Sneaker Sunday: New Balance 998

Most of you who follow my sneakergram (pplookingatsnkrs) or follow my Sneaker Sunday blog posts have probably noticed my affinity, love and obsession for the Nike brand.  So this post may come as a surprise…

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I gotta give some credit to Kawhi Leonard.  I think he’s changed the way we (as consumers) see the brand. Puma had a strong push within the NBA this year and Adidas has always made quality and comfortable kicks but neither brand was able to sway me from my first love, Nike. Seeing Kawhi rocking New Balance made me pause.  For the first time in my life I thought, you know what…New Balance is pretty cool.  After seeing these kicks in person, I’m happy I decided to try them out.

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Made in the USA with a suede and mesh upper, I am ecstatic with the quality of these sneakers.  Sporting turquoise blue on the heel and a sandy colored toe, these sneakers remind me of a Caribbean paradise. Putting the bright colors over a neutral grey gives the shoe a nice balance that doesn’t make it too wild and would ideally allow me to wear them with almost anything.  My favorite aesthetic of this sneaker though is the long tongue.  It’s a beautiful grey suede embroidered with the style: “998”, brand: “new balance” and also states proudly “MADE IN USA.”  Quite simply, this is a good looking sneaker.

Fit, form and function wise… these sneakers are phenomenal.  Immediately upon slipping them on, my feet seemed to thank me. They slid on like a glove and fit snugly around my foot.  Functionally, they are good for anything.  I’ll mostly use them as a “walking around”/ lifestyle shoe but I could technically work out or even run in them if I wished.  Looking at how premium the materials are though, I’ll try to keep these in as clean of an environment as possible.  As for stability, they feel very sturdy.  The midsole boasts the New Balance “Abzorb” technology and it just feels strong and safe underfoot

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I think the coolest thing about these sneakers is their “Made in the USA” claim.  I will admit, I didn’t buy them for this reason (bought em for style…duh) but it does make me feel proud to wear them now that I’ve done a little more research.  The pride New Balance feels for this claim is evident in this TV spot put out by them below…

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In conclusion, it’s good to try out different brands.  I’m still #Nikegang over everythang but I won’t hesitate to purchase a pair next time I see some that catch my eye.  Very happy with this purchase and I look forward to wearing them for years to come.

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