When it comes to style, Rihanna ain’t new to this — she’s true to this.
A woman of many titles, Rihanna is a superstar above all else as her extensive career has spanned music, beauty, fashion, and even sneakers.
The songstress made sneaker history when she signed with PUMA in 2015, launching one of the most successful celebrity brand partnerships that the sportswear label has ever seen.
“The launch of the first Puma by Rihanna shoe, the ‘Creeper,’ has been extremely successful,” said former PUMA CEO Bjørn Gulden, who spoke to WWD in 2015. “Most retailers sold out within hours or days.”
From that point on, Rihanna continued to carry the brand to success as PUMA North America’s revenue hit $1.4 billion in 2017, which Gulden revealed to Barron’s saying, “Rihanna’s relationship with [PUMA] makes the brand actual and hot again with young consumers.”
Since then, Rihanna’s partnership with PUMA has come to an end, but her influence is still heavily entwined within the Fastcat’s modern design language, seen on silhouettes like the new PUMA Mayze.
Even with her game-changing PUMA collaboration behind her, Rihanna is still regularly spotted in a fresh pair of sneakers, a wardrobe staple that’s been apart of her personal style since the early days of her career.
With her latest title being “mom,” we could imagine that sneakers will continue to be a mainstay for the icon as she tries to keep up with her new baby boy, who she birthed with A$AP Rocky in May 2022.
To celebrate the Barbados queen, Nice Kicks takes a look at Rihanna’s Top 30 Sneaker Moments.
1. FENTY PUMA Creepers
Of course we had to kick off the list with Rihanna’s FENTY PUMA Creepers, which dropped in many different colorways and iterations from 2015-2017.
2. Mr. Completely Creepy x adidas Samba
This custom adidas Samba by Mr. Completely Creepy is actually the sneaker that inspired the FENTY PUMA Creepers. Rihanna had also been rocking a Nike Air Force 1 edition at the time, but she retired both customs when she began her partnership with PUMA. Mr. Completely Creepy still remains a sneaker designer, although he now goes by his full name, Billy Walsh, and is also a Grammy-nominated songwriter.
3. Louis Vuitton Sneaker Boot by Virgil Abloh
These Virgil Abloh-designed sneaker boots belong to the house of Louis Vuitton. The eclectic footwear was apart of LV’s Spring/Summer 2021 collection and retailed for $3,900 USD.
4. Rick Owens Elephant Boots
Throughout the years, Rihanna has always stunned for Halloween, but her 2021 Gunna costume was definitely one of her best yet. From the Dior top to the Rick Owens Elephant Boots, Rihanna embodied Gunna with no hesitation.
5. Salomon XT-6
Some say that Rihanna is the reason the Salomon XT-6 is on the rise, which is a theory we may never be able to prove, but this 2019 birthday pic at least certifies that she was ahead of the curve in one way or another.
6. Nike Air Force 1
While a Nike Air Force 1 may not be the most head-turning sneaker, Rihanna managed to the elevate the timeless classic by pairing the kicks with a chic evening gown, making this one her best and most effortless sneaker moments.
7. Cactus Plant Flea Market x Nike Dunk Low
Once again, Rihanna reinvented how we approach personal style as she showed off her pregnancy glow with a fully-exposed baby bump. Women everywhere know that Rih’s pregnancy fits changed maternity fashion forever, and the CPFM x Nike Dunk Low is just the cherry on top of this iconic look.
8. Nike Dunk High WMNS SP “Varsity Purple”
Stepping out of the house in a full-length silk kimono and neon Gucci shades might seem over the top, but Rihanna managed to bring this look back to Earth with a classic two-tone Nike Dunk High in “Varsity Purple.”
9. Jeremy Scott x adidas Originals
Before returning to adidas last year, Jeremy Scott shook up the sneaker scene in the early 2010’s with his first adidas Originals collection. Rih Rih is seen here wearing a fierce leopard print pair and an oversized Jeremy Scott x adidas Originals t-shirt to match.
10. New Balance 574
The New Balance 574 has been on the up-and-up lately thanks to collaborative efforts from Joe Freshgoods and Junya Watanabe, but for Rihanna, it’s more of a been-there, done-that situation as the self-made billionaire had this silhouette in heavy-rotation around 2014.
11. Reebok Kamikaze II
Rihanna knows no bounds when it comes to sneakers as she’s been spotted in every shape, size, and colorway imaginable. She used the Reebok Kamikaze II’s inherently eye-catching upper to add edge and a pop of color to this sleek all-black outfit.
