When a brand releases a new technology, it is often a great success. The technologies not only affect comfort or production, but also a brand's overall image gets a boost. People are becoming increasingly picky and want the best of the best. Innovation and research ensure that a brand advances in the sneaker scene. Here are some sneaker technologies that ensure ultimate comfort, so you too can score the best of the best!
One of the most famous technologies is adidas' Boost technology, a revolutionary performance technology first used in 2013 for the Energy Boost. In fact, in the years that followed, the technology became so popular that it conquered both the sports and fashion world.
What is adidas Boost technology?
The adidas Boost technology is a product of the adidas Innovation Team (AIT) and German chemists, BASF. The two companies' goal was to develop a soft responsive sole, the sole had to absorb energy with every step while also releasing it. They did this by making thousands of elongated particles work together. The result was the perfect cushioning for a running shoe.
To make Boost, thermoplastic polyurethane particles are stretched to form closed cells surrounding small air pockets. The resulting product is called thermoplastic polyurethane or eTPU. This can be seen in the white sole seen on the Ultraboost, for example.
Vans has given their signature silhouettes a comfortable upgrade in 2019 with the Vans ComfyCush technology. This technology makes you feel like you are walking on clouds. It is a new, softer, cushioning sole that gives the classic models the ultimate fit.
What is Vans ComfyCush technology?
The Vans ComfyCush sneakers consist of moulded foam and rubber materials, which provide extra comfort. They also incorporate moisture-wicking materials, keeping your feet dry during the rain.
Not only has the sole been upgraded, the sneaker's upper has also been redesigned. Depending on the model, the sneaker offers a better fit, more support, stability and comfort.
We know the waterproof GORE-TEX from outdoor jackets and hiking boots, but increasingly this technology is also being used for sneakers. Think of various Air Jordan 1s to the New Balance 2002R. Which means you are also protected from all weather conditions during your daily activities.
What is GORE-TEX?
GORE-TEX products contain a windproof, waterproof and breathable membrane. This will keep you dry during a rain shower and you will sweat less thanks to the breathability of the material.
The GORE-TEX membrane is a thin layer of stretched polytetrafluoroethylene (ePTFE). PFTE, also commonly known as Teflon. In addition, the membrane is 0.01 mm thick and contains around 1.4 billion pores per square centimetre. Which keeps you dry but at the same time allows perspiration to get out.
Slightly less innovative, but one that should definitely not be missed in this review is the iconic Nike Air technology. The first sneaker with Air cushioning came out in 1978, the Nike Tailwind Runner. After much positive feedback, the Air Max 1 was released in 1987, which was the first to have a visible Air Unit.
What is Nike Air technology?
Air technology is a cushioning system in the midsole where compressed air (gas) is placed in a firm but flexible Air Unit made of polyurethane. The technology offers more flexibility and resilience without compromising on structure.
Because of Nike Air, you will experience cushioning during every step, reducing foot strain. These innovations allow you to work harder with unprecedented comfort.
Finally, we would like to mention that many brands are increasingly developing technologies to be more environmentally friendly. The abundance of greenhouse gases released in the production of clothing and footwear is harmful to the planet, so more and more brands are trying to innovate with materials and construction processes.
Many brands have sustainability goals, which they want to achieve in a certain amount of time. adidas creates shoes from Parley Ocean Plastic and even released a Stan Smith in 2021 that was made entirely from mushrooms. Recently, the company came out with their first Spinnova product, which uses wood, textile waste and food waste to create new fibres.
Nike recently released a Next Nature line in which Dunk Low's in particular get a makeover. These sneakers are not made of leather but made of "micro-organism-harvested air carbon". In addition, the brand aims for a circular future.
New Balance has introduced the Green Leaf. Clothing and sneakers with the Green Leaf logo are made from at least 50% ecological or recycled materials.