Sneakers are becoming more gender-neutral these days
If you talk about sneakers back in the 90s (and to an extent the 2000s and early 2010s), this topic is a male dominant one, since it is a rarity for women to be passionate about sneakers. The mid to late 2010s changed that: brands acknowledge the importance of women in sneakers and street culture, which resulted in them in releasing dope women’s exclusive sneakers and apparel.
This has further evolved to brands getting women to collaborate and design sneakers (Nike with Aleali May, Puma with Rihanna and Cara Delevigne), creating nicely-designed sneakers that even guys would wish they are also available in men’s sizing (Nike and Jordan brand has been doing that for a while for some models, and that’s a nice thing). The latest to join the craze? adidas and their collab with Beyonce’s Ivy Park.
With three new models coming on January 18—consisting of two Nite Joggers and an UltraBoost—the latter is the one that deserves more attention with its personalized Ivy Park branding (instead of the usual UltraBoost marking on the heel cup) and a cool Ivy Park strap.
The colorway is pretty dope too, with a tonal maroon upper, maroon-colored Boost and a bright orange Continental outsole that makes me think even guys can rock this (but knowing adidas, they will stick to women’s sizing for this collab).
How is this Beyonce collab relevant you ask? Aside from Beyonce’s unquestionable influence in streetwear, having her own collection (that includes sneakers with her design inputs) is proof that women hold equal power of influence to the culture just like men. This is proof that sneaker brands are being more open to more creative executions for their sneakers regardless if it is a man or a woman who conceptualized them—because honestly, the first drop of the Ivy Park collection looks very promising.
If Virgil Abloh did design a series of Nike X Off-White sneakers and apparel that is exclusive to the ladies, I really think Beyonce can think of sneaker concepts that guys will love.