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Inspired from: Running
Collection: Nike Cortez
Colorways: Beige / Black / Blue / Brown / Green / Grey / Orange / Pink / Red / White

Verdict from 7.7 hours of research from the internet

9 reasons to buy

  • Many perceived this shoe’s classic and simple silhouette as stylish and trendy.
  • Almost all who have worn it, those with wide feet and knee problems included, were happy with its in-shoe feel.
  • The low-top Nike Cortez Basic Nylon is durable and high-quality, most confirmed.
  • Its lightweight and solidly-built construction were applauded by several users.
  • One purchaser used this sneaker every day for work and was pleased with how well it held up.
  • Numerous color options are available.
  • Some thought this sneaker was great for long walks and trips.
  • The Cortez Basic Nylon is inexpensive.
  • It looked better in person than advertised, a few stated.

3 reasons not to buy

  • Its sizing is different from other Nike models, some confirmed.
  • One buyer noted that the older versions of the Nike Cortez Basic Nylon looked better than the current one.
  • The shoe tends to slip on wet surfaces, another complained.

Bottom line

Outfitted with nylon for a more lightweight feel, the Nike Cortez Basic Nylon has a classic and timeless design that is still sought-after to date. Although an old model which utilizes outdated tech, it is adequately comfortable.

Long-time users often favor this shoe for the nostalgic feelings it’s capable of evoking. The majority, however, are mainly attracted with its durability, quality not to mention its budget-friendly price tag and its retro look that never runs out of style.

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Built with a breathable and light nylon upper overlaid with durable suede, folks can expect a comfortable yet supportive fit from this model. Its low-cut profile also lets wearers move their ankles freely. Its narrow build, though, may cause slight discomfort for wide-footed sneaker fanatics, thus sizing up is well recommended.

This shoe is available in medium width. Men’s sizes range from 6-15 while women’s range from 5-12.

An updated version of Bowerman’s first masterpiece, the running shoe-inspired and low-top Nike Cortez Basic Nylon maintains its forerunner’s vintage silhouette almost untouched.

Its clean construction is often seen in a wide array of colors including black, white, yellow and royal blue. Everyday clothes like jeans, shorts, joggers, skirts and leggings simply look good with this model.

Looking a lot like its ancestor, the silver lace dubrae with a debossed Cortez 72” logo and the revamped outsole tooling defines its look. Its outsole, however, retains its stripe for added pop, its foam midsole for lightweight cushioning and the herringbone tread for traction and grip.

Sneaker juggernaut Nike, in the 1960s, started as a small business called the Blue Ribbon Sports (BRS). A sole distributor of Japanese shoe manufacturer Onitsuka Tiger (aka ASICS), co-founder and track coach Bill Bowerman worked with Onitsuka Tiger in creating a distance and road running shoe that is both comfortable and durable.

In the year 1966, a runner called the TG-24 made its debut. Designed by Bowerman, this shoe was crafted with an aerodynamic upper and a thick rubber sole with a raised heel. It offered enhanced comfort and durability. It also helped reduce injuries. This innovative creation was just what the athletes needed in those days.

Over the years, Bowerman changed the shoe’s name from the Mexico” to the Aztec” and finally the Cortez.” A shoe launched during Onitsuka Tiger's and BRS' partnership; these two companies split resulted in a legal battle over the Cortez’ rights. In the end, both were permitted to produce and sell the model. However, BRS, which at that time was already known as Nike kept the Cortez name while Onitsuka Tiger called their version as the Corsair.”

The Nike Cortez made its mark in the year 1972 during the Munich Olympics. Despite its success, Bowerman, who was insistent on developing the lightest possible runner, thought it was wise to change the original’s leather upper and create a nylon version. Known as the Nike Nylon Cortez, this 1975 model was marketed as the world’s lightest running shoe.”

The brand, though, did not stop there. Time went by, and Nike continued to make subtle tweaks to the shoe’s construction and materials. The updated version dubbed the Nylon Basic Cortez, later on, surfaced. Although no longer made for the track, this now lifestyle footwear features a slightly wider and higher heel as well as a lace dubrae.

  • The textile lining, as well as padded tongue and collar, give the shoe a better in-shoe feel.
  • Nike logo is placed on the heel tab, tongue label and insole for additional branding.

Size and fit

True to size based on 3121 user votes
Small (24%)
True to size (74%)
Large (3%)
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Danny McLoughlin
Danny McLoughlin

Danny McLoughlin is a researcher for RunRepeat covering football, sneakers and running. After graduating with a degree in computer science from The University of Strathclyde, Danny makes sure never to miss a game of his beloved Glasgow Rangers or the Scotland national football team. He has been featured in prestigious publications such as The Washington Post, The Irish Times, Footwear News and the like.