Best Lightweight Shoes Reviewed & Rated

Sturdy, thick, and heavy shoes have their uses, however, lightweight shoes can be just as high quality, offer sufficient support, and be comfortable. A lightweight shoe can help you run faster and longer, but it is also great for travel and work environments that require you to be fast on your feet. The most lightweight shoes are known as minimalist shoes, and they’ve gotten some flack over the years for not offering enough cushioning and support for the feet. Shoe manufacturers have taken these concerns into account and many have created more cushioned and more supportive shoes to protect your feet from injury. 

Last Updated: January 10, 2018
By Alice Frutis:

This update listed the ten best lightweight shoes. All of these shoes weigh 7 ounces or less. Relevant links have been added throughout the article to relevant content which may help you make an educated decision before you buy your next pair of shoes.

Breathability in your lightweight shoes helps keep your feet cool and reduce the development of odors in the shoe. The breathability feature allows your feet to dry more quickly, as well, so you’ll have fewer blisters. Many lightweight shoes are built with breathability in mind.

Featured Recommendations

Merrell Vapor Glove 2
  • Merrell Vapor Glove 2
  • 4.7 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Sticky Vibram Outsole
  • Price: See Here
ON Cloud
  • ON Cloud
  • 4.7 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Synthetic Sole
  • Price: See Here
Skechers Performance 4 Noble
  • Skechers Performance 4 Noble
  • 4.4 out of 5
    Our rating
  • 5GEN Midsole Cushioning
  • Price: See Here

Don’t write off lightweight shoes as only being running shoes. Many lightweight shoes sport a sleek and stylish vibe which would be perfect for a day at work. Plus, they can be comfortable, making a long day on your feet better.

This list of the best lightweight shoes focused on finding the very best shoes which weigh 7 ounces or less. Hopefully, you will be able to find a pair that would be perfect for you. If not, then you’ll have more tools at your disposal to find the perfect lightweight shoe for you.

 

 

 

15 Best Lightweight Shoes

 

 

 

1. Merrell Vapor Glove 2

The Merrell Vapor Glove 2 is a sleek running shoe, but it can be used in some work environments, as well, depending on the dress code. The men’s version weighs 5.8 ounces and the women’s version weighs a feather-light 4.8 ounces. Its synthetic mesh construction allows your feet to breathe and reduces odor and blistering from wet feet.
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Sticky Vibram Outsole
The sticky Vibram outsole of this shoe gives you maximum traction and safety in any environment. No more slips and falls. It’s excellent for working or running in slippery conditions.

Rubber Sole
To reduce the impact of your feet on the ground on a hard run, this shoe sports a rubber sole. This sole cushions your feet to protect you from injury.

Cost and Value
The Merrell Vapor Glove 2 rests in the middle-to-high price range. The Merrell Vapor Glove 2 is a sleek, stylish shoe with good traction, and it’s made without animal products.
Pros
  • Sticky Vibram Outsole
  • Rubber Sole
  • Mesh Construction
  • Vegan-Friendly
  • M-Select Fresh insole
Cons
  • May wear down quickly
  • Outsole may come loose

2. ON Cloud

The ON Cloud is built with athletics in mind, but it can be used for casual strolls, too. The men’s version weighs 7 ounces, and the women’s version weighs 5.9 ounces. It’s a little heavier than some of the other shoes on this list, but it compensates for that with padding and cushioning for maximum comfort on your run.
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CloudTec Sole
The CloudTec Sole is unique in that it is soft only as your feet land, and it immediately firms up to support your feet as you move to step off.

Deep Flex Grooves
The Deep Flex Grooves allow for more flexibility and a more natural range of motion as you move. The shoe follows your foot’s natural movement for maximum comfort and efficiency.

Cost and Value
The ON Cloud can be found in the middle-to-high price range. The CloudTec sole and padded tongue and collar guarantee a comfortable walk or run, making it worth the price.
Pros
  • CloudTec Sole
  • Deep Flex Grooves
  • Mesh Construction
  • Padded Tongue and Collar
  • Supportive Synthetic Overlays
  • Reflective Details
Cons
  • Sizing may run small
  • Too shallow for orthotic inserts

3. Saucony Kineta Relay

The Saucony Kineta Relay is a stylish, sleek, and lightweight shoe that comes in a variety of color schemes. The men’s version weighs 6.8 ounces and the women’s version weighs 5.2 ounces. The Kineta Relay comes with a rubber sole to reduce the impact as you walk or run and it sports no-tie shoelaces for ease of use.
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EVA+ Cushioning
The EVA+ Cushioning is light and flexible, making your day in these shoes comfortable. The cushioning protects your feet from injury and its flexibility allows you to move more freely.

