out, either pair goes with most of my going out clothes, whether that’s black pants and a fancy top or a floor-length dress. 

The green Tieks also work well with sundresses for summer picnics or BBQs. When it comes to shoes, I love a good color pop of complementary colors. 

To style your Tieks appropriately (and to choose the right color that goes with the colors in your wardrobe already), I’d recommend using a color wheel. 

If you type in “color contrast wheel with brown” into Google Images, you’ll find a cheat sheet for the best color combinations that work well together and standout (the opposite colors on the wheel). 

Do you Wear Socks With Tieks?

I’ve always worn my Tieks without socks, but yes, you can wear socks with Tieks.

This is especially a good idea if you typically have smelly feet or your foot slips around a bit while wearing Tieks.

The leather interior in Tieks can also stain, especially if it gets wet or your feet sweat.

So if you want the aesthetic of your Tieks to last longer, it can be a good idea to wear socks to protect the interior leather sole from staining. 

If you’re interested in wearing thin socks with your Tieks, these are a good choice that work well with flats. 

How Packable Are Tieks?

Another aspect that I love about Tieks is how packable they are.

They’re not only light but fold up and easily fit into the smallest of spaces in my travel backpack or travel purse.

Tieks are some of the best foldable flats I’ve come across that somehow still keep their shape and structure intact even when rolled up for hours on end. 

My other regular pair of shoes that I bring with me on trips are black Chelsea boots or my Allbirds.

It’s nice to wear the boots when I’m in transit and pack my Tieks since they take up almost no space as fold-up flats.

Are Tieks the Best Travel Flats?

best travel flats - tieks ballet flats
Chilling with my Tieks in Montreal while working on a campaign with HI Canada. These are my go-to travel shoes that are comfortable and stylish.

I haven’t tried every single pair of flats on the market, but from my experience with Birdies, Rothy’s, and VIVAIA, Tieks are some of the best travel flats I’ve found.

The only flats I’ve found that I like better than Tieks are my Allbirds Tree Breezers, which are another level of comfortable.

However, they definitely have a more casual look than Tieks.

Between how lightweight Tieks are to their walkability, comfort, and how easily they fold up and pack into your bag, it seems like they were made with travel in mind.

They’ve quickly become my favorite travel ballet flats.

They’re also super easy to slip on and off at airport security, and they’re durable enough to take to pretty much any destination (assuming it’s not overly rainy). 

They’ve also been some of the best ballet flats for walking long distances. 

So yes, Tieks are great for travel. 

Tieks Durability

How is the Quality of Tieks?

Tieks takes their craft of ‘perfecting the perfect ballet flat’ seriously.

It takes three days and 150 different steps to make a pair of Tieks, and they’re made from fine Italian leather and textiles (or miscellaneous high-quality European textiles for their vegan ballet flats).

They are known for lasting a long time and although Tiek’s wear and tear, such as scuffing and insole peeling, becomes visible if you wear them a lot, they are durable and long-lasting.

I’ve had my pair of Tieks for three years now and they’re still sturdy and only get more comfortable each time I wear them.

Can You Wear Tieks in the Rain?

If you want to keep the aesthetic look of your Tieks intact, it’s better not to wear them in the rain since Tieks aren’t waterproof.

I used to sometimes wear my first pair of Tieks in rainy weather, but it quickly started making my Tieks look more worn out than they actually were.

So, from personal experience, you risk ruining the leather on the outside if you wear your Tieks in the rain.

It might be okay for Patent Leather Tieks to get a bit wet, but they’re still not waterproof so it’s probably best to avoid getting your Tieks wet if you can help it.

If you’re looking for good waterproof alternatives, I wrote a whole article about my favorite comfortable waterproof walking shoes.

How Long do Tieks Last?

This depends on how you use your Tieks and how often you wear them.

I’ve taken my Tieks on various adventures through different cities, terrains, and climates and they’re still holding up well after six years.

At the moment, they’re my main shoes (along with my Allbirds) that I wear most days.

On average, if you wear your Tieks every day and you walk a lot, it seems like they wear out in about five years.

If you wear them once or twice a week, they’ll probably last longer, like mine.

And there are other ways to make your Tieks last longer if you take the time to care for them.

How to Take Care of Tieks

Because each style of Tieks is made from different materials, I recommend heading over to the official Tieks guide on their website for how to care for specific pairs of Tieks.

If you’re looking to cover up any scuffing, the best way to do so is through Tarrago shoe cream.

You can reference this post to find the right color cream for your Tieks.

