10 Running Gear Faves

Running is a beautifully simple sport at first glance. What could you possibly need besides your own two legs and a sidewalk? But then you realize that you can’t run in the beat-up tennies you wear to mow the lawn. Annnd, you probably need some swishy running shorts that will keep you cool on runs in warm weather. And then….you need better socks. And a hat. 

Running IS a beautifully simple sport. But collecting running gear is annoyingly complex. Every runner is unique and needs different shoes and gear. It’s a process to find exactly the right running gear that works for you. A good place to start is reading reviews from other runners. You probably will need to try gear out to know if it’s right for you, but you can narrow your options by reading reviews first.

Get started on your running gear selection process with some Fave reviews from HandsDown

Best Running Shoes Reviews

Picking the right running shoes is the most important decision you’ll make as a runner. These recs will help you zero in.

Women’s GEL-KAYANO 27 Running Shoes by ASICS

Fave of Sophie

“These are the first running shoes that I have found that give me enough ankle support, reduce the risk of foot injuries, and are overall just really comfortable shoes.”

Women’s GEL-NIMBUS 24 Running Shoes by ASICS

Fave of Serena

“Best running shoes.”

Author’s Note: The ASICS Gel-Nimbus have also been my favorite running shoes for years. I’m prone to shin splints, and these shoes have been great. It’s like running on actual clouds. They are insanely cushioned and light. 

Women’s Arahi 6 Stability Running Shoe by HOKA®

Fave of Kendra

“Cushioned shoes that aren’t heavy and don’t look like clown shoes. Fun colors. Fun miles. Fun times.”

Mens Nike By You Running Shoes

Fave of Andrew

“Customize the colors online, super comfy, supportive, quick shipping. The extra fashionable motivation I needed to get off the couch.”

There’s nothing wrong with picking a running shoe for its function AND style!

Best Running Socks

Along with the right shoes, good socks are key to happy running feet. Cheap socks will give you blisters and feel hot and sweaty almost immediately. It’s worth it to buy the good ones! 

Women’s Performance Running Ankle Sock by Bombas

Fave of Kendra

“Let’s talk something unsexy–MY FEET SWEAT. But these babies keep them dry. I tell literally everyone how much I love these socks. They are AmAzInG. Also for every pair you buy, a pair is donated to a homeless shelter. I wear these running and the compression socks at work (scrub life).”

Women’s Merino Wool Running Ankle Socks by Bombas

Fave of Emily

“Comfy, merino – all I need in a sock!”

Can confirm. Merino wool socks are awesome for cooler weather running!

Men’s Stride Micro Crew Ultra-Light Running Socks by Darn Tough

Fave of Jeffrey

“Lifetime warranty. Amazingly thin, stay dry, grippy, breathable socks. Best sock I’ve found for warmer weather activities, Biking, Hiking, Running etc. I own two pairs and these have become my primary biking sock.”

Every Fave sock you’ll find on HandsDown is Bombas or Darn Tough. These companies make good stuff!

Best Running Gear

After you take care of your running footwear, turn your attention to other gear.

Running Cap by Ciele

Fave of Sam

“My favorite running hat…comfortable, light, washable!”

Author’s Note: A good running hat will keep the sun out of your eyes (improving safety especially on sunrise or twilight runs). And it’s often a better option than sunglasses, which tend to slip down your nose as soon as you get a little sweaty. Plus, sun protection. 

OFFLINE By Aerie Nylon Running Short

Fave of Nora

“Sorry Lulu, sorry Alo yoga—these right here are the most comfortable, stretchy and cute workout shorts I’ve found. They have a seamless boyshort lining and a high waistband with just-right compression, and they look great on! Pick your normal size.”

Chloé 3 Running Nursing Sports Bra by Sweat and Milk

Fave of Sam

“The best nursing sports bra on the planet.”

Running is such an awesome sport. Even a simple jog around the block is an instant boost for your mental and physical health. With the right running gear, you can feel comfortable and confident in every step. And when YOU find your running Faves, add them to your top 10 list! Sharing is caring!

