I bought a pair of inov8 255 road x last year when i was toying with the idea of slowly working towards barefoot running. In the end I just went straight to minimalist shoes on the advice of my podiatrist.
Anyway, they are very good shoes if that's the sort of thing you are after, the build quality is good and they fit true to uk sizes in my experience. I also just bought a pair of inov8 roclite 400 gtx boots for walking. Top brand in my opinion.
I was recommended barefoot running by a podiatrist. He could have charged my employer, who sent me there, over £200 for a set of custom orthotics. Instead he suggested that the cause of my shin splints and ITB could be eradicated by running barefoot. I actually elected to buy some minimalist shoes instead, I didn't fancy cutting my feet to shreds on the dog turd infested British streets!
That was back in early November and I'm now well on my way to my modest goal of 25mi a week. Had to start slow though.
I bought VFF's initially, which I was and still am very happy with, but I also have a pair of Merrell Trail Gloves now and they are fast becoming my favourite shoes ever!
I have been running in FF KSO's for a few months now and am really enjoying my minimalist running, all my injuries have ceased to be and I'm faster too!
Mainly out of interest, but also for off road work and with the end game in mind of walking the Inca Trail in them next year, I purchased a pair of Merrell Trail Gloves this week. I'd had my eye on them for a while and when I saw some in a shop I couldn't resist trying them on, well trying leads to buying and next thing you know I have a nice new pair of size 8 (UK) Trail Gloves. I'm normally a size 8 (although my VFF's are a UK 7 1/2 and I could stand to wear a 7), but the Trail Glove seemed just a little short in an 8, my toes have just under a thumbs width before the end of the shoe (the 9 was way too big). At this point I maybe should have waited and got the 8 1/2 which the shop didn't have in stock, but I didn't.
Anyway, today after just over 4.5 miles without socks the ends of my feet are fine, but the tops of both my big toes are shredded. Feeling around inside the shoe I think it's the join between the tongue and the shoe that is rubbing.
Has anyone else had this with Trail Gloves? I wonder if it's because I really ought to have the next half size up? Perhaps the pair I have are not quite right, although it would seem quite a coincidence to have two shoes poorly made in exact same area. I really don't want to have to wear socks with them, I like being bare footed in my running shoes now.
Just looking for some advice really, the sizing advice around the web is varied at best.
The VFF KSO's on the other hand are epic, so comfortable to run in, once I got used to them and built up the milage.