The Ultra Smooth is North Face’s first running shoe designed specifically for the roads. The upper is a closed mesh with no-sew overlays, and results in a smooth interior. The ankle collar is a smooth-but-thin polyester fabric called FlashDry over relatively little foam that cups the heel effectively, thanks to a Pebax nylon cradle.

The thin tongue and flat laces secure the foot well without adding extra weight. The midsole is injection-molded EVA, a rubbery blend that provides a resilient, though firm, and responsive ride. The lateral portion of the midsole’s forefoot also constitutes the outersole. (Don’t worry,
its toughened surface is equal to the task.) The outersole is a durable Vibram rubber compound, set into the midsole for a smooth transition. The effective Ultra Smooth earns a hearty “well done” and has us hoping that it hints at a broader series of road shoes from The North Face.

Testers: "Really good-fitting shoe with a nice, smooth interior. Lightweight, but with a substantial underfoot-feel. They managed plenty of good miles for me.”

Sizes: Men 7–13,14,15,16; Women 5–12
Weight: 10.8 oz. (men’s 11); 8.9 oz. (women’s 8)
Shape: semicurved
Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, polyurethane Strobel board
Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics to mild overpronation

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