9 May

Nike Lets Girls Run the Sneaker world

If it depends on Nike, girls really do run the sneaker world lately. After unveiling the Unlaced women-only platform and the following 1 Reimagined collection designed by 14 women, Nike dropped another collaboration with a female pioneer in fashion. The Air Force 1 Low Love with ELLE’s first female creative director Ruba Abu-Nimah is another huge step in the sneaker world for women. But what does all this female engagement mean?

The fact that Nike has been focussing on female energy is nothing new. Last year the company collaborated with female Muslim athletes for the design of the Nike Pro Hijab. But more was yet to come, although the Hijab already looked like one of the biggest steps in sports brand history. The sports brand has been supporting women in sports for over a few years now, which helped women to get more opportunities in sports. The girls in the sneaker world seem to be Nike’s focussing point, and it was about time a sneaker brand did that.

Why girls?

Although many guys say the girls’ section in sneaker stores are cooler than the guys’, it’s not only the daily collections counting in this argument. Many girls wear small sizes and not many brands bring out their limited edition collections in smaller sizes than a European 38 or 39. It’s not always easy being a Hypebae! Although a lot of girls do wear their clothes oversized, it doesn’t work that way with kicks. It seems that the brand finally gets the fact that girls and women want to wear limited edition kicks or special colorways too. So Nike redefined sneakers for women.

Nike Women run the sneaker world

Hijabs for diversity

Everything started with the campaign video for the Pro Hijab last year. A bunch of athletes from all over the world got the chance to design a hijab, easily used for sports. The Hijab was part of Nike’s mission to serve all types of athletes with all types of backgrounds. To make up for the past, Nike launched a plus-size sportsline to support all body types. The next step for the brand was to make a movie to celebrate women. And who’s a better person to cooperate with than Serena Williams? She’s been a sports icon for years with 23 Major wins, and has been thinking out of the box ever since she’s started her career. In the movie, the pioneer in sports puts the diversity of women in the spotlight.

Nike Unlaced

Last month, Unlaced was revealed. An online platform for women to shop, get inspiration and to get exclusive services. If there’s one thing in the sports world which connects all female athletes, it’s sneakers. Next to a classic sports pair, sneakers are an all time statement item every woman should have in her closet. It’s something all women need, and the brand is committed to provide it for them. The first collection for the Unlaced platform was an instant hit: The 1 Reimagined spring collection. Five spring colorways and five redesigned types of classic kicks. With this initiative, Nike tries to make the sneaker world more inclusive which is a huge step in the man-ruled world of streetwear.

But, there’s always a but

Although Nike is trying its best to provide women worldwide, the company struggles with internal problems. Last month, news got out that the company has failed to hire more women and people of minorities. Only 29% of all Nike vice-presidents in the United States are women. Women who work in wholesale for the sport spioneer, earn almost 10 percent less than men. And even in retail women earn 3 percent less than the other gender. So, if Nike wants to keep up with women in the sports, sneaker or streetwear world, they might as well try to keep up with their female employees.

Photo and video credit: Nike


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