Sneakers Published: March 18, 2015 Updated: February 19, 2019  |  WORDS: Staff

Straatopedia: A Sneaker Terminology Guide

HS, QS, LS, #WOMFT, OG, LPU… Ever wondered what these terms mean? Here’s our guide to help you understand sneaker terminology.

Terms As Seen on Shoe Boxes


air yeezy 2
Image via KLEKT

HS – Hyperstrike
Shoes labeled HS are the most exclusive of all. They come in very limited quantities, with the majority given to friends and families (FNF) of artists and celebrities.
Example: Nike Air Force 1 “Playstation”, which was a promotional shoe given to Sony employees back in 2006.

QS – Quickstrike
Relatively rare shoes that are not as exclusive as Hyperstrike releases. Traditionally, QS sneakers did not have a release date tagged with them, but now they do. Typically available in Tier 0 stores that carry the most exclusive sneakers; examples would be the United States’ Undefeated, Netherland’s Patta, Tokyo’s Atmos and Singapore’s Surrender Store.
Example: Nike Roshe Run Hyperfuse

SP – Special Project
Nike SP represents the highest level of Nike quality, and also an avenue for Nike’s creative endeavors. All NikeLab releases are SP and some collabs are also categorized as SP.
Example: Nike Free Flyknit Mercurial SP

HTM – HTM denotes the first letters the first names of Hiroshi Fujiwara, Tinker Hatfield and Matt Parker
HTM shoes are designed by the creative trio comprising Fragment Design’s Hiroshi Fujiwara, Nike’s legendary designer Tinker Hatfield and Nike’s CEO and designer Matt Parker. The trio has been working together since 2002 to create and experiment with the latest technology and unique designs.
Example: Nike Flyknit HTM Trainer+

SB – Skateboarding
These shoes are specially made for skateboarders and usually come with thicker tongues.
Example: Nike Dunk Low SB

LS – Lifestyle
Shoes that are meant for casual wear and not for performance.
Example: Air Jordan 4 LS

NRG – Energy
Not much has been said to define what NRG stands for exactly, but if the nature of the release of NRG shoes such as the Air Yeezy and the Galaxy Foamposite are anything to go by, NRG could well denote shoes that are extremely limited in quantity.
Example: Nike Air Yeezy 2 NRG

PRM – Premium

NSW – Nike Sportswear
New products that stem from reinvented classics are deemed NSW.
Example: Nike Tiempo, previously a soccer boot, was reinvented into a lifestyle shoe.

New Balance

NB tongue
Image via KLEKT

New Balance shoes typically have a code name which can be found on the inside of the tongue. This code can broken down into three sections for easier deciphering.

For example, the M1500BWG can be read as M-1500-BWG. The first letter is a reference to the gender (“M” for male and “F” for female). A second letter would identify what type of shoe it is. “MR” would therefore refer to a Men’s Running shoe.

Custom or collaborative sneakers would have a “C” in front (e.g. “CM” and “CW”). Each New Balance model has its own style number, and this is shown in the second section of the code. Common numbers include the 574, 996 and 1300.

The last three letters generally refer to the sneaker’s colorway. For instance, “BWG” would mean that the colors blue, white and grey are present on the shoe. Exclusive releases might even bear custom letters for this section of the code.

Terms Used in Sneaker Transactions

air max amsterdam
Image via Facebook

DS/BNDS – Deadstock/Brand New Deadstock
There has been an ongoing debate among sneakerheads about what deadstock actually means. Some consider deadstock to be a reference to shoes not being produced and sold at retailers anymore. However, most take the term deadstock to mean a shoe being in a brand new condition. And when they say brand new, they mean it. A shoe that has been tried on once is not be considered to be DS anymore.

NWT – New With Tag(s)
An alternative to DS. Expect the sneakers to come complete with accompanying tags.

VNDS – Very Near Deadstock
This would include shoes that have been worn once or twice and look as good as new.

BIN – Buy It Now (Price)
With the growth of sneaker communities, administrators have established rules that facilitate the buying and selling of sneakers, and BIN is one of them. Simply put, BIN is the price the seller is willing to sell the the sneaker at immediately. With the option to quote BIN prices at sneaker marketplaces online, sellers won’t need to hold auctions, which weeds out the problem of fake bids, a common occurence on these platforms since they aren’t bound by legal regulations like merchants on eBay are.

OBO – Or Best Offer
If you see “BIN $550 OBO”, this implies that this particular seller is okay with selling below the BIN price (see definition above) and is open to reasonable offers.

Backing out after the seller and buyer have agreed to a price, time and place of deal.

Popular Sneaker Hashtags

straatgram #Straatgram
Straatosphere‘s very own hashtag that has over 11,000 contributions from the Southeast Asian sneaker community and beyond.

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Other Common Sneaker Terminology

jordan 1 og
Image via EU Kicks

OG – Original or Original release. This refers to the first release of a shoe (as opposed to a re-release). Taking the Air Jordan 1 as an example, the OG would be the 1985 release.

Retro – When a particular sneaker is re-released, the word “retro” is added to it.

FSR – Full Size Run. “Footlocker still has a FSR of them Jays!” means that an entire range of sizes are available for a particular sneaker.

LPU – Latest Pick Up. Showing off the latest shoe that a sneakerhead picked up.

SE – Special Edition.

PE – Player Exclusive. Shoes that are made exclusively for an athlete and is not to be released in the market.

Know of common sneaker terminology that didn’t appear on our list? Tell us in Comments below