The Mizuno Wave Creation 18 is one of the most popular shoes in the Mizuno neutral line. Using a lot of their signature wave cushioning, it is a flagship that is easy to see on people’s feet as you go out on runs or at local races.
The shoe has great stability and is a good option for the mid-range training runs. However, there are some major flaws that hold this shoe back for this reviewer.
Mizuno Wave Creation 18 General Info
The Wave Creation is a high-mileage neutral trainer that advertises high cushioning. It is a premium trainer, that uses all of Mizuno’s premium materials.
It sits at the top of the food-chain for Mizuno trainers — being one of the most popular shoes they offer and a financial step down from the Prophecy.
This shoe competes directly with the Brooks Glycerin, ASICS Nimbus, Nike LunarEpic and Adidas Energy Boost.
Upon unboxing I thought these shoes looked great — and they are some of the best looking shoes I’ve been sent.
They have a great color scheme and an aggressive look to them. The wave cushioning only being under the heel helps with the look as well.
When I first wore the shoes, they were very comfortable to wear as an all-day shoe. However, on the first run that I had the thought that these high-cushioned shoes seemed to lack the cushion that was promised.
Mizuno Wave Creation 18 Sole Unit
The sole unit of this shoe uses a mixture of Mizuno’s signature Infinity Wave Cushioning and U4ic foam.
The Wave cushioning is a flexible plastic that produces a spring reaction when compressed and helps a runner during their heel-to-toe transition. The firm foam under the forefoot helps to push your foot forward.
As a larger runner — 6’3″ 230 — I expected to get energy return from the foam and Wave technologies.
However, I did not experience that, instead I experienced a very firm ride that was just fine for mid-range runs, but left lacking during the double-digit runs or longer.
The other thing I saw on my runs was that if the concrete was wet, these shoes became tricky to run in. They did not have great grip on regular surfaces during my first couple of runs, however that went away as I broke them in.
But the overall grip became something that played in my mind when I thought of which shoes to wear on my run that day.
Mizuno Wave Creation 18 Upper Info
The upper is incredibly comfortable. It is completely breathable while not being porous to water. Your feet will feel cooled down and fresh with this upper.
Mostly seamless, with a number of rigid overlays that help secure your feet into the upper. However, these overlays are needed because the shoe is much wider a fit than is a similar shoe from another brand.
In fact, the upper feels wide throughout — from heel to toe. Due to this wide feeling, I pulled the laces as tight as they would go before I felt fully locked in.
With pulling the laces like this, there was so much shoelace left, that at times the loops of my shoelaces would go underfoot — causing me to almost fall a couple of times.
Mizuno Wave Creation 18 Conclusions
For a shoe that retails at $160, I expect them to be comfortable in all runs — short/fast or long/slow. However, this shoe did not live up to that expectation at all.
On fast runs, the shoe weighed too much and felt too heavy for a quick turnover. On the long runs, they performed well until I hit double digits, then the firm cushioning got to be too much and my feet always hurt.
As an everyday, wear to school and teach shoe, these are great. And when I wanted to go 5-9 miles at an easy pace, they were great. However, $160 is a little much for me to drop on a pair of specialty mid-range shoes.
I know that they have loyal fanbase and following. However, these are not shoes that I would recommend to many runners. They are just far to heavy and under cushioned for the price tag.
We thank the nice people at Mizuno for sending us a pair of Wave Creation 18 to test. This did not influence the outcome of the review, written after running more than 50 miles in them.
Mizuno Wave Creation 18 Price Comparison
This page contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.