Skechers begins paying $40M refunds for ‘toning’ shoes


The FTC accused the company of deceptively advertising its Shape-Up shoes by promising that wearers would lose weight and get tighter legs and abs than they would with other fitness shoes.

The California-based shoe company advertised the shoes with slogans like “Get in Shape without Setting Foot in a Gym” and “Shape Up While You Walk,” though those claims were unfounded.

Other ads referenced that an “independent" clinical study supported the claims, though that was not true. Additionally, the chiropractor who recommended the shoes based on the study was married to a Skechers marketing executive and was paid for his endorsement, neither of which were disclosed to the public, the FTC claimed.

Celebrities including Kim Kardashian and Brooke Burke appeared in ads for the Shape-Up shoes. In 2010, sales for toning shoes peaked at nearly $1 billion.