Merrell has a large line of minimal shoes and I have tried a few of them. My favorite is the Mary Jane style Pure Glove. It is made from the same last as the other models in the barefoot glove line. So same basic fit with different uppers.
I would prefer that the sole were flat. I think that in comparison with VIVOBAREFOOT's Kali the Kali has a fantastic sole and the Pure Glove have the better upper. So if the two had babies it would be a perfect sweet little Mary Jane shoe. This is what I think is so great about the Kigo Flits. They just need the velcro closure of the Merrells.....I am getting ahead of myself.
The Pure gloves weighed in at 5 and 3/4 oz on my kitchen scale. They fit is true to size. I am a solid 10.5 and these fit great in both width and length. They are nice and wide and allow for natural splay of my midfoot and toes.
They are zero drop which is great however there are 4mm midsole EVA cushions which I think is unnecessary although it seems to have broken down pretty quickly.
There is also a 1mm rocker plate at the forefoot that I don't like the feel of either but it is a slight difference and may not be noticeable to others. I can feel the tread and EVA and plate under my toes however less so off road.
The traction of the Pure Glove is pretty great. I can wear these anywhere. Vibrams and Merrell have been working together for years. Vibrams soles are on all of the "barefoot collection". They remind me of my VFF KSO Treks. This is great for off road but walking around the city its a bit annoying however not uncomfortable just left wanting. That's the tradeoff with multi purpose shoes. Its not perfect anywhere but great everywhere. They seem to be made quite well and I predict a long life of these shoes.
Where the Pure Gloves really shine is the upper. They have this fantastic stretchy fabric edge around the ankle. It is soft and yet keeps the shoe from moving around on your foot. The heel tab is also comfortable and does not rub the wrong way. The inside is soft and smooth with zero seam rubbing.
I think that the heel seat is a bit narrow. It fits well on my foot but I do have long skinny feet so it may be an issue for others with wider feet.
I did find that there was a time of breaking in my feet where the strap crosses my foot. It is a velcro closure so it has plenty of tension possibilities it was a matter of finding what was comfortable and getting used to the feel.
One of my issues with the Pace Glove in the Barefoot Collection (running shoe) is that the arch area of the shoe sucks up against my arch and drives me batty. Its not an arch support however it is uncomfortable and nearly impossible for me to forget about. The Pure Glove is made from the same last so they too have this arch area however with the width and adjust-ability of the velcro they are not an issue for me at all. So if you too had issues with the Pace Gloves for this reason I would imagine that you would like the Pure gloves much better in this regard.
They are quite flexible and much less substantial than what they look like in the photos. This has been my experience with all minimal shoes so far though. They always look bigger in the photos.
They are quite attractive shoes and I wear them with everything and will wear them with cute socks in the fall. They have many colors available to choose from so you can have a natural foot movement and fashion at the same time. They are not my favorite minimal Mary Jane but I do like them well enough.
Here are the bullet points from the websiteUPPER/LINING
• Lycra fabric and synthetic leather upper
• Hook and loop strap provides a precise and secure fit
• Non-removable microfiber footbed treated with Aegis® antimicrobial solution resists odor
• 4mm compression molded EVA midsole cushions
• 1mm forefoot shock absorption plate maintains forefoot flexibility and protects the foot by distributing pressure
• 0mm ball to heel drop keeps you connected to your terrain
• Wash as needed in cold water, gentle cycle and air dry
• Vibram® Trail Glove Sole/Rubber Compound TC-1
Women’s Weight: 4.4 ozs/124.8 gm (1/2 pair)
Those are ADORABLE! I really like them!
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