Nike’s forthcoming collaboration with storied French grand couturier Christian Dior has been one of the most hyped fashion drops of 2020, and perhaps of recent memory: combining Dior’s impeccable materials and handcrafted luxury with the iconic design of the Air Jordan I was a masterstroke for the two style icons.
Unfortunately, huge hype attracts huge flogs. Enter: good time lover, controversial influencer and YouTuber Jake Paul, who posted a video with his Dior x Nike Air Jordans that has sneakerheads fuming.
Paul shared a clip on his Instagram of him eating cereal out of his $20,000 pair of ‘Air Diors’. To add insult to injury, the cereal’s a limited edition box of Reese’s Puffs produced in collaboration with rapper Travis Scott, the hyped cereal selling for upwards of $50 on the aftermarket.
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The move did not go down well online. From “no money can buy class” to “you should grow up,” many followers of the Rich Kids Of The Internet Instagram page (where the video was reposted) were up in arms, making their feelings known in the comments.
“Who gives a sh*t how much they cost, it’s f***ing stupid to eat outta sneakers.”
Disrespecting a brand-new shoe like this in such an egregious way is outrageous enough, but to do it to such rare sneakers is particularly offensive.
Dior’s only made 8,500 pairs of these sneakers, making this a particularly limited release. On top of that, the Air Dior capsule’s release has been delayed by COVID-19, raising the rarity of the sneakers already on the market.
Paul and his brother Logan have made careers out of being controversial. After both growing to notoriety on the now-defunct social media app Vine, they’ve since branched out to film, TV and even boxing. While both have legions of young online fans, both have reputations for flirting – too far – with controversy, relying on that to get attention rather than truly creative ideas.
Most notoriously, Logan posted footage on YouTube of a suicide victim’s corpse during a trip he made to Japan, and Jake was recently (allegedly) filmed looting during the 2020 LA riots (despite having a net worth of over $11 million).
How did Paul get his hands on a pair of these sneakers, then? In a classic luxury fashion marketing move, celebrities and influencers have been drip-fed Air Dior sneakers ahead of the mainstream release in order to build up hype. Either Paul got special access, or he dropped bulk cash on them (or both, most likely) – making this mistreatment of the sneakers even more painful for sneaker fans.
DMARGE spoke exclusively to stock expert and sneakerhead Adrian Monardo, Customer Success Manager at Stake, to explore what this clip reveals about sneaker culture.
“It’s not surprising to see young influencers take part in stunts like this.,” Monardo relates.
“Jake gets a lot of clout and publicity by defacing one of the most exclusive and hyped sneakers out right now.”
While Paul’s nonchalance has got sneakerheads fuming, it’s unlikely to change the demand for the collaboration.
“Given how sought after the shoe is, with resale prices in the 5 digit range, it’s hard to suggest that Jake Paul alone has the power to move the price of the sneaker. Like stocks, the resale price of the sneaker is the equilibrium of supply and demand for it. Sure, Jake is bringing more attention to the shoe but it’d be hard to suggest that he’s bringing enough attention to truly affect demand. More eyes on the shoe certainly can’t diminish its value though.”
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The Air Diors have a retail price of $3,000 but as previously mentioned it’s impossible to find a pair retailing right now: the few pairs available on the aftermarket have an insane mark-up. Spending such a huge amount of money on a pair of basketball shoes might seem crazy to some, but Monardo explains that it’s all part and parcel of the sneaker scene.
“Trends heavily influence the entire market, particularly the stock price. Your sneaker collection and the US stock market are both home to some of the world’s most iconic brands and are influenced by global trends and supply and demand. If the trend is popular, it’s likely that brands will continue to mimic the design in an attempt to accelerate overall company worth.”
Normal sneakerheads already struggle to get their hands on limited releases, between the rampant online botting, backdooring for friends and family at retail locations, not to mention the influencers and the wealthy getting sneaky pre-releases. As we mentioned at the start of this piece, Paul desecrating such a hyped pair of shoes has gone down terribly online.
Some other choice comments include:
“Please, take a million and try to buy a brain” – @panchoparra
“@dior at least send the kicks to someone who respects em 🤦🤷♂️” – @kothari96
We couldn’t agree more.
If you’re interested in learning more about how the stock market and sneaker aftermarket are more similar than you think, and how to get the best out of trading on both of them, Adrian Monardo’s sharing more of his insights at this exclusive Stake x Butter event, which you can register for here.