Traction Sole with Triangular Lugs
You need to know your shoe won’t slip, especially in environments which have slick or wet floors. The traction sole on this shoe grips the ground so you’ll be safer.

Cost and Value
The Saucony Kineta Relay has one of the lowest price tags on this list, but it can also be found at much higher prices. However, Saucony is a high-quality brand.
Pros
  • EVA+ Cushioning
  • Traction Sole with Triangular Lugs
  • Fabric and Synthetic Construction
  • Rubber Sole
  • No-Tie Shoelaces
Cons
  • Narrow toebox
  • Not much arch support

4. Altra One 2.5

4. Altra One 2.5
The Altra One 2.5 is a sleek, minimalist athletic shoe, but it looks nice enough for some work environments. Its lightweight, cushioned structure reduces foot fatigue during a long day. This shoe weighs only 6.3 ounces. The Altra One bears InnerFlex midsole flex grooves that team up with an EVA midsole for the most shock absorption and comfort.
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Zero Drop Platform
Unlike other minimalist shoes, the Zero Drop Platform in the Altra One 2.5 means the sole is level from your heel to your forefoot with a slightly curved toebox.

Foot-Shaped Toebox
The foot-shaped toebox in this shoe gives your toes more space, which doesn’t squeeze your toes. A more spacious toebox gives you more stability as you walk, run, or stand.

Cost and Value
The Altra One 2.5 can be found in the middle price range. Its soft EVA midsole and foot-shaped toebox make it a comfortable, cost-effective investment in your foot health.
Pros
  • Zero Drop Platform
  • Foot-Shaped Toebox
  • Dual Layer EVA Midsole
  • InnerFlex Midsole Flex Grooves
  • Fabric and Synthetic Construction
Cons
  • Inflexible toebox
  • Low padding in upper

5. Merrell Bare Access Arc 4 Trail

5. Merrell Bare Access Arc 4 Trail
The Merrell Bare Access Arc 4 Trail is a lightweight, vegan-friendly running shoe that comes in a few colors. The darker colored versions of this shoe could be good for some work environments, as they look nice and aren’t too flashy. The men’s version of this shoe weighs 5.7 ounces, and the women’s version weighs only 4.5 ounces.
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Mesh Construction
The lightweight mesh construction of this shoe makes it especially breathable, so your feet don’t get as hot and sweaty. This reduces the occurrence of foul odors and painful blisters.

0mm Drop
To reduce impact and to support the natural movement of your feet, the Base Access Arc 4 Trail has no drop-off from heel to forefoot. The toe is curved upwards.

Cost and Value
This shoe is in the upper middle-to-high price range. It is an excellent running or walking shoe which is machine washable, so you can clean it regularly. It’s also vegan-friendly.
Pros
  • Mesh Construction
  • 0mm Drop
  • EVA Midsole
  • Vegan-Friendly
  • Machine Washable
Cons
  • Sole May Come Loose
  • High Arch

6. Vibram FiveFingers V-Run

6. Vibram FiveFingers V-Run
The Vibram FiveFingers V-Run shoe has individual pockets for each toe. This shoe resembles a glove designed for your feet. This shoe is the lightest on the list with the men’s version weighing 4.8 ounces and the women’s weighing only 3.7 ounces. It’s a synthetic shoe designed for athletics, not for business. It bears a cushioned, antimicrobial insole.
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Polyester Lycra Stretch Mesh
This shoe’s polyester and lycra mesh construction is stretchy and will move with your foot. The mesh is made with materials is used in compression socks, guaranteeing the shoe’s flexibility.

VI-Lite Midsole
The VI-Lite Midsole is designed to be lightweight cushioning that is responsive to your footfalls. This light cushioning absorbs the shock your feet endure as you run, jog, or walk.