Common Tieks Problems (And How to Fix Them)

Breaking in Your Tieks

where to purchase tieks shoes

If your Tieks feel a little on the tighter side, you should first wear them around the house for a good week. 

Be patient and don’t immediately wear your Tieks out of the house once you get them.

Make sure to spend some time (up to a week) walking around your house to make absolutely sure you don’t need to exchange them for a different size. 

Some Tieks customers try on their Tieks and they fit perfectly right out of the box, for others, it takes a few weeks for them to feel super comfortable.

It all depends on how sensitive your feet are and whether you bought the right size in the first place.

If your Tieks aren’t comfortable to begin with, first ask yourself if you have the right size.

If you don’t, use the easy exchange service that Tieks offers and try out another size.

If your feet just need time to adjust to Tieks, be patient and wear them in small spurts to begin with.

Eventually, wear them for longer periods and all-day excursions until your feet are happy and comfortable in your Tieks.

Do Tieks Make Your Feet Smelly?

I’m sure everyone is different in terms of foot odor, but after six years of regular wear, my Tieks still don’t smell bad.

I was kind of amazed by this, considering how often I wear my Tieks (sometimes in very hot weather).

To be fair, I’ve never had a huge issue with foot odor.

However, I’ve had my fair share of cheap shoes that made my feet sweat like crazy and produced less-than-ideal smells after a few months of wearing them.

Perhaps it has to do with the quality of Tieks and the materials they use, but my feet don’t often sweat or smell when I wear them.

This is a big pro since bad odor is enough for me to throw out a pair of shoes (no one wants to smell that, myself included).

If you’re prone to smelly feet, I would recommend just slipping on a pair of thin socks to wear with your Tieks to keep them a bit fresher while you wear them. 

Do Tieks Make Your Feet Sweat?

In general, no. 

Because Tieks are made with high-quality materials, you’re not going to have the same issues with sweaty feet as you might with cheap materials that come from fast fashion products.

As I mentioned above, I haven’t had many issues with sweaty feet while wearing Tieks. 

The only exceptions are when I’ve been in really hot and humid climates (e.g. visiting Atlanta in August), but in those cases, my whole body is sweaty from the humidity. 

Similar to the issue with smelly feet, if you often get sweaty feet or you live in more humid climates, you can just slip on a pair of thin socks to wear with your Tieks.

Do Tieks Squeak?

Another problem that sometimes happens with Tieks is a squeaking or farting noise when you walk in the shoes. 

I never experienced this with my Classic Leather Tieks because they were tighter and didn’t have extra room for squeaks. 

For my Rose Gold Glam Tieks, I did have some squeakiness when I first started wearing them because there is slightly more room around my foot. 

The good news is the squeakiness usually goes away on its own once the leather fits better to your foot after a few wears. 

If the squeakiness persists, Tieks customer service usually recommends wearing no-show socks and using a small amount of baby powder to get rid of the squeak. 

Do Tieks Scuff Easily?

One of the more disappointing aspects about Tieks is how easily they scuff around the toes and just above the soles. 

However, it’s good to keep in mind that some Tieks styles scuff more than others.

For example, the patent leather Tieks and vegan Tieks aren’t going to scuff as much as the leather Tieks (which I have).

And to be fair, the scuffing is more of an aesthetic thing than a practical thing (the shoes still work perfectly fine), but they do become less versatile in terms of dressing them up as they age and get scuffed.

The good news is there is a way to get rid of Tieks scuffing! 

My cousin, who is also a big fan of Tieks, recently told me about a specific type of leather cream that has become popular with Tieks owners to help cover up the scuffing.

It’s called Tarrago shoe cream and people swear by it to make their Tieks look almost as good as new.

Do Tieks Have Problems With Insole Peeling?

This is another common issue with Tieks once you’ve had them for some time—the insole starts to peel.

This started happening to my Classic Leather Tieks around the three-year mark. But I’ve heard of it happening sooner for other Tieks owners. 

Again, this is more of an aesthetic thing since it hasn’t changed the comfort of the shoes or their wearability, but they do look more tired when I take them off. 

I also think it depends on how you use your Tieks and what climates you tend to be in while wearing them.

I imagine they peel faster if you’re often in warmer and more humid climates.

I’ve mostly worn my Tieks while being based in San Francisco, so they’re accustomed to temperate and a slightly cooler climate.

With that said, I have taken them to plenty of other places around the world too.

A few of these destinations include the UK, Portugal, Spain, Colorado, Quebec, Mexico, Arizona, all over the South in the humid summer, and more. 

