Nike Air Max 90 History
The Air Max 90 was first released in the year 1990, but it was early then called as the “Nike Air Max III.” It was in the year 2000 that Nike changed its name to Nike Air Max 90. This classic shoe quickly gained popularity in the sneaker world, making it one of the brand’s iconic shoes.
Nike Air Max 90 Design and Technology
The design of the classic Nike Air Max 90 was conceptualized by legendary shoe designer Tinker Hatfield with a blend of colors which was a different look at the time of its 1990 release. The Air Max 90 midsole were separated by two compartments at the back and front to allow wearers a wide range of movements and experience better performance.
The iconic Nike Air Max 90 running shoe also has a multi-lace port system and the most noteworthy feature, the large visible Air unit that provides superior cushioning among running shoes at the time.
Another main highlight of the Nike Air Max 90 sneaker design is its beautiful colorway that has stamped its identity on the consciousness of the sneaker community. The Nike Air Max 90 ‘Infrared’ colorway, the most popular of all OG colorways of the Air Max 90, sports an almost fiery shade of red that immediately catches the eye of the most discerning sneakerhead.
The bright infrared hue was a beautiful contrast to the black, grey, and white base colors of the running shoe. An added trivia to the OG Nike Air Max 90 is that it was first dropped in another colorway, Hyvent Orange.
More than 25 years since the release of the Nike Air Max 90, the shoe had several remarkable transformations with new materials and color treatments. The silhouette even had a mashup sneaker with the first Air Max shoe called the Nike Air Max 90/1. Stripped down versions of the iconic sneaker were also dropped like the Nike Air Max 90 Essential and the Nike Air Max 90 Ultra Essential featuring an enhanced fit, new material, and an improved outsole unit.
Seasonal releases also geared the shoe silhouette for the elements like the Nike Air Max 90 Ultra Breathe for the summer months and Nike Air Max 90 Winter Premium for the cold, snowy winters.
Improved aesthetics, materials, and prints were also incorporated into the Air Max 90 silhouette with the release of the Nike Air Max 90 Floral, Nike Air Max Lunar 90, Nike Air Max 90 Leather, and Nike Air Max 90 Jacquard.
The popularity of the Nike Air Max 90 aesthetics also convinced the Swoosh brand to deliver them in the various category from low-top, mid-top, to high-top versions including easy slip-on designs for quick on and off.
Nike Air Max 90 Collaborations
Nike has also released quite a number of colorways of the shoe and even made some fantastic collaborative releases.
Some of the favorite collaborative shoes include the Atmos x Nike Air Max 90 collaboration where a camouflage treatment was applied in the upper overlays. Other shoe retailers and fashion labels also released Nike Air Max 90 designs like Foot Patrol, Staple, Footlocker, DQM, and Hurley.
Another favorite design is the Nike Air Max 90 “Bacon.” It is the product created by a partnership between Nike and Dave’s Quality Meats. Another one is the Nike Air Max 90 “Warhawk” which was released in 2007 as a part of the Armed Forces Pack. The shoe was considered as one of the model’s craziest releases. The shoe was inspired by the P-40 Warhawk fighter plane that was from the WW2, with its colors successfully carried into the shoe by Nike and adding the jagged teeth for a more eye-catching look.
The Nike Air Max 90 “Tongue in Cheek” was considered one of the rarest releases for the Air Max 90 silhouette. The shoe was designed by Dizzee Rascal, a UK hip-hop artist, and designer, Ben Drury. The release was a commemoration of Dizzee’s “Tongue in Cheek” album.
Jeff Staple was yet assigned for another Air Max 90 creation that was inspired by New York City itself. The Nike Air Max 90 “Navigation” features an aerial map of the Manhattan adorning its upper. Both colorways for men and women were produced in this release.
The brand made another different release on the silhouette with the Air Max 90 “Moon Landing.” The shoe was covered in a 3D-like printing of the lunar image. A combination of the patriotic colors on the heel of the shoe complements the look of the shoe.
By 2007, Nike teamed up with Keith Hufnagel and released the Nike Air Max 90 “Hufquake.” The shoe showcases a cracked pavement design on its upper entirely inspired by the earthquakes that are a considerable part of the history of their city.
The Nike Air Max 90 “Independence Day,” an all-red sneaker, was from the touch of Kanye West, one of the most influential style icons. The release was a bit risky for the brand for it being an all-red shoe since the Red Yeezy 2 was still a questionable release.
Patta from Amsterdam is one of the famous sneaker shops, which collaborated with Nike and released the Nike Air Max 90 “Homegrown.” The shoe featured a green upper with some hints of orange and a gum sole as a finish to the look.
The Nike Sportswear also began playing with some new modifications on the Air Max silhouettes. Along with the ideas they ended up with was the Air Max 90 Flywire, which features the tough thread that composes the one-piece upper of the shoe as they finished it up with a free-grooved sole by the forefoot of the kicks.
Throughout time, the iconic Air Max 90 silhouette has proven itself to be one of the classic shoes from the brand and continues to make a statement in the sneaker world as the newest Nike Air Max 90 sneaker is rolled out almost every season and every year.