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HUARACHES: Mexican shoes with 500 years of history

The Huaraches and MEXAS.

Our thing with the huaraches was love at first sight. A Mexican footwear made 100% by hand and made up of colored leather strips that can be braided in many ways. And yes, I repeat, 100% handmade, because if the product is not handmade it may be a colored braided leather shoe, but it is not a huarache.

The huaraches are the culprits that we have gotten into this adventure called MEXAS. But, Where do the huaraches come from? What is their history? What differentiates them from any other footwear In this post we are going to try to resolve the main doubts about this hybrid between shoes and sandals that we can finally enjoy in Europe.uropa.


¿What is a huarache?

Designs and colors

Defining the huaraches is not an easy task. They are halfway between a sandal and a shoe. Its main characteristic is that it is a comfortable shoe, which is made with leather straps that are braided completely by hand. The huaraches can be of any color, the most typical are leather-colored like our Sahuayo model huaraches. However, we can also find huaraches of intense colors, in pastel tones, multicolored and almost in any tone you can imagine.

The huarache plant can be synthetic or leather. Sandals with a leather sole are generally going to be more comfortable and have a higher quality than sandals with a synthetic plant, but in general, their price will also be higher.

Handmade leather huaraches

As for the sole of the huarache, it also varies both in material and in shape. The typical Mexican huaraches have rubber soles similar to those of any commercial shoe, although lately new types of huaraches with esparto soles similar to those of wedges or with a plastic platform are flourishing.

Regarding the leather of the huaraches, practically all of them use cow cut leather, since it is the leather that ensures better quality and comfort at a reasonable price. The tanning process, that is, the tinting of the skin is done with products of vegetable origin, reducing the use of chemical products to a minimum. It is true that there are huaraches made with synthetic materials such as plastic, but both the comfort and the quality of the huarache suffer a lot.

All the skin that we use in our huaraches comes from the meat industry, so no animal is sacrificed for their skin, but the skin of the cows used to market their meat is used.

Also in MEXAS we are exploring the option of manufacturing "vegan huaraches" made with a material similar to the skin extracted from the nopal, a very abundant plant in Mexico.

But remember, even if it meets all these requirements, a huarache is not a huarache if it is not made completely by hand.

The history of the huaraches

The origin of the huaraches

The huaraches began being very different from as we know them today since their origins date back to pre-Columbian times.

The word huarache comes from kwarachi, a word in the Purépecha language. The Purépecha people are an indigenous people that, for more than 500 years, have lived in what is now Michoacán, in Mexico. This is where in MEXAS we manufacture our huaraches and where practically all the huaraches in the world are produced. At first, the huaraches were made of cotton, which made them much less resistant than the current ones. However, when the Spanish arrived and conquered present-day Mexico, they used many products from the indigenous peoples and improved them by incorporating European materials. In this way, as a result of miscegenation, the huaraches made with strips of bovine leather emerge.


The design huarache

Thanks to their comfort, their low price and their ease of repair, the huaraches were widely used by peasants and friars for several centuries. However, it was not until the 21st century when the product has undergone a great evolution incorporating a multitude of models, braids and colors, being adopted by all kinds of people of different social class. Suddenly the huarache is no longer that product with hardly any design condemned to a life of work in the field, but has reached the cities, has filled boutiques and magazines with color, and is coveted by all kinds of people, both men and women. women throughout all of Mexico.


Huaraches outside of Mexico

In fact, it was not until a few years ago that the huaraches have crossed the borders of Mexico. It is true that there are huaraches or similarly cut footwear in several Central American countries, but never before in history has it left there. Currently, the United States has the largest number of huarache exports, but from MEXAS we have proposed to adapt the product to European fashion and fill the continent with huaraches. All this without renouncing either traditional production or the basic and historical principles of a shoe as unique as it is inimitable.

And that's all. For the rest, inour store You can see all our collections and choose the MEXAS that you like the most. Now it's your turn, you can write the next page in the history of the huaraches.





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