Brooks is one of the most sought-after brands when it comes to the best running shoes on the market. The brand always comes up with some of the best shoes for all kinds of runners. From overpronators to underpronators, high-mileage runners to short-distance runners, regular runners to athletes; Brooks has something special in store for everyone.
In this article, we’ll be comparing Brooks Levitate vs. Glycerin to find out which type of shoe truly is the better fit (excuse the pun) and best all-around shoe for runners.
Brooks Levitate and Brooks Glycerin are two of the best-selling running shoes by the popular brand. Both running shoes are trending, and have become a popular shoe of choice for runners.
Brooks Levitate 2 is the successor of Brooks Levitate, and Brooks Glycerin 16 is the upgraded version of Glycerin 15. The makers have tried their best to bring some new features to the table to make these shoes better from their previous versions.
If you already have your eyes on any of these shoes, our detailed product reviews will further help you make an informed purchase decision.
- 1 Brooks Levitate vs Glycerin – Comparison based on the product specifications
- 2 Brooks Levitate 2 – A detailed review
- 3 Brooks Glycerin 16 – A Detailed Review
- 4 The Bottom Line
Brooks Levitate vs Glycerin – Comparison based on the product specifications
Here’s a quick table with the comparison of both the products based on their specifications:
Brooks Levitate 2
Brooks Glycerin 16
$139.99 – $239.98 (Check out the latest rates here!)
$137.50 – $249.98 (Check out the latest rates here!)
8 mm (0.31 inch)
10 mm (0.39 inch)
26 mm (1.02 inches)
22 mm (0.86 inch)
18 mm (0.70 inch)
32 mm (1.25 inches)
Double Jacquard Mesh
Sticky Rubber Compound
HPR Plus and blown rubber
DNA Loft cushioning
US: 7 to 15
US: 7 to 12.5
11.3 oz. (318 g)
10.60 oz. (301 g)
Brooks Levitate 2 – A detailed review
Brooks Levitate 2 is the upgraded version of Brooks Levitate. Where the previous version successfully managed to satisfy the needs of neutral pronators, the latest version is no less than a treat for the runners.
Each and every specification of the original Brooks Levitate has been amplified in Brooks Levitate 2.
Where the manufacturers have retained some already useful features, they have updated the remaining to make the product more efficient.
The outsole and midsole technology remains the same, but the upper sees little changes. With an assurance of ultra-dynamic stride delivery, better durability, and comfort; these running shoes are trending big time among all kinds of runners.
Let’s now look at the detailed specifications of Brooks Levitate 2 in the Brooks Levitate vs Glycerin comparison.
- The Knit design in the upper makes it more flexible and breathable.
- A knitted heel collar, a suede-textured heel tab, and an internal bootie ensure no skin irritation and optimum comfort.
- Fit Knit wrap in the upper to provide a soft and snug fit while allowing an adaptable and a very smooth ride.
- The sticky rubber outsole offers good traction and heel-to-toe transitions.
- A DNA AMP midsole that provides comfort and decent energy return.
- Removable energize sock liner in the midsole providing more comfort.
The outsole of the Brooks Levitate 2 is constructed with a sticky rubber compound. The compound ensures that the shoes provide proper traction on a dry surface.
The arrow-point design pattern of the outsole provides a great deal of flexibility to these running shoes.
The midfoot transition zone in the outsole project the pressure towards the forefoot and this provides a smoother, as well as quick heel-to-toe transition.
Overall, the use of rubber compounds and the design enhance the durability of the midsole.
The midsole of these shoes is made of DNA AMP just like the predecessor. This special technology comprises of a polyurethane foam material sandwiched between thermoplastic skin. The most celebrated feature of this midsole technology is that it does not let the foam expand outwards and with this, it allows energy return upwards.
If you are looking for shoes that could offer you an energized ride, you can consider these shoes. The DNA AMP midsole of these running shoes offer a very energized ride and allow better energy return.
The makers have used Energized sock liners in the midsole to enhance underfoot cushioning and comfort. If you have a habit of using custom inserts, this is no problem at all. You can remove the Energized sock liner and use the custom inserts.
The manufacturers have upgraded the upper body of Brooks Levitate 2. The upper of this version uses Fit Knit which is amazingly soft and adaptable. It wraps around the foot and adapts to the contour of your foot. The internal bootie construction provides good comfort while running.
