If you’re looking to bring a bit of magic to your loved ones this Christmas, you might be looking at buying them a new pair of sneakers for their collection, or a pair you know they’ve been after for a while — but where to start? 

Know Their Size

Seems like an obvious one, but the last thing you want to happen on Christmas morning is to find out you’ve accidentally bought their favourite sneakers three sizes too big or small. 

If you’re not 100%, a surefire way of checking would be to subtly try and find a pair you know they wear regularly and check the size on them, or ask someone close to them to do this for you if you’re not able to. This way you can be sure you’re not making a guess-timation of their size, which never goes well. 

If you’re unsure whether different brands sizes will be accurate to the pair you’ve checked, a good method is to look at the Japanese shoe sizing. This is measured in centimetres, not in the standard 6-12 numerical sizes that you might be used to. Using the Japanese sizing will give you an accurate actual measurement, as a size 9 in Nike can sometimes differ to a size 9 in adidas, but the actual cm lengths etc will be consistent. You’ll usually find the whole sizing chart on the tongue of or inside the shoe, that’s where you’ll find the conversions of UK, EU, US and Japanese sizing.

Understand Their Style

Do they wear a lot of clear branding? Does their style lean more casual or dressed up? Are they more often wearing Nike or New Balance

Asking yourself some questions about the style of the person you’re buying for is key. Try to think of times that you’ve seen them going out of the house to meet friends or go to events — this is usually a time where they’re more likely to dial up their dress sense and wear something they feel good in. 

If you can, ask friends and family to describe their style and see if there’s any consistent brands or aesthetics that get mentioned, and if you’re really unsure check if they have online mood boards like a public Pinterest account that will give you some insight into what they’re saving and taking inspiration from. 

Brand Preferences 

Some people are stripes over swoosh till the end. Sneakers are a particular category of clothing in which people become very loyal to their brands. Knowing whether the person you’re buying a gift for has particular preferences when it comes to not only their brand but also the silhouette’s they stick to is really key. If you know they like to wear Air Jordans, find out whether it’s the whole line, or a specific model that they like, same goes for New Balance models, any of Nike’s long running styles like the Air Max.

General Release or Limited Edition? 

This one is more of a choice for the gift buyer — do you want to get them something that is more commonly available, classic and timeless or something unique, more difficult to get hold of and memorable? 

This is another case of taking a look at the person’s style, and existing collection. If you’re able to see nothing but collaborative styles and more limited releases, then perhaps they put more value in those styles and would appreciate something that is harder to come by. If, however, their sneaker collection consists mainly of the stone-cold classics like a pair of Air Force 1s, some Air Jordan 4s and a few Dunks here and there, maybe padding out that collection with some refreshes of old favourites is the way to go. 

Read Reviews

You can only trust your gut so far, jumping online and reading up some reviews of the styles you’re considering buying for them is always a safe option. You’ll get good insight into the durability, sizing and overall quality of the shoes from those who’ve already been wearing them. If all else fails, reviews are your friend in this instance. 

Whether you’re going for a classic pair or seeking out something more tricky to find, we’ll have something on site that can help you bring that magic of the perfect gift to your loved ones this Christmas.