Cost and Value
The Vibram FiveFingers V-Run has one of the highest price points, but it can be found for lower prices. However, its uses are more limited, as its design is unconventional.
Pros
  • Polyester Lycra Stretch Mesh
  • VI-Lite Midsole
  • XS Run Outsole
  • Mont Compound Rubber Pads
  • EVA Antimicrobial Insole
Cons
  • Uncomfortable toebox seam
  • Runs large

7. Merrell Pace Glove 3

7. Merrell Pace Glove 3
The Merrell Pace Glove 3 comes in a few colors which complement its simple style. This shoe weighs 6.8 ounces in the men’s version and a scant 5.8 ounces in the women’s version. This Merrell brand shoe would work well for athletics, but it would also be a good choice for work environments without a strict dress code.
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Omni-Fit Lacing System
The Omni-Fit Lacing System eliminates the need to tie your shoes, as the laces can simply be pulled to tighten. This system ensures a secure fit, which reduces painful rubbing.

TrailProtect Pad
The Merrell Pace Glove 3’s TrailProtect Pad is a sturdy outsole used to protect your feet from anything you may step on and injure your foot from rocks to branches.

Cost and Value
The Merrell Pace Glove 3 can be found in the middle-to-high range. Merrell is a trusted brand and the many features make it a great deal. It’s vegan-friendly, as well.
Pros
  • Omni-Fit Lacing System
  • TrailProtect Pad
  • Breathable Mesh Construction
  • Padded Collar
  • Zero Drop Platform
  • Vegan-Friendly
  • M-Select Fresh Insole
Cons
  • High arch
  • Inflexible sole

8. Saucony Virrata

8. Saucony Virrata
The Saucony Virrata is a stylish athletic shoe made of a breathable mesh. It has a synthetic sole, and it bears EVA midsole cushioning. It boasts a sturdy rubber outsole, too. This shoe is a little heavier than some of the others on this list with the men’s version weighing 6.5 ounces and the women’s version weighing 6 ounces.
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HydraMAX Moisture-Wicking Collar Lining
This specially designed collar lining sheds water to keep your feet dry and happy. Its moisture-wicking properties also make it breathable, for cool feet on the trail or at work.

XT-900 Traction Outsole
A Saucony exclusive, the XT-900 is made of carbon rubber and designed for long-lasting, durable traction. The better your shoe’s traction is, the safer you will be on the go.

Cost and Value
This shoe is firmly in the middle price range, making it more affordable than some shoes. Its reflective details make it a safer bet for low-light running or working environments.
Pros
  • HydraMAX Moisture-Wicking Collar Lining
  • XT-900 Traction Outsole
  • Breathable Mesh
  • Low-Light Reflective Details
  • EVA Midsole
Cons
  • Narrow toebox
  • Decals may fall off

9. Merrell Mix Master Glide Move 2

9. Merrell Mix Master Glide Move 2
The Merrell Mix Master Glide Move 2 is a simple shoe which looks nice but is also functional. This shoe weighs the heaviest at 7 ounces. Weighing a few more ounces than most of the other shoes listed here, this shoe packs a punch with extra cushioning, padding, and reflective overlays. Don these shoes for a casual run or marathon.
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Reflective Overlays
This shoe’s reflective overlays help people see you when you’re out at night. This is an important safety feature for anyone who enjoys an evening or night walk or run.

Protective Toe Cap
The protective toe cap on this shoe is designed to protect your toes from injury. Whether you are doing cross-country or washing dishes, this feature could save you some pain.

Cost and Value
This sporty shoe rests in the upper middle-to-high price range. If you want a lightweight shoe with more cushioning and comfort, this shoe would be a great fit for you.
Pros
  • Reflective Overlays
  • Protective Toe Cap
  • Lace-Up Shoe
  • Plush Tongue and Collar
  • Moisture-Wicking Mesh Lining
  • MBound Midsole
  • Removable EVA Footbed
Cons
  • Poor arch support
  • Narrow toebox

10. Skechers Performance 4 Noble

10. Skechers Performance 4 Noble
The Skechers Performance 4 Noble is simple in design and not very flashy, but it’s a strong running shoe. It weighs only 5 ounces, making it one of the lightest shoes on the list. It sports a breathable mesh construction with very few seams. As its color scheme and design aren’t flashy, it could work in a casual office environment.
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GoGa Max Midsole
One of two midsoles in the Skechers Performance 4 Noble, this midsole fosters rebound to energize your steps. The high rebound removes some of the effort required for each step.

