Men's Comfort Oxford
The summary of my review is the following: extremely comfortable out of the box, but poorly made, bad quality control, inconsistent sizing, and not durable at all. They were a disappointment, since I expected a lot more. They're not worth what Payless sells them for, even on sale. I've had good experience with other Payless shoes, but not these. The curious can read on and find out why, but would not recommend them.
For starters, they run very small. I ended up needing a full size larger than I usually get from Payless. In the end, they actually stretched quite a bit after breaking-in, but they were tight enough at first that I felt I needed the larger size.
The description says that they're manmade uppers, but every pair I tried (3 different ones) had leather uppers. It also comes with a fabric tongue, that doesn't match the rest of the upper. Not a big deal, but be aware of these design changes. The leather upper certainly did not increase durability at all. The brown color is also lighter than it appears in the photos. It's not awful, but not exactly what I wanted and showed dirt and wear more easily.
Comfort-wise, they absolutely deliver as promised. As comfortable as a good set of sneakers or walking shoes right out of the box. They do break in and get softer, but you can do extensive walking right out of the box. This was the only plus with these shoes and made their severe shortcomings in other areas all the more disappointing.
Durability was a weak point -- they're not. They lasted about 4 months of wear. In fairness, I wore them several times a week (which will wear any shoe faster -- you should rotate shoes), but I've had much longer life from shoes I've worn similarly. The laces began to break apart in a week. By the of the time I decided to retire them, the soles were pretty much worn out, especially in the heel area. The uppers had also gotten discolored and couldn't be effectively cleaned. They also looked visibly worn to the point that I didn't want to wear them at work anymore.
Comfort-wise, they were absolutely fantastic. Extremely comfortable out of the box and fine for walking or standing for long periods of time. I teach and need something that lets me stand for long periods of time. While they lasted, these did the job.
Unfortunately, the plus of comfort is far outweighed by the negatives of these shoes. The ones in black may be a little more durable (the material looks to be different), but after my experience, I wasn't willing to gamble on another pair. Look at a different model instead. These are not a good value at any price.
February 20, 2014