Birdies’ latest Cardinal & Roadrunner Sneakers caught my eye with their punchy, colorful looks. The Cardinal Sneaker is a streamlined leather sneaker silhouette, while The Roadrunner has a more retro look.
Overall, I’m a big fan of Birdies (all my previous reviews here), and was curious to see how these stack up against their current line-up. In this post, I’ll be reviewing The Cardinal in multi-white (love the leopard detail) and The Roadrunner in Citron.
Both shoes are made from a mix of materials – nylon, suede, and leather. The Cardinal is more leather-forward, as expected of a classic sneaker style. On the other hand, The Roadrunner varies depending on the colorway, so each one has a pretty unique style.
Sizing & Fit
I ordered both styles in size 7.5, which is my usual street shoe size. Unfortunately, both were too big! Their website now has a disclaimer advising that you order half a size down if you are 7.5 and up. As you can see in the photos below, both shoes in size 7.5 are significantly larger than comparable styles from other brands.
I exchanged the Roadrunner for a size 7, which while snug, fits much better. Additionally, the Cardinal is also slightly larger than the Roadrunner – so I recommend sizing down especially for the former.
These are both very classic and on-trend sneaker styles at the moment – so you can’t go wrong on that front.
The only odd thing I noticed was that my first pairs had very long laces. Each pair came with another set of shorter laces – which was previously mentioned on the website but now removed. My exchanged pair had normal-length laces, which makes me think this might have been a first batch quirk.
As mentioned above, both styles have a hidden wedge insole that provides a little extra boost of height. This also makes the overall footprint a bit smaller if that is something that appeals to you. If you’re trying to optimize for height, the Roadrunner has a slight edge on the Cardinal with an extra 5mm lift.
Both styles come with the classic Birdies quilted insole that is comfortable right out of the box. It’s not as puffy as the insole in my leather birdies, which I think is a good thing – cushioned, yet structured enough to provide stability.
With both size 7.5 and size 7, I experience a bit of heel lift when walking, most likely due to the thicker, less flexible sole with the hidden 20mm wedge. This doesn’t bother me currently, but it might cause a bit of heel irritation for some.
Overall, I think these are a great sneaker option from Birdies, but you may need to order multiple sizes to find the right fit. I ended up returning the Roadrunner since I already have three pairs of white sneakers. Otherwise, I would have kept them (in a smaller size) along with the Roadrunners, which I did keep.
As always, I will be sure to update this post with any wear and tear thoughts after a few months.
Partnership Disclosure: This blog post was not sponsored by any of the brands listed above. As always, all opinions are my own. This post may contain affiliate links, in which I earn a commission on purchases.