Verdict from 69 user reviews

8 reasons to buy

  • Majority of the buyers commended the sneaker’s stylish silhouette.
  • Some purchasers were pleasantly surprised about the Jordan Instigator’s flexibility considering its sturdy look.
  • One customer said that the support on the ankle is praiseworthy and that it felt like a basketball shoe.
  • A handful of testers attested that the sneaker delivers comfort even after long hours of wear.
  • The high-top Jordan Instigator breaks in easy as per a couple of wearers.
  • A satisfied customer mentioned that the shoe’s design looks great with corporate attire.
  • As stated by a few buyers, the sneaker provides good traction.
  • Some mentioned that it looks great with everyday clothes. 

2 reasons not to buy

  • One wearer complained that the high-top already got creases after only two uses.
  • One buyer sold the sneaker shortly after buying it due to being too narrow toward the toes.

Bottom line

Inspired by the iconic Air Jordan 1, the high-top Jordan Instigator emanates a luxurious appeal, a quality that is not normally associated with the brand. Versatile as it gets, this sneaker allows users to have a stance with class for any everyday occasion.

Ample support is guaranteed, as the material composition ensures comfort and traction without sacrificing style. While it is not the most affordable fashion sneaker available, everyone acknowledges that when it comes to innovation and recognition, Jordan is on the rarefied stature.

Tip: see the best sneakers.

Good to know

The Jordan Instigator features a leather and patent leather upper which delivers flexibility and comfort on every step while the hidden lacing system and the wrapped leather on the ankle offers a snug fit. 

For those who will be purchasing the high-top, the Jordan Instigator is available in US men’s sizes from 5.5 to 14. Some noted that the sneaker is true to its size.

Exhibiting virtually monochromatic color schemes with premium design details, the Jordan Instigator is certain to catch anyone’s attention. Its leather upper fades into suede and waxed hidden laces bestow a distinctive upscale appearance.

As implied by most users, the high-top Jordan Instigator matches well with either jeans or shorts, making it an excellent option for summer ensembles.  

At first glance, the Jordan Instigator has an almost non-existent branding aside from the embossed Jumpman logo on the tongue. Its patent leather on the toe box fades into suede on the back is arguably this high-top’s most defining feature.  Also present is the Injected Unit or IU midsole, which is responsible for the shoe’s cushioning and lightweight feel. This also delivers durability while the quilted collar lining is there for additional comfort.

The pyramid pattern on the heel contributes to the sneaker’s contemporary look. Additionally, the midsole has a slightly translucent composition compared to the upper and outsole.

The year 1985 was exceptional for basketball, not only because Michael Jordan was selected in his first All-Star game and crowned Rookie of the Year, but also because the Air Jordan 1 was introduced to the public. The Air Jordan I is a pioneer as it was the first sneaker with multiple colors to be worn in the NBA. Initially, Jordan was not sold on the concept and even stated that he will not wear it because he would look like a clown. After some time though, he started to appreciate the shoe.

The Air Jordan 1 was priced at $65 at that time. After the release of the AJ 1, NBA commissioner David Stern issued a restriction on the shoe as it violates the uniform code. Every time Jordan wore the sneakers, he was obliged to pay a fine. Nike took the opportunity of the publicity it would bring and instructed MJ to continue using the shoe, and the company would cover the fine.

Nike labeled the Air Jordan 1 as "banned" by the NBA to generate more buzz about it. By then the shoe’s popularity has risen so much, as there are reports about people being robbed of their pair instead of the usual high-value items.

Nike re-released the AJ 1 in 1994 for $80 but did not go well as expected, probably because Jordan retired during that year to be successful in a different sport. By 2001-2004, it was re-released again but unlike last time, with more success.

Today, Jordan brand is thriving as ever in the sneaker industry, as the perpetual re-release of its game-changing Air Jordan series compels an unparalleled demand while also making a seamless branching to lifestyle shoes. As an Air Jordan 1 inspired shoe, the Jordan Instigator is one of the numerous casual kicks that delivers on-court support with a contemporary off-court silhouette. 

  • Geometric-shaped tread pattern is present on the IU rubber outsole.
  • The Jumpman logo is placed on the silver colored lace tips.
  • Its weight is approximately 12.8 oz.


How Jordan Instigator ranks compared to all other shoes
Top 33% sneakers
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Top 24% Jordan sneakers
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Top 38% high sneakers
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The current trend of Jordan Instigator.
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Danny McLoughlin
Danny McLoughlin

Danny is a sports nut with a particular interest in football and running. He loves to watch sports as much as he loves to play. Danny was lead researcher on RunRepeat and The PFA’s report into Racial Bias in Football Commentary. His football and running research has been featured in The Guardian, BBC, New York Times and Washington Post.