We have not been great to our feet. We have squeezed them into heels of varying sizes for way too long. We let our friends volunteer them for 5Ks and we make them walk around all day in contraptions that are cuter than they are comfortable. We owe them. And now with 3D printing, we might be able to repay them part of that debt. New company SOLS is hoping to shape up our sore feet with just a foot selfie and a 3D printer. Smell that? It’s no longer your stank toes, it’s the future of footcare!
To slip your tootsies into one of SOLS insoles, you have to do very little work. You or your podiatrist will kick off the process taking a short video of your foot using an Android or iOS device. This “scan” will help them create a prescription for your foot problems and mock up a model to help solve them. They then use a 3D printer to create a fully-customized, happy-hued insole made out of durable nylon within two weeks.
These insoles will help with a laundry list of #pedprobz including proper alignment, posture, plantar fasciitis, even smell. Yeah, we said it. Sometimes feet smell but these insoles are anti-microbial, washable and odor-proof so you’ll never be embarrassed to let your toes wiggle wild and sock-free again. The process ends up being cheaper, quicker and overall easier than it’s ever been to make your ordinary orthotics. And the result is even kinda cute.
SOLS is coming to your local foot specialist first, where you’ll be able to go and work with trained docs to get insoles created for you at around $300-$500. The company’s next step is to work directly with consumers, likely through a web service so that we, the shopping people, can order our own custom fits at around $100 online. Devices with capabilities like Google’s Project Tango could perfect the process and be an ideal tool for both doctors and shoppers.
While their initial focus is on healthcare, this process could also completely change the way we shop for shoes. Next, SOLS wants to take their technology to the mall to go from custom insoles to a completely created-for-you shoe experience at the register. With in-store foot scanners, you could custom cobble a pair of sneakers or heels that would be fabulous and fit well too.