My First Thoughts on the adidas UltraBOOST X All Terrain

Living in LA has many perks, one of which is having an array of activities to choose from to stay fit and healthy. My preference is hiking because you’re able to get away from the hustle and bustle of life and take in Mother Nature all while exercising and getting in that cardio workout.

I’ve been wanting to wear my UltraBOOSTs on hikes, but they don’t fare well on rough landscapes. After all, they were made for running, so you can imagine my excitement when adidas reached out to me and said they’d be sending over a pair of the newly designed UltraBOOST X All Terrain. Without hesitation, I started planning my next hike.

That following weekend, I ended up weartesting the UltraBOOST X All Terrain at Griffith Park and they performed just as expected. I was looking for two main components – traction and comfort – and they both passed with flying colors. Mind you, the hikes I go on are mainly dirt trails with moderate inclines and declines, meaning I’m not scaling the side of a mountain*. If that’s you, I’m sure you already know these shoes aren’t meant for that (…I hope).

A few key features that adidas implemented to transform the everyday runner into an all terrain shoe:

  • Water-repellant Primeknit upper
  • Higher ankle collar for added coverage and comfort
  • Updated lug tread on outsole enhancing traction

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Naturally, the UltraBOOST X All Terrain made its way into my hiking rotation. They also look pretty fresh casually, so I may need to grab another pair. One for hiking, one to stunt, and I’m set.

Thank you to adidas Running for looking out! #giftedbyadidas

*The shoot location was at the end of the Bee Rock trail. It’s a short hike up, but once you’re at the top, you’re rewarded with breathtaking views. 

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Jumpman 23 Updates Air Jordan 1

We’ve seen a lot of variations of the Jordan 1 including new colorways and the recent use of premium leathers, but we haven’t really seen new tech aside from Flyweave…until now. Jordan Brand dressed the entire upper with Flyknit making it lighter, flexible and breathable, which boils down to a huge increase in comfort – something this iconic silhouette has been lacking.

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If we’re specifically talking about GS pairs (small footer, here), they’ve NEVER been comfortable except for the 2017 Royal 1 which was a step up. Typically, the leather is stiff and the shape is off, but after receiving the Flyknit 1 I immediately noticed two things:

  • How lightweight they felt in-hand
  • The sole mold and ankle height of the high top took on the shape of the men’s Jordan 1

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As soon as I slipped them on, the comfort was there, from the Flyknit upper to the padded insole and leather detailing on the tongue and inner lining. The men’s version includes a zoom air unit in the heel as opposed to a standard air unit and I’m not mad that the GS version doesn’t include this feature. I’m just happy it has the other aforementioned updates and is seriously cozy.

I’ll admit the shape of the sole and ankle height have nothing to do with comfort, but shape is important to me and most sneakers just look better in men’s/women’s pairs versus kids’.

Bottom line: Would I buy another pair if more colorways released? Probably not. I’d be more inclined to buy a Jordan 1 that uses the same updated tooling with better leather on the upper instead of Flyknit. Say, the Shadow Grey 1 that’s dropping in 2018. That’d be an instacop, no question. I guess I’ll just have to wait and see.

Turntable-Inspired Saucony Grid 9000

Two years ago, Saucony linked up with 10 top sneaker influencers who rose to notoriety via social media, and offered each tastemaker a once-in-a-lifetime (shouts to Craig David) opportunity to design their own sneaker collaboration with the Massachusetts-based brand. The creative partnership dubbed the “Originators Only Collection” ultimately came full circle this year in 2017. Drop 1 of the collection released last week on August 11th, with Drop 2 following next week on August 25th.

One of the 10 influencers and a friend James Hesse, who’s been moonlighting as a DJ for roughly 14 years, reached out to me to help shoot his Grid 9000 “Turntable” collab. The inspiration behind his particular theme came from his very first turntable, the Technics 1200.

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“The extra income I made throughout the years from DJing helped kickstart and fund my passion for sneakers. If you work hard and stay motivated, doors that you never thought existed, will open.” 

Drop 2, inclusive of James’ design, will be available next Friday, August 25th on Saucony.com.

 

Kung Fu Kenny at Staples Center in Los Angeles

What an epic night. I was lucky enough to have floor seats at Staples for Kendrick Lamar’s third and final night in LA. The DAMN. show was amazing from start to finish. Without getting into too much detail, here’s a quick breakdown of what happened:

  • D.R.A.M. opened the show and brought up XXXTentacion
  • Travis Scott opened for Kendrick
  • Kendrick brought up special guests SZA and Schoolboy Q
  • Ninjas were involved

I was mainly looking forward to Kendrick, but the energy in the building was crazy making me want to turn up during all performances . If you haven’t seen Kendrick live, you need to check out one of his shows. His last DAMN. tour date is September 2nd in Miami, so you’re not out of luck unless you don’t live near the remaining cities he’s hitting up. Can’t help you there, but you can check out the photos I took at the DAMN. show down below. Always capitalize off of floor seats and point & shoot cameras.