12. Air Jordan 1 “Bred”
Tumblr was never the same after this pic dropped during the early 2010’s. Street style began to rise in popularity amongst women, and it was all because of Rihanna and the Air Jordan 1 “Bred.”
13. Air Jordan 1 “Olympic”
Rihanna’s knack for color-blocking is demonstrated well here as she paired the Air Jordan 1 “Olympic” with tonal shades of navy, black, and olive to create a stylish laid-back look.
14. OFF-WHITE x Air Jordan 1 “UNC”
Even though she’s always on-the-go, Rihanna stays ready with a fresh pair of kicks. She used Virgil’s avant-garde approach to her advantage as she styled this OFF-WHITE x Air Jordan 1 “UNC” with a neon green button-up for upgraded street style.
15. OFF-WHITE x Air Jordan 1 “White”
Rih Rih made her mask look high fashion here as she coordinated her OFF-WHITE x Air Jordan 1s with the 2020 face garb and an oversized Yankees bucket hat.
16. Union x Air Jordan 1
Needless to say, the Union x Air Jordan 1 paired with the sherpa Mastermind jacket goes crazy. Even in all-black, Rihanna manages to stand out.
17. Facetasm x Air Jordan 1 Mid
Rihanna officially co-signed the #MidAgenda when she was spotted in the Facetasm x Air Jordan 1 Mid. If Mids are good enough for Rihanna, then they’re good enough for you.
18. Air Jordan 1 “Black Toe”
The Air Jordan 1 “Black Toe” was rumored to be releasing in 2023, but that rumor is now said to be untrue. As annoying as that is, at least we can enjoy this pic of Rihanna wearing her pair back in 2013.
19. Air Jordan 4 “Cavs”
The Air Jordan 4 “Cavs” pay homage to Cleveland’s retro jerseys from 1988-1989. Rihanna is seen here wearing a pair backstage with ripped jeans and a Céline tee.
20. OFF-WHITE x Air Jordan 4 WMNS “Sail”
Virgil truly made something special with the OFF-WHITE x Air Jordan 4 WMNS “Sail,” which was even auctioned off to benefit Black Lives Matter. Rihanna wore her pair with a tonal fur jacket and light wash jeans as she left one of her favorite restaurants, Giorgio Baldi.
21. Union x Air Jordan 4 “Guava”
Rihanna looked so cute here as she basked in baby bliss. She wore the Union x Air Jordan 4 “Guava” as she walked hand-in-hand with A$AP Rocky.
22. Air Jordan 5 “Fear”
This senaker is sure to surprise many and shows how deep Rihanna’s sneaker closet truly is. The Air Jordan 5 “Fear” released in 2013 and was apart of a larger sneaker pack that included the Air Jordan 4 and Air Jordan 3, with the AJ3 returning in 2023.
23. Air Jordan 7 “Golden Moments”
The Air Jordan 7 “Golden Moments” couldn’t be a more perfect sneaker for the superstar as she shines here on stage at the iHeart Radio Music Festival in 2012.
24. Air Jordan 7 “Raptors”
Compared to Rihanna’s other carefully crafted fits, this look isn’t one of her show-stoppers, but the Air Jordan 7 “Raptors” definitely deserve a nod.
25. Air Jordan 7 “Olympic”
From on-stage, to the airport, and even the club, sneakers are always a “yes” for Rihanna. She’s seen here spotted with her best friend in the Air Jordan 7 “Olympic.”
26. Air Jordan 12 “Playoffs”
The Air Jordan 12 “Playoffs” are a must-have for any sneakerhead and Rihanna proves that she’s got the receipts to compete with even the most serious collectors.
27. Air Jordan 13 “He Got Game”
The Air Jordan 13 “He Got Game” is another sneaker W for Rihanna as this exclusive pair first launched in 1998 alongside Spike Lee’s film, “He Got Game.”
28. Air Jordan XX8 “Red Elephant”
Only Rihanna could make the long-forgotten Air Jordan XX8 “Red Elephant” look good. This eccentric silhouette was far from a hit, but Rihanna takes the prize for styling this sneaker to perfection.
29. OFF-WHITE x Nike Air Max 90 “The Ten”
There’s no denying that Rih Rih is a big Virgil fan as his collabs from Nike, Jordan, and Louis Vuitton have appeared in her sneaker collection over the years.
30. Nike Air Yeezy II “Solar Red”
Closing out the list is the Nike Air Yeezy II. While Ye’s controversial figure has cast a dark shadow over his work, this shoe is undoubtedly a moment in sneaker history. Rihanna wore her Nike Air Yeezy II on-stage at BBC Radio 1’s Hackney Weekend in 2012.
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