Summary

We spent 9 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what sneaker fanatics think:

8 reasons to buy

  • The majority of the wearers have shared that the Puma Thunder Desert is very comfortable.
  • Few respondents have mentioned that this sneaker is the perfect cheap alternative to the pricey Yeezy Runner 500 Blush and the Balenciaga Triple S.
  • Its subdued colorway is ideal for wearers who want to sport dad shoes without being too loud, some video reviewers have shared.
  • Many buyers love the muted colorways that are easy to pair up with any casual attire.
  • Most of the reviewers highly recommend this sneaker to their friends. 
  • This pair runs true to size, others informed.
  • Buyers can avail this at an affordable price range.
  • A couple of buyers are surprised that the creasing is not bad compared to other the dad shoes they have tried.

2 reasons not to buy

  • A few buyers do not like that this kick makes their feet look bulky.
  • A user criticizes the prone to dirt white rope-like laces of the Thunder Desert from Puma

Bottom line

The Puma Thunder Desert displays a subdued color scheme while bringing an exaggerated tooling and craftsmanship. This model is the answer to the trend's thirst for chunky sneakers without grabbing too much attention.

Comfort-wise, this dad shoe has been inserted with equally unapologetic cozy elements suitable for day-long strutting. As a whole, the Puma Thunder Desert deserves a spot in the leading options for buyers wanting to dive into the dad sneakers trend.

Facts

Style: Retro
Top: Low
Inspired from: Running
Collection: Puma Thunder
Closure: Laces
Material: EVA, Mesh, Nubuck, Rubber Sole
Price: $120
Colorways: Beige, Black, Green, White
Size
Small True to size Large
Fit
Tight Loose
Support
Neutral Stable
Flexibility
Stiff Flexible
Breathability
Warm Breathable
Cushioning
Firm Plush
Durability 9/10
Comfort 9/10
Traction 8/10
See more facts

Expert Reviews

Experts are sneaker fanatics, who post reviews at youtube, directly at RunRepeat or at their own websites. Each expert is categorized from level 1 to level 5 based on expertise. See stats on expert reviews and how we calculate scores here.

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This model is available in men's and women's sizing in medium width. Like most lace-up sneakers, this model uses rope-like laces to provide a snug and personalized fit. Also, the inner heel support further intensifies the cozy feel.

The low-top Puma Thunder Desert displays authentic dad shoe elements while shrugging off the loud tones. Its upper is made of suede to boost sophistication with textured leather overlays for added character.

The desert dusk-hinted tones of this model create subdued colorways; thus, making this easier to style with virtually any casual, relaxed ensembles. Buyers can pick from the low-key colorways, such as Bright White/Grey Violet/Puma White, Natural Vachetta/Cream Tan, Smoke Green/Silver Green, and Puma Black.

While sporting a bulky profile, the minimalist color palette intensifies this pair's styling potential. Several influencers on Instagram have already featured this model in their one-off outfits. Most of them can be seen sporting this sneaker with shorts, skirts, rolled-up trousers, or joggers with shin-high socks for authentic dad look.

Aside from the chunky, layered sole of the Puma Thunder Desert, there are too many striking elements that make this pair remarkable compared to its predecessors and other dad kicks found on the market. The brand equipped this model with faux reptile skin on its eyestay, Puma Formstrip, and on the heel. This detail makes the Desert noticeable than the other iteration in the Thunder Pack.

Meanwhile, on its toebox, the brand added a leather overlay for added luxurious appeal. For a "rib cage" effect, a TPU system on the lateral side of the midfoot was also inserted. Additionally, the small pillow on the heel provides added comfort to the Achilles, making this kick not only fashionable but also with utmost comfortable feel.

The "dad shoe" trend made an extraordinary comeback in 2018. Although this profile has been around for years, this chunky silhouette is currently enjoying the limelight as being the 'it fashion' for the modern trend. This resurrection can be credited to the luxury brands that have gotten so into the dad shoe game.

Dad shoes can be described as the footwear that someone chooses because of its function and utility regardless of its fashion state. Case in point is the Adidas Stan Smith. Almost all fathers from the 80s until the 90s sported this versatile and brilliant kick which gained popularity for its undeniable comfort and timeless look. Most dad shoes have a clunky profile, which somehow dubbed them as the epitome of 'uncool' kicks.

It has been said that Stan Smith started the dad shoe craze which grew out of the normcore trend when it came back in the market in 2014. Until today, people choose Stan Smith not because of its style but because of its practicality. As years passed, these dad shoes have managed to shake off its tasteless reputation as more people craved for a fashion piece that will break the seriousness of fashion.

Several brands have been bitten by the dad shoe craze, the most popular ones are the Yeezy Runner, Balenciaga Triple S, and the Luis Vuitton Archlight sneakers. Although late, Puma surprisingly jumped to the chunky kick craze by introducing their take on the bulky kick, which is an entirely fresh new silhouette in the German brand's impressive lineup.

  Puma Thunder Collection

The Puma Thunder collection is composed of three silhouettes, all drenched in dad shoes' elements - chunky and old style. This series is the answer of the Jumping Cat to the modern market's appetite for sneakers with utmost comfort, and best aesthetics the dad kick market has to offer. Although considered a second swizz to the pricey Balenciaga Triple S, many do not know that this silhouette was stirred from a profile originated in the Puma's backyard, the Puma x Alexander McQueen Tech Runner Lo.

Included in this collection is the Puma Thunder Desert, the last iteration released in the market. The Desert iteration bears almost identical elements of its predecessors, but this model's tooling and color options are its key differentiator. It lacks bold colors and the metallic details, and displays monotoned colors on its suede and textured leather overlays.

  • This pair has pull tabs on its tongue and the heel for easy on and off.
  • The extra-thick IMEVA midsole delivers lightweight cushioning for a more comfortable feel.
  • This pair approximately weighs 396.8 grams.
  • Puma branding is debossed on the leather tongue and heel pull tab.

Comparison

Author
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Danny McLoughlin

Danny is a sneakerhead turned sneaker industry expert that believes a good outfit begins from the feet up. His aunt currently isn't speaking to him for wearing a pair of kicks at his cousin's wedding. He spends most of his time trying to keep on top of the latest releases, hitting up his contacts and doing what needs to be done to secure his next pickup. Danny has been featured in prestigious publications such as The Washington Post, The Irish Times, Footwear News and the like.

daniel@runrepeat.com