Top 10 Most Underrated Sneakers
Sneakers, trainers, kicks, whatever you like to call them, most of us live our lives in them, some of us like to wear them for sport, whereas others wear them purely for style reasons, but what we can all agree on is that sneakers are a big deal.
We’ve all seen the hype around various sneaker releases, avid fans queue up for hours with hopes that they might bag themselves a pair. However, there are some very underrated sneakers in the world, that we think deserve some form of recognition.
- Nike SB Zoom Stefan Janoski SE
Stefan Janoski has been noted to be one of Nike’s biggest collaborators, but Stefan’s vision didn’t quite hit the spot with certain sneaker freaks out there. The velcro straps and choice of material made it a questionable model, but I think it looks sleek, stylish and most importantly, practical.
- Nike Hyperfeel
Designed for runners, the Nike Hyperfeel didn’t quite reach the mark with sneaker fans and running fanatics alike. The initial design idea for this sneaker was a sock. It was designed to be as light as a feather as it was moulded for runner’s. Hyperfeel should have been one popular sneaker, but it sadly flopped a little bit in the grand scheme of things. Oh well, I’m sure Nike got over it.
- Vans Caballero
Probably the most famous skating shoe brand in the world with some of their earliest sneakers still being made and worn today. However, there are a few sneakers that slipped through the cracks of the sneaker world, and the Caballero is one of them. Many of you will know the Vans Half Cab, but without the Caballero, you wouldn’t have the Half Cab.
Van’s designers were fed up of people continually cutting the tops off of their Caballero sneakers, so they created the Half Cab as an alternative for skateboarders.
- Puma GV Special
We have Guillermo Vilas to thank for these sneakers. A major tennis player during the 70’s and 80’s, he sported a pair of these Puma GV Specials, specifically designed to help cushion his foot whilst playing tennis. However, as much as Guillermo was a hit, sadly, his sneakers weren’t.
- Wilson Pro Staff Classic Mesh
Many people’s association with Wilson will be rather damaged, after Tom Hanks grew particularly fond of them during his brief stay on a tropical island. But during the 1980’s Wilson was a sports brand to be reckoned with as they dominated the sporting world with their hi-tech sporting shoes and clothing.
The Wilson Pro Staff Classic Mesh, are sadly no more. Although popular at the time, the Wilson brand never really made it past the 80’s/90’s but I’m sure generational sneaker lovers will remember these in fondness.
- Puma Disc
We first saw this gem in 1991, it is considered the first of its kind. A technological advance for the sneaker world, the Puma disc will go down in history as one of the first laceless sports shoes. The disc has its downside, but personally, I feel that, for such a technologically advanced shoe, it really does deserve more of a mention.
- Converse Jack Purcell
This may be a controversial choice from my part, but I feel that not enough people knew about the Converse Jack Purcell sneaker at all. Aptly named after the famous badminton player, Jack Purcell, Converse bought the trademark rights to these shoes from B.F.Goodrich in 1970, and ever since then the popularity of the sneakers grew.
With the signature ‘smiley’ toe cap and minimal design, the Converse Jack Purcell is sure to go down in sneaker history.
- Nike + Running Shoes
Another technological shoe for the sneaker world, Nike released a series of running shoes that synced to your iPod in partnership with Apple. These sneakers were capable of tracking your running to help you improve i.e. your speed, how many steps you’ve taken and even how you run. However, these weren’t a massive hit, with avid running fanatics not taking to the sneakers. As a technological first, you have to give it to Nike on their aspirational sneakers.
- Puma Clyde 24k Gold
Unfortunately, these sneakers weren’t made out of 24k gold, but they certainly looked like they were. These were re-release of the 2012 collaboration with UNDFTD and focused on the classic Walt Frazier sneakers that Puma is known and loved for. It may have been the color, that people weren’t a fan of, but you can’t deny the design on these beauties.
- Etonic X Fred Perry
This is a pair of sneakers that many would love to have, this was a collaboration between sneaker powerhouse Etonic and global tennis star turned apparel designer. Fred Perry was not something to be desired at the time! With the retro sneakers trend still in full swing (a massive fan myself).
Featured photo credit: Max the black does Cardiff via theidleman.com