Will the Yeezy Pod become the new slides for athletes?

Despite being priced at $20, the first piece of independent footwear released by the Yeezy brand has received a polarizing response.

Marni - Front Row - Milan Fashion Week - Womenswear Fall/Winter 2024-2025
Marni - Front Row - Milan Fashion Week - Womenswear Fall/Winter 2024-2025 / Arnold Jerocki/GettyImages

Despite their simplicity, the Yeezy Pod has taken TikTok and social media by storm. They are the first official shoes released by Ye, the artist formerly known as Kanye West, following his separation from Adidas. Now an independent brand owner, many were eager to see what new ideas he would bring to footwear, or if he would simply rehash the looks of previous models.

Ye would take the fresh route by beginning to be spotted initially in what fans believed to be socks or just barefoot outdoors, but there seemed to be a bigger vision ahead. As time went on, it was revealed that the sleek, sock-like model was a full-fledged shoe consisting of a sock knit upper and two separate soles forming the bottom of the shoe. Not only was it a very simple design containing no logos, no laces, and ultimately a very convenient model, but the main selling factor was that they essentially folded into a small pod-like structure, making them easy to travel with and able to fit in a pocket.

The Yeezy Pods handy travel feature made them an extremely appealing to athletes and other groups.

The shoes, initially selling at a price point of $200 when released, were met with mixed reviews as fans expressed concerns with the high cost compared to product quality. Many were hesitant to purchase the Pods, aside from select influencers and those buying for review purposes. However, this changed on Christmas Day when NBA viewership surged, and Boston Celtics star Jaylen Brown was spotted wearing an exclusive one-of-one green Yeezy Pods colorway before a game. Fans took note of the forward, who had previously endorsed the Yeezy brand under Adidas, sported them in a pregame fashion similar to how some might wear slides before getting fully dressed for a game.

During Super Bowl 2024, a commercial would air during the big game showcasing Ye and his announcement of a new line of clothing to be released on the Yeezy website, including the Yeezy Pods, but this time there was a twist. Everything on the site had been discounted to only $20, a statement Ye had been spreading for years while contracted with Adidas and GAP about wanting to make his apparel affordable for everyone.

The site was met with a surge of orders making a total of $19 million with 266,000 sales of the Yeezy Pods. As fans wait patiently, orders have begun to finally ship out and arrive at doorsteps. It is only a matter of time until the Pods hit the hardwood floors and gym bags before being swapped out for basketball sneakers like the recently released Nike Book 1 and are slipped back on after for a comfortable and easy-to-travel experience much like the slide has dominated for years.

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