Do Tieks Hurt Your Big Toe?

The most common complaint with breaking in Tieks is the uncomfortable tightness around the toes, especially the big toe. 

It was definitely the most uncomfortable aspect I came across when I was breaking in my first pair of shoes from Tieks in that first month.

I also have slightly different-sized feet, which probably doesn’t help, but the big toe on my left foot wasn’t a big fan of Tieks while I was breaking them in. 

If you feel uncomfortable pressure on your big toe when you get your Tieks but they otherwise fit well, there is a way to fix this.

You can take two corks and put one cork in each shoe where the big toe usually goes.

Then fold them backward and place them in a narrow place (i.e. between two book holders) to hold the shape. Leave them overnight.

Do this for a second night and try moving the cork to where the other toes go. Again, leave it overnight.

Do this for 2-3 nights then try them on and see if they fit more comfortably around the toes. 

How Do I Get Rid of The Tieks Toe Bump?

This isn’t as much of a problem with patent leather Tieks, but with the soft leather Tieks you’ll sometimes notice a slight toe bump. 

The toe bump bothers some people, others don’t care that much. 

If it bothers you, there’s an easy fix to get rid of the toe bump with a little creativity and some Moleskin. 

Just cut a half circle of Moleskin to fit inside the interior toe area of your Tieks, and *voila* the toe bump magically disappears!  

Tieks Returns and Exchanges

How Much is Tieks Shipping and How Long Does it Take?

tieks returns & exchanges with my Rose Gold Glam Tieks
I took advantage of the quick and easy Tieks return policy for my Rose Gold Glam Tieks. I ordered two pairs and sent back the one that didn’t fit as well, so I could try both on before deciding on a pair. Easy peasy.

Since you can only buy Tieks online and they’re not the cheapest shoes, it’s a nice touch that they offer FREE shipping in the US.

This includes on returns and exchanges as well, so if you’re not happy with your Tieks and you want to send them back or exchange them for another pair, you don’t have to pay anything. 

The one downside with Tieks shipping is that outside of the US it can be expensive.

I’ve heard of some people having to pay around $50 for shipping if they’re located outside the US. 

In the US, Tieks shipping is fast and efficient for receiving your pair after ordering online, and for exchanges and returns. 

In general, you can expect Tieks shipping to take around 2-4 days.

How to Return or Exchange Tieks

If for any reason you’re not happy with your Tieks or you need a different size, Tieks offers super fast returns and exchanges.

If you’re based in the US, shipping is free both ways.

And as long as your Tieks aren’t worn outside, you can exchange or refund them at any time.

That’s right, there’s no time limit if you change your mind about your Tieks.


What is Tieks Customer Service Like?

Besides offering a quality product, I really think Tieks has been so successful throughout the years because of their great customer service. 

Tieks customer service is super quick with replying to any questions or concerns and happily accepts returns or exchanges as long as shoes haven’t been worn outside.

I’ve even heard of customers getting a brand new pair of shoes from Tieks if they report something wrong with a pair they’ve worn for a while (kind of like Apple), although I don’t know if this is the norm. 

Regardless, it’s a nice feeling to have good customer support in case any issues arise when you’re investing so much in a pair of shoes. 

Where to Purchase Tieks

How Much Are Tieks Ballet Flats?

cute ballet flats - tieks flats
At a travel blogging conference in Texas with my Tieks. It’s easy to wear these shoes for every occasion.

So how much do Tieks cost?

Leather Tieks start at $185 and go up to $195 and even as high as $345 for specialty Tieks. Vegan Tieks are all $185. 

They also just recently started selling children’s Tieks for $140. 

Click here for the most up-to-date Tieks prices.

Why Are Tieks so Expensive and Are They Really Worth the Price?

Tieks are expensive for a pair of shoes (especially a pair of cute ballet flats), but the tradeoff is investing in a quality pair of shoes that will last for years to come.

It all comes down to what is most important to you and your perspective.

If you’re looking at designer flats, Tieks are probably at a lower price point and higher quality than what you’d find from quite a few of the luxury brands.

Case in point—have you ever seen the price of Jimmy Choo or Tory Burch flats?

And in my opinion, Tieks are more comfortable and attractive than most flats I’ve seen from those designer brands.

But then again, I’m not that into the ‘designer’ aspect of fashion. 

So, are Tieks worth the price?

If you’re looking at them as just regular flats, the price probably seems way too high.

As I mentioned above, it’s about whether you’re ready to invest in a quality pair of shoes, and how many years you hope to wear them.

