Verdict from 3 experts and +100 user reviews

9 reasons to buy

  • Many users thought the Vibram FiveFingers V-Trail was extremely comfortable and breathable.
  • One reviewer was amazed that the shoe provided a tight and secure grip on slick surfaces.
  • Several runners agreed that it felt great on the foot and it fit them comfortably well.
  • The shoe was durable enough and did not show any signs of wear even after many months of usage, according to a user.
  • It provided a subtle amount of cushioning that was just right for a five-fingered shoe, as stated by a reviewer.
  • One buyer mentioned the shoe helped relieve their pain from walking.
  • A majority of runners claimed there was adequate protection from the shoe against sharp rocks and roots.
  • A couple of runners said the shoe was comfortable enough to be worn without socks.
  • A reviewer said the V-Trail allowed them a more efficient running experience and has brought less strain on the knees compared to ordinary running shoes.

5 reasons not to buy

  • A number of users found that the colors of the shoe bled and stained their sock and foot.
  • The shoe needed quite a long time to break in, as observed by a couple of runners.
  • Some buyers said that the shoe felt tight and narrow.
  • The heel bed was narrow and the toe part caused abrasions, according to one user.
  • One reviewer pointed out that the shoe was not easy to put on or take off because of its unique foot-shaped design.

Bottom line

The V-Trail is a minimalist off-road shoe that is suitable for runners and racers who are relatively experienced in barefoot running. It is designed to handle rough trails, including slush and muck that is usually brought about by winter conditions. The structure of this shoe is made to withstand tough use by adventurous wearers.

Tip: see the best trail running shoes.

Good to know

  • The FiveFingers V-Trail is designed to give a balance between proprioception and protection on rugged surfaces. It is built specifically to promote a barefooted sensation while running. It’s also structured for forefoot strikers and those with neutral pronation.
  • The outsole makes use of the Megagrip compound, which aims to offer unparalleled grip and longevity on both wet and dry trails. Additionally, the 3D Cocoon technology delivers a balance of steadiness and flexibility for ground adaptation. It also aims to provide a sure-footed grip and protection from stones and debris.
  • The upper of this Vibram FiveFingers running footwear is made of polyester and spandex and is designed to envelop the foot to keep debris out.

While most runners will find that it fits true to size, others with a wide-volume foot may want to go a size up to accommodate their foot comfortably. As the V-Trail is a five-fingered shoe, the correct way to determine one’s size for this shoe is to measure the foot in inches from the heel to the tip of the toe. To wear the shoe, insert the foot beginning with the big toe and end with slipping the heel in place. Width profiles available are D-medium for men and B-medium for women.

Similar to a similar shoe, the Spyridon, the outsole of the V-Trail makes use of the Megagrip compound, but it now has a new sole pattern. It aims to deliver a level of traction that excels no matter the trail condition.

With a multidirectional lug design, the shoe intends to provide all-around traction, even on the most aggressive trails.

Featuring the Vibram 3D Cocoon technology, the outsole also employs a molded mesh that extends to the forefoot. This serves as a protection against rocks and other potentially damaging objects on the trail.

Technically, the V-Trail does not consist of a traditional midsole construction. It consists of a 2-mm EVA that acts as the insole for some cushioning and protection. It doesn’t hinder the wearer’s capacity to feel the ground. There is also an antimicrobial sock liner that aims to reduce odor and buildup of bacteria.

Made from polyester and Lycra, the upper is made to be stretchy and breathable at the same time. The material and structure of the upper encourage the natural movement of the foot. The Lycra is durable and elastic so it protects the structure of the shoe while encouraging natural flexibility.

There is a slightly padded heel cuff to support the heel while providing comfort, especially on uphill or downhill runs.

The shoe employs a quick-lace system for an easy wear and a snug fit around the arch.


How Vibram FiveFingers V-Trail ranks compared to all other shoes
Top 28% trail running shoes
All trail running shoes
Top 34% Vibram FiveFingers running shoes
All Vibram FiveFingers running shoes
Top 44% minimalist running shoes
All minimalist running shoes


The current trend of Vibram FiveFingers V-Trail.
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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.