Ranking the Top 5 Air Jordan 1 Colorways
The Air Jordan 1 has been one of the most popular sneakers around for 35 years now, and has played a big part in shaping sneaker culture as we know it today. Since the silhouette released, another 34 signature Air Jordan’s have touched our feet, Jordan Brand has become a brand in its own right, and the world has only gotten crazier for kicks. But some Jordan colorways are just that bit more memorable than the others, so without further ado, here are our picks for the top 5 Air Jordan 1 colorways.
5. Air Jordan 1 Retro Travis Scott
Kicking off this list is the highly coveted collaboration between Houston rapper Travis Scott and Jordan brand, that turned heads with its reversed swoosh. Releasing in 2019 after the success of Scott’s album, Astroworld, the shoe featured a brown, black and white color scheme, with his signature Cactus Jack branding on both the tongue and heel. Since the shoe’s release, the model has been worn by the likes of Lebron James, Chris Paul and Kyrie Irving, further adding to the shoe’s iconic status.
4. Air Jordan 1 Retro Off-White University Blue
The 4th shoe on this list is another recent release, which hit shelves in 2018. The Air Jordan 1 Retro Off- White University Blue was created by renowned designer and founder of Off-White, Virgil Abloh, who wanted to put sneakers' flaws on display. By revealing stitching, and leaving parts unfinished, the model possesses a unique look that captivated sneakerheads all around the globe. Now it should be said the Chicago version of the Air Jordan 1 Off-White is worth 2x times as much (and was part of the original “The Ten” collection released in 2017), however we are choosing to focus on this colorway- as the Chicago theme may make an appearance further down this list.
3. Air Jordan 1 Retro Royal
Photo: Fice Gallery
The first shoe on this list to have debuted back in 1985, the Air Jordan 1 Retro Royal is a fan favorite for many sneakerheads. This is because unlike many of the classic Air Jordan 1’s, the sneaker doesn’t come in Chicago Bulls' colors. Instead, the shoe released in black and blue, with a white midsole and blue outsole, and its simple color blocking has prevented the sneaker from ever going out of style. Since then, the shoe has been retro-ed on multiple occasions, most recently in 2017, and now fetches prices on the resale market of up to $500.
2. Air Jordan 1 Retro Bred
Coming in second is the Air Jordan 1 Retro Bred. The shoe gets its nickname Bred (black and red mashed together) due to the shoe’s black and red upper, which is paired with a white midsole and red outsole. As well as being one of the first colorways to release to the general public, the shoe also had the most memorable ad campaign. This was because when Michael Jordan wore the black and red colorway of the Air Jordan’s predecessor, the Nike Air Ship, he was confronted by the NBA, as the shoe didn’t fit the league’s uniform rules. Instead of changing the shoes, Nike offered to pay Michael Jordan’s fines, and then released the Air Jordan 1 Bred with an ad campaign boasting about its ban from the hardcourt. The campaign proved very successful and helped make the shoe into the iconic model we know of today.
1. Air Jordan 1 Retro Chicago
Of course, however, the top Air Jordan 1 colorway has to be the Chicago. Based on Michael Jordan’s Bulls team, the shoe comes in a white base, with red detailing and a black swoosh and heel. There could be an argument made for the Bred’s having a bit more history, but the fact of the matter is that whenever the Air Jordan 1 is depicted, the Chicago model is almost always the colorway of choice. The more interesting color blocking allows the sneaker to show its layers and details much better than the two-tone Bred, but also a game-worn pair of signed Chicago’s sold for $560,000 in 2020. That must count for something!
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Do you agree with our picks? What are your favorite colorways? Comment below!