Brand: BEAUTY & YOUTH UNITED ARROWS x New Balance 2002R
Buy: UNITED ARROWS from mid-July
Editor's Notes: New Balance's mastery of the retro runner has been proven time and time again but few of its timeless trainers take the old school crown as nattily as the 2002R. Though it's received some especially spiffy makeovers recently, UNITED ARROWS' BEAUTY & YOUTH imprint is updating the silhouette with a truly elderly look, appropriate given its all-inclusive approach to youthful style.
I'm not sure what it is, exactly, that draws older gents into the mostly-white chunky runners (e.g. Air Monarch), but it's like dad catnip. The 2002R has already appeared in some tonal iterations, but BEAUTY & YOUTH really went the extra mile with chunky new ABZORB sole akin to those seen on the Fresh Foam series.
Fresh Foams are especially popular in Japan, having been remixed by the likes of N.Hoolywood and others in recent years, so it's not terribly surprising to see another hip retailer bringing the tech on board. This is far from B&Y's only recent NB partnership, as well, but the 2002R leans especially hard into the loungey streetwear vibes that BEAUTY & YOUTH frequently observes, though it's more mature than the funky fare offered by sibling label monkey time.
B&Y graces its 2002R with pale nubuck and mesh, blending white and light grey into a low-key mélange, complete with a purple-trimmed "N" logo, that cushioned sole and a black outsole. On the insole, there's another throwback element: New Balance's '90s-era "The Intelligent Choice" tagline, recently revived for several Aimé Leon Dore collaborations.