5Gen Midsole
The 5Gen Midsole is a powerful, lightweight cushioning midsole that teams up with the GoGa Max Midsole to cushion your feet to maximize your comfort and minimize any foot fatigue.

Cost and Value
This shoe has the lowest price point on this list. It rests in the low-to-middle price range. This versatile shoe can be used at work and on a hard run.
Pros
  • GoGa Max Midsole
  • 5Gen Midsole
  • Soft Fabric Lining
  • Breathable Mesh
  • Rubber Sole
Cons
  • Runs large
  • Poor arch support

11. Soulsfeng Running Shoes

11. Soulsfeng Running Shoes
Relatively new in the world of sneakers, Soulsfeng was founded in 2016, in New York. Hoping to give everyone unique, comfortable, sneakers the couple who started this venture also know how important innovation and new technology is when dealing with lightweight shoes. With unique options like lightweight shoes that glow in the dark or have a spray painted pattern, you are sure to stand out in the crowd. Soulsfeng also gives us exactly what we need with breathable fabric that keeps your feet cool and comfortable, and a sock liner that keeps your feet from painful blisters and chafing. These lightweight shoes are good for any occasion and we believe that Soulsfeng will continue to grow and continue to offer high-quality shoes.
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FlyKnit Technology
FlyKnit Technology keeps your feet feeling great in super light hugging yarns and fabrics that give the upper of this lightweight shoe superior breathability. Keeping your feet dry during those long walks or throughout your busy day is very important. Wet feet can lead to blisters, chafing, and fungal or bacterial growth. Keeping dry feet will keep you moving through all life’s adventures. Soulsefeng has given us a great feature with the use of FlyKnit Technology. It is important to note that FlyKnit Technology gives you a precision fit because of the knit fit forms to your foot like a second skin. Keeping you and your feet exceptionally comfortable.

Great For All Life's Adventures
Versatility is key when looking for a pair of lightweight shoes. It takes enough time to find one pair of shoes for everyone in the family that will support, and keep their feet feeling great throughout any activity. No one wants to find different shoes for hiking, biking, running, walking, the gym, and all the other excursions you may decide to go on. The Soulsfeng Running Shoes will give you a comfortable fit with a cushioned insole liner, and stay with you throughout all the situations you find yourself getting into. Great for the whole family, these give you awesome, fresh styles and will keep you active and feeling great for the next day.

Cost and Value
Lightweight shoes that will stroll through your busy life with ease don’t have to cost a fortune. The Soulsfeng Running Shoes feel great and keep the bank account happy too. Fit your whole family with a reliable shoe that gives a unique sense of style in each pair. All for a price that may surprise you at how reasonable it is. We look forward to what Soulsfeng will make in the future, knowing their passion and innovation in lightweight shoes.
Pros
  • Great for All Ages
  • Very Unique Styles
  • Supportive Heel
  • Excellent for Daily Wear
  • Top Quality
  • Superior Price
Cons
  • Not for Narrow Feet

12. Inov-8 FastLift 370 BOA

12. Inov-8 FastLift 370 BOA
A custom fit like you have never seen before the Inov-8 FastLift 370 BOA, offers a lightweight shoe that removes pressure points with a dual-BOA dial system. Superior performance and stability due to the outside heel cage and Power-Truss Technology. These lightweight shoes are also exceptionally flexible. The forefoot of this shoes has Meta-Flex Technology to ensure these shoes move with you. Made with the gym in mind Inov-8 offers a top quality shoe that is sure to help you reach new points in your workout.
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Customizable Fit
We are all used to lacing up our sneakers and heading out for the day. Often we find the need to tighten or loosen our laces while on a long walk or hike through the woods. Laces in shoes tend to cause painful pressure points and adjusting them can be difficult depending on the situation you find yourself in. The dual-BOA dial system gives you quick easy access to adjustments. It is also important to note that this system removes the concern of pressure points. Slide your foot into these lightweight shoes and you will see that they feel like they were made just for you.

Enhanced Stability
Power-Truss Technology paired with an external heel cage gives great stability to these lightweight shoes. Particularly important if you love weightlifting. These shoes give you the base you have been looking for and helps to ensure your feet stay planted where you put them. Another awesome feature that will help you in all your adventures is the power transfer that you will see when wearing these lightweight shoes.

