Brooks Pure Connect

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The Pure Connect is new to the Brooks line and is the most minimal of the four Pure Project shoes. The upper is a wide open mesh covered with a thin, gauzy mesh so there’s good breathability. A bit of support comes from the sandwiched, no-sew overlays and a sturdy heel counter. The midsole features the 4-millimeter heel-to-toe drop geometry shared by this line and is a blend of EVA and Brooks’ DNA polymer instead of the heavier configuration that uses a DNA insert. The outersole is composed of scant islands of rubber that provide durability while allowing increased flexibility, particularly in the narrow gap between the big toe and the rest for a more dynamic toe-off. The combination of quality, versatility, and features earned the Pure Connect our Best Shoe award in the Minimalist category.

Testers: “Even though these shoes are very light and minimal, the reinforced toe doesn’t lay down on my toes. The roomy fit lets my forefoot play as it wants. The shoe snugs up around the instep nicely. On harder/longer runs, my arches would like just a little more support, but they are getting stronger.”

Sizes: M 7–13,14; W 5–12 Weight: 8.1 oz. (men’s 11); 6.5 oz. (women’s 8) Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4 mm