The 3D knit provides a plush feel and allows more flexibility while also keeping your foot in place. The rearfoot area of these shoes has a modified heel counter which offers a good fit and also, brings down irritation in your Achilles region. The faux-suede material provides a protective and cushy finish.
The cushioned low-cut ankle collar ensures optimum comfort and support to you.
Size and Fit
These shoes are true to size. The anatomical foot shape, the roomy forefoot area, and snug midfoot, as well as the heel, conform to the natural shape of your foot.
The shoes are available in medium width profile, both for men, as well as women.
Brooks Levitate 2 is quite heavy. The shoes weigh 11.3 oz. The makers haven’t done anything to minimize the weight of the shoes. Just like the prior version, these shoes are heavy.
Though heavy, these shoes are comfortable. The anatomical foot shape of the shoes keeps your foot at comfort while running.
The snug upper and the wider forefoot area add to the comfort. Furthermore, the cushiony and responsive sole adds to the comfort while running.
However, you may find the sock liner a little irritating.
Talking about breathability, Brooks Levitate 2 fails to impress. The upper of these shoes contain many holes that should ideally facilitate air flow, but they don’t work to their true potential.
+The lack of breathability makes the internal environment very hot making it a very difficult task to run in these shoes in summer.
You should also refrain from wearing these shoes in the rain as they are great at absorbing water.
This limits the use of these shoes to only the winter season.
These shoes score well when it comes to protection. If you have a tendonitis problem, these shoes can make running a painless and smooth experience.
These shoes come with a heel tab made from faux-suede which prevents irritation in the Achilles tendon and provides extra comfort while running.
The use of Fit Knit upper provides a secure fit. However, this can create a problem in the summer season. For winter, these shoes offer great protection.
If you are seeking support, Brooks Levitate 2 is a good running shoe for you. The insoles provide optimum support without being too hard or too soft. But, if you are in need of extra arch support, you should look for other options.
Also, these shoes are good for slow or medium-paced runners. If you are a fast-paced runner, these are not apt for you.
The upper of these shoes assure excellent stability. The snug upper fits the feet and make it very comfortable for you to run.
The upper, midsole, as well as outsole, of these running shoes, demonstrate fine quality resulting in enhanced durability.
Responsiveness is one of the most celebrated features of these shoes. The responsive cushioning provides better energy return. It offers excellent stride and heel-to-toe transition.
However, some runners feel that responsiveness is less in the forefoot area as compared to midfoot and heel.
These shoes offer moderate flexibility while providing support to the Achilles tendon.
Brooks Levitate 2 offers moderate traction on the dry surface, but the same is not true for wet surfaces.
These are not perhaps the most stylish shoes available on the market. The makers only offer three color options.
- Reduces irritation around Achilles tendon
- Very responsive
- Not very breathable
- Traction on a wet surface is questionable
Brooks Glycerin 16 – A Detailed Review
Brooks Glycerin is one of the best athletic shoes in the Brooks running shoe line. The makers have incorporated many changes in these shoes to make them better than their predecessor.
Where the older version, i.e., Brooks Glycerin 15 saw the use of Super DNA cushioning, this version is equipped with DNA Loft midsole to make the shoes more responsive.
Just like the midsole, the upper too sees the introduction of jacquard mesh to make it more breathable.
All these changes make sure that you get a better running experience. Read about the specifications and features of Brooks Glycerin 16.
- Double mesh jacquard that is very stretchable and breathable.
- HPR Plus and blown rubber in the outsole provide traction and flexibility.
- Ideal Pressure Zones in the outsole offer a smooth ride.
- Internal bootie construction provides a good in-shoe feel.
The outsole of these rubber shoes brings in use two different types of rubber material namely, the HPR Plush rubber and the blown rubber.
Talking about the HPR rubber, it provides durability. Used in the heel area, the HPR rubber compound is robust and protects the sole from wear and tear in highly abrasive conditions.
The same rubber compound also provides a good amount of traction on different surfaces.
The forefoot area of the outsole is covered with the blown rubber. The use of this rubber compound assures better flexibility and also, enhances the traction.
Blown rubber is generally very bouncy and soft in nature and because of these features, it adds to the underfoot cushioning making it comfortable for you to run in these shoes.
A notable feature of the latest version of Brooks Glycerin 16 is the use of Ideal Pressure Zones. These zones help in dissipating the pressure providing a very smooth ride.
