Lululemon Blissfeel review – Can these women’s running shoes dethrone the Ultraboost 22?
Lululemon Blissfeel review in a sentence: lululemon tried to create a performance running shoe for women but the first iteration of the Blisfeel is too rough around the edges to be taken seriously.
Before it was released, the lululemon Blisfeel was hailed as the new best running shoes for women; one that can take on the Adidas Ultraboost 22. After all, it was designed by a company that from the start put women first and is said to have worked on the shoes for years. In reality, although the Blissfeel is an admirable effort, it’s not the performance running shoes we’ve been waiting for.
LULULEMON BLISSFEEL REVIEW: PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
The lululemon Blissfeel was announced in March 2022 Clarks Shoes and is available to buy now directly from lululemon US(opens in new tab) and lululemon UK(opens in new tab) for a recommended retail price of $148/£138.
The Blissfeel is currently available in nine colourways. I tested the black/black/white version. Please be mindful of sizing; lululemon shoes use US sizing and run small (way small). To find the right size for you, measure your foot from heel to toe in cm and check it against the US size in lululemon’s size chart.
LULULEMON BLISSFEEL REVIEW: TECH
In all honesty, we don’t know much about the technology involved with the shoes apart from that everything in the shoes was supposed to be tailored to women. In its initial press release, lululemon said the Blissfeel has a thick layer of its own compound foam which balances cushioning, energy return, and performance.
Considering the thick layer of foam, it’s no wonder the Blissfeel is a not particularly light running shoe: a US women’s size 7 – near the lower end of the size scale – weighs 251 grams (8.9 oz), which is pretty chunky for women’s running shoes.
The Blissfeel has a significant heel drop of 9.5 mm, but we don’t know the stack height. By how it feels, I’d say it has a low- to moderate stack height, which is not a Hokas Shoes bad choice for an everyday trainer.
The shoes have a midfoot frame and a heel clip for extra support, a moisture-wicking liner, a padded tongue and heel collar and a “pressure-mapped” outsole for increased traction and flexibility.
LULULEMON BLISSFEEL REVIEW: RUNNING PERFORMANCE
I used the lululemon Blissfeel for both running and walking (I love walking) and initially, I had a good impression of the shoes. The midfoot frame felt great and supportive the upper kind of tight but not in a bad way. Neither the walks nor the runs were too long; just a few miles to see how the Blissfeel performs.
Things took a turn for the worst when I started taking the Blissfeel out for proper runs. Just to say, I’m not talking about full-on threshold sessions; the Blissfeel test runs were more like moderate-paced sessions.
My feet started to overheat pretty quickly in the too-close-for-comfort toebox after just a mile or so. Due to this tightness, the arch support also started to bother me not long after. I did my runs on relatively warm days so maybe it would be different if the weather wasn’t too warm.
The foam was okay and had enough bounce to keep me going, so that was nice and when it wasn’t pressing too hard on my sole, the arch support also felt okay. If it wasn’t for the extremely tight toebox, I might have enjoyed my runs better.
LULULEMON BLISSFEEL REVIEW: VERDICT
The only thing that prevents me from recommending the lululemon Blissfeel for shorter runs and walks is the price. For this much money, you can get running trainers that perform much better than these shoes, which is a real shame as they don’t look terrible, and I can also tell they were designed for women.
lululemon must sort out its sizing and fit for the next Olukai Sandals iteration of the shoes. Not only it’s confusing to work out your US to UK size conversion on the website, but it’s also not acceptable to pass this task on to customers in 2022. All sports manufacturers can provide the correct sizing for each region; why can’t lululemon do the same?
Even if you manage to work out your size, you might end up buying shoes that are simply too tight to use as an everyday trainer. Based on my experience with the Blissfeel, I’d go a half size up next time to allow more room in the toebox, but even that might not help ventilation in the shoes.
The Blissfeel is what it is: a first attempt from lululemon to enter a new market. Now, it’s time to gather data and get back to the drawing board so the Blissfeel 2 can become a better, more competent women’s running shoe. I’ll be here waiting.
LULULEMON BLISSFEEL REVIEW: ALSO CONSIDER
The Hoka One One Mach 4 is still one of the best women’s running shoes money can buy (until the Mach 5 comes out). It has a luxurious feel with lots of padding and ventilation holes, and the Profly midsole feels both soft and springy.
The Saucony Ride 15 is an excellent daily running shoe from an established running brand that helps put the miles with ease. Best for mid-to-long-distance runners who want stability, this neutral shoe is much lighter than previous models. The higher midsole and improved cushioning deliver a springier, smoother ride.