I Tried Lululemon's Blissfeel Sneakers, and I Never Want to Take Them Off

The Blissfeel Running Shoe is the brand's first attempt at footwear, and the sneakers are designed specifically for women's feet.

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Lululemon Blissfeel Shoes
Photo: Lululemon

It's a not-so-well-kept secret in the sneaker business that most shoes are designed based on a male foot (yes, even women's shoes). The obvious problem with designing shoes for women based on men's feet is that they're, well, different. But everyone's favorite activewear brand — Lululemon — is aiming to change this with a new leap into footwear. While there's certainly no shortage of footwear options today, shoes are a category Lululemon has yet to dive into — and the brand is putting women at the forefront of the new launch.

Closing the Gap in Women's Shoe Innovation

The brand first announced its highly anticipated plans to get into the footwear game several years ago and spent about four years developing the new shoes, according to George Robusti, Lululemon's vice president of footwear design. And it's clear that getting this first women's specific shoe totally right is the brand's first priority — they don't even have plans to launch a shoe for men until 2023. "In terms of foot morphology, there are clear scientific data differences in men's and in women's feet," says Robusti. "If you're doing a one-size-fits-all [shoe] you can feel it. So, that was our entry point...through the lens of understanding the foot morphology, how women's feet differ to men's and then building [a shoe based off of that]."

When designing a running shoe, the brand wanted to not only make supportive and stylish sneakers but shoes that would fit really well. "We just obsessed [over] every aspect of the shoe, beyond the initial fit," says Robusti. "From the seamless linings to the beautiful sort of molded packages around the heel, the collar to give you a nice snug fit. The tongue top is sort of scalped out to wrap around your foot versus cutting into it as you run...these are very considered small details that can add up to the bigger experience," he says.

"We intentionally started with women first because we saw an opportunity to solve for the fact that, more often than not, performance shoes are designed for men and then adapted for women," said Sun Choe, Lululemon's chief product officer in a press release. "That didn't sit well with us. Innovating for women is in Lululemon's DNA — now we're bringing that same expertise to footwear, and women were part of this journey every step of the way."

During their research and development phase, Lululemon scanned the feet of millions of women, took that data, and started making the Blissfeel shoes from scratch, testing and getting feedback from women testing the sneakers. It's that feedback that they say shaped the final collection of shoes — the Blissfeel running shoes (available now) the Chargefeel (a cross-training shoe), the Restfeel (a recovery slide), which both launch this summer, and the Strongfeel (a training shoe) which will launch in the fall — available in Lululemon stores and online. (FYI, price points range from $58 to $148.)

Putting the Lululemon Blissfeel Shoes to the Test

Needless to say, I was stoked at the opportunity to take the Lululemon Blissfeel Running Shoes (Buy it, $148, lululemon.com) out for a spin, and I pretty much haven't taken them off since.

As a fitness editor and certified trainer, I tend to do lots of different workouts and my weekly routine mix varies, to say the least. And even though these sneakers are designed for running, I was pleasantly surprised that they took me from a run one day, to a dance cardio class the next, and I even wore them during my weekly meditation-meets-HIIT and strength training class at Mind Body Project with zero complaints. When I first saw the Blissfeels I instantly loved the blush pink color and neon green accent — the perfect colors to take my workout look into spring and summer. But if pink is not your thing, no worries since the shoe comes in 10 different colors.

When I first slipped them on, I instantly noticed the support and cushioning (which is "an energy-filled underfoot foam cushioning technology," according to the brand) — it was just enough to give me some spring and bounce but did not feel overly padded or disruptive. The upper part of the sneaker is flexible too, and my ankle did not feel stiff or restricted in the shoe. If I could compare the fit and feel to other sneakers on the market, I'd put the Lululemon sneakers somewhere in between the Adidas Ultraboost (but with a bit more support, yet still flexible) and a Hoka One Bondi shoe (but not as cushioned).

The Blissfeel is a neutral running shoe, which is the type of shoe I typically run in (FWIW I was told by a running shoe fit specialist that neutral shoes are the best for my feet and my running gait.) When I first took them for a run outdoors I wasn't expecting a totally smooth run without needing to stop to adjust anything or deal with a blister,since the shoes are brand new, but honestly, none of that happened. They felt light, bouncy, supportive, and exactly what I look for in a running shoe as someone who runs more casually (aka I don't run races or long-distance, typically). I even had a dance cardio class at DanceBody later that day and decided to wear the Blissfeels since they were so comfortable. I swear by a specific style of shoes for my weekly dance classes and usually never stray, but I made an exception for the Lululemon sneakers, and my feet felt great during the entire high-impact class that involves a lot of jumping.

The TL;DR: if you're looking for a neutral running shoe that is also versatile (aka can easily take you from a run, to walking all over the city, and stand-up to other workouts like a dance or HIIT class) the Blissfeel is for you. I can't speak to how they hold up on super long runs or training periods for marathons or races — but as someone who plans to run outdoors more as the weather warms up — these will be my new go-to shoes. And based on my experience with the Blissfeel, you can sign me up for all the rest of the Lulu shoes from here on out.

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