Buying sneakers isn't fun anymore. Well, at least buying the in demand drops isn't: doing so means facing off against tireless bots, quick-on-the-trigger teens with their parents' credit cards, people willing to wait in tedious lines and intentional scarcity meant to drive up resale value. Frankly, the footwear industry is in a weird place.
And, with the launch of KYX, a new subscription service aimed at offering high-priced sneakers for a monthly fee, it just got even stranger.
Now, instead of shelling out $300+ for a pair of Jordans or speciality Adidas then ruining them upon first wear and rendering them unsellable, KYX lets you pay anywhere from $49 to $599 a month for access to nearly 300 different sneakers in most sizes. The lowest tier (Level 1) gives you access to one sneaker worth up to $300 at a time; Level 2 ($129/month) means two pairs at a time, unlimited swaps in a month and a selection of 200+ kicks valued at up to $650 a pair; Levels 3 and 4 do much the same, offering further access to higher priced items with more flexibility to swap, return, etc.
In Level 1, there are hard-to-get Yeezy 500s and Jordan 1s, a few higher profile collabs from camps like CLOT, Sean Wotherspoon and Bodega, and a long list of easier-t0-find footwear — Nike's Space Hippie line, a few Air Max iterations and the ilk.
Upon rental and return, a 10-step cleaning process rids the shoe of signs of previous wear: odors or the remnants of the previous wearer's rainy day run. The company covers all type wear and tear, too, meaning you shouldn't worry about actually wearing the pairs you rent. Unlike when you don an expensive pair on your own dime, there's not that immediate remorse if you crease, scuff or spill. You won't be charged if you incur any unintentional damage. Plus, if you liked the pair you wore in a given month, you can opt into keeping it for another — or buying it outright.