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Women in Sneakers; Where is the Love?

When it comes to the billion dollar industry of sneakers we’ve seen the growth and transitions that have occurred over the last couple of decades. One noticeable and unfortunate reality of the world of sneakers is that when it comes to inclusion of women, it is severely lacking. The percentage of women sneaker designers in the world versus their male counterparts is devastatingly different, so much so people are not only starting to notice, but demanding change.

Fashion has many avenues, and in the recent years street wear and sneakers have become more popular ,and socially acceptable in a variety of environments whether it be business or professional. The truth is women drive the fashion industry, and set trends much more than men. While knowing that one can easily raise the question where is the love for women in sneakers?

The sneaker industry is male dominated, and extremely hard to break into. Thankfully there is a current uprising of women sneaker designers such as Aleali May, Natasha Cloud, Serena Williams, and Beyoncé to name a few. These efforts to include women in the design process by companies such as Jordan, Adidas, and Nike are examples of taking steps in creating an inclusive sneaker industry. These woman happen to have large social media followings and a couple are also famous entertainers or athletes. That can be a good strategy to inspire other women and young girls to pursue opportunities in the sneaker industry and change the game when it comes to sneaker design and representation.

There is still much work to be done, and a lot more opportunities need to be created to encourage young girls and women to pursue their passions around sneakers. Fortunately there are programs like the Adidas S.E.E.D. program that was created specifically for women to enter the sneaker industry as designers. There is also Pensole Academy a sneaker design school, and Sneaker Essentials which is a certification program operated in partnership by Yellowbrick and New York’s FIT. Both of those offer educational experience needed to learn and understand the sneaker industry as a whole.

With the awareness and efforts being made to include and amplify more women in sneakers there is hope for the change we deserve to see. The more we empower women and remind them they not only have a seat at the table, but can also create their own in the world of sneakers is vital, and will change the industry as we know it.

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