WORDS BY STEPHEN YU
Space barnacles, Yeezy crocs or grilled cheese: whatever you call and whether you love them or hate them, the Yeezy Foam RNNRs, also known as the Foam Runners, have changed footwear –– forever.
First teased by his daughter North West in summer 2019, before being unveiled by Kanye and legendary Yeezy designer Steven Smith (creator of the Reebok Instapump Fury and former designer for New Balance and Nike), the Yeezy Foam RNNR manages to marry sustainable materials, futuristic aesthetics and cutting-edge production techniques all in one shoe. Plus, they’re insanely comfortable too.
Debuting Yeezy’s ‘seed to sole’ manufacturing ethos, the shoes are made from an eco-foam that blends algae (harvested from Ye’s very own hydroponic farm at his Wyoming HQ) with a highly-cushioned EVA. Aesthetically, the shoe falls somewhere between a sneaker and a Croc with its unique aerodynamic shape, and features holes and ridges taken from the Yeezy 700. And finally, Yeezy joins New Balance as one of the few footwear brands to make their own product in the USA with the innovative one-piece injection moulding of the shoe taking place in Atlanta.
But most importantly, the Foam RNNR (as Kanye spoke about on Joe Rogan’s podcast) is all about wearability. The ergonomic tongueless slip-on design and foam construction mean this shoe's comfort levels rival that of adidas’ very own Boost, so we can understand why Ye is rarely seen without his. With many sneakerheads saying the Foam Runner releases have given them ‘early Tinker Hatfield Jordan release’ type feels, this really does feel like a turning point for sneaker culture. A shoe that’s sustainable, covetable, technological and proudly made in the USA, while being Yeezy’s cheapest ever product (it first retailed at just $75).
With Kanye aiming to get their price down to just $20, and a potential GAP release alongside other colourways incoming, you better get your Yeezy Foam RNNR sizing sorted before it’s too late. Here are four fans of Yeezy’s most polarising shoe to date to clue you up on what size to buy your Foam Runners in.
The Ultimate Yeezy Foam RNNR Sizing and Fit Guide
I was intrigued by the Yeezy Foam RNNR ever since images of them surfaced on Instagram about a year ago. My initial reaction to them wasn’t completely positive, I was more curious about them because they were unlike any of the previous Yeezy footwear models. The Foam Runner is one of the most polarising pieces of footwear to release this year, but I absolutely love them now that I’ve worn mine for a few months. Besides being super comfortable, I love the seamless minimal design and I find it refreshing to add something different to my sneaker rotation.
Having a strong sock game is key when it comes to styling the Yeezy Foam Runners. I like to pair them with earth-toned socks that compliment the Ararat colourway.
This tonal outfit that I put together is all about being comfy and cosy. I’m wearing a Les Tien hoodie and shorts as well as a Jacquemus bucket hat that are all in that same colour family. I also think that the Foam Runners look particularly good with wide-leg pants as they balance out the dome-like shape of the sneaker.
Sizing & Fit:
At the moment, the Yeezy Foam Runners don’t come in half sizes which can make it a bit tricky to find the perfect fit. While I usually go half a size up for most Yeezy silhouettes (e.g. the Yeezy 350 V2 or 700), I’ve gone true to size with the Foam Runners and they fit well. However, if you’re in-between sizes and you have wide feet I’d recommend sizing up.
The comfort of the Foam Runner is unlike any other sneaker that I own. Being entirely constructed from EVA foam, it’s lightweight, soft and cloud-like on foot. It’s my current go-to because it’s so easy to slip-on and adds a very effortless appearance to any outfit.
The EVA foam material and seamless construction makes cleaning and maintaining the Yeezy Foam Runners super easy. I usually use wet wipes for a quick clean but you can definitely wash them under running water if necessary.
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The unique design of the Yeezy Foam RNNR is what really drew me to them. How the perforations of all holes have this symmetrical flow from the toe to heel. You can honestly say that there’s nothing else like these in the market which makes them different and refreshing in the sneaker industry. They’re also environmentally friendly as the Foam uses algae from ponds.
The way I like to style the Yeezy Foam RNNRs is cosy and comfortable. No matter what fit you put together, the Foam Runners are going to be the centre of attention. In my fit I decided to wear these with CPFM socks, Stüssy shorts and a Kanye West ‘Jesus Is King’ T-shirt.
