We’re all too familiar with the Instagram posts of sneakerheads showing entire walls covered in the hottest sneakers to drop in the last few years. A quick scroll would reveal an influx of jealous comments and envy-fueled likes. These flex posts got us thinking: does the community really only appreciate hype sneaker collections? We took to our Straat Talk polls to find out.
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Through the Straat Talk polls, we got a good idea of what our followers felt about hype sneaker collections. The first thing we noted is that 85% of sneakerheads don’t restrict their purchases to only hype sneakers and 91% of respondents didn’t believe that their rotation should comprise hype sneakers only. In fact, most respondents shared that 60% to 80% of their collection was made up of general release sneakers.
What is a general release sneaker? More here on sneaker terms: Straatopedia: A Sneaker Terminology Guide
From the polls, it seems most sneakerheads understand that the singular pursuit of hype will only leave us chasing our tails. As one user, @dexter_t, pointed out quite pertinently, what we regard as hype sneakers today is bound to change with time and trends. The Nike Element 87 and Adidas Ultraboost are some examples that were once hype, but are now past their prime.
In many ways, the brands are in control of creating the hype. A common practice across brands now is the restocking of hyped sneakers like the Adidas Yeezy Boost 350 V2 Bred. As user @kingofsqueak puts it, these restocks are a “coin with 2 sides” — a great second chance to gain access to the pair for those who missed out on the original release; not so great for those who were banking on the hype of those shoes when they first dropped.
The short answer: buy what you like. As user @hrthirfn puts it, “… if you love the design, love the shoes, grab it – f**k whatever anyone says.”
This is far from a novel concept – it’s the mindset that created sneaker culture in the first place. Sneakerheads used to buy the shoes that they liked for its origin story or its design. New Yorkers stayed loyal to white-on-white Air Forces due to its association with basketball and rap music while in Europe, the Adidas Samba was beloved for its close links to football culture. Those were simpler times, and the responses to our poll suggest a yearning for that.
So how do you resist falling for the hype? Here are some steps you can take to create a rotation that is true to you:
Here are some more attainable alternatives to the Nike Dunk: Bored of the Dunk? Here are some fresh alternatives