If you’ve got a shoe freak in your life—you know what’s up: Collecting sneakers isn’t just a hobby, it’s a lifestyle. So if you happen to be looking for gifts for sneakerheads—and your budget isn’t a bajillion dollars—you’re likely not gonna secure the holy grail shoe of their dreams, although we wish you the best of luck in scoring ‘85 Jordan 1 OG Breds. Even if you can’t get the one shoe they’re pining for, there are plenty of sick gifts for shoe lovers that won’t break the bank (and a couple of luxe options too, if you’re feeling spendy). We’ve got some pretty wavy ideas that your footwear lord will love—including top-tier cleaning kits and sneaker-themed objets d'art. Lace up; it’s time to shop the best gifts for sneakerheads.
Get those cooked kicks from dusty to pristine
Every real sneakerhead cares for their sneakers with love, affection, and an intense attention to detail. Get them the most GOATed shoe cleaning kit of all time from Reshoevn8r. Not only does the brand have excellent reviews—one sneakerhead remarked that this “quality product…comes with everything you need to get your kicks looking crisp again”—but it also has tons of videos displaying the proper way to restore crusty sneaks. Not to mention, the cleaning kit’s shoe trees help both during and after the cleaning process, providing a stable form and shape as you clean and helping to maintain the shoe’s shape over its lifespan once you’ve revived your well-loved kicks.
Keep ‘em protected…outdoors
It’s about to be brick city out there, and a sneaker’s one true nemesis is bad weather. Sure, you could gift some cool rain boots, but as you likely know, the hustle never sleeps, and neither does shoe game; boots are cool, but they’re not a replacement for a beloved pair of Nikes. These UGG rubber boot covers have actually blown up in the sneaker community, for just how well they fit over and protect Nike Dunks, New Balance 550s—you name it. Say what you will about someone opting to wear a rubber casing over their sneakers, but a rubberized shoe covering is a lot easier to buy (and replace after consecutive wet-weather wears) than a limited-run, sold-out sneaker.
For a cheaper version with more coverage, these clear zip-up shoe covers are great for stashing in the car, a gym bag, or at work for whenever there’s an unexpected downpour. Sneakers are an investment, after all!
For folks that love their shoes as much as pets, the perfect travel bag is Flight Club’s classic duffle with a hidden sneaker compartment for keeping your most prized possessions snug as a bug in a rug.
Wrap up a nice set of wooden shoe trees to keep your giftee’s most prized pairs in prime resale state, or to help them with stretching out that lucky pair they copped at the thrift that’s just a half size too small. Shoe trees, especially ones made from materials like cedar wood, also have the benefit of airing out the interior of sneakers, with the material’s natural properties helping to wick away moisture, and, by extension, absorb odors.
Show off that collection
Seriously, what’s the point of having an enviable shoe closet if you’re not gonna display your collection like art? Show them you support their addiction by giving them the confidence to display their grip of sneaks in an aesthetically pleasing way. If they’re the ostentatious type, gift them a Hypelev, which levitates their sickest pair in a futuristic hover-display that will have all their future guests thinking they got money, honey.
They insist on wearing their shoes in the house
Because no look is complete without kicks, including pajamas, these sneaker-lookin’ slippers help maintain consistency even when lounging.
Socks are a classic gift, and if there’s one thing a shoe-obsessed fit lord loves, it’s a sick pair of socks to tie the whole look together. Basically everyone and their mom love Bombas, and the brand’s super-cozy merino wool socks come in excellent marled colors for easy everyday styling.
If you’re in the market for more of a statement sock, there are plenty of designer options that will really up their ability to get fits off: a classic bandana print from Carhartt WIP; chunky, fuzzy stripes from Marni; and one can’t forget an iconic set of Palm Angels flames.
Adorn their swag palace
A candle in the shape of an Air Force 1 and the perfect selfie mirror for taking pictures of their newest acquisitions are two low-key gifts that any sneakerhead would love, but likely wouldn’t purchase for themselves. (If anything, they’ll be grateful they can say, “Oh, that? It was a gift.”)
Let them showcase their artistic side
OK, so you’re really trying to impress this person. Maybe you’re shopping for your boss that has literally everything. Maybe it’s your spouse, and the holiday gifting season means it’s either go big or get an exciting new divorce in 2023. Regardless of who you’re shopping for, we bet they don’t have a Nike Dunk carved out of solid white marble, or one made of neon. Perhaps an Andrew Herzog aerial photograph of people forming the Nike Swoosh might do the trick? All these excellent presents would be very hard to top.
Expand their sneaker lexicon
Chances are your sneakerhead will be well-versed in the history of famous models and releases—but there is so much more than just drop-day calendars and shoe silhouettes when you’re a committed sneakerhead. With decades of sneaker history to look back on, there’s plenty of interesting archive-related books, from those looking into the brand histories of Adidas and Nike to those examining the role of advertising in making sneakers such a global phenomenon. If your giftee is looking for something less “coffee table book” and a little bit more narrative-driven, Phil Knight’s (best known as the co-founder of Nike) memoir Shoe Dog is a riveting way to see what went into building one of the biggest (sneaker) brands on the planet.
You hit the lotto and wanna splurge
Hey, Daddy Warbucks—maybe you’re feeling extra generous this year, or—more likely—trying to mend a really big f-up, perhaps? Well, we’ve got the absolute perfect gifts for you.
You’ve got a true collector on your hands, and you want to get them the ungettable get: A deadstock pair of original 1985 OG Air Jordans—never worn.
Is there a greater flex than having an ultra-rare set of red and silver Jumpman-branded dominos? No.
Last, but certainly not least, we know how ubiquitous Nike Dunks have gotten over the last 12 months, but Dinosaur Jr. Nike SB Dunks? We damn near guarantee no one will be able to top or copy this gift. ‘Nuff said.
Step to it.
The Rec Room staff independently selected all of the stuff featured in this story. Want more reviews, recommendations, and red-hot deals?Sign up for our newsletter.