Sizing & Fit:
Sizing wise with the Yeezy Foam Runners I took a half size up. For me, Yeezys tend to run a little small and this pair is no different. If you already own a pair of Yeezys I recommend sticking with that size and you should be good.
The Yeezy Foam Runners are the most comfortable clogs/sneakers I’ve ever worn. Your feet just sink right into that algae foam material, giving you this soft squeezy feeling without losing support or durability. The only sneaker technology that’s remotely comparable is adidas Boost but even then, I’d still say that the Foam Runners are more comfortable.
Very little maintenance is needed for the Yeezy Foam Runners, I take care of mine using just water and a rag. You can literally hose them down with water and they’ll clean right up, dirt and grime just comes right off them.
Sneaker customiser based in Los Angeles, United States of America
What drew me to the Yeezy Foam RNNR was the fact that it’s the most unique looking Croc/shoe I’d ever seen. Also, the fact that they’re the first Yeezy product made in the USA made them even more special. I love the Yeezy Foams due to their design, and comfort while wearing them around the house or even outdoors.
The way I style the Yeezy Foam Runners is pretty simple –– I don’t think much about it, I tend to aim for comfortable/cosy styles of fit like sweatpants, crewneck sweaters, or even house robes while wearing them. You can also switch it up with a more classy look and wear them with a pair of denims and a regular T-shirt. The simpler the outfit the better for the Yeezy Foams, you want them to be the highlight of the entire fit.
Sizing & Fit:
My personal opinion on how the Yeezy Foam Runners fit is that they’re true to size, so stick to your normal size. But for those people who are in-between sizes like myself, take a half size down on the Yeezy Foams since they don’t come in half sizes (I’m a US9.5 in Yeezy but took a size US9 in these). They have some space in the toe box area, it’s enough so they don’t feel as snug even when wearing them with socks.
The YEEZY foam runners are definitely a comfortable shoe. They’re made out of algae and this rubbery material that compresses lightly under the foot, it literally feels like you’re walking on foam.
Compared to other brands of sneakers or slides, I’d put the Yeezy Foam Runner at the top as far as comfort goes. They can be worn all day if you desire. I’ve never experienced foot pain or blisters while wearing the Foam Runner, and I wear mine all the time and have even spent whole days wearing them.
The Yeezy Foam RNNR is very easy to clean, just wipe off any dirt that may get on the shoe. I take good care of my Yeezy Foam Runners, I clean them after each wear with microfiber cloths and a bowl of hot water and regular shoe cleaner. You can get cleaners from brands like Angelus, Jason Markk or Crep Protect.
Also adding a little bit of acetone to your bowl of hot water, or even applying it to a cloth and wiping the Foams with it will help take a lot of deep stains off. I always like to take my Foam Runners back to their original fresh out the box look. But if you want a simpler route, just use a microfiber cloth and hot water to scrub or wipe the areas where it’s needed.
Nothing else really exists out there at the moment like the Yeezy Foam RNNR, it’s totally unique. The futuristic, almost alien-like design drew me to the sneaker and I can’t wait to see other colourways come out.
I get the best look with the Yeezy Foam Runners wearing track pants or shorts. Anything that’s a relaxed fit looks great, track pants from adidas will do but if you wanted to go more high-end then Off-White is a good option. In terms of colours, neutral tones seem to work best.
Sizing & Fit:
For the Yeezy Foam Runner, I went true to size and they fit me perfectly –– though I must admit it was a bit of a gamble as I’d heard stories of others having issues. The sizing is definitely different from something like a Yeezy 350 so be a bit careful before ordering.
The Yeezy Foam Runners are light, well-ventilated and extremely comfortable. It’s hard to describe exactly what they’re like as there's nothing like them to compare them with. I’d describe the comfort as in-between a sandal, a sneaker and a pair of Crocs. Top tip – they look great without socks but they can rub a little on the heel so just make sure you don’t have far to walk.
Now that the summer months are gone in the UK I’ve already boxed my Yeezy Foam Runners up until next year, or a future hot weather holiday. They’re made from a light-coloured foam so they will get stained if you wear them out, so keep that in mind.