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These Japanese Exclusive Nike Sneakers Are Worth a Trip to Tokyo

Nike’s Cortez sneaker is a classic silhouette that’s lasted, largely unchanged, since the ’70s.


Nike’s Cortez sneaker is getting a Japan-exclusive glow up, courtesy of the streetwear purveyors at Billy’s Tokyo.

The classic silhouette, designed by Nike co-founder Bill Bowerman himself, has been a perennial favorite around since its debut in the early ’70s. What began as the most ubiquitous track and field sneaker of its time (Bowerman was an Olympic-level coach) has (with the help of a Kendrick Lamar collab or two) become a streetwear staple. Sneaker News reports that the Billy’s Tokyo take on the shoe is a premium, under-branded one — built out with a black leather upper instead of the traditional nylon and even going as far as removing the Nike swoosh from the outside of the shoe (the swoosh’s outline can still be seen on the interior).

The Japanese domestic model will be available only in Japan on August 31. It’ll retail at ¥10,800, or just under $100. If you want a pair, we’d book a ticket now.

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