Size and fit

The Nike Air Skarn runs true to size built on a unisex shoe construction and is available in US men’s sizes. It features a rope style lace-up closure that allows adjustments for a snug fit and its mesh upper keeps it comfortable and breathable when worn.

Nike Air Skarn Style

Revived from the ‘90s, the Nike Air Skarn is now in a new Sand/Racer Blue colorway with the same build for outdoors and performance under Nike’s innovative All Conditions Gear line. It has a breathable upper with navy blue mesh as the base with contrasting red stitching across creating an Air Max 97-like wavy pattern. A red rope loops around the upper creating a trail shoe-style lacing system that gives the shoe a rugged aesthetic.

Durable Sand suede overlays reinforce the base and lead to the chunky white and black sole with hits of grey and red details. The logo patch at the tongue and embroidered ACG branding on the lateral side give it vintage vibes. With its multiple colorways available, it can easily be styled with anything casual. It’s a vintage pair that will definitely turn heads.

Notable Features

Nike designer Tinker Hatfield created the Nike Air Skarn in 1997 to incorporate a sporty vibe into the traditional rugged hiking silhouette and it has now been revived in fresh new color options like the Sand/Racer Blue colorway. This 2019 version is a product of Nike’s sustainable efforts in its Nike ReGrind program where its surplus manufacturing materials are recycled and used to create new sneakers. 

It is built on a unisex shoe construction. The upper is made of a mesh base in Racer Blue that’s breathable and is complemented by a bright red stitching in a wave pattern comparable to the sneakerhead-favorite Air Max 97. A sturdy rope in matching red loops around the upper following its contours and anchor the laces. Sand suede overlays wrap around the upper to give it additional reinforcement. 

Layers of white, black, and hints of grey and red pop all over the exaggerated sole. It’s contoured bright white midsole houses the lightweight Air cushioning unit and protrudes into the upper for additional midfoot stability and support. The black outsole that extends to the heel has a super-lugged tread that makes it stable and gives it great traction on the trails. An eye-catching detail is a black and red insert into its midsole that creates a unique shape to the entire sole. ACG branding on the lateral side and heel, Nike Air logo patch on the tongue, and a red Swoosh on the heel tab complete the design.

Nike Air Skarn History

In 1989, Nike launched the All Condition Gear (ACG) subsidiary line focused mainly on engineering, designing, producing sports gear and apparel fit for outdoors in all weather conditions. This gained a lot of interest from the market because of its unique and bold designs and colorways in every collection. 

Originally released in 1997, the Air Skarn was very similar to the Air Max heavyweights that time in terms of aesthetics. The difference was that the Air Skarn was specifically made for off-road use with its chunky sole, grippy tread pattern, and more rugged material. It became a popular pair from the ACG line and got its revival in 2019. The 2019 retro features the same off-road tools of the OG and is even a product of Nike ReGrind that transforms scraps into new shoes.

Nice to know

  • It comes in four colorways Sand/Racer Blue, Sequoia/Vivid Purple, Black/University Gold, and Black/Habanero Red.

Facts / Specs

Style: Retro, Sporty, Chunky
Inspired from: Hiking
Collection: Nike Acg, Nike Air
Closure: Laces
Material: Suede, Mesh, Rubber Sole / Fabric
Technology: Air Cushion
Season: Spring, Summer

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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.