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Clear Influence: How the Nike Air 180 Paved the Way for the Brand’s Future

It’s once again coming up to Air Max Day, Nike’s celebration of all things Air, and the main event is their all-new Air Max 270, the first Air Max style to be built as a lifestyle sneaker from the ground up. In preparation for the big day, Nike is bringing back one of the retro styles that served as a major influence for the brand’s current line-up: the Air 180.

An innovative running shoe from 1991, the Air 180 distinguished itself from its Air Max brethren with a unique deployment of the Max Air bubble: instead of just being part of the midsole, the clear air bag extended to the outsole, giving the shoe an eye-catching focal point and providing runners with their first taste of running purely on air. This was the first step on the long road to where Nike is today, with the revolutionary Vapormax sole finally providing the Nike design team’s holy grail of an all-Air sole unit.

Influential heritage aside, the Air 180 itself has long been a favourite of sneaker collectors for its unique look, particularly in this OG ‘Ultramarine’ colourway that pairs white mesh and Sail nubuck overlays with hits of bold blue and Solar Red that bring to mind the iconic OG Infra Red makeup from the Air Max 90, while that clear Max Air section to the heel proves just as head-turning now as it was back in 1991. As with all retro releases of this nature, numbers are limited, so don’t miss your chance to add this influential classic to your rotation.

The Nike Air 180 OG in Ultramarine / Sail / Solar Red is launching 2nd of February from Aphrodite Clothing.

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