Sneaker culture is not just about rocking a fresh pair, no matter how hot or extremely rare the kicks you copped are. If we’re being honest, it’s about feeling part of something much bigger, which entails putting your hands on a piece of culture, owning that sartorial time capsule, and rocking it with pride and style. Now more coveted than ever, since the mid-2010s, a shoe is just a shoe if you wish to simply look at it as such. For a whole generation, or two, it’s become the ultimate symbol of cultural relevance with limited-edition collaborations featuring celebrities, artists, and designers turning kicks into the holy grails of an era.
Birthing a thriving resale market as a result, where sneakers are sold for hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars above their original retail price, the cultural phenomenon, that’s been blowing up in recent years, has been quite hard to keep up with as releases have become more frequent, and given the popularity of the trend, consequentially harder to jump on as each drop usually sells out within minutes, if not seconds. You can blame bots and greedy resellers for that.
At the intersection of several industries, including music, cinema, sports, and fashion, seasoned sneakerheads and new collectors alike have been competing against each other to figure out who’s got the flyest pair in the game. That automatically means knowing when to jump on the relevant website, preemptively knowing its price range, and unfortunately, in the case you’re a money-making fiend, the resell potential of the given gem you’ve got your eyes on.
It’s only been a month since we stepped into the new year, and the first few weeks of 2023 have copiously been punctuated with announces of sneaker drops. For the occasion, we gathered some of the hottest hitting shelves soon to make sure you’re ahead of the curve the next time you’re trying to add a sole-made item into your basket.
Nike x Corteiz Nike Air Max 95
Release Date: March 2023
Price: Expected $209
Shortly after London-based streetwear label Corteiz teased a partnership with Nike by projecting its logo onto the brand’s London flagship Batman style, the duo’s first project together has been revealed. Corteiz founder, Clint, revealed the first look at the Nike Air Max 95 on Instagram, which come in khaki, olive green, grey, and black colorways and feature the brand’s signature Alcatraz logo on the shoe’s tongue.
Tiffany x Nike Air Force 1
Release Date: March 7, 2023
Price: Expected $400
This week, luxury jeweler Tiffany & Co. and Nike have officially announced their anticipated collaboration. Dubbed “a legendary pair” by the brand on Instagram, the pair of Air Force 1s come in a Tiffany blue shoebox branded with the footwear giant’s logo. The hotly-anticipated collaboration also comes with a range of sterling silver accessories that include a shoe horn, whistle, cleaning brush and lace dubraes.
The new shoes are just the latest in a string of projects launched by 30-year-old Alexandre Arnault in a bid to target a younger demographic. Arnaut, who took the helm at Tiffany last year debuted an ad campaign with the controversial tagline “Not Your Mother’s Tiffany,” distancing the brand from its longtime customers. He went on to team up with Beyonce and Jay Z on an ad campaign, collaborate with Daniel Arsham, a fixture in streetwear and art, as well as roll out an exclusive hypebeast-approved collection with streetwear giant Supreme.
New Balance 550 “Blue Haze”
Release Date: February 1, 2023
Following successful collaborations with Aime Leon Dore and Comme des Garcons Homme on the 550, New Balance now introduces the “Blue Haze” colorway, set to hit shelves today.
YCMC x New Balance 990v3
Release Date: February 2, 2023
Baltimore-based retailer YCMC (Your City My City) teamed up with the Boston-based footwear brand yet again on a pair of coveted 990v3 to start off the month on the right foot. Inspired by trailblazers, the new shoes come in a muted green colorway punctuated with vibrant tones of orange, purple, and turquoise across its upper and sole unit.
Travis Scott x Air Jordan 1 Low ‘Olive’
Expected Release: March 23, 2023
One of the most anticipated sneaker collaborations of the year is no doubt Travis Scott’s seventh and rumored last Air Jordan 1 collaboration with Nike. The fanciful footwear, which the rapper first teased last September, is set to debut in spring. What makes this release particularly exciting is that for the first time, the shoe will be available exclusively in women’s sizing.
Air Jordan 1 High OG ‘Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse’
Expected Release: May 20, 2023
In Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, moviegoers were quick to spot the titular hero Miles Morales wearing a pair of Nike AJ1s. The pair came to life via an official Nike collaboration, and now, with the sequel to the beloved Marvel movie on the horizon, a second pair of Spiderman-themed sneakers are on the way.
Junya Watanabe x New Balance 650
Expected Release: TBC
During Paris Men’s Fashion Week, Junya Watanabe unveiled its latest New Balance collaboration during its Fall 2023 presentation, and it might just be the Japanese label’s cleanest pair of kicks yet. Coming in three blacked-out colorways, the pair of 650s differ in the materials used, which includes mesh, hairy suedes, and leather.