Who should buy the New Balance 550

Grab a pair of New Balance 550 if you:

  • enjoy wearing throwback-styled sneakers with modern comfort
  • are looking for an affordable New Balance model to add to your rotation
  • prefer kicks that are easy to maintain

Who should NOT buy it

The New Balance 550 might feel weird if you've got narrow feet, as it fits broader than usual. Alternatively, you may check several New Balance models in narrow sizes, such as the bball-inspired New Balance BB480 or the popular Adidas Forum Low

New Balance 550: Recreating a timeless classic

The Boston-based brand dropped the modernized NB 550 to pay homage to the '90s basketball generation. Being a part of the brand's core line of sneakers, the NB 550 remains faithful to its original details - uncomplicated and polished. And to add some modern hints, the brand dressed this sneaker in different hues giving users the luxury of picking which NB 550 colorway fits their style. 

Simple and versatile flair

The 550 is not a brand new silhouette as it was initially unveiled in 1989 as basketball footwear. It features a clean and adaptable look reminiscent of the famous and luxurious Louis Vuitton Trainer. This pair looks great when paired with countless attires - from denim jeans and work days to cargo pants for weekend adventures.

Dependable durability

After many uses, this model remains unscathed, giving credit to its high-quality leather upper, mudguard-overlaid toe box, and thick rubber outsole. 

Pristine finish

There were no reported visible glue stains or unfinished stitches on the New Balance 550. Sneaker fans praised its polished details, despite its affordable price.

Double-layered insole

It has a removable two-layered Ortholite insole that provides better comfort and underfoot support than most ordinary insoles. The Ortholite insole also helps wick moisture, thus keeping your feet dry and odor-free for hours.

On-the-go lifestyle friendly

Thanks to its leather upper, upkeeping this sneaker is such a breeze. Users who are always on the move can simply wipe the dirt off using a damp cloth.

Easy on the pocket, too!

Unlike most New Balance models sold at pricey ranges, the New Balance 550 is reasonably priced without sacrificing the overall quality. However, because of its limited release, some users gripe about its availability on the market.

What's the update?

New Balance collaborated with lifestyle brand Aime Leon Dore to revamp the vintage New Balance 550. After comparing the updated and the retro versions, we've come up with a list of their minute differences:

  • The N logo of New Balance 550 is made with smooth leather, while the Aime Leon Dore version is covered with crack-styled leather. 
  • The midsole of the Aime Leon Dore version is a bit yellowish, while the retro New Balance 550 is in pristine white.
  • Set side by side with the mass-produced NB 550, the Aime Leon Dore version is covered with slightly better quality leather. 
  • The ALD logo is found on the heel of the left pair of Aime Leon Dore's version. Meanwhile, the general released 550 has the NB logo on both sneakers.


Facts / Specs

Style: Sporty, Retro
Top: Low
Inspired from: Basketball
Closure: Laces
Material: Rubber Sole, Leather, OrthoLite, Cup Sole
Season: Spring, Summer
Features: Orthotic friendly / Antimicrobial / Removable insole

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New Balance 550 unboxing and on-feet videos


Jaydee dispels the myth that women can't be experts when it comes to sneakers. With hundreds of sneaker articles under her belt, she gained a surefire edge over others claiming to be experts. Since joining RunRepeat in 2017, she’s published formidable arrays of sneaker write-ups - some covered in lifestyle magazines. Interested in scrutinizing a pair of sneakers? Jaydee is the best person to talk to as she can intuitively chew it over with you even while doing her laundry. When she’s not writing, you can catch Jaydee playing with her two kids, online shopping, and spending far too much time on Instagram.