We spent 6.6 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what sneaker fanatics think:

7 reasons to buy

  • A majority of the purchasers commended Nike SB Zoom Bruin’s classic conception of the silhouette.
  • Numerous users were comfortable when trying the shoe on and a percentage of them even use it every day as beaters.
  • The shoe is true to size and fits their feet adequately, according to many buyers.
  • A handful of the users suggested that the shoe is lightweight.
  • The Nike SB Zoom Bruin was very flexible and sturdy, according to several satisfied customers.
  • The shoe has an excellent grip which also emanates a sufficient board feel, according to some skaters.
  • More than a handful of the customers were astonished by the shoe’s durability in the skateboarding scene.

3 reasons not to buy

  • A few users claimed that after a few hours of wearing the shoe, their feet start to hurt and was unbearable to wear for a prolonged period of time.
  • The shoe runs narrow, according to a small sample of customers.
  • A buyer stated that for the colorway with a white midsole, the shoe would easily get dirty and takes a long time to clean.

Bottom line

The Nike SB Zoom Bruin is a vintage revival of a classic from the pioneers of the Nike brand of shoes way back in 1972. Its simple design, with its conservative silhouette and various combinations of colorways captivated users from a handful of decades ago and still to this day.

Bringing back the shoe and morphing it into Nike’s skateboarding series was a paramount achievement that instigates comfort without neglecting durability. Zoom Air was also included in the midsole of the shoe to provide cushioning and better energy return.


Expert Reviews

  • First look | Tactics Boardshop |

  • First look | Ippei Morita

Become an expert

The shoe generally runs true to size and is available in Men’s sizes ranging from 4-13 in D Medium width. A standard lace-up closure offers comfortable and personalized fit in this shoe.

Intentionally re-purposed for skateboarding, the Nike SB Zoom Bruin has a simple silhouette with different combinations of compact colorways. It has very intricate stitching across the shoe with that vintage front toe midsole design from the original Bruin. The shoe can be used casually on an everyday basis and can be partnered either with jeans or shorts.

The Nike SB Zoom Bruin has a suede upper with a swoosh logo on the side panels. It has triangle stitches at the vamp near the bottom of the laces. The leather heel is embroidered with NIKE and parallel to the perimeter is an angular stitch. The vulcanized midsole contains etched patterns mimicking weaves of thread with streaks of symmetrical vertical protrusions and miniature stars embossed at the toe front. The gum outsole has a herringbone pattern for maximum suction and grip.

The Nike SB Zoom Bruin’s roots can be traced down to the brands that started the introduction of Nike into the sporting industry. The Nike Bruin, the forefather of the shoe, was originally intended for basketball with its low-top upper and was released in 1972. Along with the Nike Blazer, a high-top basketball shoe released the same year as Bruin, the duo helped fastened the Nike name in the sport and since then acquired a following for the shoe. As the years came by, several competitors and even Nike, created their own style of basketball shoe with the Air Jordans as a testament. The Bruin was then less appreciated come after.

Fast forward to the late 00’s, Nike Skateboarding collaborates with Supreme and launched the Supreme x Nike SB Bruin. The vintage Bruin brand design was revamped with a plain suede upper with a swoosh logo on the side. It has a vulcanized midsole and the herringbone gum outsole was also tweaked to provide more grip. Both shoes were also printed with words at the heel counter with “world” on the left shoe and “famous” at the right.

In late 2009, Nike Skateboarding released the Nike SB Zoom Bruin which included a Zoom Air midsole for better cushioning and durability when doing skateboard tricks. Since then, the shoe was made available in a variety of colorways which was mainly made from suede and the classic vulcanized midsole.

  • Collaborated with Fluffy in 2009, they released the Fluffy x Nike SB Bruin, composed of a canvas, leather, and suede upper in a charcoal grey colorway with a fluffy signature at the heel.
  • A simple white colorway with an Orion blue swoosh, the Nike SB Zoom Bruin - Mulder was released in summer 2011 following the design of famous skateboard pro, Richard Mulder.
  • Nike SB launched a Lost Art x Nike Bruin SB collaboration in 2014 with the shoes in quick strike inspired by the revived Liverpool skate scene.
  • Famous celebrities spotted flaunting the Nike Bruin are Lebron James, Justin Bieber, Shia Lebouf, Kevin Hart and more.
Danny McLoughlin
Danny McLoughlin

Danny is a sneakerhead turned sneaker industry expert that believes a good outfit begins from the feet up. His aunt currently isn't speaking to him for wearing a pair of kicks at his cousin's wedding. He spends most of his time trying to keep on top of the latest releases, hitting up his contacts and doing what needs to be done to secure his next pickup. Danny has been featured in prestigious publications such as The Washington Post, The Irish Times, Footwear News and the like.