Admit it: whenever you’re traveling, you’re not only conscious about what you’re wearing. You also have this uncontrollable tendency to check out what the people around you are wearing, too—more so when you explore a place with a culture or climate that’s very much unlike the PH. Countries where people dress up in thick layers, fur, and thigh-high boots. If only you had the chance to layer here.
In a city like Seoul, for instance, you will definitely enjoy style spotting. Trademark ajumma outfit aside (read: mismatched prints, trekking shoes, bucket hat or visor, and an overall no-nonsense look), South Korea is #teamcozy all the way. You’ll see hints of city chic with their sleek trench coats, slacks, and pantsuits. But the street style scene is dominated by oversized sweaters, relaxed culottes, denim, and, of course, sneakers.
White sneakers still make a lot of appearances, but if there’s one pair that will catch your eye while riding the subway trains and getting lost in the streets of Seoul these days, it’s the Vans Classic Sk8-Hi.
This pair is so easy to spot—the high top shoes in black canvas come with white details, most notably that curved sidestripe. You can also get a pair in navy and white and in black and gray checkers (the Leather and Canvas SK8-Hi varieties come in several other colors), but the #OldSkool B&W version is the most popular one.
It’s unisex, and various K-Pop stars have also been seen sporting their Sk8-Hi. There’s G-Dragon from the group Big Bang, Lu Han and Baekhyun, both from EXO, and Yuju from GFriend (plus some Hollywood celebs like Chloë Grace Moretz, Kristen Stewart, Alexa Chung, Chris Brown, and Kanye West).
Big Bang’s G-Dragon
Lu Han of EXO
Aside from its sporty and edgy appeal, here’s another reason why these trainers have been so popular: they’re seriously comfortable. You definitely need shoes with ample support for your feet when you’re navigating the steep slopes of the streets of Seoul, and Sk8-Hi’s padded ankle, its cushioned soles, and the footwear brand’s vulcanized signature “Waffle Outsole” provide that. You won’t end up killing your feet—whether you’re waiting at the bus stop, shopping through the streets of Myeong-dong or Hongdae, or maybe trying to catch the last subway train back downtown after spending the day in Gyeonggi’s Korean Folk Village. You could even wear them for skateboarding, like the cool guys at Vans Korea’s Skate Fry-Days events
It’s also worth noting that these sneakers are more affordable than other trendy sneakers. While you can get them for $60 when you shop online (excluding shipping fees), you can hunt down a pair for less than P3,000 in Vans stores nationwide.
Now, take a look at these four ensembles you could wear with the Vans Classic Sk8-Hi:
White tee + striped black culottes + sling bag
Boxy cropped top + denim culottes
Oversized tee or sweater + short shorts
Images from @vans_korea on Instagram