Here’s something you know: The Galaxy Foam release rocketed the entire sneakerhead world into mainstream consciousness and created a whole new generation of hypebeasts.
Here’s something you might not: It was also the moment when Nike jumped the shark on the silhouette, sending Foamposites on the exact opposite trajectory as the rest of the sneakerhead game.
The Foamposites have long been considered a sneakerhead staple whose limited release and clean colorways almost guaranteed it “heat” status amongst both casual and serious collectors. Following the Galaxy drop, however, Nike starting pumping out more and more hideous colorways in a blatant attempt to capitalize on the hype trail left in Galaxy dust. In doing so, Nike unwittingly cannibalized the two traits that made Foamposites so desirable to begin with – simplicity and exclusivity.
Allow me to demonstrate: I’ll trade you some Thermal Maps for your Eggplants? No? I didn’t think so.
In an attempt to demonstrate just how much damage has been done to the Foamposite line we will, of course, summon our sneakerheaddata. Specifically, let’s compare the average resell price of all Foams before and after the Galaxy, with special attention paid to premium Foams.
The chart: We’ve plotted average deadstock price for every Foamposite One and Pro in order of release. The small chart in the top right shows the overall averages of key subsets, Pre and Post-Galaxy. The Penny Pack is listed on the main chart but excluded from all averages due to its extreme price and limited availability.
- Prices are falling: Not counting the premiums, Pre-Galaxy Foams (1997-2011) sell for an average of $331, 20% more than Post-Galaxy colorways (2012-2014), which average $275.
- Markets are flooding: The average number of pairs released per year in the Pre-Galaxy Era was 1.4, while the Post-Galaxy Era has seen 11 pairs per year – and we’re only halfway through 2014!
- Solids > Patterns: Again, holding premiums aside, the least insightful (i.e., most obvious) insight here is that sneakerheads prefer their Foams like their bowel movements – solid. On average, the resell price of solid Foams is 30% higher than patterns ($320 vs. $245).
- Premiums > Everything Else: All of the premium Foams – Penny Pack, Galaxy, ParaNorman, Doernbecher, Ducks and both Supremes – are reselling on average for 389% more than all other Foams as a group ($1,481 vs. $303). That’s why they call ’em premium.
If we put it all together, a pretty clear story starts to emerge: Foamposites are Ryan Howard. They’re well past their prime, coming to bat too often, striking out just about every time. But every now and then they hit a home run and when they do, its usually a monster.
By comparison, the rest of the sneaker game is Mike Trout – they’ve gone from barely on the radar to the biggest, baddest, best there is – or at the very least, the most hyped. In the two years since the Galaxy release, the resell sneaker market has increased 135%. Over that same time, the price of Foams has dropped 19%. Shark jumped.
What do you think about the state of Foamposites? What should be the next colorway to drop?