Most Popular Air Jordans

Most Popular Air Jordans

Since its inception in 1985, Nike's Air Jordan has been a game-changing staple in sports and footwear. To the astonishment of many, the shoe generated an unprecedented $126 million in its first year. This ultra-premium sneaker features groundbreaking design and advanced performance technology, embodying both lavish luxury and nostalgic prestige. Tinker Hatfield's captivating designs of Air Jordan have enthralled global audiences with classic silhouettes over four decades. Out of all the varied styles available, some truly stand out as special. Here are the best Air Jordans.

8. Air Jordan V

Air Jordan 5 Craft "Light Orewood Brown." Image via Nike

Heavily inspired by Michael Jordan's game, the Air Jordan V's iconic silhouette originated in the late 80s with Nike designer, Tinker Hatfield. The Air Jordan V stands out from its predecessors with notable design elements. Fueling its resurgence in recent years, influential icons like Will Smith reignited Air Jordan's popularity. Collaborations with Supreme, Clot, Paris Saint Germain, DJ Khaled, and Virgil Abloh have further propelled it to legendary status. Furthermore, this classic sneaker firmly entrenched itself in pop culture as it embodies an unmistakable retro vibe and timeless appeal.

7. Air Jordan VI

Air Jordan VI
Air Jordan 6 "Midnight Navy." Image via Nike.

The VI aided MJ's quest for a championship title with its timeless design and meticulous attention to detail. Its remodeled midsole and tongue set it apart from its predecessors, while a two-layer upper offered scope for stylish color blocking
Additionally, this model gained renown for its iconic outsole colorways, drawing inspiration from fighter planes and German cars. Throughout decades of alteration in men's fashion, the VI's popularity never faltered, remaining an influential symbol in streetwear. Ultimately, Jordan VI was vociferously present as MJ grabbed his first NBA Championship crown.

6. Air Jordan VII

Air Jordan 7 "Cardinal"
Air Jordan 7 "Cardinal." Image via Nike.

Showcasing a high ankle silhouette, innovative tongue, and pronounced midsole detail, the Air Jordan VII set the standard for its successors in the following years. This iconic sneaker marked Michael Jordan's triumphant return to basketball at the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona. Derived from Nike's Huarache technology, designer Tinker Hatfield combined sportswear style with hard-hitting African tribal prints. To honor this legacy, Nike released seven original colorways, including the Chicago Bull-inspired #9 heel.

5. Air Jordan XIII

Jordan 13
Air Jordan 13 "Black-University Blue." Image via Nike.

Michael Jordan's iconic Air Jordan XIII capped off his Bulls career in unforgettable style. As the founding design of MJ's own eponymous brand, it offers a unique aesthetic inspired by the "Black Cat's" nickname. The design features a leather upper, plush side panels, and most notably, an eye-catching holographic eye panel and panther-inspired outsole. The AJ XIII also has a big screen role, with Denzel Washington donning them in Spike Lee's classic He Got Game. Reaching record heights recently, they sold for $378,000 at the Christie's "Six Rings" auction and were featured in ESPN/Netflix doc The Last Dance. Even after two decades, these classic sneakers remain performance powerhouses and coveted collector gems.

4. Air Jordan IV

Jordan 4 "Thunder."
Air Jordan 4 "Thunder." Image via Nike.

Tinker Hatfield's design of the Air Jordan IV was an iconic success. It included a unique toe box, netting on the side, and lacing eyelets, and without the III's elephant print on the heel. Simultaneously, further iconic moments both in and out of sports culture, such as Michael Jordan's game-winning shot against the Cleveland Cavaliers in their Playoff series and Spike Lee's critically acclaimed Do the Right Thing, cemented the sneaker's legacy. In addition to its timeless fashion and technology being reworked into other models of the line, the style's numerous collaborations with artists such as Eminem, Travis Scott, Mark Wahlberg, Union, Undftd, Virgil Abloh, and Kaws have all reinforced its strong standing in the footwear world.

3. Air Jordan III

Air Jordan 3 "Fire Red."
Air Jordan 3 "Fire Red." Image via Nike.

The legendary Air Jordan III is the epitome of high performance, fashion, and pop culture. Famed designer Tinker Hatfield's pristine high-top design with its iconic elephant print detailing on the heel and toe was an instant classic when it was initially released. This style soared to fame when Michael Jordan donned it for his revered 1988 Slam Dunk Contest in Chicago. Film star Spike Lee also made the sneaker iconic with his role alongside MJ in Nike advertisements and his acclaimed movie She's Gotta Have It. In terms of fashion, this classic silhouette has rivaled the likes of the Nike Blazer, Adidas Superstar, and current designs from luxury brands Louis Vuitton, Dior, and Balenciaga. Complementing any fit, many celebrate the timeless style of the Air Jordan III, from casual to special occasions. This includes DJ Khaled, retailer A Ma ManiƩre, and iconic collaborator Hiroshi Fujiwara and his Fragment Design label.

2. Air Jordan XI

Air Jordan 11 Cool Grey
Air Jordan 11 Cool Grey. Image via Nike.

Jordan returned with a vengeance in 1995, debuting the Air Jordan XI as his weapon of choice for the season. This iconic silhouette boasted a full-length carbon fiber plate for movement, along with nylon upper and webbing loops for the lacing system. The sneaker also had a patent leather panel on the toe and around the design, which hasn't been replicated since. With its storybook performance that season, coupled with its unique characteristics, this shoe became an instant classic - exuding both power and sophistication, the XI was dubbed the "tuxedo sneaker." Every year, collectors eagerly anticipate the holiday closure of the Jordan calendar, waiting to grab their hands on this remarkable sneaker.

1. Air Jordan I

Air Jordan 1 High OG "Lost & Found." Image via Nike.

Having previously represented Adidas, Jordan initially declined Nike's offer. Yet, with the persuasion of his agent and family, he eventually decided to meet with the small sneaker company. Unexpectedly, they proposed an unprecedented offer for Michael-his own signature line along with six figures. Before the renowned Air Jordan, the "Air Ship" model preceded, but it was his one-of-a-kind style that revolutionized the court.

His first sneaker, the Air Jordan I, became a symbol of design perfection, offering superior performance, comfort, and versatility. Despite rapidly advancing styles, 2007 marked a historic moment with "Old Love/New Love" iconic colors. Moreover, this revolutionary shoe continues to set boundaries beyond design innovation. Concurrently, through classic colorways and collaborations, it is inspiring creativity among artists, creators, and musicians alike.



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