*All DAMN. puns are intentional

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Coral Bleaching Inspires Latest adidas Ultra Boost

adidas and Parley* raise awareness for the global coral bleaching crisis by using it as inspiration for their latest Ultra Boost collaboration. Coral bleaching occurs when algae inside the coral gets expelled, stripping it of its natural color and leaving it completely white, as well as susceptible to disease and death.

Out of sight, out of mind is unfortunately the case when it comes to many crises, including marine life matters, but you can help spread awareness with Parley’s A.I.R. strategy:

Avoid plastic wherever possible
Intercept plastic waste
Redesign the plastic economy

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The Parley Ultra Boost collection is available on adidas.com here.

*Parley is an organization that brings to light how vital the oceans are as an ecosystems and what we can do, collectively, to preserve them. 

Maldives-inspired Ultra Boost With a Purpose

I linked up with Finish Line’s Content Manager and Creative Strategist Brandon Edler to get an early look at the second installment of the Parley adidas Ultra Boost Uncaged. Roughly, 11 plastic bottles were used to make each pair, applying yarn – on the upper – created from reclaimed and recycled ocean waste. More than just a story, the Parley adidas collection serves as a reminder of both the importance and urgency of sustainability, and its effects on the world.

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The collection, which includes the Ultra Boost X, Ultra Boost and Ultra Boost Uncaged, releases tomorrow, May 10, 2017 on adidas.com, Finishline.com and at additional retailers.

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Visiting the Museum of Ice Cream in LA!

Ice Cream: a sweetened frozen food typically eaten as a snack or dessert (or sometimes dinner)

The Museum of Ice Cream, a pop-up exhibition, opened its doors in LA last month and I was lucky enough to check out the interactive space last night. Exhibits consisted of playful ice cream-themed rooms, with many serving edible samples. All of the rooms were super cute, but my favorites were the sprinkle pool room (sadly, the sprinkles weren’t edible and no, I didn’t try) and the pink rotary phone room where Seth Rogen gave me a quick pep talk about ice cream via one of the rotary phones. Albeit he said it wasn’t him speaking…I know it was you, Seth!

There’s no way you could leave here without a smile on your face. Capture the happiness I experienced last night through my photos below. Enjoy!

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Finally, Jordan Brand Brought Out Quality Leather for GS Air Jordan 1 Royals

It happened. Jordan Brand answered our prayers and used quality leather on GS Royal 1s. We’ve been asking for better materials on our Jordans for years and now that it’s a reality, I’m thankful…we’re (GS fam) thankful.

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At first sight, you immediately notice the tumble on the royal-colored leather…something we’re not accustomed to seeing on a pair of Js. You’ve heard of the food phrase, “If it looks good, it tastes good,” right? This is very much the case with the leather. As soon as you feel it, you notice how plush it is and are instantly reminded of what quality defines. Don’t get the wrong idea, it’s no Hermès Bolide bag, but I’m not taking the upgrade for granted.

Jordan Brand, please continue to use good quality leather on GS pairs. It would make myself, as well as so many other women happy. We have faith, don’t let us down!

For an on feet look at the Air Jordan 1 Royal, check out the video below:

More Air with the Nike Air VaporMax

Aside from my shelltoes and Airwalks, I was always a runner girl. Like most, the visible air bubble on the Air Max always caught my eye, and as soon as I was old enough to ask my parents to buy me a pair of $100+ sneakers without getting yelled at for acting crazy, I did.

Fast-forward to present day. The air bubble still intrigues me and the fact that Nike made a silhouette with a fully visible 360 degree air unit sans midsole is jaw-dropping, to say the least. It’s one to be remembered and whether you’re team air or team boost, the Nike Air VaporMax deserves respect.

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Check out some shots I took of the homie Ray P in the VaporMax below and leave a comment with your thoughts on the new air bubble or feel free to reach out on Twitter and/or Instagram.

For a comprehensive assessment on fit, performance, styling + more, peep Ray’s review: www.nicekicks.com/nike-vapormax-review

Last, but not least, Happy Air Max Day! As my gift to you, I’ll just leave this close-up of the VaporMax air bubble here…

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A Brand New Nike Air Max Style for the Ladies – Air Max Jewell

Nike has been dropping dimes lately to celebrate Air Max Month, and the women’s Air Max Jewell is no exception. This new style has really grown on me. Now, I can say with certainty that women who grew up being called tomboys are extremely skeptical when it comes to women’s footwear styles. We often don’t like the silhouettes or colorways that are offered, and most of the time just want the men’s version in our size, which is a chore in itself since small sizes are limited or unavailable. This isn’t the case with the Air Max Jewell.

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Finally, a breath of fresh air for us ladies.

Not only is the silhouette minimal and clean with design features inspired by the Air Max Plus, the colorways are very neutral and earthy. Something I really dig. They retail at $100 (mesh version) and for an everyday casual shoe, you can’t go wrong. I get into more detail about the Air Max Jewell in my review video. Check it out here.

A HUGE Thank You to Finish Line for sending these my way. The Air Max Jewell just found its way into my Air Max rotation.

Grab a pair over at Finish Line here or at Nike here.