Shoe Review: Brooks Glycerin 20
The Brooks Glycerin 20 will make you feel like you’re running on air.
The Brooks Glycerin has long been a favorite among neutral runners seeking maximum cushioning, and the latest version doesn’t disappoint. It's on our list of the Best Cushioned Running Shoes in 2022. The Brooks Glycerin 20 features a brand new midsole made with Brooks’ nitrogen-infused DNA Loft v3 technology, creating a luxuriously smooth ride. A redesigned engineered mesh upper adds comfort.
Fleet Feet reviewers tested the fit, feel and performance of the Brooks Glycerin 20 during long runs and daily walks. Here’s what you can expect.
Brooks Glycerin 20
Brooks Glycerin 19
9.1 oz (W), 10.1 oz (M)
9.0 oz (W), 10.2 oz (M)
Brooks Glycerin 20 Features Nitrogen-Infused Cushioning
The Brooks Glycerin 20 is designed to be the softest version yet, thanks to a new nitrogen-infused DNA Loft v3 midsole. Brooks shoe designers used an innovative process to inject the midsole with nitrogen, making it incredibly light, soft and durable.
The process starts with a midsole 3D blocker, which is about one-third of the size of a normal midsole. This midsole blocker is placed into a nitrogen infusion chamber along with liquid nitrogen, where heat and pressure turn the nitrogen from liquid to gas. The midsole, now filled with nitrogen gas, expands and is then stuffed into a compression mold where it takes its final shape.
Although you’re technically running on thousands of nitrogen bubbles in the Brooks Glycerin 20, it feels like you’re running on air.
“As soon as I put these shoes on, I knew I was going on a magic carpet ride. They truly felt light and airy under my feet,” Adina says.
The nitrogen-infused foam is lighter and more durable than traditional EVA foams. It’s also easier to fine-tune, helping shoe designers create the best possible underfoot feeling. Reviewers noticed the difference.
“The highlight of the Brooks Glycerin 20 is definitely the cushioning. It provides a beautifully gentle ride without feeling so soft that I was sinking in, and also not feeling so firm as to sacrifice any comfort,” Alex says.
Reviewers also noticed that the DNA Loft v3 midsole seemed to feel better and better with each run.
“The midsole gets more comfortable the more I wear the shoe. It has the right combination of cushion and bounce for a smooth run,” Mandy says.
The Brooks Glycerin 20 also features a redesigned outsole with a wider platform, leading to smoother transitions and a more stable feel.
“Stability and durability in a shoe are super important to me and the Glycerin 20 met both of these needs,” Adina says.
What’s a midsole? Learn about the parts that make up a running shoe here.
Smooth, Breathable Upper Offers All-around Comfort
The Brooks Glycerin 20 is plush and soft all around, thanks to a redesigned upper. The breathable air-mesh upper offers more support than previous versions thanks to increased overlays.
Reviewers appreciated the comfortable fit.
“The Brooks Glycerin 20 fits true to size. It has a light, flexible upper that wraps comfortably around my foot. The heel collar and tongue feel super soft, and the laces are slightly textured to prevent slippage. A bonus is that the laces are long enough to tie the marathon loop. The materials feel premium and add to the overall plushness of the shoe,” Caroline says.
“The materials feel well made and I love how the tongue stays in place and doesn’t slide from side to side,” Adina says.
Fresh new colorways are easy on the eyes, while reflective strips on the heel and toe box add extra visibility.
Brooks Glycerin 20 vs Brooks Glycerin 19
The biggest update to the Brooks Glycerin 20 is the nitrogen-infused DNA Loft v3 midsole. The Brooks Glycerin 19 featured a full-length DNA Loft midsole and was touted as the softest version yet – until the Glycerin 20. The newest version of Brooks’ DNA Loft is softer, lighter and more durable than ever before.
Even though the DNA Loft v3 midsole is lighter than previous versions, it didn’t affect the overall weight of the Glycerin 20. It’s almost the same weight as the previous version, save for a tenth of an ounce.
A redesigned outsole offers smoother, more stable transitions while a new upper adds comfort and support.
Overall, reviewers appreciated the updates to the Brooks Glycerin 20.
“I think runners will love the new Glycerin, especially after they go for a few runs in the shoe. This will definitely be a staple in my running shoe collection, especially for long runs,” Mandy says.
The Brooks Glycerin 20 offers luxurious cushioning and a smooth, buttery ride, bringing comfort to even the toughest runs.
Reviewers love the new nitrogen-infused midsole and the light, breathable upper.
“The Brooks Glycerin 20 is truly a comfortable and well-made daily trainer. It seems like Brooks was able to cram in all the features of a top-tier shoe while keeping it slim and reasonably light,” Alex says.
Whether you’re ramping up your mileage before your next marathon or spending a long shift on your feet, the Brooks Glycerin 20 provides premium comfort and support to keep you going.