We’re living in the era of high-quality sneakers. Fast company recently reported that the global sneaker market was valued at approximately $79 billion in 2020, and said that it is predicted to reach $120 billion by 2026.

They called high-quality sneakers the cultural symbol of our times and it’s easy to agree. Sneakers are so coveted that people snap them up for re-sale and they can fetch significantly more on auction websites than they sell for new. 

In this article, we’ll tell you about some of the hottest brands to check out for investment-level kicks.

No 1. New Balance. Function Meets Fashion

New Balance might not be the brand you expected it to be. The sportswear associations are starting to slip and New Balance is turning heads. 

Shaking off their associations with high school gym class and affordable running shoes, New Balance is becoming a very desirable, luxury brand. By blending function, performance, and wearability with innovative design, this sporty staple brand is beginning to compete with big fashion houses. 

Beefy collaborations with fashion designers like Todd Snyder, Ronnie Flegg, and sneakerhead magazine SneakerFreaker have put New Balance sneakers on the high fashion, sneaker desirability map. Check it out!

No 2. Balenciaga. Life-Changing High-Quality Sneakers

Our next pick is fashion-house turned desirable sneaker maker, Balenciaga. When it comes to luxury sneakers it’s hard to beat Balenciaga for wearability and luxury style. 

This high-end Spanish brand has become extraordinarily popular due to their Speed Sock sneaker which is easy to slip on and off and looks great paired with both casual and more refined ensembles.

They have also had a lot of sneaker press for their Track.2 sneaker which has a traditional profile and come in a range of appealing color options. Their Triple S Clear Sole sneakers are also a popular choice! 

Fashion experts are saying their newfound fame and success in the sneaker world all comes down to one thing. The former founder of Vetements Demna Gvasalia joined Balenciaga in 2015 as Head of Design and switched the brand up a gear. They haven’t looked back since.

No 3. Gucci. High-Quality Leather Sneakers

There was a time at which teenage girls were writing rap songs about Gucci slides. Do you remember? 

Anyway, the slides have taken a back seat and Gucci’s leather sneakers are the absolute height of style right now due to their incredible range. There is something for everyone. If you like a loud and proud logo they have you covered. Prefer something more discrete? You’ll love some of their latest releases.

Gucci has everything from functional hiking and sports-inspired styles to laid-back, flat casual looks. Their instantly recognizable brand colorways feature but there are also some less in-your-face options that whisper Gucci instead of shouting it. 

The highlight of their sneaker range though has to be their Off The Grid selection which is sustainable fashion and also beautifully stylish. 

They claim all their materials for Off The Grid products are sustainably sourced or recycled and they’re made with reducing the environmental impact of the shoes, firmly in mind. 

No 4. Dolce and Gabbana. High-Quality Fashion Sneakers

Dolce and Gabbana are currently headed by Stefano Gabbana, the original co-founder of the business. He’s got into some trouble by saying controversial things, so you might not be his biggest fan, but it’s hard not to love the sneakers this brand has been releasing.

Their eye-catching shoes are decorated with regal embellishments. They have some sleek little black Portofinos too but the amazing thing about their sneaker range is how bold and colorful they are. 

There are some structured sneakers, jewel-encrusted high tops, mixed material space sneakers, and more. Chunky rubber soles lend everyone, male or female a little more height regardless of whether they need it or want it. 

No 5. Fendi. High-Quality Casual Sneakers

While D&G (above) has been making really exciting shoes, Fendi has been making sneakers that keep you calm. 

They’re going for nudes, muted browns, warm yellows, and khaki with their colorways and not trying to shout as loud as some of the other fashion brands on this list. 

They’re recognizably Fendi sneakers thanks to the iconic Fendi motif and they have a ton of styles to choose from. If you want mature, understated, and classy sneakers these kicks are definitely in that category. 

No 6. Valentino. The Best High-Quality Sneakers

One of Italy’s best-known and most celebrated fashion houses Valentino is here to make you feel artsy with their crochet-knit styles and metallic mirror finish designs. Their One Stud low-top style sneakers are classic, sporty, and almost retro. 

We love their mid-top sneakers in mirror finish gold. Why? They would look great paired with a formal suit for a wedding or red carpet.

Their padded nylon Gumboy sneakers elevate your style literally and figuratively with a little more wedge and height in the heel. The Gumboys remind us of 90’s puffer jackets and ski trips but have soft urban edginess too.

High-Quality Sneakers Brands

That concludes our list of the best high-quality sneakers that are hitting the stores and the streets right now.

New Balance is emerging as an exciting luxury sneaker brand because of their excellent collaborations with creative designers and a lot of traditional fashion houses are making extremely covetable (and resell-able) shoes.

We hope you enjoyed learning all about our top six picks for the best sneaker brands. Keep exploring our blogs for more exciting articles about fashion and a range of other topics.