Urban Outfitters’ senior footwear buyer, Kris Babet, on how to avoid falling into traps you might not even know are there
The issue: Ah, Mr Sensible. Admiral Safe. Farmer Predictable, only buying black or white trainers. Is that what you want? To be that guy? Hell no!
The solution: “Right now, pastel colours are a big deal, but as we move into autumn, you’ll want to tone it down. Go mono – one colour full to the floor, like the new Vans SK8-Hi. The colourway is different but not too frightening to pull off.”
The issue: You don’t need socks! You’re young Tom Sawyer, running through fields, leaping over fences, getting into scrapes! Except… maybe you do need socks. To forego them is to unleash your shoes’ hidden hellstink, if you haven’t taken precautions.
The solution: “Two words, one name: Jason Markk. I swear by his care products. The first thing to do once you’ve unboxed your new creps is reach for the repel spray and coat them. You’ll keep footwear fresher for longer.”
The issue: That nagging feeling your new kicks aren’t quite the ones to have. Staring at your feet, sensing Key Instagram Style Influencers left these behind a week ago – no man should suffer that.
The solution: “By far the biggest drop for us this season was the unbelievably comfortable adidas Ultra Boost. Those things sold out in a day! Set a reminder for the end of the month – we have a new batch coming in then.”
The issue: It’s hard to resist “the done thing”. But if we never progressed, we’d still be voting on The Corn Laws. Working down t’mine. Eating mud. Move on! You owe it to evolution.
The solution: “Now is an amazing time to embrace different trainer materials. I’m a firm believer in mesh footwear in the summer, and leather in the winter. One tiny but different detail to look out for in your next pair? 3M reflectivity. Invisible in the day, but a reflective pop at night. So cool.”
The issue: You know Nike and adidas inside out. But there’s that urge to learn more. Like at election time when you pick up the Green Party manifesto and are so ready to read it but oh look there’s a semi-handsome dog outside and I can’t miss this.
The solution: “There’s a reason why adidas and Nike are up there – they’re the best. But don’t overlook the rest. Reebok is a great brand if you want something a little more out-of-the-box while keeping that athletic vibe. Its Club C and Workout models are pure 90s sportswear goodness.”