What is comfortable, lovingly retro, and turning 30 years old this year? No, not your grandparent’s couch; the Nike Air Max 90! All jokes aside, the classic performance runner celebrates a monumental milestone in sneaker history in 2020 and, as you’re about to read, we’ve taken the opportunity to shine a spotlight on some of the top colorways of the Tinker Hatfield-designed shoe.
Batting leadoff for the Nike Air Max 90, the “Infrared” is the very first colorway of the classic performance running shoe and a perennial choice by enthusiasts as one of the greatest Air Maxes in history. Here’s another bit of sneaker trivia we like to share from time to time; the Air Max 90 originally debuted way back in the day as the “Air Max 3” because it was, yes, the third silhouette in the lineage of the shoe.
Basking in the glory of its 25th anniversary, the Nike Air Max 90 “Cork” from 2015 employs the “Infrared” accents found on the first colorway of the shoe. The “Cork” design is undoubtedly one of the more adventurous color schemes of the nominal sneaker, and it tells a charming story. We can definitely toast to that!
The Air Max 90 was a shoe-in—pun obviously intended—inclusion for Nike’s groundbreaking “The 10” collection with Off-White. Virgil Abloh’s take is one of the more dramatic reimaginings of the shoe we’ve seen, yet he keeps the familiar structure of the shoe intact, proving that no matter which way you bend it, the Air Max 90 is a certifiable classic.
Sneaker fans and collectors have longed for the “Viotech” colorway to appear on more silhouettes following its debut as a Japan-only Nike Dunk way back in 2002. The Swoosh looked out for Air Max diehards and OG Dunk heads by lacing the Air Max 90 with the bold colorway some two decades later. Because we’re feeling gracious today, we’ll bestow some additional little-known sneaker facts on you: the “Viotech” nickname comes from the color of purple Nike employs on the mudguard.
Not only is Mars looking like a great getaway destination right about now, but its rocky red surface also inspires one of the most coveted Nike Air Max 90 designs, the “Mars Landing” from 2019. As we touched on earlier, the Air Max 90 has largely evaded the heavy handed affection of Nike’s eccentric colorways, yet this outer space-inspired look is one we can certainly get behind.
The Nike Air Max 90 “Be True” is a special makeup that honors both the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising in New York City’s West Village neighborhood and Gilbert Baker’s rainbow flag; two pivotal landmarks in gay rights.
Is it us, or does it seem like Undefeated designed about 100 different colorways of the Air Max 90 in 2019? We’re definitely not mad; each look is refreshingly bold and makes a statement without relying on overt branding. The black and blue edition seen above is definitely one of the best of the pack.