I was a little reluctant to purchase these online without having tried them on first, but being a Merrell fan, and owning a bunch of the Waterpro Maipo (PLEASE bring those back- they are hands down the most comfortable shoes I've ever owned), I bought these and Merrell did not let me down. They fit like a glove with the utmost comfort. They are cushioned but not too cushy, so I added my insert as I always have to do with shoes due to my high arches. Perfect! No breaking in was necessary- I wore them for two days straight with no problem. They are also a perfect height- low cut but not too low. They basically feel like a regular shoe but maybe a tad on the bulkier side. I guess they're like a lightweight hiking show. Great support but not rigid or uncomfortable. I bought these because I hate wearing winter boots (unless there is a TON of snow) and needed waterproof shoes that would get me through the lousy weather here in Michigan. The traction is excellent but be aware that you will hear some squeaking. Not sure if that goes away or not, but it really doesn't bother me, as it makes me feel safe knowing I have protection against falls outside. I've yet to wear them in rain or snow, so cannot tell just how waterproof they are. One thing I did do after reading reviews here is that I purchased them 1/2 size up. I'm normally a 9 and got the 9 1/2. I chose the Drizzle Mint and just love the subtle but cool looking color. They look great with jeans. Great shoe- hope your experience is as good as mine.