Our verdict

Upon wearing the On Cloud 5, we finally understood the hype around this high-class footwear. It is a quality lifestyle shoe that shines as a daily driver and as an athleisure option. If you are someone living on the go, we can attest that you will be delighted with its weightless construction and the ease of on-and-off. This shoe just disappears on the foot.

Pros

  • Perfect for all-day wear
  • Unbelievably lightweight
  • Can do low-impact workouts
  • Amazing in-shoe feel
  • Very breathable
  • Super easy on-off
  • Great flexibility
  • Regular laces are added
  • Sustainable materials (44%)

Cons

  • Not for wide feet
  • Lacks durability
  • Outsole catches pebbles

Audience verdict

89
Great!
  • Top 8% most popular walking shoes

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Who should buy the On Cloud 5

This is a fine shoe if you want a fusion of classy and sporty for daily use. This On Cloud is ready for walks of any distance, long hours of standing at work, travelling, or simply enjoying your weekend leisure. What makes the shoe really stand out though is its extreme lightness. It is perfect for the fans of lightweight walking shoes.

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As a nice bonus, it can also be used for light home workouts, body weight, or with lighter dumbells and kettlebells. You can wear it for warm-up treadmill runs too as long as you keep your runs short and casual.

Who should not buy the shoe

Because of its close resemblance to many other On Cloud shoes, the Cloud 5 is easy to confuse for a running shoe or a gym shoe. But we find that this trainer should be limited to daily wear. So, if you were hoping to get a performance shoe, consider the following alternatives:

  • a shoe to walk in AND do your runs and workouts, a much better (and cheaper) option would be the Reebok Nano X1;
  • a proper running shoe from On is the Cloudflow 3.0.

We also find the shoe’s exposed foam concerning for long-term durability. So, if you know that you’ll be dragging your feet or kicking stones here and there, try the On Cloud X. It is very similar in design but is far superior in durability with its beefier outsole and more rubber.

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Game-changing comfort of the Cloud 5

We felt like we could sleep with these shoes on because of how delightful they are on our feet. The comfort of this walking shoe astonished all of us, testers. After spending 10-12 hours with Cloud 5 on our feet, we could say that it was one of the best pairs for work. We discovered that even someone with peripheral neuropathy is accommodated well by Cloud 5, improving the said condition.

Even at times when we don't wear this shoe with socks, blisters are out of the picture. It’s the only shoe that doesn’t hurt in Disney World. Cloud 5 has become a saving grace for daily walks as it made us walk and move more often.

on-cloud-5-all-day-comfort

Excellent breathability

Contributing to the comfort is the high amount of breathability offered by the shoe’s mesh upper, especially in the toebox. We could still feel the air coming through with our socks on. We also tested the shoe at 10 degrees Celcius and our feet got cold.

In the video below, you can see the most transparent (breathable) parts of the upper.

This is definitely a breathable walking shoe for warmer months. And if you need one for rainy days, check out the Cloud 5 Waterproof.

The midsole is a bit firm, don't expect a marshmallow

The only potential issue we see people having with this On Cloud is that its midsole is slightly on the firm side. We realised that those who are used to the marshmallowy plush Skechers GOwalk found the Cloud 5 a bit stiff.

The On Cloud 5 sits right at the average across our lab-tested shoes in terms of cushioning softness. It is moderately firm, only 4% firmer than the average.

on-cloud-5-softness-durometer-test

Disclaimer: To ensure accuracy, we take the durometer measurement 5 times before noting down the result. The photo shows 1 out of 5 takes.

However, it is good to know that the foam on Cloud 5 stiffens up in cold temperatures. In our test, it got 48% firmer after spending 20 minutes in the freezer. Keep this in mind when taking the shoe out on a chilly day.

on-cloud-5-softness-after-freezer

Enough cushioning to keep you supported all day

It may not the the most generously cushioned walking shoe on the market but the Cloud 5 employs a good amount of foam to help you feel comfortable for extended periods of wear.

We measured the heel stack at 27.6 mm, while the forefoot was 20.7 mm.

on-cloud-5-heel-stack

Disclaimer: Our midsole stack measurements include the insole as well. It is 4.4 mm thick on the Cloud 5.

