StyleStomping On Yeezy Boosts Is The Weirdest Sneaker Trend On Instagram
Why are sneaker accounts posting pictures of people stepping on other sneakers like Yeezy Boosts and Balenciagas?
Posting a pair of rarified Yeezy Boosts on one’s Instagram is a surefire way to get some likes—but in a weird twist, stomping on them for the ‘Gram might make your pic even more likely to go viral. The concept might seem
stupid silly to those who don’t spend their time embedded in the trenches of the #sneakers hashtag, but over the past few months it’s become increasingly difficult to avoid. [Extremely Ryan Reynolds voice]…But why?
Generally speaking, sneaker Instagram is a corner of the Internet built to optimize likes, but in general it doesn’t care much in the way of carefully cultivated taste. It’s a place full of over-logo’d outfits, awkward poses, and obscured faces—but little in the way of actual style advice. So at the very least there’s an element of trolling involved in the stomping trend—in other words, people are just doing it to get attention. That said, most of these photos look almost identical: a close-up of someone’s sneakers as they stand on top of another pair of sneakers, in most cases Yeezy Boosts. Perhaps, then, there’s an aspect of Yeezy Boost backlash and fatigue involved here, now that Yeezy Boost 350 V2s are seemingly on the market every other week. (Even though getting a pair at retail is still borderline impossible.) Yet the irony of posting a photo stomping on Yeezy Boosts while wearing Balenciaga Speed Trainers or Triple Ss—themselves two of the most hyped-up and oft-Grammed sneakers of 2017—is seemingly lost on those who take (and post) these photos.
Maybe these people are simply showing their allegiance to Demna Gvasalia’s footwear designs over Kanye West’s, fighting a proxy battle on social media between Balenciaga and Yeezy. One post by @balenciagaworldwide, a fan account of the French label, even features the caption “Fuck Yeezys.” Sneakerhead fans are some of the most opinionated and vocal collectors online, but a blanket dismissal of Yeezys via a stomping picture seems like an over-serious declaration of footwear preference. But the Balenciaga vs. Yeezy rule doesn’t always hold true. Multiple stomping pics we came across show someone in a pair of Balenciaga Triple S sneakers stomping out some Balenciaga Speed Trainers, while others depict the new runner style Yeezy Boost 700s is stomping on a pair of 350s. So intra-brand stomping is apparently accepted practice, too. If sneaker Instagram is the Wild West of menswear, then stomping posts are like a saloon where everyone is drunk and armed with a six-shooter. Shots are fired, but who gets hurt and for what reason we have no effing clue.
We reached out to the person who runs the @balenciagamens Instagram account in hopes they knew who and why the trend started, but they too were unaware of the stomping trend’s origins. So ultimately, this trend is like an optical illusion: the more you look at it, the more confounding it becomes. Just don’t be surprised if one of these photos winds up on your Explore page in the coming weeks. And for the record, we don’t recommend posting one of these pics on your own page. Though stomping on Yeezys on Instagram might get you some likes, it’s also, well, extremely dorky.