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The history of sneakers

The sneaker is an iconic shoe model with a rich history of evolution and adaptation, originally designed as a sports shoe. The term "sneaker" was coined because of its rubber sole's noiseless quality. Over the years, the sneaker has undergone countless changes and innovations, becoming a staple in athletic and casual fashion.


It was the Boston Journal in the USA that in 1887 wrote the word sneaker for the first time and referred to it as "the name boys give to their tennis shoes". The tennis shoes had rubber soles and were quiet (sneaker = stealthier), unlike the ”louder” leather shoes used for suits.

Sand shoes

So much for the name Sneakers, but what about the shoes themselves then. Credit for designing the first rubber-soled sports shoes is usually attributed to The Liverpool Rubber Company, founded by John Boyd Dunlop in 1830. Dunlop was the inventor and found a technique for attaching canvas shoe uppers to a rubber sole. The shoes were called sand shoes and were worn by people during the Victorian era in England during their visits to the beach.

New sneakers, new roles

Since that time, the sneaker has changed, improved and actually changed its role as well. Next to this article, you see a compilation of the most important and most style-shaping models over the years.
We do not think Dunlop had any idea that his invention would become the strongest fashion trend in shoe history.
The original definition of a sneaker – a shoe made of synthetic material and a rubber sole – is still partially true, but nowadays we have a much broader definition. The sneaker is a nice and comfortable leisure shoe. It no longer needs to be used for physical activities and it is perfectly fine to consider it solely as a fashion shoe.
What started as a sports shoe, became a fashion shoe, a dance shoe, a leisure shoe and many other variations. It became a shoe to express belonging and show who you are.

First combination of safety shoe and sneaker

Now there is also the first shoe that is a combination of a safety shoe and a sneaker – Jalas Tempus. In Jalas Tempus, protective functions have been combined with a fashionable appearance. Jalas Tempus is a safe safety shoe to use at work. It has protective features such as advanced shock absorption with PORON XRD, protective toe cap and a soft and flexible textile nail tread cover. The sole has an effective grip pattern and is made of a special nitrile rubber for high durability. The JALAS Tempus shoes are ESD and anti-static certified for use in ESD protected work environments. But in addition to being an effective and approved safety shoe, it looks like a modern sneaker. That is why Jalas Tempus is the first sneaker that is also a safety shoe. In practical terms, it can be used at work but also on the way there and home. Where the sneaker’s history will go next remains to be seen. But one thing is for sure, it doesn’t stop here!

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Converse All-Star 1918. Converse is an American brand, created in 1908 as the Converse Rubber Shoe Company. Their All Star is the most famous model and the one that has improved over the years. Above all to provide better support for the ankle and better grip in the sole. Converse is a subsidiary of Nike since 2003. 

One of the first adidas shoes with the three stripes. Adidas was created by Adolf (Adi) Dassler and his brother Rudi in 1924 in Germany. The three stripes already had a function from the beginning, to hold the soft leather shoes together so that they did not lose their shape so quickly. Eventually, the three stripes became the symbol of the entire company and became more of a decoration on the shoes than a function.

The Nike Cortez, an iconic sneaker, made its entrance into the vibrant world of discos during the 1970s. Born in this era, the Nike Cortez emerged as one of the pioneering models from the Nike brand to showcase the renowned swoosh logo as an embellishment on the side of the shoe. Initially designed as a sports shoe, the Cortez gradually transformed into a fashionable footwear choice, gaining popularity amidst the disco wave that swept across the 70s. Interestingly, in the movie "Forrest Gump," our beloved protagonist encounters a familiar sight as he embarks on his extraordinary journey – he laces up a pair of Nike Cortez sneakers, further solidifying their cultural significance.

1966, the first Vans. Vans was created in 1966 by Paul Van Doren in Anaheim California and run by himself and his family. The shoe brand quickly became popular with skateboarders and one of the reasons was that users decorated and pimped their shoes themselves.
Gucci ACE Sneakers. This is an example of how sneakers are getting into the fancy high street fashion companies and are no longer made for working out in. The shoes in the picture cost 600-700 euros.
Jalas Tempus, the first sneaker that is also a safety shoe. You can wear the same shoes at work as on the way home.