adidas Superstar

    Filter on

    • Sort

    • Gender

    • Brand (adidas)

    • Line

    • Collection (Superstar)

    • Model

    • Edition

    • Material

    • Style

    • Sport

    • Collaboration

    • Size

    • Colour

    • Price

    adidas Superstar


    There are not many sports that have such a close connection to music as basketball has to hip-hop. With the sport and the music genre both coming from the same working-class neighbourhoods in the big cities of the US, they were always destined to be linked together. And it was this deep relationship between basketball and hip-hop that brought us the adidas Superstar. The launch of this classic as sports performance footwear happened back in 1969. Soon, the Superstar was the most worn footwear of all basketball shoes in the NBA, with basketball legends such as Kareem Abdul Jabbar wearing them. But it wouldn’t take long for the Superstar to hit the streets too, and for these new sneakers to become a staple in men’s and women’s fashion. Due to its revolutionary design, the adidas classic captivated kids’ minds everywhere. For hip-hop artists, who were often basketball fans, the adidas Originals Superstar didn’t go unnoticed. As the original model was used less as performance footwear going into the eighties, rappers and RnB singers kept wearing the trainer. In 1986 hip-hop icons Run DMC dedicated a song to the shoe. And that’s arguably when the adidas Superstar became the most famous footwear in history. On the streets, the adidas Classic Superstar evolved into a status symbol. Owning a pair would instantly turn you into the coolest kid in grade school. But it’s influence reached further than just the streets and the boys and girls on the basketball courts. Breakdancers wore these trainers too, even skateboarding youth appreciated the fit, in the UK and beyond. The model even came out for children and toddlers in baby and infant sizes, with parents hoping for a discount price when the junior model went on sale. The Superstar is timeless, always keeping the same vintage features alive with a look which is simple but never cheap. This may be the reason why this model is the Superstar among sneakers. In the early seventies, the design of the shoe was a huge step forward in basketball footwear. Before it came onto the scene, all performance shoes in this sport came as high-top models. Superstar proved that low-top could work just fine. In fact, the low cut leather gave athletes more freedom of movement. Additionally, the material around the tip of the foot, known as shell toes, gave great protection. Adidas brought out a range of versions using this recognisable toe cap design, such as the black and white Gold Toe and an entire collection called the Supershell. Over the years, almost nothing has changed in the basic design, though one notable variation was when adidas replaced the leather with mesh and added Boost technology foam to the midsole, showing the Superstar’s ability to adjust to the 21st century while still showing off its classic style. This can be best seen in the Superstar 80s and the Slip On.

    This same up to date yet retro style can be enjoyed in the model’s different colorways. Everybody knows the legendary colour combination of the white base and three black stripes. Over time, the two colours were switched and later on took over the entire shoe, resulting in the popular block white All White and the block black All Black editions. And then the colours arrived with models in blue, red and yellow, the All Blue, the All Red and All Yellow. All of these models are part of the monochrome line, adidas Supercolor. In this collection, the shoe came out in every colour of the rainbow, from navy to burgundy, maroon and olive, from beige to khaki and a nude brown tan. It didn’t stop here. Green, pink and gold made an appearance in the All Green, All Pink and All Gold, with gold also used in the shiny Metallic Gold. As if this great variety of colours wasn’t enough, more and more editions were added. Styles as different as the Neon and the grey Moonrock hit the streets. In the Copper and the Rose Gold, every stripe in the logo was bronze. Heads were turned when the Oddity Pack came in with its collection of bright and vibrant colours across the upper. Pastel colours were also brought into the palette, with shades such as cream and soft mint, or the orange tones of the Peach. The Paint Splatter looks like the multicolour palette has been dropped over the original adidas Superstar. Then there’s the more abstract Pride, where round coloured circles are used instead of wild splashes. And all of these interesting patterns bring us on to some of the more remarkable prints that were featured on the sneaker. Adidas has always loved Animal print, and the Superstar is no exception, with models coming out using Zebra, Leopard and Snakeskin print. But the German brand also made reference to the natural world with both the Floral and the Flower, and in the earthy, camouflage tones of the Camo. On the other end of the spectrum we find the iridescent which has shiny 3-stripes with colour fades, similar to the Holographic and Hologram. Another great example is the Xeno, which has reflective scales. If you really want to go all out, then there’s the Sparkle with its daring silver glitter design.

    The Superstar is one of the adidas models that has changed the least in terms of overall design. In fact, the Original (OG), the modern vintage version from the 1969 model, is still one of the most popular, with very little difference from the original. At the same time, the line has seen some expansion. The Superstar 2, the successor of the original which is also known as the II, was given more padding in the tongue and at the heel, just like the adidas Superstar Foundation. And although the Superstar was famous for being a low-top basketball shoe, with the Superstar UP, the UP Wedge and the Pro Model, it was also released as a high top. As popularity increased, adidas launched models targeting specific demographics. For example, the Superstar W and the Bold, with its platform outsole, were aimed at women. The same was done for kids with the Scarlet and 360 model. Children with junior sizes were provided with the Superstar J and even babies could be seen wearing the Crib edition. Still, even with these different models, big design changes weren’t immediately visible. That changed with the Weave, a model where neither leather nor mesh was used. Instead, adidas went for a woven upper. The Quilt refused the traditional leather and mesh in favour of padded nylon upper with a checkered pattern. The adidas Superstar Velcro had velcro straps in the place of laces. The outsole had some changes too. With the Superstar Vulc ADV, the classic foam was switched for a vulcanised rubber outsole, giving the shoe a cut edge, which made it perfect for skateboarding. One thing which stayed constant throughout almost all the models was the toe cap. Even the Superstar ADV snowboard boots kept this recognisable toe cap design. One notable exception is the Superstar slides, and the 3G Slide is the padded edition where no toe cap is to be seen.

