The intersection between fashion and function in sneaker designs has never been stronger, with technically-accomplished footwear at the top of the agenda right now. Numbered are the days of the Balenciaga Triple S head turning reign, with eyes increasingly drawn towards the sportier silhouettes of brands like Salomon and Hoka One One.
Whether your sneaker rotation is for display purposes only or you like to put your latest cops to the test in your sport of choice, below we’ve rounded up the footwear that performs in more ways than one. From the under the radar brands being adopted by the fashion elite, to the adidas runners and court-ready Jordans that have been on sporting radars since day one, our selection covers all bases.
Scroll on to pick the perfect performance-enhancing shoe for any occasion.
Regardless of whether you’re running up cliffs, aesthetically speaking, off-road shoes are front of mind for sneakerheads right now. Brands such as Salomon have been killing it recently, and its collaboration with French brand Satisfy Running last year was one of the prettiest trail-ready shoes we’ve seen in a long time. Coming in clean black and white colorways, the sneaker is a much more minimalist approach to Salomon’s usual designs, while also breaking into the deconstructed trend with Satisfy’s trademark exposed label on the tongue.
For those of you who need to flash their brand allegiances off-road, however, adidas’ Terrex line brings the goods with its Swift R2 low-top and mid silhouettes, each offering a rugged traction sole, added stability, and weatherproof materials. Nike’s ACG line (which stands for All Conditions Gear), on the other hand, has been on point with its trail-ready Air Revaderchi sneaker in a super-wearable all-black colorway.
That said, if you’re looking to really stand out from fellow racers, Hoka One One continues to emerge as the runner of choice for fashion’s most in-the-know joggers. The brand’s signature chunky sole nods to orthopedic silhouettes and allows for next-level cushioning.
When you’re hitting the gym, your footwear should be lightweight, flexible, and support natural movement. Might sound like a YEEZY boost, but we’re actually talking more along the lines of the Nike Air Vapormax Flyknit 2, designed for incredible versatility no matter what you’re working on. Meanwhile, the durable support offered by Nike’s super affordable dadcore Air Monarch 4 might, ironically, be your best way to keep dad bods at bay.
Look out for the added ankle-support of high-top basketball sneakers if you’re regularly hitting the court. As for brand, do you even need to ask? Bball is where Nike excels, with LeBron James, and Kobe Bryant-inspired models not only making you look the part on the court, but giving you that extra spring in your dunk attempts.
Skaters can’t really go wrong with a pair of classic Vans. The label’s flat, grippy soles are perfect for nailing that ride life, and to really stand out, look no further than the recent DSM collab for some low-key but undeniable flex.
Otherwise, Nike’s SB Dunk Low is set to make a major comeback in 2019. Get ahead of the wave and cop a classic.
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- Curated by: Rhianna Matthews