The phrase “only ’90s kids remember the ’90s” has been immortalized on the internet in the form of memes and an avalanche of listicles for good reason. It was in this tumultuous decade that pop culture flourished—giving us everything from Clueless and Friends to the Spice Girls and Tupac Shakur—and fashion turned out a tapestry of styles. The ’90s were an era of the chunkiest of chunky sneakers and oversized, grungy fits.
The decade has become an endless honeypot prime for dipping into by today’s wave of young hypebeasts. Sure, they either spent the decade in diapers or weren’t even born yet, but in the age of the internet, time is a flat line. Everything old is new again as brands turn back time and enter their vaults to dust off the classics that put them on the map.
Enter: Umbro’s Archive Research Project (or ARP for a ‘gram-worthy acronym). Way back in the ’90s, the shoemaker spent the decade on the chest of some of the world’s biggest footballers. Brazil’s national team won the 1994 FIFA World Cup in Umbro-clad ‘fits and, four years later, Manchester United spent their 1998-99 season rocking the brand when they dominated the English Premier League, FA Cup, and UEFA Champions League.
Under the long shadow of their sports shirts, it was natural for their sneakers to fly under the radar until now. Two decades after they dropped, Umbro has reimagined the classic styles and rereleased them under a new ARP collection with three silhouettes: The Runner M, Neptune, and Exert Max. Fit with chunky soles, mesh lining, and leather paneling ripe for flexing on the ‘gram, the ARP kicks have made their way onto the feet of Instagram’s most stylish influencers.
Before you head to Umbro, Foot Locker, or Urban Outfitters to cop all the ARP silhouettes and browse their full ‘90s-inspired Umbro Projects Collection, see what East Coast Instagrammers had to say about the kicks and peep the shots. Tell us which fit is your favorite in the comments below and for all the latest from the brand, follow Umbro on Instagram.
Jorge’s Umbro style is for the dogs.
Teron Harris goes business casual in a rooftop ready ‘fit.
Gia flexes her stripes in white ARP kicks.
Ziggy’s calling up his trade’s girlfriend in his Umbros.
Johnson brought literal flames to his Neptunes.
Raquise sits on the sidelines in a cozy ‘fit.
Semsi brings clean sneaks to his grunge look.
Odalys treks through Harlem in the Neptune ARP silhouette.