Who should buy the Adidas Spezial

This sneaker from the Adidas Originals family is worth focusing on if:

Adidas Spezial spezial

Who should NOT buy it 

If you are wide-footed or have bunions, you might find this sneaker a bit constricting. Consider similar styles like the Superstar and Gazelle since these are typically built with a roomier toe box. 

Adidas Spezial toe

Gentle on the ankles

This shoe also holds ample cushioning on the tongue and collar. Walking on this throughout the day feels comfortable. 

Adidas Spezial collar

Treated with high-quality materials 

Wearers appreciate the craftsmanship of this shoe, where the upper utilizes premium suede. They say it's a bang for their buck since it comes affordable and doesn’t wear out soon. 

Adidas Spezial materials

Easy to carry around

Many wearers highly praise the lightness of the Adidas Spezial. It doesn't feel heavy at all.

Adidas Spezial light

Fascinating vintage flair

Many users praise this kick’s timeless appeal, from its treated suede cover to its old-school gum sole and heel patch. It’s often mistaken for the Adidas Gazelle as they both display the iconic T-Toe overlay as well as the heel-to-toe suede treatment. 

Adidas Spezial t-toe

Clean and straightforward

The simplicity of the Adidas Spezial's silhouette is a magnet for men and women looking for a go-to sneaker for casual styling. Its straightforward design makes it easy to mix and match with many everyday clothes. 

Adidas Spezial clean

Shuts off excess moisture

A couple of reviewers mention that this pair has ample ventilation that keeps their feet feeling fresh and dry.

Adidas Spezial ventilated

Unique glow no matter its color

Adidas released striking colorways for this shoe, from neutral, earth tones to a fascinating blend of bold and vibrant shades. 

Adidas Spezial charm

Slimmer than other Adidas sneakers 

Broad-footed users would need to size up as this shoe is a tad narrow than most Adidas kicks. 

Adidas Spezial narrow

Attracts dirt quickly

A few reviewers mention that the Adidas Spezial is hard to maintain as it gets dirty quickly.

Adidas Spezial dirt

Adidas Spezial history

In 1979, the Adidas Spezial was first launched as a handball shoe in Germany and was worn by some world's most excellent players from Holland, Germany, and Scandinavia. Handball is an indoor game that requires heavy-duty footwear that can deal with sharp movements and hard frictions.  

During the Casuals movement in the 80s, this handball footwear became a staple kick in the fashion world. Several travelers praised the comfort and stylish facade of the Adidas Originals Spezial. Like other shoes in the Adidas Spezial collection, they realized that this sporty kick goes well with jeans and other casual male outfits in the 80s.

Adidas Spezial branding

The Adidas Spezial is made of high-quality suede upper with excellent cushioning. It is seated on a thick rubber gum sole with a heel panel for added reinforcement. This shoe displays an uncomplicated and straightforward look that enhances its versatility and timelessness.

Meanwhile, the gum sole improves the striking feature of this kick. It has a cleat-inspired outsole constructed to increase durability.

Adidas Spezial rybber sole

The first Adidas Original Spezial launched was in white/black, red/white, white/blue colorways. The Three Stripes brand expanded the colorways of the Spezial and was adopted by various designers and specialist sneaker stores.

Forty years after it was initially introduced, the brand re-launched it with timeless elements, such as premium suede, iconic Adidas brandings, and the gum sole. The Primeknit version was also launched recently.

Adidas Spezial sole

The Adidas Spezial Primeknit showcases the familiar silhouette modernized with the lightweight and durable woven upper. The brand renovated the collar into an elastic, foot-hugging sock-like construction to enhance its overall fit. Meanwhile, the brand kept the iconic rubber gum sole to maintain the throwback vibe.


Facts / Specs

Style: Retro, Sporty, Minimalist
Top: Low
Inspired from: Other
Collaboration: Gary Aspden
Collection: Adidas Originals, Adidas Spezial
Closure: Laces
Material: Leather, Suede, Rubber Sole, Gum Sole, EVA

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Adidas Spezial unboxing and on-feet videos


If Sneakerology exists, Judith’s close to earning her Ph.D. She owns not stacks of kicks, but hundreds of published sneaker content online, headlining grails, greats, GRs from over 30 global brands. She’s a natural creative wordsmith, a hype monster at times, who writes and edits lifestyle articles professionally for over two decades now. If you're lost in a sea of popular or undervalued sneaks fishing for that best catch, she’ll gladly help out between sips of coffee or lemony mojito.