Cost and Value
A performance driven shoe that uses the most advanced technologies and also gives you great support, stability, comfort, and ease costs quite a bit more than the other lightweight shoes in our guide. While they will be an investment you will see after wearing them to the gym, how awesome they are, what great power transfer they give you, and how great your feet feel after a killer day at the gym. You will not be disappointed if you decide to invest more in these superior lightweight shoes.
Pros
  • Incredible Heel Support
  • Enough Room in Toe Box for Toes to Move Naturally
  • Exceptionally Easy to Adjust with Dual-BOA System
  • Easy On and Easy Off
  • Consistent Stability
Cons
  • Gym Use Only
  • May Be Too Wide for Narrow Feet
  • Stiffer Than Expected

13. Mizuno Wave Hitogami 3

13. Mizuno Wave Hitogami 3
Guided by the true idea of sportsmanship, Mizuno, has built a brand that athletes across the world have trusted. These lightweight shoes will improve performance, feel great, and last through all of the activities you may get involved in. Responsive foot strike and a three-panel construction will give the minimalist exactly what they have been looking for. Less cushion and superior flexibility make this shoe really move with you, on your longest journeys.
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Mizuno Wave Technology
When you are running the responsiveness of your foot strike can make or break your run. A lightweight shoe offers good bounce and will keep your stride going for miles. Mizuno’s Wave technology offers a quick response during your foot strike and springs you forward with ease. Allowing your foot to move naturally, giving you the right amount of cushion and evenly dispersing the impact of the foot strike this lightweight shoe will have you exceeding your mileage goals on a daily basis.

Mizuno Dynamotion Fit
Want to feel like your shoes disappear off your feet after you put them on? The three-panel construction in this lightweight shoe will give you just what you are looking for. Mizuno Dynamotion Fit is a lightweight combination of stretch mesh and flex eyelets which naturally moves with the runner. A lot of running shoes are much bulkier and can detriment the runner's stride and times because of the increased weight. Dynamotion overcomes what most lightweight shoes cannot, they really respond and move with your feet. The upper stretches as needed and your heel will stay locked down keeping your feet where they need to be through your longest adventures.The superior fit of the stretch mesh keeps your foot in place and promotes the perfect strike, every time.

Cost and Value
Top performing, lightweight shoes do not have to cost a fortune. The Mizuno Wave Hitogami 3 is tested and trusted by athletes around the world and none of them broke the bank to buy them. Keep your feet cool, dry, and comfortable and price that makes everyone comfortable. It’s nice to know there are still affordable, quality, products on the market today that we can trust to perform as we expect it to. Not just today but every day that we decide it’s time to go on an adventure.
Pros
  • Great for the Minimalist Shoe Wearer
  • Low Profile
  • Great Price
  • Open and Airy Toe Box
  • Help in Prevention of Shin Splints
Cons
  • May Need to Order a Half Size Up
  • Not Good for Wide Feet

14. Adidas Adizero Boston 6

14. Adidas Adizero Boston 6
Adidas has been a leader in the world of lightweight shoes for many generations. Forever growing and giving us great innovation and technology the Adizero Boston 6 is no exception. It offers superior responsive cushioning and the Torsion System to make sure the middle section of the foot stays supported and comfortable. Very breathable with a mesh upper, the Adidas Adizero Boston 6, will help you reach and exceed your adventure goals, all the while, keeping your feet feeling great.
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Torsion System
This arch supporting system allows your feet to adapt to different surfaces without causing excess motion that may lead to pain and injury within your foot. The midfoot support helps ensure correct movement and helps fight over flexion in your arch, which helps keep your feet healthy and feeling great. The Torsion System will give you great control while moving and will give you the support throughout your foot that you have been looking for in a superior lightweight shoe.

Continental Rubber Outsole
Many of us decide whether we are going to exercise inside or outside by looking out the window and seeing what the weather is doing. Wet conditions can be slippery and sometimes lightweight shoes can’t keep your feet under you where they belong. Adidas Continental Rubber Outsole not only gives you grip in the gym but also performs perfectly outside, whether it is wet or dry. In addition, you will get great traction, which is essential when heading out for your daily walk or run, and conditions are a little bit slick

