Puma Deviate Nitro Shoe Review

Puma Deviate Nitro Shoe Review

The Puma Deviate Nitro comes as one of the most requested shoe reviews yet. Although any Puma shoe has been requested for a while. Truthfully, they’ve been sold out in women’s size 11 for a while. Now that they cooled off a bit, it was a perfect time to try them.

Puma Deviate Nitro Shoe Review

Puma Deviate Nitro Quick Facts:

Weight: 6.8 oz

Heel to Toe Drop: 8 mm

Price: $160

Puma Deviate Nitro Shoe Review

Puma Deviate Nitro Intro:

It’s no secret that Puma has taken the running world BY STORM over the last few months. I distinctly remember asking Hannah about Puma in late December, and she casually said: “I should wait because Puma has some new cool things coming out.” She didn’t say: “just wait, we are making a huge impact in the running world in 2021”.

For the last few months, Puma models have been sold out in my size. I was finally able to purchase a pair a few weeks ago.

First, what is the difference between the Puma Deviate Nitro and the Puma Deviate Nitro Elite? The Elite is made for racing. Seems easy enough, right? The Nitro elite is made from PEBA foam, whereas the Deviate Nitro is made from non-EVA.

Puma Deviate Nitro Upper:

It feels as though many brands have gone towards more neutral color options lately. So I was excited to see Pumas has several bright and neutral options.

Puma uses “Nitro foam midsole,” which keeps the Puma Deviate Nitro light and makes it responsive. Plus, it’s durable.

The Puma Deviate Nitro uses a seamless “dual-layered upper” with an engineered mesh tongue and a suede material in the heel. It appears to be an offshoot on the Nike Turbo 2. Are they secret twins?

Puma Deviate Nitro Shoe Review

The engineered mesh fits well, and with no overlays, it can fit wider feet better than many shoes. However, the heel is…not great.

The paper-thin heel cuts through my Achilles and left me bleeding in my first run. I’ve only ever had a couple of brands do this, including the Brooks Levitate. I truly don’t understand why brands don’t make a “normal heel.” It also creates a gap which can mean rocks, debris, or anything else get in the shoe. As someone who runs on a lot of trails, this can be a problem for me.

Trying to new brands is tough. Will it fit well? Puma isn’t really available in local running stores, big box stores, or anywhere so it can be tough to decide what size shoe do you need. In that case, I usually air in my bigger range of sizes (I wear between a 10-11 wide). In the Puma Deviate Nitro,  I ordered a size 11.

The Puma Deviate Nitro fits true to size, and the 11 was fine. So minus the heel, I do like the fit of the Puma Deviate Nitro.

Puma Deviate Nitro Shoe Review
The heel in question

Puma Deviate Nitro Ride:

Puma uses advanced “NITRO FOAM” technology. What does this mean? It is supposed to be extremely responsive, with plenty of cushioning but also light. Is that a triple threat or what?

Well does it? The answer is yes. It’s everything it claims to be.

Puma Deviate Nitro Shoe Review

The thing I LOVE about the Puma Deviate Nitro is the amount of grip it has. According to Puma, they use “Pumagrip” which provides a lot more than average traction. I can 100% say that is the case. This shoe would be perfect in inclement weather. I think it would be perfect to run in the desert sand with the exception of sand actually getting into the shoe between the heel and my foot.

I wasn’t really sure where the Puma Deviate Nitro would fit for me. I really like the ride, but the heel does limit how far I want to go (even with thicker socks). Ultimately, I’ve decided it was best as a daily trainer for runs under 10 miles and that I might want to go a little faster in.

Puma Deviate Nitro Shoe Review

Puma Deviate Nitro Conclusion:

I like and don’t like the Puma Deviate Nitro. I can’t see myself grabbing this shoe all of the time because it cuts my heels (which is a common complaint I’ve heard from several people). However, even with thicker socks, I do feel it. This split of people “loving the heel” or “hating the heel” seems to be about 50/50. I have many friends who feel great in the shoe and the only way to know is to try it.

I do like the ride of the Puma Deviate Nitro a lot. However, if they fix the shoe’s heel, I would probably grab it more often than not.

Would I say this is the “best shoe ever”? No. But would I say it’s the best shoe Puma has created in a VERY LONG time? Yes.

Finally, keep in mind you can only return to shoes to Puma if they are unworn. This is a strict return policy and in fact more strict than almost any other brand. So once you commit to them, you commit. In all, I am fairly in different about the Puma Deviate Nitro. It is definitely not my least favorite shoe of 2021, but it’s hard to love a shoe that cuts my heels.

My Current Shoe Rotation:

Easy/Daily Runs Saloman Sonic 3 Balance, Puma Deviate Nitro,  Mizuno Rider Waveknit 3, Diadora Mythos Blushield Volo, Brooks Ricochet 3, New Balance 1080 v11Hoka Bondi 7,

Speed Work: Nike Tempo Next%, New Balance Fuelcell TC Shoe ReviewReebok Float Ride Run fast Pro,

Long Runs: Hoka Clifton Edge,  Under Armour Sonic HOVR 3

Trail Running/Hiking: Hoka Torrent 2, Saucony Peregrine 11, North Face Flight VECTIV

Races: Hoka One One Rocket X, adidas Adizero ProAsics MetaRacerNew Balance Fuelcell 5280Nike Next%,  Saucony Endorphin ProNew Balance fuelcell TCReebok Run fast Pro 

You Can See All Current Shoe Reviews Here.

Looking to learn more about running shoes? In my ebook, I talk about why you need a good running shoe, a shoe’s anatomy, neutral vs. stable, and even myths of running shoes.

Questions for you:

Hvae you tried Puma running shoes?

What is your current favorite running shoe? 



  1. Great review! I totally agree with you on these. I LOVE the ride and the grip, but the heel is the weak spot. I for sure have to think about what socks I’m wearing and that’s not common for me with other shoes. Personally, I find the rest of the shoe worth dealing with the heal. 🙂

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