As 2023 comes to an end, our SoleSavy community is making their voices heard in the sneaker of the year conversation. A few weeks back, the community was presented with a list featuring most of the popular releases 2023. For the following week, members were encouraged to submit their votes on their top ten releases.
10. Supreme x Nike SB Low Rammellzee
The sneaker world always stops and pauses when Nike SB and Supreme team up. That is especially the case when the collaboration is on a Nike Dunk. Supreme’s friendship with Rammellzee stems back to, well, pretty much the brand’s inception. Though technically being the pair’s third collaborative drop, it was undoubtedly the most exciting. Releasing in August, the collaboration also featured a Dunk High with Rammellzee’s art print that once stood displayed at a Supreme storefront. In a year packed with great Nike SBs, it was only right to start this list with the Rammellzees.
photo courtesy of SoleSavy member thechungle
9. Action Bronson x NB 990v6 “Lapis Lazuli”
New Balance’s impressive run continued into 2023 and it’s hard to argue anyone else as their top collaborator without mentioning Action Bronson. In the Spring, the partnership ushered in the year of the New Balance 990v6 with the polarizing Baklava colorway. That same day, Bronson debuted the Lapis Lazuli colorway for a feature in GQ. Before even having an idea of when the shoe would be released, fans were hooked on the Lapis Lazuli colorway. The pair was finally released in June to a sold-out reception. In a year loaded with great New Balance collaborations, you would be hard-pressed to find a pair better than the Lapis Lazuli.
photo courtesy SoleSavy member Eric Crumbaker
8. Marvel x KITH x Asics Gel-Lyte III Remastered
At this point, it should be no surprise that Ronnie Fieg and KITH delivered a fan-favorite pop culture collaboration. A project between one of Marvel’s most beloved intellectual properties, on a remastered version of an iconic asics model, was a match made in heaven. Perhaps most impressively, the collection delivered seven great sneakers and a robust apparel and accessory capsule. That’s without even getting into the storytelling and packaging that came with the sneakers that made it one of the best unboxing experiences of 2023.
photo courtesy of SoleSavy member JC
7. Crenshaw Skate Club x Nike SB Dunk Low
Since its inception, Crenshaw Skate Club’s mission has been to represent and empower inner-city skaters worldwide. Their first official collaboration with Nike SB celebrated that mission. From the tear away on the upper to the building blocks visible on the outsole, the shoe is filled with references that celebrate Crenshaw Skate Club and skateboarding culture. They kept the release close to fans by releasing most of the inventory on the brand’s website. This collaboration promised to be one for the fans, and it delivered on that mission.
photo courtesy of SoleSavy member RothisRad
6. Union LA x Bephies Beauty Supply x Air Jordan 1 High “Summer of ‘96”
Another calendar year, another appearance for UNION in our Top Ten. This time, UNION kept it with the family and, along with Bephies Beauty Supply, delivered one of the most talked about Air Jordan 1s of the last few years. The shoe is a love letter from Chris & Beth Gibbs with a message resonating with sneakerheads everywhere. The release introduced a new “HUMAN PASS ” shopify feature that allowed real customers to easily purchase a pair. From the sneaker itself to the release strategy, UNION took some risks and delivered a Top Ten worthy sneaker.
photo courtesy of SoleSavy Member ad__sneaks
5. Travis Scott x Air Jordan 1 Low “Olive”
Something else that will not surprise anyone is an appearance from Travis Scott. This year’s Air Jordan 1 Low brought a familiar feeling and colorway from past collaborations from the rager and the Jumpman. Releasing in extended women’s sizes allowed all interested sneakerheads a chance to get another shot at a Travis Scott sneaker.
photo courtesy of SoleSavy member Lionel
4. BornxRaised x Nike SB Dunk Low
Not many brands stick as close to their roots and fanbase as Venice, California’s BornxRaised. Their Nike SB Dunk Low collaboration was a celebration of its late founder, Chris “Spanto” Printup’s, roots. Before his tragic passing, he even delivered pairs of sneakers for the graduating class of his alma mater, Venice High School. That message of unity and celebrating Spanto’s legacy propelled this release to the upper echelon of excitement among sneakerheads. Nike respectfully gave all of the North American stock of this sneaker to BornxRaised to allow them to release them as they saw fit. The sneaker celebrated the legacy of a beloved figure in the streetwear scene and introduced fans worldwide to one of the most authentic brands out of the West Coast.
photo courtesy of SoleSavy member Sarah
3. Jarritos x Nike SB Dunk Low
As soon as rumors of this collaboration surfaced in 2022, this pair quickly became one of the most anticipated sneakers of 2023. As it turned out, the sneaker ended up being one of the best SB Dunk Lows to come out this year so this place on the podium should not come as a surprise. Nike SB is at its best when it emphasizes attention to detail and between the tear-away canvas and the Jarritos branding throughout the sneaker, not a detail was missed.
photo courtesy of SoleSavy member DanRealLife
2. J Balvin x Air Jordan 3 “Medellin Sunset”
A vibrant sneaker from J Balvin and Air Jordan is to be expected at this point. Fittingly, the pair collaborated on an Air Jordan 3 for their third sneaker collaboration. This time, though, the shoe wasn’t inspired by J Balvin’s album cover or music, but rather, the sunset of his hometown of Medellin. The aged upper is contrasted beautifully by the gradient heel tab and midsole panel representing a sun setting. The collaboration, somehow, was able to deliver a vibrant sneaker with a hit of subtlety. J Balvin emphasized the importance of celebrating his hometown with this sneaker, and it’s safe to say he did Medellin justice.
photo courtesy of SoleSavy member CM
1. Nike SB x Air Jordan 4 Pine Green
The Nike SB x Air Jordan 4 “Pine Green” was voted by the SoleSavy Community as the sneaker of the year. There is no recency bias here as the sneaker, which launched in the Spring of this year, is the oldest release to make the community’s top ten. Coincidentally, the two released an Air Jordan 4 four years since their last collaboration. Simply put, this shoe is a hit among sneakerheads because it checks off every single box. The sneaker they chose to collaborate on this year is one of the most beloved and on-trendAir Jordan models. The colorway features one of the most popular colors for sneakers at the moment. Finally, the outsole is made out of a gum bottom, which is not only a fan-favorite outsole but also a material seldom used on an Air Jordan outsole. All of that without even mentioning the Nike SB branding on the iconic Air Jordan 4 heel and updated shape and comfort. This collaboration was a sneakerhead’s dream come true and a fitting sneaker of the year.
photo courtesy of SoleSavy member chadtastico