Cost and Value
Made by a brand trusted by millions, the Adidas Adizero Boston 6 lightweight shoes will cost you more than most of the shoes in our guide. While not the most expensive shoe, if you are an avid runner looking for a change try these out and I think you will find how easily they become your favorite lightweight shoe. They will stay with you through your longest journeys and keep your feet feeling great. While a little more costly can break a deal, this investment is one really worth taking.
Pros
  • Unmatched Comfort and Durability
  • Locks Your Foot Down Tight
  • Ultra Lightweight But Still Gives Great Cushion Where Needed
  • Great for Trainers and Competitions
  • Excellent Responsiveness
Cons
  • Tongue May Bunge
  • May Need to Order a Size Up

15. Puma Carson

15. Puma Carson
A leader in the sports lifestyle, Puma has been offering top quality products to the world for years. Proven to give superior performance and advanced technologies to help you crush your active goals, the Puma Carson is built with an athlete in mind. From the blown rubber outsole to the textile upper and injected EVA insole, this lightweight shoe will show you a performance only seen in your dreams. Breathable and stylish, take these shoes with you on all of life’s journeys and find that you still have truly comfortable and supported feet until you call it quits for the night. Kick off your shoes and know tomorrow you will still feel great, slide them back on and head out to show the world what you're made of.
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EVERIDE Outsole
Durable and extremely lightweight, the EVERIDE Outsole is made of blown rubber that will last as long as you. Not only does this feature provide you exceptional cushioning and comfort it also helps resist impact. Dispersing the impact during the foot strike is a large concern for all runners. The blown rubber EVERIDE Outsole keeps the impact on your body to a minimum and gives you great traction and grip throughout your walk, run, or other activities you may find yourself involved in.

EcoOrthoLite Sock Liner Paired With EVA Insole
The EcoOrthoLite Sock Liner provides ultimate breathability and gives you a comfortable, supportive, hugging fit to your lightweight shoes. When adding the EVA insole to this shoe you find great comfort and superior support. The match of these two technologies will make you believe you are walking or running on a cloud. High performance with superior support and cushion where it is needed makes this lightweight shoe an awesome addition to your collection.

Cost and Value
These lightweight shoes fall into the middle range of pricing. They are quite affordable but you may have to stretch your budget depending on your personal situation to add these shoes into your rotation. Superior comfort, fit, feel, and durability does cost a bit more, however, your feet will thank you at the end of that killer run. If staying active and being on the go all the time this may be the shoe you want to consider.
Pros
  • Well Balanced
  • Great for All Day Wear
  • Feel Like You Are Walking on Air
  • No Break In Period
  • Superemely Lightweight
Cons
  • Sizing Issues

Whether you are running, walking, or working, a lightweight shoe can lessen foot fatigue and support the natural movement of your feet. Minimalist shoes, which are generally lightweight shoes with few bells and whistles, don’t have to be uncomfortable. Many come with cushioning and are made with flexible materials for optimum comfort. If you aren’t comfortable when you wear your shoe, you probably won’t wear them again.

As you are looking for your perfect lightweight shoe, consider the drop from heel to forefoot. Lower drops will lessen the impact of each step on your feet. The best lightweight shoes incorporate some form of cushioning, even if it isn’t much. Some cushioning is better than none. Many of the shoes on this list were vegan-friendly, which is something you may want to consider as you shop.

When you’re looking at different lightweight shoes, don’t just grab the one with the smallest weight. Consider what you are willing to sacrifice in the design of your shoe. Hopefully, this list has helped you pick out an excellent lightweight shoe, or at least gave you some ideas for where to look.

 

Criteria Used to Evaluate the Best Lightweight Shoes

Fit

Our feet naturally swell as our days go on. Depending on what your day looks like, and what you do, you can see a lot of swelling by the end of the day. If your shoes are too tight, it can lead to pain, pressure sores, hotspots, and in general, uncomfortable feet. A shoe that is too loose can lead to a lot of the same problems. In addition, you will also find ankle stability to be a real problem with shoes that are too loose.

Know your feet. That is the first step to making sure you are getting a fit that really promotes good posture, correct foot positioning, and of course a comfortable ride. So, what do I mean by knowing your feet? Let’s start by talking about width.

  • Narrow – If you have narrow feet and have ever worn a shoe that was too wide, I’m sure you noticed your feet slipping and sliding around inside them. Why is this a problem? When your feet slide around you lose stability and can also cause abrasions and blisters from excessive rubbing. If you find even after tightening your shoe that your feet and ankles move around easily, you need to find a different shoe. It is also important to note that extra ankle movement can lead to injuries like rolling or spraining of the joint. If this happens you may find yourself out of the game for a while. The moral of the story here, my narrow-footed friends, is your shoe needs to hug your foot and support it, not let it wiggle around wherever it wants to.

