Cariuma makes an eco-friendly skate shoe called the Catiba Pro.
Lately, I’ve seen this shoe everywhere in skate videos, so I wanted to try them for myself to see if there is a benefit to skateboarding in them outside of helping the planet.
This is an honest review of the shoes that I will update as I skate them. In here, I will cover how well they skate, how quickly they wear down, and everything you need to know before buying a pair.
The Highlights & Specs
- The main reason to get these shoes: They are good for the environment and skate incredibly well. You can learn more about Cariuma’s sustainability efforts here.
- The Catiba Pro is the most environmentally friendly skate shoe on the market.
- It is incredible for flip tricks. This has a sole that is specifically designed to flip the board and be durable.
- These are very comfortable shoes. These have memory foam and provide excellent arch support.
- The Catiba Pro offers the perfect amount of board feel and grip. The outsole has an unheard of level of grip without any loss of board feel. It is made with a natural rubber and has the classic herringbone pattern.
- These are durable skate shoes. They have a reinforced stitching in the ollie and flick areas to increase the life of the shoes.
- They look so fresh. Cariuma made a skate shoe that both looks and skates great.
First Impression of the Cariuma Catiba Pro Skate Shoes?
In all honesty, these are the first sustainable sneakers purchased to review on this blog. I really didn’t know what to expect.
When I first got the shoes, I thought to myself, “Wow, these are nicer than I thought they would be.” My first thought was that the look is very reminiscent of some other footwear brands like Adidas or Lakai, with their shape and trademark logo on the side.
The Cariuma Catiba Pro is a lightweight shoe. When you’re holding this in your hand, you start to notice some of the features that set it apart from other skate shoes. For example, when you look down into the footbed, you can see that Cariuma used cork.
The side of the sole has an excellent level of traction that can help you with your flip tricks. There are deep rubber ridges running along the side of the sole. The best that I can describe it would be like this. Picture if a screw was made of rubber and you were running your finger along the side.
Those ridges show the level of flick these shoes looked to have.
I knew the shoes were made with natural ingredients. However, the suede parts still looked like the suede of what I would consider a long-lasting skate shoe. Its the same with the tweed. I’ve always been a fan of heelflips, and the side of the heel is a mix of padded tweed and suede where the heel flicks the board. It looks like it can take the side shoe abuse of heel flipping with no issues.
Once I tried the shoes on, I noticed how comfortable they are. My first impression is that they may be a hair too big. However, after skating them for a few days, I think it is more accurate to say they feel like they come pre-broken in.
Wearing these shoes, I notice they have a cool factor that I haven’t felt in a pair of skate shoes before. They feel comfortable and look good.
There is something to that.
When you have gear that looks sharp, you skate better. Maybe it is because your confidence is a little higher when you feel you look good. That “I look good confidence” translates to skate confidence too. You try tricks you ordinarily wouldn’t try and progress a little faster.
Why Did I Buy the Cariuma Catiba Pro?
I got a pair of the Cariuma Catiba Pro shoes because I kept seeing pros and influencers wearing them.
I like that Cariuma uses ethically sourced, natural materials. They also are doing their best to save the rainforest. For every pair of sneakers they sell, they plant two trees in the Brazilian rainforest.
There has to be something to an environmentally friendly shoe that two out of three of the Olympic medalist skateboarders were wearing.
Brazilian Kelvin Hoefler earned a silver medal in the Tokyo Olympics wearing a pair of the Cariuma Catiba Pros.
American Jager Eaton also got the bronze medal in the Olympics wearing the Cariuma Catiba Pro with a broken ankle!
So I wanted to see what it was like to skateboard in these shoes.
The Pros: What do I like about the Cariuma Catiba Pro Shoes
I love how comfortable these shoes are. The memory foam insole is a dream. These shoes can take impacts my other shoes can’t. That feature is proving itself to be useful because earlier in the summer, I broke my thumb toe. It is still giving me issues when I land or push. The memory foam is helping me be able to skate without any discomfort.
I love that these are eco-friendly skateboard shoes. Skateboarding is not the most eco-friendly sport. We go through maple decks and shoes often, and the companies that make the products haven’t done much to lower their carbon footprint. Cariuma is solving for that.
I love the level of grip and flick these shoes have. I am a strange breed that can switch kickflip better than I can kickflip. My regular kickflips just look like blah. In the Catiba Pros, I find that my kickflips improved greatly. I like the grip level of the sole with the deep ridges on the side. They managed to add extra rubber without making the shoe feel heavy. Best of all, I love how well that level of grip holds up. This is after a few weeks of perfecting my kickflips.
Lastly, I love the way the Cariuma Catiba Pro looks. These are some fresh looking shoes.
The Cons: What do I do not like about the Cariuma Catiba Pro Shoes
When I first put these on, it felt like they were a quarter size too big for me. I think it is more just getting used to the shoe feeling like it is pre-broken in. Cariuma uses more natural, ethically sourced materials. These shoes do not feel as tight or stiff when you first put these on. While the size I got is insanely comfortable, I’d be curious to know if I should go one-half size smaller. I’ll report back on this once I had a chance to try a slightly smaller size.
Most of the other reviews say they fit true to size, so if you run into an issue where you need to go one size smaller, just send yours back and order the next size down. Cariuma offers free return shipping.
The only other detail that is less than ideal is that these shoes tend to be on the more expensive side. That said, they do something no other skateboarding shoe brand does. They allow you to buy one shoe at a time.
When you are just learning to skate, you might go through the shoe of your front foot faster than your back foot. Cariuma makes it easy for you to buy either the left or the right shoe of any Catiba Pro style.
Who Is the Cariuma Catiba Pro a Good Fit For?
These would be perfect for any skateboarder.
The shoes look great. They’re comfortable. They are durable, and best of all, they are good for the environment.
Specifically, anyone working on their flip tricks will benefit greatly from owning a pair of the Cariuma Catiba Pro.
What Other Benefits to the Cariuma Catiba Pro are There?
I mentioned most of them here. The main story is that they skate well.
How Quickly Do They Wear Down?
So far, these shoes are holding really well for me. At the time of taking this picture, I am about 27 hours into skating them. That is about a month for me with skating for an hour every day after work.
Right now, I am learning frontside heelflips, so the side of the shoe is taking a little more abuse than it normally would. They are still good with their reinforced seams still tightly secured. The only detail noticed is the edge is fraying.
The side logo is torn. However, that hasn’t degraded the shoes ability to grip the board or skate in any way. The cloth section covering right where I would flick my heel is beginning to tear. It is still on there tight, though. I estimate that I will get about another month 30 hours more before the side will tear completely.
The rubber in the sole at the bottom still has a lot of life left in it.
Altogether, I estimate these will last me two to three months before I will need to replace my front shoe.
Overall Rating of the Cariuma Catiba Pro Skate Shoes
|Considerations||Rating Out 5|
|How well they skate||5|
|Board Feel & Grip||5|
Would You Recommend the Cariuma Catiba Pro?
Absolutely. The hype around these shoes is real because they skate so well. You have to give them a try.
Skateboarding has not been the most environmentally friendly sport. Every few weeks, we take a piece of maple mixed with glue and throw it out only to buy a new one. That’s just the board itself. We also go through shoes constantly.
The fact that we now have a premium skate brand that is environmentally friendly, we can and should do our part to preserve the skate park that is our planet.
Where Can You Buy Cariuma Shoes?
You can get the Cariuma Catiba Pro here.
See other colorways here.
Thanks for reading this Cariuma skate shoes review.
Looking for more skateboard reviews? Check out the other reviews I’ve written