How the New Balance 990 Became a Cultural Phenomenon

Featuring conversations with musician Chaz French, model Veneda Budny, and Dominick Adams of Maketto.

Presented by New Balance
Footwear 
12,981 Hypes 0 Comments

As trends come and go, brands sometimes leave a permanent impression which spawns a loyal fanbase. In very special cases, that loyal fanbase can grow into a cult-like following and even into a cultural phenomenon. The New Balance 990 fits that description, with the running silhouette now more than 30 years old. At its launch, the 990 was the first performance athletic shoe offered at $100 USD, yet it was able to cultivate a passionate customer-base dedicated to the sneaker’s niche despite its high price. Much of the 990’s success today can be spoken about in the same terms as the New Balance brand’s — a commitment to stability, cushioning, and flexibility incorporated with classic aesthetics, which has been adopted by scenes around the world.

The story behind the New Balance 990 started in 1982 with the sneaker undergoing minimal cosmetic changes since its introduction. Its wide fit, grey suede, and clean simplicity continues to make it a cult-classic. From Steve Jobs’ go-to shoe to teaming up with brands such as Concepts and J.Crew to transcending its dad shoe status, the 990 continues to carry over its original sensibilities as a performance running shoe even as it gets slight tweaks and version updates. In 2015, designer Gosha Rubchinskiy welcomed the 990v3 into the realm of contemporary fashion, styling the shoe for German GQ. The model remains an east coast favorite as the D.C., Maryland, and Virginia regions rely on shops, Shoe City and DTLR to stock the limited colorways. Rather than trend-chasing, the 990 concept has stayed true to its principles, its “Made in the USA” heritage, and has slowly but surely became an international trend.

Read Full Article
Image Credit
Sebastian Jimenez/HYPEBEAST

Join Our Discussions on Discord

The HYPEBEAST Discord Server is a community where conversations on cultural topics can be taken further.

571 Users Online

What to Read Next

Sisqo's "Thong Song" Finally Gets an Official Remix & Video
Music

Sisqo's "Thong Song" Finally Gets an Official Remix & Video

Listen at your own risk.

Nike's LunarCharge Model Is Set to Drop in An "Obsidian" And "Armory Navy" Color Scheme
Footwear

Nike's LunarCharge Model Is Set to Drop in An "Obsidian" And "Armory Navy" Color Scheme

A brand new look for the hybrid runner.

Kanye West Responds to 'The Life of Pablo' TIDAL Release Lawsuit
Music

Kanye West Responds to 'The Life of Pablo' TIDAL Release Lawsuit

Kanye wants the lawsuit dismissed.


Daniel Patrick Presents His Sportswear-Heavy Range for 2018 Spring/Summer
Fashion

Daniel Patrick Presents His Sportswear-Heavy Range for 2018 Spring/Summer

Activewear everything.

Meet the Chinatown Doyenne Behind Music's Favorite Jewelry Spot
Fashion 

Meet the Chinatown Doyenne Behind Music's Favorite Jewelry Spot

“Hit Canal Street, vintage gold medallion/ Smokin’ blunts in front of public housin’.”

BEAMS, Engineered Garments & Converse Drop an Ultra Clean Multi-Cream All Star
Footwear

BEAMS, Engineered Garments & Converse Drop an Ultra Clean Multi-Cream All Star

Understated luxury.

More ▾
 
Subscribe to our Newsletter

Gain access to exclusive interviews with industry creatives, think pieces, trend forecasts, guides and more.

By subscribing, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Help us serve you better

We appreciate your support in allowing HYPEBEAST ads, where we can share contents from the latest fashion, to those culturally relevant. In adding HYPEBEAST to your ad blocker's whitelist, ads on our sites will show while you continue to browse.