I Tested Them All, and These Are the 8 Best Brooks Sneakers for Women

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There's a reason why Brooks running shoes are considered tried and true by so many runners (and foot doctors!)—and if you're here looking for the very best pair for your needs, you're in the right place. But let's back up a sec. Back in 2020, when fitness boutiques around New York City closed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, I masked up, secured my sneaks, and made Central Park my playground. One week later, I could barely walk without pain. Turns out that immediately jumping into running with a pair of ill-fitting sneakers had (ahem) screwed my feet up.

Once my plantar fasciitis healed—thanks to a combination of arch stretches, ice, and anti-inflammatories—I hit up a specialty running shop to get fitted for a pair of actually supportive shoes. After scanning my foot, putting me through a gait test, and having me test-drive some shoes, the run expert and I came to the same conclusion: Brooks running shoes are better for my feet than any other brand.

Since then, I’ve made it my personal mission to pound pavement or train on the treadmill in every pair of Brooks running shoes available. Ahead, I use my 3+ years of on-the-ground research to round-up the best Brooks running shoes for women.

The best Brooks running shoes for women, at a glance

8 best Brooks shoes for women

Best for walking

Brooks Glycerin 20 — $160.00

I may never walk my pup, Lacey, laced into another pair of sneakers again. My pup loves long (think: 5+ mile) walks, but my propensity for plantar fasciitis does not, which is why I appreciate the extra support the Glycerin 20s provide.

The Brooks Glycerin 20 sneakers aren’t just for us dog lovers with inflamed footies. Cushy, comfortable, and cute, the Brooks Glycerin 20 is the perfect walking and running shoe for travelers, traverses, and trekkers, too.

This footwear features Brooks’ patented Guiderail technology that’s designed to keep the foot, ankle, and knee stable while you move and groove. The way this option marries stability and comfort, without adding heft or hulk, makes it the optimal option for people who have a job that requires that they’re on their feet all day long—for instance, teachers and those in the food industry.

Lastly? There are 18 different color options available, that range from subtle to snazzy. Actually, the shades this running shoe comes in convinced me, an all-black-everything girlie, to spice it up.

Sizes available: 5.0 – 12.0
Head-to-toe offset: 10mm
Weight: 9.1 ounces
Colors: 18


  • Offers a tremendous amount of cushioning
  • Available in a wide variety of colors
  • Medium weight
  • VERY comfortable for long walks (and runs)


  • Costs $160.00

Best on a budget:

Brooks Revel 6 — $100.00

As far as the Brooks women’s running shoes are concerned, no shoe offers a better bang for your buck. Ringing up at just $100, Brooks Revel 6 are a fraction of the cost of competitor options.

The lower price tag, however, doesn’t signal that this running shoe skimps on comfort—it doesn’t. Sporting a breathable knit upper and silica soles, these runners keep your feet cool while hugging them.

Personally, I prefer a cushier option for my hot girl walks and a lighter-weight option for long runs. But these have become my go-to for 5K and 10K training days. I also like this option for CrossFit workouts that include the curved treadmill, but no weight lifting.

I wear these when I’m using an assault runner, too. For the uninitiated, assault runners—manual, non-motorized treadmills—use your own bodyweight and momentum to power the belt. Here, being able to really feel the tread beneath your feet is helpful for finding a pace that works well for you. The reduced cushion in the Brooks Revel 6 allows me to feel the tread better than more cushiony, cloud-like options (like Hokas).

Sizes available: 5.0 to 12.0
Head-to-toe offset: 10mm
Weight: 8.1 ounces
Colors: 6


  • Budget-friendly
  • Made from sustainable material
  • (Lightly) cushioned throughout
  • Breathable upper
  • Comes in 6 different colors (including tie-dye)
  • True to size
  • Great for manual treadmills, roads, and treadmills


  • Lightly cushioned

Best trail runner:

Brooks Catamount 2 — $170.00

In the Brooks Catamount 2, the trail becomes your runway. A sleek shoe with a streamlined design, these trail runners are here to add a little extra spring and speed to every step and stride.

What sets the Catamount 2 apart from other trail runners and hiking sneakers—besides the sexiness of its design, of course—is the outsole. A TrailTrack rubber outsole is designed to grip gravel and clasp cliffs in dry or wet conditions.

As wanna-be rom com lead as it may sound, I find precipitation energetically cleansing. So, I’m a sucker for a rainy day hike. Each of the three coastal excursions I went on while wearing these bad boys, I was impressed by how connected I was to the mud, muck, and marshes. Despite being clumsier than a clown, I didn’t slip even once while laced up in these beauts.

In case you were wondering: My wet walks left my Catamount 2 slick with sludge—a quick rinse in the sick got them clean.

Other features I liked about these trail runners include the bounce-back return from the midsole, the textured, no-slip laces, and tear-resistant upper. Truly, I feel like I could use and abuse these babies for months and months without having to worry about wear. As such, the $170 price tag feels reasonable to me.

