Inov-8 Bare XF 260 Review

The Inov-8 Bare-XF 260 is an aggressive road running and obstacle course racing flat that’s also popularly used for weightlifting because the zero- drop, barefoot-inspired design gets your foot closer to the ground, making you more balanced than traditional athletic shoes. Not only that, the shoes rounded toe-box was made with extra flexibility to help your toes spread and clench into the ground.

Inov-8 Bare-XF 260 Review

The Inov-8 Bare-XF 260 is also excellent for climbing, rope climbing, and hiking, and is also meant for daily use to help you develop and sustain functional, natural mechanics based on the shoes barefoot-first construction.

Upper Specifications

The upper is a durable mix of meshy, Rope-Tec fabrications that are exceptionally light and flexible, therefore there’s nothing getting in the way of your foot’s natural gait!Inov 8 Bare XF 260 Review

The mesh is also very airy, delivering extra airflow, making the Bare-XF 260 a highly capable summer running/training shoe, but despite being so airy and light, the upper is durable and robust for obstacle course races!

To provide a reinforced and personalized fit, the upper goes well beyond lacing by featuring Velcro straps that gets your foot really locked into the shoe with no pressure points! The interior lining is also supple and soft, so you can wear these puppies comfortably without socks.

Sole Specifications

The Bare-XF 260 sits on a tough, yet flexible zero-drop, super thin rubber sole that offers runners most of the benefits of the barefoot running movement, while offering slight cushioning for longer runs that also provides protection against harsh surfaces.

Inov-8 Bare-XF 260 Review
Feeling the ground is always better than not, and the Inov-8 Bare-XF 260 gets you super close to the ground with excellent ground-feel, making you more balanced with every step.


The paper-thin sole coupled with the added flexibility at the front of the shoe makes it super easy for you to connect properly on your forefoot when you run which is always better for your knees!Inov-8 Bare-XF 260 Review

As for traction, the sole is very smooth and sticky, providing ample grip with widely-spaced indented chevron-shaped grooves that also gives the flexibility to move more agile, giving you more confidence on uneven grounds.

Last but not least, if you like the Vibram FiveFingers, you’ll be very pleased with the Bare XF 260 because the shoe is very similar in feel and flexibility.

Final Thoughts

Inov-8 created a well-stabilized profile without the boosted weight with the Bare XF 260, which is also plenty durable than most minimalist shoes.

You’ll no doubt love the reassuringly stable connection with the ground, but where this shoe really shines is with its functionality! The shoes barefoot-inspired construction improves the quality of your mechanics, helping to use your forefoot strike more efficiently, while the unrestrictive fit perfectly prevents foot weakness. 

If you’re interested in the Bare-XF 260, you can get your paws on a pair here!

If you’d like, you can support Run Forefoot and help keep it going by making a donation in any amount of your choosing:

Or, you can also support Run Forefoot by shopping at the following top minimalist shoes brands, and be sure to bookmark the links:

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If you’ve enjoyed this review, you’ll love my reviews on the other barefoot shoes that work for everyone, here!

Bretta Riches

"I believe the forefoot strike is the engine of endurance running..."

BSc Neurobiology; MSc Biomechanics candidate, ultra minimalist runner & founder of RunForefoot. I was a heel striker, always injured. I was inspired by the great Tirunesh Dibaba to try forefoot running. Now, I'm injury free. This is why I launched Run Forefoot, to advocate the health & performance benefits of forefoot running and to raise awareness on the dangers of heel striking, because the world needs to know.
Bretta Riches

P.S. Don't forget to check out the Run Forefoot Facebook Page, it's a terrific place to ask questions about forefoot running, barefoot running and injury. I'm always happy to help!

1 Comment

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