Based on the brand's statement, the heel-to-toe drop on the Cloud 5 is 8 mm. However, we measured it to be 6.9 mm. Not too big of a difference though.

on-cloud-5-forefoot-stack

Quite stable for a neutral shoe

The On Cloud 5 is a neutral walking shoe, which means that it doesn't have any arch support. However, its moderately firm midsole and wide platform help to create a rather stable platform.

The shoe's footprint is 80 mm wide in the heel and 101.4 mm in the forefoot. While this is not above-average wide, it is enough to create a rather sure-footed base.

on-cloud-5-sole-width

But if you are someone with flat feet or overpronation and looking for more arch support in your footwear, do consider the Cloud 5 Push. It is a more supportive edition of the shoe. Alternatively, you can replace its removable insole with the one that suits you better.

Snug fit warning!

The brand tags the Cloud 5 as "True to size." However, we ended up complaining about the snug fit, especially in the toebox.

on-cloud-5-fit

In our own measurements, we found that the toebox of the Cloud 5 is indeed far on the narrow side of the spectrum! Showing 89.5 mm in the widest part of the forefoot, it is actually the narrowest among the walking shoes we've tested. The average is 95.9 mm.

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Unfortunately, On Cloud 5 doesn't come in wide and extra wide options. So, if you need a wider shoe, consider the On Cloudnova.

It’s a slip-on but keeps the foot locked in

We love the quick lacing of the Cloud 5 as we can slip right into them without the need to readjust the tongue or mess with the lacing system.

We found that the hands-free, no-tie convenience is especially appreciated by seniors and people who find it challenging to bend over.

Despite being a slip-on shoe, it keeps our foot secure. Even with its longer-than-average boot, or shoe opening, we never had heel slip issues with the Cloud 5.

A fully-gusseted tongue definitely contributes to the locked-in fit.

on-cloud-5-gusseted-tongue

But if you do need a more conventional fit, the shoe comes with an extra pair of traditional laces. You can use the extra eyelets to lace them up and get a more locked fit for running or hitting the gym.

on-cloud-5-laces

So light you forget about having shoes on

The shoe’s barely-there feel is one of the first things we notice when taking the Cloud 5 on a walk for the first time. Even when we wear it for longer periods, it still remains unbelievably light. For reference, the average weight of men’s walking shoes is 11.3 oz (321 g), while the On Cloud 5 is 26%(!) lighter.

on-cloud-5-lightweight

One more thing that makes the shoe feel easy on the foot is the large grooves throughout the bottom. We discovered that even the testers among us who prefer walking barefoot or wearing sandals find that it’s one of the few shoes that keep them totally comfortable. We found that the shoe worked with our foot instead of forcing it to go a certain way.

The only caveat here (which is the same with all On shoes) is that pebbles do get stuck in these flex grooves.

on-cloud-5-outsole

Unbelievably flexible

The Cloud 5 is not only the most flexible among On shoes but also among all of our lab-tested shoes. It is incredibly bendy which helps you transition from heel to toe seamlessly.

Based on our measurements, it is 35(!)% more flexible than the average.

Twisting the shoe, we were also amazed by its pliability. In our subjective assessment, we gave the shoe 1/5 for longitudinal flexibility and 2/5 for the torsional one. For reference, 5 is the stiffest.

Reflective logo shines in dark

As a nice and handy touch, the brand made the logo and a few other elements throughout the upper reflective.

On Cloud 5 is not the shoe for wear and tear

We are not convinced about the shoe's long-term durability. There are two problematic areas in the shoe: the forefoot foam and the mesh over the toes.

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The foam tends to scuff near the toes because there is too little rubber coverage. We faced this issue even though we hadn't even worn the shoes for that long and had not used them for that crazy of activities.

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Another potentially frail area is the toebox mesh. After a few months of moderate use, the toes have worn a hole through the material.

A step closer to sustainability

If you care about making less of an environmental impact even through shoe shopping, this On Cloud is the way to go. Made of 44% recycled materials, it is one of the most sustainable walking shoes on the market.

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