The Primal 2 shoes offer true freedom to your feet, paired with the kind of comfort that can’t be matched. Lem’s is a company that aims to reinvent shoe design and create products that really benefit your feet. Knowing this, it’s no surprise that the Primal 2 minimalist shoe has many carefully designed details that make everyday wear so enjoyable.
When we say minimalist, it means the shoe doesn’t have any unnecessary materials. This allows it to significantly cut on weight while remaining tough and pleasant to wear. As a nice addition, all the materials used when making these shoes are vegan-friendly, without anything that’s animal-sourced.
The best thing about this shoe is the natural shape of the footbed. Unlike most shoes on the market today, the Primal 2 has a wider toe area that reduces the pressure when walking. This is why they are fantastic for many different purposes – everyday wear, work, dog walks, hiking, gym, or anything else you can think of. If this sounds interesting and you’d like to learn more, be sure to read the rest of the review below.
The Primal 2 really shines when it comes to its features, as everything is carefully thought through for the best possible performance (without any unnecessary details). This is likely the main thing that contributes to the popularity of this model, and also of the company. Take a quick peek at everything this pair of shoes has to offer:
- All materials and components are 100% vegan
- Ultra-lightweight for exceptional walking comfort
- Zero-drop design improves your step and posture
- Wide toe design with wiggle room for toes
- Incredibly flexible outsole for easy walking on any surface
- Mesh upper wicks moisture and keeps feet dry
Outsole: Air-injection rubber, 8mm (LemsRubber)
Upper: Microfiber, open-weave mesh
Insole: Polyurethane, 3.5mm, removable
Drop: 0mm (Zero-Drop)
Stack height: 9mm (without the footbed)
Weight: 6.9 ounces (195g)
Sizes: 3 to 14 US (37 to 48 EU)
Warranty: 1 year (manufacturing), 6 months (laces and insoles)
Construction: People who have tried the Primal 2 generally agree that the construction is very solid for this type of shoe. The blend of materials feels good on the feet, but also has the strength to endure almost anything you throw its way.
The microfiber and mesh make the upper very soft and give you a nice feeling regardless of whether you’re wearing socks. The mesh is highly breathable, so you don’t have to worry about wet or sweaty feet. The footbed comes with a removable PU insole which, even though it isn’t arched, gives you excellent support when walking.
Users say that unlike many other lightweight shoes, the outsole on this model gives your feet solid protection when walking. It’s made of air-injected rubber that can twist and bend however you need it to, allowing your feet to feel natural and allowing you to feel the ground as you walk.
By using only the necessary material, the Primal 2 shoes were able to cut down the weight to a minimum. At under 7 ounces total weight, these are significantly lighter than traditional hiking shoes. Furthermore, the materials that are used are carefully selected and are fully vegan, which customers think is a great initiative.
Design: The whole design of this shoe is oriented to the wellbeing of the feet, and people recognize this. Certainly, the biggest difference compared to other products is the width you get in the toe area and the forefoot. This way the shoe follows the natural line of your foot and doesn’t bend your toes or press them together. In addition to this, the Primal 2 also features a Zero-drop platform, which helps improve the posture and gives you a better mid-foot strike.
While these shoes are very versatile, users suggest they are best when used in dry weather (even though they dry pretty fast). Unlike kayak and water shoes, they are not designed for use in the water as their structure can be compromised.
Lem’s has a philosophy of building a shoe around the foot, instead of not making the foot adapt to the shoe. They make naturally-shaped lasts and carefully study the design so they can make improvements on each product. This is an upgraded version of their original Primal shoe, and they’ve taken into consideration the complaints and suggestions from customers to take comfort and functionality to a higher level.
Fit: These are made to be worn casually, so you can expect them to have a very relaxed fit. Thanks to the wider front of the shoe, you have plenty of room inside for moving the toes. This relaxed and comfortable fit allows you to wear them barefoot on hot days, but also with a light sock.
Customers say that they are generally true to size, so you have nothing to worry about. The manufacturer recommends that you buy your standard US size, as it should be a good fit for most people. As we mentioned in the specs section, there is a large number of sizes to choose from. However, if you are unsure between two sizes, you should go with the larger one.
Performance: People who wear them claim that these are some of the most comfortable shoes you can buy. They are versatile and perform well for any activity from walking your dog to taking them to the gym. They also give excellent protection from gravel, pointy rocks, and branches, so the soles of your feet won’t be poked as you walk. This is why many outdoor enthusiasts choose them for lighter hiking and camping too.
One of the benefits of the Primal 2 shoes is their compatibility with Correct Toes, which separates and positions your toes naturally. Because of the larger toe area, you can easily combine the two and have your toes in an optimal position throughout the day. This can also help heal bunions and foot numbness among other things.
Durability: According to the manufacturer, you can expect these to last for 300 to 600 miles, depending on the terrain and the way you walk. Considering these are light and without reinforcements, this is a pretty good result.
Users say that the mesh on the upper is the weakest link and that it’s the first place where the shoe tears. Luckily, it takes quite some time for this to happen. Also, Lem’s stands behind their product and gives you a 1-year warranty, so you can have peace of mind when shopping.
- Price: 90% – At first glance, you can see that the Primal 2 shoe isn’t the most affordable in this class. However, after everything we discussed in the review, we concluded that the price is justified. It’s much more reasonable to pay a little more for a reliable pair of shoes with top-level comfort, then to be money-oriented only and buy a pair that is going to fall apart after a few uses.
- Material: 90% – The choice of materials is really good since it gives the Primal 2 shoes the flexibility and the strength needed for everyday use. As we mentioned earlier, the fact that all the materials are vegan is a big plus in our eyes. On the other hand, since this is a lightweight shoe, you shouldn’t expect it to be tough enough for conquering difficult terrain.
- Design: 100% – We are really impressed with the design of this shoe. Lem’s proves they are all about action, as these provide the level of comfort that not many shoes can match. The extra space in the toe area is fantastic, and the Zero-drop design really helps with keeping posture and pace when walking. Also, the addition of breathable mesh panels on the upper makes it possible to wear on bare feet, giving you excellent ventilation on warmer days.
- Overall: 93% – Primal 2 shoes are certainly some of the best minimalist shoes we came across. It’s only when you put them on that you see the difference in comfort that this type of design gives you. This is why most customers claim that these will soon become your favorite everyday shoe.
Globo Surf Overview
All things considered, the Lem’s Primal 2 is a pair of amazing lightweight shoes. They are shaped exactly as a foot-friendly shoe should be, and the level of flexibility and breathability will definitely surprise you. These left a really good impression on us, and we share many of the same positive thoughts as the people who wear these every day. If you walk or stand a lot and want to do your feet a favor, these are the way to go.
More Backpacking/Hiking Reviews:
- Hydration Bladder
- Solar Watches
- Hiking Hat
- Backpacking Pillow
- North Face Backpack
- How To Pack A Backpack
- How To Wash A Backpack
- Best Hikes In The World
- Gorilla Trekking Uganda
- Langtang Trek