New year, new rotation. Some of you might already have the sneakers on this list, or perhaps it’s an opportunity to try something different. We’ve previously suggested the types of sneakers that are part of a diverse and well-rounded collection, but these selections are in line with what is going to be popping off in 2020. Some are long-awaited retros, while others are looking to the future. Get that wishlist ready…
Seven Sneakers for Your 2020 Rotation
Date: January 13 2020
By: Minh Vuong
Saying Dunks are cool again might raise a few eyebrows, but the ubiquity of the Air Jordan 1 in recent years means people are beginning to seek something different. The appearance of Nike's archival colourways on the feet of your favourite rappers and fashion designers means the relative sleeper Dunk is becoming lucrative once more. SBs are easily attainable if you search for a late release or throw enough money at StockX. But, you can easily pass off as an OG sneakerhead if you manage to stumble upon an early-2000s two-tone colourway or the 1999 co.jp pairs, if you're lucky. Hell, even the 2016 BTTYS will pass muster. Michigans…
New Balance 992
Pull out your Issey Miyake turtlenecks and Levi’s 501s: the New Balance 992 is back. We’ve consistently sung its praises over the years, and so has everyone from sneakerheads to runners – and statistically, at least a handful are dads, too. Kith just dropped an exclusive white and grey edition that is all but sold out, but the OG grey is the one to have. It’s the perfect opportunity for those who’ve worn out their 2006 pairs to double up, or for those new to the game to see what all the fuss is about. Understandably, some casual fans of its incumbent 990v5 sibling might not see the big difference, but po-tay-toes po-tah-toes.
Nike Alphafly (Prototype)
You actually won’t be able to buy these at time of writing, but there is a strong likelihood the supposed Alphafly will release once it starts accumulating gold at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Packed with all of Nike’s next generation tech, the mysterious Atomknit upper combined with the visible forefoot Zoom Air sure looks comfy. Similar cushioning has been rolled out in the new SuperRep line, so the Alphafly is definitely coming soon. It’s time to start living in the future, so why not wear the latest in footwear tech? And even if we’re not all aiming for podiums, at least those of us who wear the Vaporfly NEXT%’s successor will experience faster strides.
Yeezy Foam Runner
Like the Alphafly, this is a prototype sneaker with a working title and no confirmed release date. But, it’s coming in 2020 – surely. An eco-friendly concept from the madcap mind of Kanye West, the latest Yeezy silhouette is reportedly made from algae straight outta Wyoming. With the flowing, organic yet sharpened silhouette, the cored-out look and mollusc resemblance is certainly future forward. There might be a bit of an identity crisis: they’re somewhere between a clog and a sneaker, but they’re definitely not Crocs! And if worse comes to worst, they’ll make a good beach shoe/shower slide/office slipper. Let your toes breathe every now and again…
If you’re reading this and don’t own any Superstars – it’s not too late! One of adidas’ all-time greatest sneakers turns 50 in 2020, so there will be an abundance of OG colours. There surely will be both weird and wonderful variations too, if 2015’s rollout is anything to go by. Pharrell released 50 different tonal Shelltoes for the ‘Supercolour’ pack, we got polished steel-capped women’s pairs, and countless other permutations too. However, the wizened collectors will be baying for one-to-one recreations, made in France no less. If adidas were able to do it in 2014, surely they can again in 2020. To anyone at adidas reading this: include fat laces with this year’s Superstars for the bboy steez!
Nike Air Max 90
‘Infrared’ Air Max 90s are coming back this year for the silhouette’s 30th anniversary. This will be the eighth time the OG colourway has returned (Currents, Premium Ostrich, Hyperfuse et al don’t count), so is it a case of eighth time lucky? The hype has grown exponentially with each retro wave, so you might have to beg, borrow and steal to get a pair. Beyond the ‘Infrared’ as the most desirable AM90 colourway, there are other incoming options that follow the OG colour-blocking, we’re looking at you ‘Chlorophyll’. Apparently, ‘DQM Bacons’ are coming back too, but we’ll believe that when we see it. In any case, like the Superstar, if you don’t have a pair yet, 2020 is your year.
‘Are Wallabees technically sneakers? Or are they part of the post-sneaker world?’ Our cheeky postulation on Instagram last week irked a few diehard sneakerheads, but our love for the crepe-soled moc is well documented. The Wallabee is already a staple in New York, London, and Jamaica – but they are due for global domination. With at least a dozen strong Clarks collaborations last year, 2020 is full of possibilities. So, get on the front foot of a 50-plus-year-old shoe and get into these stitched suede numbers. It doesn’t have to be a colab for it to be cool: the ‘Sand’ and ‘Beeswax’ editions have been doing their thing for years. No hype, all quality.