The midsole of these shoes is made of DNA Loft cushioning. This cushioning brings in use rubber, foam, as well as air. All these components come together to make the midsole very soft. A comfortable cushioning, better bounce and an efficient heel-to-toe transition make running a great experience.
The upper of these running shoes is made of double jacquard mesh. The mesh material is very breathable and conforms to the shape of your foot due to its stretchable nature.
The incorporation of 3D Fit Print Technology in the upper provides a better fit.
The internal bootie construction lends a soft in-shoe feel. Midfoot security is ensured by the lace-up closure which also locks your foot in place while running.
Size and Fit
These running shoes are true to size. There are many size options available. Even if you have a wide foot, you will definitely find a perfect fit for you.
The heel, as well as the forefoot area, showcases regular medium fit. The toe box is very roomy and hence, you can spread your toes very comfortably.
When it comes to width options, these shoes are definitely going to impress you. The forefoot section of these running shoes is wider as compared to Brooks Glycerin 16.
For women, the available width options are AA – Narrow, B – Medium, and D – Wide. While for men, the available width options are D – Medium and 2E – Wide.
With the amount of cushioning these shoes offer, it is natural to think that it may be a shoe with some weight. But, you will be surprised to know that these shoes are not that heavy.
The makers have done a good job by maintaining a lightweight despite the plush cushioning. The shoes feel comfortable when running.
The women’s shoe weighs 9 ounces, and the men’s shoe weighs 10.5 ounces.
The shoes are extremely comfortable. If you are looking for the most comfortable running shoe, you should definitely consider these shoes.
The comfort of the shoes can be attributed to many specifications that come together to make them one of the most comfortable running shoes available on the market.
First and foremost, the comfortable midsole is to be thanked. The plush midsole with ample cushioning along with the very supportive, breathable, and flexible upper and the use of additional features such as plush ankle collar, as well as tongue, make it the most comfortable shoes.
As already mentioned, the upper of the shoe is extremely breathable. The use of double jacquard mesh in the upper does not entertain the common issues like overheat, poor drainage, and waterlogging.
The mesh material allows a good flow of air inside the shoes and makes way for air to go out. The proper air circulation keeps the interior of the shoes cool and dry adding to comfort.
The 3D print overlays used in the upper provide good ventilation.
These shoes are a good pick for your summer runs but it’s not that you can’t wear them in winters. These shoes offer breathability along with protection.
The amazingly cushioned midsole of these shoes makes them a good option for you if impact protection is a point of concern for you. The plush cushioning provides impact protection and features Ideal Pressure Zone construction.
The shoes are efficient enough to absorb the impact forces generated during running.
The engineered mesh provides a very snug fit and thereby good support while running. The soft and flexible heel collar supports the heels.
The midfoot support makes them an ideal option for the runners who have medium or high arches. To enhance support, you can use an insert. There is enough room for one.
The wide design of the new Brooks Glycerin 16 makes them very stable running shoes.
Durability has never been an issue with Brooks Glycerin and just like the previous models; these shoes are also very durable. The tough outsole, midsole, and upper materials make these shoes very durable.
If you compare these shoes with the previous version, you will find that the responsiveness of these shoes is much better than its predecessor. The new midsole material ensures a better energy return.
When it comes to flexibility, these shoes are not that impressive. The outsole is soft but not very flexible. The shoes offer a stiff transition.
The outsole provides a good amount of traction on wet, as well as dry paved surfaces. Both the kinds of rubbers used in the outsole possess good traction quality and hence, you should not worry about slipping while running in these shoes.
Talking about style, Brooks Glycerin never disappoints the runners and Brooks Glycerin 16 is no exception. The manufacturers have introduced six new designs for men and seven for women. There are many new color options available.
- Plush cushioning that aids long runs
- Breathable upper
- Very responsive
- For some, the cushioning is too soft
The Bottom Line
Now that you’ve gone through the detailed Brooks Levitate vs Glycerin comparison, what is your take? Based on the reviews and ratings provided by existing customers, we have concluded that Brooks Glycerin 16 s better than Brooks Levitate 2.
The double jacquard mesh upper in Brooks Glycerin 16 is extremely breathable, and the Ideal Pressure Zones that have been incorporated in these running shoes dissipate the pressure even during a sudden impact.
Even though the upper of the Brooks Levitate 2 shoes comes with holes to stimulate the air flow, there’s no improvement as far as breathability is concerned.
We hope you agree with our choice, and if you would like us to review other shoes or do more head to head comparisons, please let us know.