We test all sorts of sneakers here. The huge brand names (Nike and Adidas) are the pinnacle of sneakers. Under Armour is coming on strong. Puma and New Balance are both in vogue again. There are plenty of choices if you want to buy retail shoes (and you should, they are better in almost every way).
But there is another class of sneakers out there. Reps or replicas. These shoes attempt to mimic or copy a legitimate sneaker. Consumers have decided there is a place for these reps in the market, but it’s not without problems.
Retail vs Reps
Anyone who has tried to get a popular Air Jordan or Yeezy release at retail, knows it’s like winning the lottery. In some cases, that’s exactly what it’s like, because they have drawings and lottery’s to select an exclusive few who may get the chance to purchase these shoes.
Not only are they limited in number, but many of the most desirable releases, don’t make it to smaller markets. They only release in major metros where buyers are fortunate to have well supported sneaker outlets.
While many retail sneakers have a limited availability at release, Reps are highly available. If you can find a website, you can order reps.
When you buy a pair of Jordans at Foot Locker, you know what you’re getting. There are very few questions. The quality is superb. The color is exact. The value is unquestionable. You can try them on and return them for a different size if something else feels better. These shoes are built to last, for the most part.
Reps are a different animal here. You don’t know the seller. With some exceptions, returns are nearly impossible and not even remotely convenient. Sizing is different from one supplier to another. Colors may shift from version to version. Quality is often suspect. Payments are rarely secure, if ordering on a website and if you opt to pay via Western Union or some other service, you have no guarantee you’ll ever see your product or at least, the one you ordered.
How we can help
One of the most important things we want to do here is to educate people. It’s not enough to say “Don’t buy unauthorized shoes.” That hasn’t worked and I doubt it will. With limited quantities and surging prices, reps are going to exist. Let’s teach you how to avoid reps, if you want to.
This site will cover reps just like a retail shoe.