You know the saying—when it rains, it pours. That is not an observation of the state of the world we inhabit right now. We at Esquire are giving you not one, but multiple ways to help make this lockdown a tad better; think socially responsible ways to flex your outfits, breakdown of different businesses that are banding together to help our migrant worker community and gifts like cakes, cold brews, flowers and care-packages that you can send to your love ones from a safe, social distance.
But for that metaphorical cherry on top of that sundae of goodness, we are going to be bringing you a list of the best sneaker launching this week, that you can cop from the safety of your home. Although that begs that question of what is worse—camping out overnight at retail outlets or battling the bots online for sneaker supremacy. But that's a debate for another time.
This week, we see two low variations of iconic Jordan sneakers, a triple black Yeezy (always a good idea) and two of the most in-demand New Balances.
Nike Air Jordan 1 Lows 'Beijing'
Celebrating basketball's cultural impact in China, Jordan Brand would be release two limited-edition colourways of the Air Jordan 1 lows. The best one of the lot, features a white upper with black snakeskin overlay, with a tie-dyed space print on the toebox. The sneaker also features astral lightning detailing on the Swoosh, the iconic ball and wing logo on the hell, and glow-in-the-dark outsoles. While the sneaker is a China-exclusive, that has never stopped a die-hard sneakerhead before.
Available from 23 May via China SNKRS app
Nike Air Jordan 11 Retro Low 'Gym Red'
The Air Jordan 1s might be the inception of Michael Jordan's sneaker empire, but his favourite of all time? The Air Jordan 11. The sneaker was created by Tinker Hatfield as a sneaker that would complement Jordan's love of tailoring. The 'Gym Red' or 'Concord Breds' sees the fusing of the black patent leather mudguard of the 'Concords' on the toebox with the red sole 'Bred' detailing. There is also the luxurious touch of leather, instead of the ballistic mesh. Enough said.
Available from 23 May via Singapore SNKRS app and raffle on END clothing.
Nike Killshot OG
Not every sneaker has to have mind-blowing details to be great—take for example the Killshot OG silhouette. Brought back to life from Nike's archives from their collaboration with J.Crew, the Killshot is quiet, but not lacking in confidence. The sneakers feature a blend of suede and mesh uppers, with a pop of colour from the Swoosh—think of it as the perfect plan B sneakers, with you can't decide on your kicks on the day, you just throw these on and you are good to go.
Available from 22 May via Singapore SNKRS app and raffle on END clothing.
New Balance 1300 Tokyo Design Studio R_C1300
Looking to their Tokyo Design Studio, New Balance channels the ethos of summer through their take on the 1300 model. Reworking the uppers, it features a blue marble-like upper, with a cream support detailing on the heel and white midsoles. The outsoles is also radically beefed up, which combines New Balance ENCAP® and ABZORB® technology with Vibram® rubber.
Available from 22 May via raffle on END clothing.
Adidas Yeezy Boost 700 MNVN Black
If you missed out on the first launch of the Adidas Yeezy Boost 700 MNVN Black, here is your chance to cop it again. As groundbreaking as Kayne West's sneaker designers are, sometimes they might be a little too out there. Your best bet is to go monochrome, and when it comes to monochrome, it does not get better than triple black. This literation comes with tonal 700 graphics embossed on the sides.
Available on 23 May, via Adidas Singapore
KITH x New Balance 992
KITH is no stranger to New Balance, having created many great collaborations over the years. This weekend, the American label will be dropping a new colourway for the 992, the first of five different New Balance models getting the midas touch of KITH's founder Ronnie Fieg. Inspired by the colourway of the seminar 'Blue Steel' colourway of the New Balance 1300, the sneaker features dark grey suede and sail leather panelling over a light blue mesh base. The sneaker is contrasted by a sail N logo, with bright blue detailing on the front sole.
Available from 23 May, via Kith
Converse x Fear of God ESSENTIALS Chuck 70s
Jerry Lorenzo makes a case for elegant sportswear with his take on the classic chuck 70s. The model features a black and white colour block scheme, with canvas lateral panels and leather tongue, and extra-long laces. Elegance doesn’t need much, and if you are missed out on the first drop, make sure you do not make the same mistake again.
Available from 21 May on Dover Street Market Singapore Online, and Limited Edt Online and 18 June at Pedder on Scotts and Converse at Takashimaya Shopping Centre.
Converse x Rokit Chuck 70s
For their second collaboration, Rokit looks to the Downtown LA for inspiration—drawing on their core DNA of melding the world of skateboarding and basketball. The sneaker sees a patchwork of different textured fabrics, bonded matte black taped seams are in reference to the textures of skateparks and courts, a signature orange dot as well as a furry textured Converse logo. Perfect for those who prefer their all black-fit with a tactile touch.
Available from 14 May on Dover Street Market Singapore Online and Limited Edt, and 11th of June at Converse at Takashimaya Shopping Centre.
Nike X Comme des Garçon Dunks
2020 is building up to the year of the Nike Dunks. The silhouette has seen collaborators like Virgil Abloh, Strangelove and Travis Scott name a few, put their spin on it. Joining the roster is Rei Kawakubo and her take on the iconic sneaker. This is not the first time Comme des Carçons releasing a dunk, with the last one coming in 2017 that featured a transparent upper. Kawakubo continues the experimentation of unique fabrics with the 2020 edition, that sees a translucent stretch fabric called Nexkin, that is lightweight, breathable and conforms to your feet.
Available from 14 May at Dover Street Market London.
PUMA x CENTRAL SAINT MARTIN Rider
This collaboration seemingly came out of the left-field, but one that we thoroughly enjoy. Not only does this allow the brilliant students to put their twist on the iconic Rider silhouette of the house, but also see them incorporate innovative and eco-conscious techniques into creating the sneaker. But is not just marketing fluff, even without that added sustainability touch, the sneaker stands out on its own, with the use of external lacing system, and brilliant touches of vibrant hues. Futuristic yet grounded.
Available from 14 May on Puma's online store.
Nike x STÜSSY Spiridon Caged 2
With the successful launch of the previous colourways, STÜSSY continues its hot streak with this blacked-out version of the Spiridon Cage 2. The Spiridon Caged 2 is still as relevant as it was in 2003—much of it can be attributed to its timeless design, the market's recent infatuation with chunky technical running sneakers, and above all, melding form and function. If you were holding off on pulling the trigger for the first two drops, then do not miss out on this minimalistic number.
Available from 15th May on STÜSSY's online store.
Adidas Yeezy 500 High 'Tyrian'
If there is one thing that we can distil from Kanye West's Yeezy line, is that the silhouettes is that it is both enigmatic yet desirable at the same time. The Yeezy 500 High is no different—is it a hiking boot or a basketball silhouette. If you were to post the question to the man himself, he would dive into some tangential spew about tangential stuff. But that doesn't distract the fact that this sneaker, made out of suede, tumbled leather and insulating neoprene, is not shy about what it is. Perhaps it is best left to the sneakerheads that embody that same ethos.
Available from 16th May on END.