Each year, analysts predict that the sneaker bubble will soon burst. And each year, the market reacts by growing bigger and bigger. More specifically, the resell market continues to expand as a billion-dollar industry, without any hints of a slowdown. Everybody knows certain shoes are good for a quick cash flip. But some rare, select kicks are the shoe equivalent of a winning Lotto ticket. We’re talking shoes that require extreme blessings from the plug or the willingness to sell an organ to purchase. These aren’t your ordinary sneakers, since they’re friends-and-family versions or exclusive drops limited by geographic location.
The good people at StockX provided us with the figures for their average resale values. The rankings are determined by these prices and include all sneakers released this year. Here are 2018’s 10 most expensive shoes.
10. Air Jordan V Retro “Paris Saint-Germain” (Friends and Family) Adding yet another international-themed retro to the mix is the upcoming PSG x Air Jordan 6, according to zSneakerHeadz. The sneaker is dressed in iron-grey, while mixing in infrared, the hue that’s most synonymous with the model, on the tongue and midsole. Hits of black are seen on the tongue, lace lock, and outsole. Note that the sneaker pictured is a Photoshop representation of the upcoming collab, as official images have yet to surface.
9. Adidas Futurecraft 4D (Friends and Family)
Adidas keeps pushing the envelope with its Futurecraft project. The Three Stripes used light, air, and its Digital Light Synthesis technology to create the future of footwear. Just like any new tech, this early entry model had people paying way above retail for pairs. You know, because exclusivity can be costly. Thankfully, Adidas started releasing more 4D kicks, so smart shoppers can find more.
8. Air Jordan III Retro Quai54 2018
Jordan Brand’s near-15-year history with the Quai54 streetball tournament has produced many coveted sneakers. But none may be more exclusive than this colorful version of the Jordan III. First seen on the feet of Justin Timberlake, these required a French connection and deep pockets to catch in the wild. With their eye-catching colors, they’re flashy enough to warrant spending the extra cash to floss.
7. Parra x Nike Air Max 1 2018
Good things tend to happen when Nike gives Piet Parra the green light to work his magic on shoes. As part of his second collab with the brand, the Dutch artist crafted a Swoosh-less version of his multicolor, multi-print, multi-mat
6. Air Jordan V Retro “Fresh Prince”
As if Will Smith didn’t already live his best life, Jordan Brand blessed the Fresh Prince with a very special pair of Air Jordan Vs for his 50th birthday. The OG Grapes got flipped into a gold and satin tribute to Bel Air’s favorite nephew. Unfortunately, only 23 raffle winners scored a pair—along with a chance to hang with Smith for a day. The rest of us were left to settle for Nick at Nite reruns and the laceless general release of the shoe, which isn’t much consolation, honestly.
5. Air Jordan III Retro UNC PE
For years, it was the basketball team at Michael Jordan’s alma mater that got all the best kicks. In 2017, the Tar Heels football team also joined the Jordan Brand family and started getting their own special shoes. Looking at these PEs makes you wish you had practiced ball a bit harder as a kid so you could have been a member of UNC’s gridiron gang and owned a pair. Or that you had the money they command on the secondary market. With the sneaker’s value so high, it’s wack that Tar Heels players were suspended for selling theirs. Let the kids eat, NCAA.
4. Undefeated x Nike Kobe 1 Protro “Flight Jacket”
The Kobe 1 Protro “Flight Jacket” was extremely hard to get your hands on, with a meager 10 pairs released via raffle for the opening of Undefeated’s new location in Tokyo. But just winning the raffle wasn’t enough. The lucky “winners” had to compete in a basketball challenge for a chance
3. Colette x Air Jordan I Retro High
What better way to bid farewell to the French footwear powerhouse than with a special Air Jordan I colorway? Jordan Brand crafted these blue and white beauties for Colette as the shop prepared to close its doors after 20 years of business. The scarcity of these makes the chances of owning them about as slim as getting struck by lightning while riding a unicorn.
2. Adidas Pharrell NMD Hu China Pack “Happy”
How hard were these to buy? Well, they only released in China in a quantity of 300. The country’s population hovers around 1.3 billion, so just do the math to determine the odds of getting a pair. Many of Pharrell’s NMD models are hot-ticket items on the secondary market and consistently make yearly top 10 lists. This particular NMD Hu features “Happy” written in English on one shoe and in Chinese on the other. “Happy” also describes how it must feel to own such a rare pair.
1. Undefeated x Nike Kobe 1 Protro “Purple”
Like its counterpart on this list, the purple version of the Nike Kobe 1 Protro by Undefeated released in extremely small quantities. The fact that they were only available through the Hong Kong location made acquiring the shoes that much more difficult. Anyone fortunate enough to snag a pair dedicated to the Lakers great now has a valuable gem in their collection.