    Given its rich history, it will come as no surprise that plenty of artists, brands and athletes have been linked to the adidas Originals Superstar. You can even custom design your own pair, and personalise your sneakers. It all started with Run DMC endorsing the model in the 80s, and many celebrities and brands would follow, resulting in a long list of limited edition models. In 2019, there was a collaboration with legendary Italian fashion brand Prada. American fashion designer Jeremy Scott also designed his own and gave the Superstar some wings. Then there was that really impressive collection that music artist Rita Ora made. And remember the Supercolor collection we mentioned above? That was the work of music producer Pharrell Williams. Other notable designs came from the mind of multi-talented artist and former pro skateboarder, Blondey McCoy. And this wasn’t the only link with skateboarding. As part of the ‘Respect Your Roots’ collection skateboarding pioneers Kareem Campbell and Drake Jones were honoured, turning the Superstar into skate shoes. And the connection with sports goes on. The adidas Superstar, being a basketball shoe by nature, has always stayed particularly close to this sport. This can be seen in the East River Rivalry Pack, celebrating the rivalry between the basketball franchises of the New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets, and in the Derrick Rose signature edition. In football, German legend Franz Beckenbauer got honoured as ‘The Kaiser of New York’, for his time playing with the New York Cosmos. But the Superstar’s influence stretches well outside of sports too. It honoured Jamaica and Rastafari culture with the Rasta Hemp, and has celebrated famous movies like Star Wars, in addition to the remarkable diversity of branded submodels that were released for the sneakers 35th Anniversary.

    Superstar 80s

    The breakthrough moment for the Superstar was in the eighties when the shoes stepped from the basketball court out onto the streets. Thanks to the hip-hop group Run DMC, who released a song called ‘My Adidas’, the sneaker became famous the world over. So famous in fact that a special model named after the decade was brought in, the adidas Superstar 80s. The goal was to honour the original version with a model that had a vintage look, but the Superstar 80s was much more than that. With the classic black and white design of the adidas originals Superstar 80s, a lot of variation in material and colour was brought in throughout the years. The leather was replaced by primeknit and suede. In the Cork, the cap protecting the front of the shoe became a cork toe. A similar change was made with the Metallic Silver, giving the front a metal toe cap. Vibrant colours like Blush Pink were added to the palette. But the original black and white stayed as well, which worked well when men and women in the 21st century started getting interested in vintage sneakers from the 80s and 90s. The Superstar 80s Clean lost the three stripes and got a ‘clean’ upper, giving the shoe a classy look. Adidas designers also restyled the sneaker with a stretched out tongue, under the name the Remastered. This was one of several special and limited edition models that were made. In this same limited series you have the 80s Undefeated X Bape, a collaboration between Undefeated, a premium sneaker store from California, and the Japanese clothing brand BAPE. Another great collaboration was set up with Japanese designer Nigo, resulting in the launch of the palm tree print Nigo Bearfoot. And, an eye-catching special edition was the 80s DLX, a deluxe version of the original, but with gum outsole and toe cap. A lot of these special models, including the 80s Metropolis, were sold at Consortium stores. Speaking of the metropolis, the 80s had a whole collection of city-related sneakers known as the City Pack. This pack honoured big cities with model names such as Paris, Berlin, and the Tokyo, which looks particularly good in purple. On top of this, there were models in the City Pack for New York, with the full black NYC, London, and of course the yellow Shanghai. This international range just gives us some idea of how influential the Superstar has become on a global scale.

    Superstar Slip On

    You’d never recognise the adidas Superstar Slip On as a Superstar model if it weren’t for the rubber toe cap at the tip of the foot. Very rarely are shoes characterised by one specific feature in this way. And adidas dared to change almost everything except for this toe cap in the groundbreaking design of the Superstar Slip On. This new model was targeted at women. The first thing to notice is that the slip-on does not have laces. Two elastic straps cross over the instep instead. Around the back heel there’s another band which carries the adidas logo. Under the base of the shoe there’s a neoprene fabric cut into the shape of a sock. It wraps comfortably around the foot, providing a snug fit. So hugely different from the original model. And still, if you look at the toe, the rubber cap that protects the front, the Slip On is easily recognised as a Superstar. The trainer became very popular over time and had some cool variations as well. It was coloured in white, black and bright pink. Small changes were made to the upper: the two elastic bands that hug the top-part of the sneaker, were given three stripes and the band around the ankle got decorated with different patterns. The base of the shoe was decked out in mesh. On top of this, a whole new submodel was created, called the Bw35 Slip On. This submodel had a very clean design, with only one band over the length of the instep and a suede fabric forming the base. It shows that the future of the adidas Superstar looks exciting and promising.

    Rank the Adidas Superstar

    SPORTSHOWROOM uses cookies. About our cookie policy.


    Choose your country



    Asia Pacific


    Middle East