Sizes available: 5.0- 12.0
Head-to-toe offset: 6 mm
Weight: 8.6 ounces
Colors: 2


  • Sticky traction
  • Easy to clean
  • Textured, no-slip laces
  • All-terrain stability
  • Sticky traction
  • Come in 15 different sizes


  • Only available in two colors
  • Slightly more narrow shoe box compared to other Brooks

Best for long distance:

brooks ghost 15, one of the best shoes for disneyland
Brooks Ghost 15 — $140.00

Long distance zealots, this running shoe is for you. Thanks to the DNA Loft foam technology that makes up the mid and out sole, the Ghost 15 is able to marry squish with stability, light with luxury. Indeed, while there’s enough cushion to cradle the under-belly of your foot, the shoe is lightweight (it weighs just 9 ounces).

While these are marketed as a classic fit shoe, they felt slightly more narrow on my feet compared to other brooks running shoes. As a person who likes feeling extra secure in my sneakers, I appreciated the tighter fit. But, if you have a history of bunions or prefer a wider toe box for whatever reason, keep scrolling.

Some reviewers noted that they liked wearing the Ghost 15 during fitness classes and regular gym work, too. But personally, I did not—the shoe was too bulky to comfortably fit into rowing straps or indoor cycling toe cages. And while comfortable, the midsole was too cushy to allow my feet to ~feel~ the ground, as I can with zero-drop sneaks.

All in all, I recommend the Ghost 15 for everyday runners. Y’know, the folks logging mad miles in preparation of a marathon or ultra. (That said, one Well & Good writer likes them for Orangetheory classes, too).

Sizes available: 5.0 to 13.0
Head-to-toe offset: 12mm
Weight: 9.0 ounces
Colors: 15


  • Available in 15 colors
  • DNA loft foam technology provides comfort
  • Lightweight
  • Tried and true option


  • A little bulky for toe-cages and rowing straps
  • More narrow fit compared to other Brooks

Best for road running:

Brooks Levitate 6 — $150.00

The Brooks Levitate 6 fit nearly-perfect, at no point during my runs did I feel heat-spots pop up the way I do with other shoes. Plus? They’re sleek AF. If (nay, when) running shoes ever get an exhibit in the MoMa, the Levitate 6 will be featured. Yep, IMHO they are that good-looking.

It’s more than just a pretty shoe, though—this pair can perform under pressure. The DNA AMP v2 foam that makes up this shoe’s midsole is light-light-light. With each stride, this technology will allow you to feel like you’re literally springing off the pavement. It’s almost like you’re, levitating…

The upper of the Levitate 6 is stretchy, which allows your foot to move unencumbered when you run. It also allows you to cinch the laces for an even tighter fit, should you need it.

As for how these held up in the weight room and gym? I grade them a B. While I felt well-supported while doing movements like box jumps, burpees, and pull-ups, the midsole was softer than I like for deadlifts, squats, and lunges.

Sizes available: 5.0 to 12.0
Head-to-toe offset: 8mm
Weight: 9.5 ounces
Colors: 5


  • Cushioned throughout
  • Sleek enough to wear while running errands
  • Breathable toe box reduces foot sweat
  • Stretchy upper helps you customize the fit
  • True to size


  • On the narrow-side for a shoe marketed as “medium” width
  • Not great for leg day

Best lifestyle sneaker:

Levitate Stealthfit 6 — $150.00

The Levitate Stealth Fit 6 is advertised as a road runner shoe. No doubt, with springy midsoles, sleek upper, and shock-absorbent outsoles they will support you while you pound the pavement. However, I personally prefer to wear this pair while running errands than while running.

Why? Honestly, because they are sexy and I am nothing if not an athleisure girlie. The Stealthfit 6 sports an integrated tongue and stretchy sock-like upper make for a sleek, streamlined aesthetic. Actually, these days I’m more likely to grab my white Levitate Stealthfit 6s than my Nike Blazers, which is saying something!

Don’t read it wrong: I may prefer to wear these in Trader Joe’s than on the treadmill, but not all runners do.

The Levitate Stealthfit 6s are constructed with the same DNA AMP v2 foam that make the Levitate 6s so stinkin’ springy. Plus, the outsole features an arrow-point pattern that allows your foot to strike heel-to-toe even more quickly.

Sizes available: 5.0 to 12.0
Head-to-toe offset: 8mm
Weight: 9.1 ounces
Colors: 4


  • True to size
  • Integrated tongue for streamlined design
  • Arrow point pattern in the outsole supports springy ride
  • Stretchy upper for customized fit
  • Looks good in and out of the gym


  • Only available in 4 different colors
  • Integrated tongue isn’t for everyone

Best for fast runs:

Brooks Hyperion Max — $170.00

Just two-thirds the weight of other sprint shoes on the market, they are the opposite of bulky. It’s all thanks to the midsole which is configured with nitrogen-infused, DNA FLASH cushioning. For the non-engineers, that means the shoe is as springy as it is lightweight.

I ran in the Brooks Hyperion Max multiple times, both on the streets and on a manual treadmill. On the roads, I legit felt like a galloping gazelle—rather than striding through my town, I felt like I was gliding.