They’re made with high-quality Italian leather, they’re a US-based company, and they typically last for years (even when you wear them every day).

If those aspects are important to you, the investment might be worth it. 

How Do You Justify the Price of Tieks?

The biggest hindrance to Tieks is the cost.

Starting at $185, it’s a lot of money to spend on a pair of comfy ballet flats, even if they’re meant to be some of the best flats for women on the market. 

It took me four years before I made the leap and purchased my first pair, and I can understand why most people don’t want to spend that much money on a pair of shoes. 

With that said, you get what you pay for. 

When I buy clothing now, I think of it in terms of investing. How much return will I get from this pair of shoes for the price?

I’ve worn my first pair of Tieks regularly for six years, which comes out to $29.17 per year, and that will continue to go down the longer my Tieks last.

And with six years under my belt, I probably would’ve spent that much on 2-3 pairs of cheap shoes every couple of years that would’ve worn out by now. 

When you break the cost down this way and think of Tieks as a long-term investment, the price doesn’t seem quite as bad. 

What Social Causes Does Tieks Support?

Before spending money on expensive shoes, I like knowing where my money is going.

Tieks has an impressive community of shoe lovers and the company knows how to make the most of its impressive social media presence.

In 2022, Tieks auctioned off special edition colors, patterns, and designs. The auction raised nearly $90,000 for World Central Kitchen.

World Central Kitchen is an organization providing meals for people in Ukraine and surrounding countries during the Russian War.

Do Tieks Ever Go On Sale?

Do Tieks go on sale? Sadly, Tieks don’t really ever go on sale.

There aren’t any Tieks coupon codes, Tieks discounts, or Tieks sales that the company runs. 

They do offer an annual Tieks Black Friday Sale where they release a new limited-time Tieks style, but they still don’t usually offer a Black Friday discount. 

If you want to find cheap Tieks, the best way to go about it is to head to the many buy, sell, and exchange Tieks Facebook groups (just do a quick search), where you can buy used Tieks. 

Facebook groups are probably the best way to save on Tieks if you’re looking to spend around a $100 or less on lightly used Tieks.  

Or you can head to eBay and see what you can find. 

Just be wary of knock-off Tieks or fake Tieks and make sure you’re buying from reputable sellers if you go this route of buying from unofficial Tieks retailers. 

Where Are Tieks Made?

Tieks by Gavrieli is a California brand (heyoo!).

They’re a bit hush hush about where they actually make the shoes.

From some good ol’ fashioned internet research, it seems like they’re made in factories in Italy, Brazil, and around Asia.

The assembly takes place in China and the final packaging happens in Los Angeles.

All of the design work and the brand headquarters are in Los Angeles, California. 

Where Can I Try On Tieks?

best flats for women - tieks ballet flats
Taking my Tieks around Montreal during the spring.

Tieks doesn’t have any physical stores, so you can only try on Tieks from the comfort of your own home. 

Luckily, because of the easy exchange and return policy that Tieks has, you can exchange any size that doesn’t fit.

Tieks are so popular in large part because they know how to market their brand really well. 

Even more than that though, I think there’s a lot that goes into what makes Tieks such a successful company that has such diehard fans. 

Firstly, their customer service is some of the best I’ve come across. Period.  

Secondly, they make the order and exchange process super straightforward, simple, and hassle-free.

And they also offer free shipping in the US, which customers love. 

Lastly, and probably most importantly, they have a quality product that backs up all their marketing and great customer service. 

And Tieks aren’t just high quality, they’re creative foldable flats that come in tons of different styles and colors. 

They’re attractive to a wide range of women who come from different backgrounds and use their Tieks in different ways (from travelers to CEOs). 

There’s a lot going for Tieks and the Tieks community they’ve so brilliantly created around their brand. 

Where to Buy Tieks Flats

Does Nordstrom sell Tieks? How about Amazon or any other online retailer or department store? No, no, and no. 

Unless you’re looking for cheap knock-off Tieks, Tieks can only be purchased online from the Tieks.com website.

I was a little hesitant when I first discovered this since I don’t usually buy shoes without trying them on (especially when they’re $185+).

The good news is with the Tieks return and exchange policy, it’s risk-free if your Tieks don’t work out. You just have to go through the effort of sending them back. 

As I mentioned above, if you’re hoping to find a deal on Tieks, they unfortunately don’t offer any discounts or coupons.

Instead, you can try eBay or Facebook groups (just search for ‘Tieks buy sell trade’) for an almost new or used pair that is slightly less money. 

For more information, you can read my detailed article on the different places to purchase Tieks.