Narrow Medium Wide

  • Medium – Medium sizing is probably the easiest to deal with. Not really narrow and not really wide is easy for shoe companies to accommodate. Finding yourself in this category, you still need to make sure your shoe is not too wide or too narrow. As we stated above, if your shoe is too wide you will not have the support in your ankle, instep and other areas of the foot because there will be too much room and your feet will have the ability to move around in the shoe. On the other side, if a shoe is too narrow, you will have pinched and painful toes. You may also find, if a shoe is too narrow, that it squeezes the arch which will make you very uncomfortable. Lastly, with a medium width, you still need to look at how the foot sits in the shoe to make sure you get that hugging feeling when you time them up.
  • Wide – It used to be very difficult to find a quality lightweight shoe that fit wide feet. In recent years it is becoming easier due to the fact a ton of manufacturers listened to their customers and started giving the option for wide width.  The point made with standard width and narrowness goes for wide feet as well. You need a bit of room for your toes to spread out naturally and you want a comfortable, supportive, hugging fit on the rest. If you have wide feet I am sure you have pushed into a pair of lightweight shoes just to find your feet screaming because your feet were suffocating inside.

After you figure out the width you require for a great fitting shoe then it’s just a matter of time until you find exactly what you have been looking for. Our guide gives options for all widths in life and hopefully, you can find the perfect match.

In addition, you need to take into account swelling, as I mentioned before. If you are in between widths in the morning, as the day goes on the swelling in your feet may push them into a different category. If this is the case, you may want to consider ordering a larger width or make sure to buy a shoe that adjusts easily. This will ensure your feet have enough room and you stay comfortable throughout your day.

Construction Best Lightweight ShoesConstruction

How your lightweight shoes are constructed can really make the difference in any activity you find yourself in. An average adventure or one that you crush because you are walking on air and your feet feel great depends on the construction and performance ability of your shoes.

The outer panels of your lightweight shoe should be made of mesh and synthetic leather. Mesh is very breathable and helps to keep water out due to its structure and design. Synthetic Leather is much lighter than natural leather. It aids in keeping water out and attaches well to the bottom of the shoe. In addition, synthetic leather is also very flexible, durable, and it dries very quickly.

The outsole also plays a huge role in the construction and overall performance ability in lightweight shoes. When we say outsole, we literally mean the bottom of the shoe. If in need of a lightweight shoe, you want an outsole that is made of a shock absorbing, lightweight, even pressure dispersion, material. Typically, you will want to look for something made of blown rubber, polyurethane, or a mixture of the two. Blown rubber is definitely the lightest, followed by a mixture, and Polyurethane outsoles tend to be the heaviest.

Construction is not just about the outside of the shoe. It is also about how it fits on the inside. You need a lightweight shoe that has an insole that keeps your feet cool, dry, comfortable, and doesn’t add a lot of weight. EVA insoles are great in all of those categories.

A lot of lightweight shoes also offer a sock-like liner. This hugs your foot and helps wick away sweat. Keeping your feet dry is always a top priority when trying to keep your feet healthy. A mesh or synthetic blend sock liner can help ensure your feet feel great at the end of a long day.

Last but not least, let’s take a minute and talk about the heel and toe of your lightweight shoe. The toe box should allow you enough room to stretch your toes out. Your feet naturally grip with your toes as you walk, that natural movement is important in keeping your feet feeling good. If your toes are pinched not only will your feet hurt but you will have a reduction in stability. The heel cup of your lightweight shoe should securely cup your heel. Holding your heel in place while you walk, run, hike, or participate in other activities, will stop painful blisters from forming and help in your performance due to a lack of slipping around in your shoe.

Flexibility Best Lightweight ShoesFlexibility

Finding the perfect balance between flexibility and support can be difficult. A shoe that is too flexible will not help support the foot during the pounding it takes while running or walking. A lightweight shoe should be flexible at the ball of the foot to provide natural motion. The flexibility in a shoe involves several factors.

First, looking at the ball of the foot. Your feet naturally roll when you run or walk. Some lightweight shoes offer a rocker bottom which really enhances the correct motion of your foot. Support in the arch is typically a bit stiffer leading to the front where you see more flexibility. If the support in the arch is too long for your feet you may find decreased flexibility and that can lead to painful shin splints and days out of the activities you love.

