Why Are Sneakers So Expensive?


Did you know that the most expensive sneaker ever was sold for nearly $2 million? These were the Kanye West Nike Air Yeezy prototypes from 2008. Although not all shoes cost nearly as much, sneakers are still fairly expensive when considering how much other types of clothing cost.

So, why are sneakers so expensive? Let’s take a look at some of the key factors that influence sneakers pricing so you can have an easier time buying sneakers in the future.


One of the most important nuances that affect the price of sneakers is their scarcity. Sneakers are often released in limited quantities, making them more sought after.

As a result, they become more expensive as time goes on. A great example is the Nike Air Jordan 1 sneaker. These Nike jordan shoes are often released in very limited quantities, and they are sometimes only released in select cities.

Unless you are a shoe collector or are looking to flip them for a profit, it’s best to stay away from sneakers that cost this much. This is simply due to their price far exceeding their inherent value.

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Brand Name and Celebrity Endorsements

Another reason sneakers can be expensive is because of the brand name and celebrity endorsements behind them. Brands such as Nike, Adidas, and Jordan are well-known and trusted by consumers, so they can charge more for their products.

It’s also not uncommon for brands to work with individuals who have a high social status. This is true even for those who simply have a large following on their social media platforms.

When consumers see famous people wearing a certain type of shoe, they will be more inclined to purchase that shoe for themselves. As a result, this increases the overall value of the product.

This is particularly true when it comes to resale. For example, let’s assume that a discontinued sneaker would normally sell for $200. If a high-profile celebrity like Drake, LeBron James, or Harry styles wears this shoe during a public appearance, it will dramatically increase its resale price.

Materials and Labor

The materials used and the amount of labor that goes into making sneakers also play a role in their pricing. For instance, sneakers made with premium materials such as leather or suede will cost more than those made with less expensive materials.

Additionally, the level of craftsmanship that goes into making a sneaker can also add to the price. It’s essential to understand this fact when looking into purchasing sneakers, as they cost substantially more than conventional shoes. The good news is that you often get what you pay for as long as you can find sneakers that are reasonably priced.

Overall Demand

As you might guess, the overall demand for sneakers also has an impact on how much they cost. When sneakers are in high demand, the prices tend to be higher. So, if you’re looking for a good deal on sneakers, it’s best to buy them when they’re not in season. You should also look for sneakers that are not particularly popular.

For this same reason, this is why sneakers of certain shoe sizes are more expensive than others. The more people who need to wear a particular size, the higher the demand and price will be. If you research enough, you should be able to find sneakers that fit your taste without having to empty your wallet.

Hype Created by Hip-Hop Artists

Hype Created by Hip-Hop Artists

Interestingly, many people overlook the role that hype plays in the pricing of sneakers. It’s well known that hip-hop artists have contributed a significant amount to the overall value of sneakers.

Not only do they wear them during music videos and performances, but they also mention them by name and in various songs. A perfect example is Air Force Ones by Nelly, a track that caused these Nike shoes to explode in popularity afterward.

So, you can be sure that specific sneakers associated with have hip-hop culture are going to be more expensive than similar shoes without this hype behind them.

Resellers Looking to Make a Profit

Resellers also play a large role when it comes to influencing the price of sneakers. When people buy sneakers and then sell them for a higher price, it drives up the cost of sneakers for everyone.

Unfortunately, there are people out there who aim to buy up as much of the supply as possible after certain shoes are released. They then make it their goal to resell the shoes for an exponential profit. Sometimes, they might stand outside of a shoe store shortly after a release and sell the sneakers to customers who were not able to get a pair for themselves.

If you wish to avoid this scenario, it’s in your best interest to try and secure a pair on release day.

Why Are Sneakers so Expensive?

The answer to this question depends on the above factors. More than one at a time may play a role when determining the price of a given type of sneaker. The good news is that the answer to the question, “Why are sneakers so expensive?” will help ensure you fully understand sneakers pricing and why they cost as much as they do.

This can help you make find the best sneakers for you in the future. Looking for other fashion info that can help improve your lifestyle? Be sure to check out the rest of our blog.

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