So, Are Tieks Worth It?

palace of the fine arts - san francisco architecture
Are Tieks really worth it? In my personal experience, yes! I’ve had a lot of miles and adventures in my Tieks and I think they’re worth the investment.

Are Tieks worth the price? In my personal experience, yes!

I was skeptical for a long time about Tieks and whether they were actually as good as everyone seemed to make them out to be.

This is why it took me four years to finally purchase my own pair and to see what all the hype was about. 

And even right after I got them and the fit wasn’t perfect, I still wasn’t sold for a few months.

It was only after I broke them in and started wearing them regularly that I saw the magic of Tieks that makes so many people love them.

They have the powerful quadfecta of versatility, style, comfort, and packability.

I hope you got value out of this Tieks review and that you found it helpful in deciding whether or not to get your own pair of Tieks.

If you have any other questions about Tieks, let me know in the comments below! 

More of a visual and audio person? Check out my Tieks review video below:


Mimi McFadden Headshot

Mimi McFadden
Founder & Editor-In-Chief

Mimi McFadden grew up in Santa Cruz, California, and founded The Atlas Heart in 2013. Starting in 2020, she began testing new footwear to find that perfect balance of style, comfort, and versatility that’s so important for travel. In just a few years, she has tested over 30 shoe brands as the main footwear tester at The Atlas Heart and is always on the lookout for more trendy new shoes to try out. Mimi knows that no gear’s quite as important as what you wear on your feet, which is why she puts so much time, effort, and methodical testing into her shoe recommendations.

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Hi, I'm Mimi! I'm an outdoorsy Californian who has spent over 28 years immersed in the incredible natural beauty that California has to offer. My goal is to inspire others to get out and find their next adventure in California. Whether it’s escaping to an alpine lake in the Sierras, finding peace among the giant redwoods, or road tripping down the PCH, there’s always more to explore in this beautiful state.


9 thoughts on “Tieks Review (for 2024): Are Tieks Really Worth the Cost?”

  1. I bought tieks after reading the reviews and was extremely disappointed in the quality. The inner lining fell into pieces and turned my feet green. The leather has peeled off in several areas. This is clearly not worth the $200+ I paid.

    • Hi Rachel, I’m sorry to hear that. I’ve had three pairs of Tieks for many years now and I haven’t run into those types of issues, besides some minor inner lining peeling in one pair after a couple of years of constant wear as my travel flats, accidentally getting them wet, and taking them to humid places around the world. Did you contact Tieks customer service? They’re usually very responsive and good about replacing shoes if there’s a defect.

  2. I really enjoyed reading your Tieks review. It was very honest and detailed. I’ve been thinking about buying a pair of Tieks for a while, but I was hesitant because of the price. Your article convinced me that they are worth the investment. I love how versatile and comfortable they are and the variety of colors and styles they offer. I think I’m going to order the Clover Green Tieks, they look so chic and vibrant!

  3. I have two pair of Tieks. I have to disagree on the statements about sweaty smelly feet. Tieks do make my feet sweat which in turn causes the shoes to eventually smell. I have a pair of Dexter loafers I bought over 25 years ago. They smell as fresh as the day I got them. They are 100% leather inside and out. The Tieks also do not work for high arch people like me because I can see a gap underneath my arches when wearing them.

  4. Hello, My name is Elena Smith and live Fort Myers, Florida (SW Fl.). I would like to suggest to you a simple fix for “the teik creak”… Take a dryer sheet or town and rub it in the foot bed of each shoe and viola! No more squeak. No staining, no marks on the shoes of any sort. Plus my shoes now have a lovely lavender scent! I didn’t invent myself but saw a blurb somewhere online (wikifixes or something) this but it does make sense when you feel a dryer sheet there is a smooth film on them that dissaptes after going through the dryer cycle.

    I hope this helps. BTW just purchased 2 pair minutes ago, 1 in rouge suede and even though marked as sold out in all sizes the woman on the phone asked and they found a pair of Pacific Green in my size. What luck!

    Be safe


  5. I can’t keep my tieks on. When I walk the back seems to collapse. I have five pair of tieks and am very upset. There must be something I can do. Look forward to your reply

  6. What a fantastic review. I bought a pair of Tieks in 2018 and I expected to hate them and return them. Instead I loved them and bought 2 more pairs 4 days later. I currently own 34 pairs which should keep me comfortable and looking great for years. I love that Tieks are made in larger sizes. I’m lucky cuz a size 11 fits me perfect.
    Thanks for sharing your review.


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