A shoe that is too flexible will not support the foot as well. Some people believe in the minimalist shoe. A minimalist shoe will not offer the support and cushion of other shoes, however, they are extremely flexible. Minimalist shoes make your feet do all the work and for some, that is an excellent feature.

The arch and heel of your lightweight shoes will be a bit stiffer. This is where extra cushion and support will help in force dispersion and pressure release. Your foot rocks from the back to the front. A supported heel means when you strike during your stride your feet and joints will not have to absorb all that pressure. You want to make sure your shoe feels great and moves with your feet. A stiff shoe may break in after time, do your best to find one that flexes correctly from the start and your feet will be able to hang with you through the toughest challenges.

FAQ Best Lightweight Shoes

Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

 

Q: What is the difference in a lightweight shoe and a regular shoe?

A: The simple answer is the weight of the shoe is lighter however, there is a lot more to it than that. The weight of your shoe depends on the cushioning and construction and different activities will require a different amount of cushion. Lightweight shoes that are not of the minimalist variety, do great at absorbing and distributing shock. This is very important when walking or running on hard surfaces. Heavier shoes add weight and stress to the runner’s joints and muscles. A heavy shoe can decrease a runner’s performance dramatically.

Lightweight shoes are built for performance. If you find that you have fallen in love with running, walking, or joining in at the local gym, a great pair of lightweight shoes can help you go that extra mile. If only talking about your daily wear shoes, lightweight shoes can be great if you are on your feet all day. Superior shock absorption and the walking on a cloud feeling will help you feel great even at the end of a long day.

Q: My feet hurt, will lightweight shoes help me?

A: Lightweight shoes may help your sore feet. Depending on what type of shoe you are currently wearing, you may need to look at what part of your foot is causing you pain. Flat feet, plantar fasciitis, high arches, supination, or pronation could be part of the issue.

Discovering the root of the problem will help solve what you need to buy to help your feet feel great on a daily basis. Lightweight shoes will help a variety of foot related problems and help you feel better at the end of a long day. It is important to note that lightweight shoes have vast differences and you not only need to find the root of the problem but also look at what shoe will give you support where you need it. Our guide has included a variety of supportive, comfortable, lightweight shoes and we are sure there is a pair that will have you feeling great in no time.

Q: When should I replace my lightweight running shoes?

A: We know how difficult it can be to part with your favorite running shoes. It is, however, important to make sure your feet are getting the support and shock absorption that is required to keep your muscles and joints feeling great.

Most quality running shoes are reliable for 300-500 miles. Depending on how your stride and heel strike impacts your shoe will decide how many miles your shoes will stay reliable. When your shoes need to be replaced you will start to notice it. You will have more impact and therefore your joints and muscles will take a bigger beating and you will feel it. If your favorite lightweight shoes are at this stage, it’s time to bite the bullet and get a new pair.

Ideally, you should try to buy a new pair of shoes before your favorites are completely unwearable. This gives you time to wear the new pair a few times intermittently with your broken in comfortable pair. Breaking in new running shoes can take time and integrating them in over a span of time can decrease blisters, abrasions, and sore feet that tend to occur when getting used to a new pair of shoes.

Q: What are the benefits of wearing a lightweight shoe compared stability control shoe?

A:  Lightweight shoes work wonderfully for anyone that has a neutral position from their ankle to their heel. If you have a problem with overpronation you may want to avoid lightweight shoes. Overpronation is when the ankle rolls in and the heel tilts out. This type of positioning needs a shoe that provides stability and keeps the ankle from rolling when landing as this can lead to injuries.

If overpronation is not a problem for you lightweight shoes will be a great addition to your shoe collection. Lightweight shoes are great for short races or beginning runners. They will help increase your speed and your muscles and joints will thank you for the shock absorbing ability of a great pair of lightweight shoes.

Finding yourself standing in the same position all day can also lead to very sore feet. A stability control shoe may be a little constricting for this type of situation. A superior lightweight shoe can make your feet feel like they are standing on air and therefore offer a quality you are looking for when standing in the same position is part of your everyday. Rocker style shoes are also really excellent for those that stand. The natural motion encourages you to move and helps circulation and comfort on those long days.

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