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ALL ABOUT LYRA

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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

If you don’t see your question here, check our Pointe Shoe FAQ, our Help Page, or drop us a line on our Contact Page.

Lyra continues the Gaynor Minden tradition of innovation with our new Premium Weave satin, a proprietary blend of yarns, woven in Italy and exclusive to Gaynor Minden. Lyra is made with an all new, more flexible construction method that, along with the Premium Weave satin, creates an effortless roll-through, high demi-pointe, and secure alignment. Flexibility and roll-through are further enhanced by Lyra’s pliable vegan outer sole.

The primary differences are the satin and soling materials:

Lyra is made with Premium Weave satin, a proprietary blend of yarns, woven in Italy and exclusive to Gaynor Minden. Flexibility and roll-through are further enhanced by Lyra’s pliable vegan outer sole.

Europa is made with robust Italian satin for firm wraparound support to the entire foot. A leather sole enhances support underfoot even further.

Many dancers love the robust support that Europa provides. But other dancers value the flexibility and enhanced forefoot control of Lyra. Now we can offer them a choice.

Lyra and Europa are made with the same unbreakable molded shanks and boxes and the same genuine Roger’s Corp. Poron® Performance cushioning that have been at the core our pointe shoes for three decades. These are the materials responsible for Gaynor Minden’s unparalleled durability, comfort, and quietness. Learn more about what makes our pointe shoes better.

Because pointe shoes must be fitted precisely in order to provide safe, secure, and comfortable support, Lyra and Europa are available in the same wide array of sizes. Most dancers can wear the same size in both lines. 

Lyra and Europa are both produced in Europe.

Lyra is recommended for dancers who prize expressive footwork, high demi-pointe, and effortless roll-through.

Europa is recommended for dancers who prefer robust support and upright alignment. Dancers with very flexible feet and ankles often prefer Europa.

Need more advice? Schedule a fitting with your local retailer! Call to check stock availability in advance. We also offer virtual fittings.

Already know your Gaynor Minden size? Order the exact same size in Lyra! Most dancers will be able to continue wearing their current size, without changes.

New to Gaynor Minden or need a refit? There’s no substitute for an in-person fitting! Visit your local retailer or our NYC boutique for the best experience. We also offer virtual fittings.

Yes. Because pointe shoes must be fitted precisely in order to provide safe, secure, and comfortable support, Lyra is available with the same numerous fitting options that have always been available from Gaynor Minden.

Learn more about our fitting options here.

The size code for Lyra pointe shoes begins with an L. The rest of the code is the same as Europa.

For example, LSC-8M4FDH.

Lyra feels a bit different but functions similarly.

Compared to US production, Lyra provides dancers with similar placement, articulation, and roll-through.  

Our Premium Weave satin is still slightly firmer and more supportive than what was used in the US production. In that regard, Lyra feels like a much more flexible version of Europa, especially in the forefoot.  

Since 2020, we have been continually refining our processes and methods for Europa production. We’ve made a slow, steady series of improvements. But Lyra is truly different — that’s why it’s a whole new line. 

Our pointe shoe production is based in Southeastern Europe and the satin is sourced in Italy. The flexible molded inserts and Poron® Performance Cushioning are made in the USA.

Gaynor Mindens were manufactured in the USA until 2020 when government mandated pandemic lockdowns forced that factory to permanently close.

To start, our new Premium Weave Satin is only available in Peachy-Pink. More colors will follow soon!

Lyra is available 100% vegan when special ordered with satin tips.

Lyra has a flexible, yet durable, microfiber vegan outer sole, which encourages expressive footwork and effortless roll-through.

Suede tips are standard in Lyra. Without a special order, Lyra is not vegan.

Suede tips are standard in Lyra. Suede tips are extremely durable, and most dancers prefer them. They are part of what makes Gaynor Minden the longest-lasting, most economical pointe shoe available.

Satin tips are available by special order. When special ordered with satin tips, Lyra is 100% vegan.

Lyra’s flexible vegan outer sole is made from microfiber. It’s more pliable than leather, yet just as durable.

Dancers who want a 100% vegan shoe can special order theirs with a satin tip.

Our new Premium Weave satin provides the wraparound support that Gaynor Minden is known for, but it behaves like a much softer satin. It allows expressive footwork, good roll-through, and nice articulation — especially of the forefoot. It was created specifically for ballet and can only be found at Gaynor Minden.

Lyra is made using new pliable construction techniques. The new construction positions the foot inside the box in a way that creates a secure connection between the bottom of the foot and the shank. Dancers feel outstanding support and alignment and they have great control of the forefoot and demi-pointe. It’s great for balancing!

Lyra pointe shoes are made with our new Premium Weave satin, a proprietary blend of yarns, woven in Italy and exclusive to Gaynor Minden. It took nearly three years to develop the new satin. We had to reformulate our ratio of materials, build a special machine to produce it, and run studio tests around the globe. Combined with a new pliable microfiber vegan outer sole and new construction techniques, Lyra encourages effortless roll-through, secure alignment, and expressive footwork.

That being said, Gaynor Minden pointe shoes cost less to use than other brands because they last an average of 3–5 times longer than conventional pointe shoes.

How? Gaynor Minden shanks and boxes are made from flexible molded inserts. Most other pointe shoes have a paper and paste construction that dates to the 19th century. Our flexible molded inserts are made from highly specialized materials, engineered for extraordinary pliability, resilience, and strength, so naturally they are more costly than paper and paste. Gaynor Minden is also the only pointe shoe with genuine microcellular Poron® Performance Cushioning built right into the shoe.

Finally, Gaynor Minden pointe shoes are handmade in Europe. If you examine the stitching and workmanship, we think you will agree that our quality and consistency are unequaled. It is more expensive to manufacture in Europe, but the result is a superior product.

All Gaynor Minden pointe shoes are equally durable and long-lasting. Because our molded shanks and boxes never weaken or deform, Gaynor Mindens last an average of 3-5 times longer than conventional paper and paste pointe shoes.

Many dancers choose a stiff shank in a traditionally made shoe to increase its longevity, but with Gaynor Minden they should wear a more pliable shank and enjoy the benefits of a lighter, more flexible shoe without compromising its durability.

To extend the length of your pointe shoes even further, keep your shoes well-ventilated and allow them to dry thoroughly between uses. Fresh Pointes can help! If you dance every day, rotate pairs.

Lyra pointe shoes are made-to-order, which can take up to six weeks. Need shoes sooner? Check with your local store to see what they have in stock!

Lyra is available at authorized Gaynor Minden retailers around the globe. Contact your nearest store to inquire about stock availability.

If your local Gaynor Minden retailer doesn’t carry Lyra, ask them for it! Often, stores carry what they think their clients want. If you don’t tell them that they’re missing something you want to purchase, they’ll never know! All authorized retailers can order Lyra pointe shoes.

Lyra pointe shoes are subject to our regular return policy.

Europa pointe shoes are subject to our regular exchange policy.

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