Who should buy the Vibram FiveFingers EL-X

This barefoot running shoe from Vibram is an excellent choice for runners who:

  • Want most of the benefits of barefoot running experience while also being protected on the road.
  • Are looking for a neutral to shoe for crosstraining and gym workouts.

Vibram FiveFingers EL-X logo

Updates to the Vibram FiveFingers EL-X

  • Does not use laces or a Velcro strap to keep the foot down.
  • Upper is made of polyester stretch mesh to accommodate the foot with the help of very thin TPU overlays.
  • Resembles the serrated pattern of a blade for traction and is non-marking, which makes it excellent for indoor or gym workouts.
  • Uses a Dri-Lex nylon linings inside the shoe to wick moisture away.

Vibram FiveFingers EL-X updates

Delivers good traction and underfoot protection

Vibram uses its brand-exclusive TC-1 rubber in the outsole of the FiveFingers EL-X for a combination of traction and a little underfoot protection.

Vibram FiveFingers EL-X good traction

It is only 3mm so there should be optimal ground feedback. This outsole material is also used in the Vibram Bikila and other Vibram FiveFingers running shoes.

The serrated design of the outsole gives it quite a good grip on multiple surfaces. It is also non-marking for those who would use the shoe for cross training in the gym.

EL-X has antimicrobial properties and little cushioning

There is technically no midsole in the Vibram EL-X. A 2mm EVA insole with Dri-Lex antimicrobial properties act as the nominal midsole for a little cushioning and underfoot protection.

Vibram FiveFingers EL-X little cushioning

Vibram FiveFingers EL-X is a super minimalist shoe

The upper is an innovative combination of stretch polyester mesh, TPU overlays, and Coconut Active Carbon Fabric that snugly holds the foot when running or working out.

Vibram FiveFingers EL-X overlays

It is a super minimalist upper that is also breathable. There are no laces or strap to secure the fit so the upper relies on optimal fit to keep the shoe from slipping.

Facts / Specs

Terrain: Road
Weight: 4.2oz
Drop: 0mm
Arch support: Neutral
Pronation: Neutral Pronation / Supination / Underpronation
Arch type: High arch
Use: Walking / Jogging

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Vibram FiveFingers EL-X video reviews

Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen

Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.