These shoes were even better on the treadmill, though. Since getting them, I’ve had the pleasure (truly, a pleasure!) of wearing these during five interval running workouts on the manual treadmill. In my opinion, proper heel-to-toe form is even more important on a manual treadmill than it is any other surface. That’s because your strides, rather than the machine, control the speed of the tread. The uniquely curved heel of the Hyperion Max helps your foot roll forward into your toes with each strike. The result? You’re able to go faster without working as hard.

The one con is that, while I love wearing these while I run, the heel design took some getting used to while I walk. I wore these during one run-walk training piece and the first 10 minutes were a little unbalanced-feeling. This could be just a “me” problem though—I’m not very coordinated, like I mentioned before.

Sizes available: 5.0 to 12.0
Head-to-toe offset: 8mm
Weight: 6.7 ounces
Colors: 3


  • Super-duper lightweight
  • Rapid roll technology has unique curving of heel to toe
  • True to size
  • Works great on manual treadmills


  • Only three colors (though, to be fair, they are fun colors)
  • On the pricier side

Best value:

brooks launch 9 gts sneaker on a white background
Brooks Launch 9 — $110.00

As a general rule, I think if you’re going to shell out money on workout gear, it should be on workout shoes. (After being ~influenced~ into buying legging and bra dupes on Amazon, I no longer think $100+ leggings are worth it.)

That said, I was super impressed with the quality, durability, and function of the Brook Launch 9. Ringing up at just $110, these are one of the most affordable Brooks running shoes.

The shoe itself manages to be both padded, and light. It features a layer of Brooks’ signature BioMoGo DNA cushioning underfoot, which makes them a comfortable pick for indoor and outdoor training runs. Thanks to their mesh upper, you also get a breathable shoe that keeps your feet dry while you ride. Given that calluses are more likely to form when your socks are wet, this feature shouldn’t be overlooked.

For the sake of this article, I wore these puppies to two CrossFit classes. While they are OK for cross-training, as a person who has long lifted in shoes specifically made for lifting, I won’t be switching to the Launch 9’s anytime soon. That said, I can see them being good for fitness classes that incorporate a treadmill, like Barry’s Bootcamp or Orange Theory.

Sizes available: 5.0 to 12.0
Head-to-toe offset: 10mm
Weight: 7.1 ounces
Colors: 15


  • Affordable
  • Available in a wide variety of colors
  • True to size
  • Mesh upper enhances breathability
  • Comfortable


  • Not the best pick for resistance training

Brooks FAQs

Shoes are a B-I-G purchase. After all, they’re *the* thing that’s going to literally support you as you navigate the world (not just your workouts!). So, it makes sense if you have even more questions about Brooks shoes and women’s running sneaks. Ahead, find your answers.

What type of Brooks are the best?

Ultimately, it depends on what you’re looking for in a shoe!

If you’re looking for a Brooks hiking shoe, with their TrailTrack rubber outsole the Catamount 2s are ideal. Meanwhile, if you’re looking for a cushy walking shoe, the Glycerin 20s are tops.

However, the most popular Brooks of all time is probably the Brooks Ghost 15 which are able to provide a tremendous amount of support whilst still being wicked lightweight.

Which Brooks is best for being on your feet all day?

IMHO the Glycerin 20s are hands (er, foot) down, best for being on your feet all day.

Why? Well, they provide subtle stability around the ankle, while protecting all the tiny muscles in your feet with a well-cushioned insole. Plus, they come in 18+ colors, so you’ll be able to find a pair in a palette that matches any outfit or uniform.

Do podiatrists recommend Brooks shoes?

“Doctor recommended, runner approved” isn’t just a tagline, it's the truth. At the time of publication, Brooks has seven different styles that have earned the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) Seal of Acceptance.

These shoes include the Brooks Addiction 14, Adrenaline GTS 22, Beast 20/Ariel 20, Dyad 11, Ghost 14, Glycerin 19, and Glycerin GTS 19.

Of course, the shoe your podiatrist will recommend for you personally will vary based on the shape and particularities of your foot, as well as your fitness needs. So, if you’re experiencing any foot woes or are getting into walking, running, or fitness for the first time, call up a local podiatrist for a personalized recommendation.

Which Brooks shoe is best for back pain?

In some cases, pre-existing back pain can be exacerbated by pounding pavement. Luckily, there is a shoe like the Brooks Glycerin 20 which is constructed to absorb some of that pounding.

Can I wear the Brooks Ghost for walking?

You betcha. The Brooks Ghost 15 is categorized as a road-running shoe. However, the shoes' soft cushioning, smooth transitions, and reliability allow it to work well as a daily walking shoe, too.

(FYI: Most of Brooks women’s running shoes double as walking shoes).

What's the difference between Brooks Ghost and Adrenaline?

The Ghost and the Adrenaline have a lot in common. Both popular running shoes feature soft cushioning, are available in a shocking number of colors, and have a classic fit. The difference, however, is that the Brooks Ghost doesn’t provide additional support, while the Adrenaline does.

Categorized as a neutral shoe, the Brooks Ghost is optimal for runners who like a lighter-weight, less supportive shoe. Meanwhile, the Brooks Adrenaline is for workhorses who need a little extra foot and ankle support while they stride.

But wait, there's more!
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