10 Outdoor Footwear Faves

When the weather starts to warm up in the spring, I’m always eager to swap out my footwear right away. I put on my Chacos and head out for a walk with a lighter step and renewed interest in the world. I used to be a runner and biker, but these days I’m a walker during the warm months. Because my outdoor sport interests have narrowed, I find that one excellent pair of outdoor shoes will handle all my spring and summer adventures. For me, that pair of shoes is Chacos. 

But however you enjoy the great outdoors during the spring and summer, you’ll need some awesome footwear. If you are looking for reliable sandals, running shoes, socks, or hiking boots, you’ll want to peek at these recommendations from the HandsDown community

Best Outdoor Sandals for Women

Everyone needs some great outdoor sandals!

Teva® Tirra for Women | Strappy Water Sandals

Fave of Esther

“Love these for any outdoor adventure that will include water. I also love that Teva uses recycled materials and will also take their shoes back with their recycle program. I’ve had my pair for 6 years and they’re still going strong.”

Women’s Z/Cloud 2 Sandals | Chaco

Fave of Kate

“I’ve worn the same pair of Chacos for 6 years, and they are only just starting to wear out. My feet and back never get tired even after a long day of walking around in them. Hands down my favorite pregnancy shoes too, since they adjust to fit my swollen feet and give great arch support.” 

Note: Yep, these are from my list! One thing to know is that they are not great water shoes, surprisingly. But awesome for all other outdoor adventures!

BIRKENSTOCK USA

Fave of Kittie

“All time fav shoe brand, can’t beat their well-made leather and cork sandal for the summer festival season.”

So many people listed Birkenstocks as a Fave footwear item! They are classy, comfortable, and well-made. Hard to beat!

Comfortable Running Shoes and Socks

Women’s Performance Running Ankle Sock 4-Pack Gift Bag – Bombas

Fave of Kendra

“Let’s talk about something unsexy–MY FEET SWEAT. But these babies keep them dry. I tell literally everyone how much I love these socks. They are AmAzInG. Also for every pair you buy, a pair is donated to a homeless shelter. I wear these running and the compression socks at work (scrub life).”

Bombas is another brand that shows up on many Fave lists! (Including mine!)

Men’s Stride Micro Crew Ultra-Light Running Socks – Darn Tough

Fave of Jeffery

“Lifetime warranty. Amazingly thin, stay dry, grippy, breathable socks. Best sock I’ve found for warmer weather activities: biking, hiking, running etc. Own two pairs and these have become my primary biking sock.”

Pro tip: Virtually every sock recommendation you’ll find on HandsDown is either Bombas or Darn Tough. Can’t go wrong with either!

Women’s Arahi 6 Stability Running Shoe | HOKA®

Fave of Kendra

“Cushioned shoes that aren’t heavy and don’t look like clown shoes. Fun colors. Fun Miles. Fun Times.”

Women’s OOahh Slide Sandal – Lavender – OOFOS

Fave of Jill

“Best sandals to wear after a run. Also use them as my house shoes. Great support and super comfortable.”

Don’t forget to pamper your feet after a long run! They worked hard!

Best Outdoor Footwear for Hiking

Women’s Lennox™ Hiker Bootie | SOREL

Fave of Ashley

“These boots help me take long hikes with no blisters afterwards.”

I mean, the #1 job of hiking boots is no blisters, so that’s a winning review!

The North Face Activist Mid Futurelight Hiking Shoe

Fave of Peter

“Good ankle support, look cool, waterproof, lightweight.”

It’s nice to see a hiking boot that doesn’t seem like Serious Business. They really do look cool and comfortable. 

Cairn PRO II Adventure Sandals – Bedrock Sandals

Fave of Becca

“These are the ultimate hiking sandals! I love that I can hike 4+ miles and easily go over rocks, mud, in and out of water, and uphill with ease. It’s a great sandal for packing when you know there are going to be adventures.”

Whether you enjoy the outdoors through festivals, hiking, running, or walking around the neighborhood, I hope you find your hands down fave footwear for the season! When you do, add it to your list of Faves and share it with your friends.