Best Barefoot/Minimalist Trail Running Shoes for Women

Merrell Women's Vapor Glove 2 Barefoot Trail Running Shoe
  • They make you feel as you are totally barefoot
  • Incredibly comfortable and stretchy
  • Sleek fit with a roomy toebox
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Barefoot-style trail runner in mesh with traditional laces, breathable mesh lining, and Vibram sole. This featherlight trail shoe has 0mm cushioning with 0mm heel-to-toe drop. 

The minimal sole may not be for everyone. Bland design. 


The Merrell Vapor Glove 2 Barefoot Trail Running Shoe was designed to unleash your natural side. It's for those of you who want to feel like you're actually running barefoot. We couldn't believe our eyes when we saw that they come with a zero-drop ground contact. If that doesn't blow you away, maybe the Vegan friendly materials will. We loved the sock-like fit that conforms to your feet allowing for extreme flexibility. However, since these lightweight shoes give your feet the "barefoot" feel, you may be want to be careful with those long runs. We don't want you getting any injuries.

Comfort and fit: The fit feels like you're wearing a sock with a sole, literally. If you don't like a lot weighing you down, you'll definitely love these shoes. In fact, these shoes only weigh 5.4 ounces. Now that's impressive. The sizing for the Vapor Glove is slightly larger than expected, so size down .5 or one entire size for the best fit. We love how soft the inside is, which means you can wear these runners sockless. The simplistic design includes a zero heel drop which means that your feet will have full foot-to-ground contact. 

Traction: The Vibram sole is smooth enough for road running, yet provides enough traction for trails as well. It is broken up into four different places to provide the most possible flexibility including the big toe, small toes, midfoot, and heel. As a bonus, the treads are deep and act like little cleats when you run uphill or downhill through the trails.

Breathability: This shoe is very breathable. You can easily feel air through them, even while in motion. However, because these shoes are so well ventilated, you may not be able to wear them in the winter. 

Price: The $85 price is somewhat on the competitive side, of course, but these lightweight shoes are definitely worth it. If you are a zero drop enthusiast, these are worth a try.


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