It was early this year in March. I was in a press line with a few familiar faces for event at Nike Soho. It was one of the commencement events for Air Max Day this year and there was definitely a slight buzz in the air. As a few other special guest invites arrived we began to speak on the event, potential silent drops for the weekend, and the latest addition to the Air Max family, the Vapormax. One of them had on the COMME des GARÇONS iteration and the other the University Red colorway. Mind you this a little bit before the launch of the shoe, so it was most of folks first impression on the shoe. My immediate reaction was thinking this was completely uncharted territory for Nike. It looked like nothing I had really seen before. And the first words when described by both of them were “Crazy Comfortable”.
The night went on with many of us floating through the event providing the world with the first in depth look at the silhouette. As a huge fan of Air Max 1s as soon as I heard we had an option to get them at the event, I immediately requested the University Red pair. For many of you that follow me on IG you know I don’t own a pair of University Red Vapormax. I was then suggested to go with Pure Platinum pair, and honestly I reluctantly said yes. Figuring it would be dope to have them regardless and when I get to them I get to them. I was asked did I want to try them on and I laughed pointing out we don’t ever try on sneakers. I purchased my pair and continued to enjoy the event.
It wasn’t until the following morning when I really inspected the shoe. Immediately I marveled at how light the shoe was. Then I moved on to the execution of the Flyknit on this model, which is arguably Nike’s best. After that I went back to admiring how unique the design of the shoe was and how it seemed to be Nike stepping into the future. Literally after that they went right back in the box and sat for months. Even though I truly enjoyed the shoe, that mentality of I’ll get to them when I get to them came back into play when it came to wearing them. I don’t ever normally wear my sneakers anywhere near when they are purchased though, so this is nothing new. Little did I know at that moment, but that was a huge mistake.
I finally got around to wearing them some months later after getting some mixed reviews on them. So, how do I explain this next part? There are shoes that don’t look like it but feel like you are standing on a platform. This is what I expected because that’s exactly what the shoe looks like. A soft upper standing on a firm platform. Man, was I wrong. It was refreshing how comfortable this shoe is. And amongst the super comfortable sneakers if the world, Ultra Boosts, Prestos, Spiridons, Gel Lytes, the Vapormax truly stood toe to toe with each one. For some of you that may be a bold statement, but I am guaranteeing this and would be willing to confidently wager that you would feel the same.
So we have spoken on form factor, and comfort which means there is only one other thing to speak on; which is the style aspect of the shoe. Other than the fact that they are extremely versatile from a wear standpoint, have you even seen a bad colorway of the Vapormax? This isn’t even me being a Stan. The Vapormax at worst looks good in most colorways, and then there are many colors it looks literally flawlessly in. I have had friends say they will definitely stock pairs once they go on sale, which has literally been impossible because most pairs sell out. I want you all to think about this. What was the last shoe we said looked good I’m pretty much every color? We can add to that name a shoe that releases at the frequency of the Vapormax with as many quality pairs from point of inception?
The writing is on the wall. Some of the best general releases of the year. One of the best packs of year. Some of the best limited run release of the year. On top of those, if we talk about the Off White collaborations it may be the best shoe of the ten. I can honestly say of you are not a fan of these you are out of touch with sneakers at this point in time. I will also say there are some other shoes that could be considered for shoe of the year, but the second place spot is far from close to the Vapormax.