A Guide to Sneakers: The Staple of Streetwear

If you’re looking to change your style and start experimenting with some streetwear combos, you’ll mostly have trouble picking the right kicks to go with the outfit. The sneakers are usually what separates the streetwear style as they are what gives that casual and comfortable look that streetwear style is meant to embody. In this article, I’ll discuss the different types of sneakers for men, and the most popular brands from each type. Many sneakerheads, including myself, separate sneakers into three basic categories: low, mid and high-top. As you can tell, this is according to the height of the shoes. Let’s get into more detail.

Low-Top Sneakers

Low-top sneakers don’t cover the ankle and they’re great to wear throughout the warmer months of the year. They’re usually very lightweight and feature a slim silhouette, which makes them a perfect match with shorts. Low-tops are extremely popular among skaters, simply because the decent-quality ones are very durable and lightweight. Generally, Vans, Converse and Nike SB offer amazing models of low-top sneakers for men that you can pick from. Alternatively, you can go for running low-top shoes, which Nike recently popularised. These feature incredible cushioning which makes them really comfortable to wear.

Mid-Top Sneakers

Mid-top sneakers are difficult to distinguish by height alone, but if the shoe isn’t low-top or high-top, then it probably falls into this category. In fact, many high-top and low-top sneakers feature mid-top variations, but most of them don’t provide the aesthetic that the original model does. I personally own a couple of mid-top Jordans, which frankly, are quite similar to the high-top models, but cheaper! This is something worth considering when shopping for high-tops.

High-Top Sneakers

High-top sneakers cover the ankle, and they were originally worn exclusively by basketball players. However, the rise of the hip hop culture made them a staple in streetwear, and they’re practically non-existent out of it. You won’t see many people combining them with formal wear, but they look great with joggers, shorts and everything that’s more “sporty”. High-tops are divided into two types – basketball and non-basketball. Jordans, Nike Air Force, and Adidas have plenty of models to pick from as far as basketball sneakers go, while Converse is dominating the non-basketball high-top market.

I realize that other brands, besides the ones I wrote about, have plenty of sneakers for men that are also great, but these are the most popular ones and the ones you’ll find most easily online and in outlets.