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The Hottest Sneaker Trends of 2022 (So Far!)

The Hottest Sneaker Trends of 2022

The sneaker industry may be a fickle beast, but there’s some trends that are undoubtedly going the distance in 2022. From clogcore chaos to the incumbent Y2K revival, sneaker nostalgia is combining with new technologies to create an explosive environment – just check out what went down at Paris Fashion Week SS23! So pull your laces tight: These are the footwear styles that have defined the year so far!

Clogcore Chaos Continues!

Once derided as an irredeemable footwear faux pas, the humble clog has surged back into the cultural frame in recent years. No doubt emboldened by the interminable global lockdowns, the clogcore chaos has inspired an eye-watering amount of releases in 2022, with hyped collaborations from the likes of Salehe Bembury, Palace and Jeff Staple elevating the sandal to new heights.

All the major labels have also been quick to deliver their own takes. In June alone, Jordan Brand, New Balance and Louis Vuitton all unveiled their renditions, while adidas officially announced the dubiously dubbed adiFOM Q, reportedly inspired by the archival Quake of 2001. Someone check on Ye.

ASICS and the Y2K Revival

The Y2K bug continues to gnaw on our sneakers in 2022. Stuffed with all the nostalgic aesthetics of the late 2000s, models like the teched-out GEL-Kayano 14 were perfectly positioned to exploit the nascent revival, and ASICS didn’t fall asleep during the countdown.

Anchored by Kiko Kostadinov, Angelo Baque, and the newly-formed ASICS Collective, ASICS have enlisted the help of JJJJound, HAL STUDIOS, Andersson Bell and many others for turn-of-the-century style runners, while a mountain of shiny, metallic GR colourways have kept fans well-fed.

With the world’s high-end fashion houses continuing to exhume 2000s-era sneakers and silver mesh aesthetics for their footwear fetishes in the 2020s (looking at you Balenciaga and Louis Vuitton), the second half of the year looks set to be another big one for the Japanese soothsayers.

New Balance 990s Go Nuclear

The New Balance 990 line is going HAM in 2022. A favourite among NB’s legions of fans across the globe, head of collaborations Joe Grondin and the team at New Balance have pulled the pin on a pile of superlative 990s this year.

Headlined by Teddy Santis’ inaugural collection in May (which included the 990v3, 990, and 990v2), the infallible line has been tapped by Salehe Bembury, JJJJound, Kith and DTLR among many, many others.

With collaborations busting at the seams, the momentum has also extended to NB’s stellar in-line colourways, making it somewhat easier to score some solid sneakers.


The Air Jordan 2 Can Still Score Buckets

Not many could have predicted the shocking resurrection of the Air Jordan 2 in 2021/22. Michael Jordan’s much-maligned sophomore sneaker has been the butt of innumerable jokes since its inception in 1986, the silhouette even rumoured to drive MJ to adi’s doorstep.

But it was Virgil Abloh’s Midas Touch that saw the AJ2 take on a new life as a collaborative canvas, with Union, J. Balvin and Maison Château Rouge all boarding the steaming hype train.

Still, it’s the A Ma Maniére link-up that hit nothing but net in 2022.

GORPcore Soldiers On

The GORPcore trend continues to carve a path between utility and streetwear in 2022, with French alpine giant Salomon again serving as our fearless guide. Recently belaying brands like Slam Jam Milano and Comme des Garçons, the XT-4 and XT-6 have joined recent arrivals like the ACS Pro Advanced to become the hottest models in Salomon’s vast roster.

High fashion of course refuses to be left in the cold – just take a look at Dior’s show at Paris Fashion Week SS23!

Can’t Stop. Won’t Stop

Can anything stop the Nike Dunk? Short answer: No. Nike’s 1980s hooper (and 2002 SB sibling) is still on a tear in 2022, with every Tom, Dick and Harry on earth lining up for a collaboration.

The Dunk is still one of the ultimate canvases for creatives, and its startling resurgence in 2019 saw OG sneakerheads enthusiastically prying open their wallets (or scratching their heads. Or both.)

The first half of the year was loaded with collaborations from the likes of OSKi, Pass~Port, Undercover, CLOT, and Union, and there’s plenty more on the horizon!

How Much to Print a Pair of Sneakers?

Although still nascent technology, 3D printing has become an exciting new prospect for the sneaker industry, with Heron Preston, AMBUSH and KidSuper all exploring the capabilities with Zellerfeld – a frontrunner in the field.

For his part, Colm Dillane and his KidSuper imprint debuted the ‘Heal Your Soul, Heel Your Sole’ concept sneaker at Paris Fashion Week, a design inspired by vintage men’s platform shoes.

'3D printing has allowed me to fully think outside the box. When designing these shoes I kept having to tell myself that anything is possible, there are no restrictions,' said Dillane. 'This thought process has never been possible in the shoe industry until now.'

Expect a lot more from the 3D printing space moving forward.

For more 2022 recaps, make sure to check out the biggest sneaker stories so far!

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