Introduction to the adidas Yeezy 500
The Yeezy 500 marks Kanye West's full-on entry into the "dad shoe" market, which initially launched with the Yeezy Boost 700. Like the 700, sneaker aficionados were initially taken aback by the 500's clunky, otherworldly design, but the Yeezy 500 has now become another must-have from the Land of Yeezy.
Modified Versions of the adidas Yeezy 500
Kanye West, along with adidas, released modified versions of the Yeezy 500 beginning in 2019:
- Yeezy 500 Soft Vision has the traditional look of the 500 but with a natural gum outer sole.
- Yeezy 500 Stone replaces the outer mesh layer with plush Neoprene panels to give it a more dramatic and cohesive look.
- In late 2019, West released the Yeezy 500 High-Top in a Slate colorway that, like the Stone version, eschewed the mesh of the original 500 for buttery soft cushioning material. The outer sole came in a beige colorway that harkened back to the original 500, and the retail price was $220.
- In May 2020, the Tyrian colorway was released, a look reminiscent of the 2019 version of the Yeezy Desert Boot. Tumbled leather underlays join the Adiprene cushioning, each in a dark brown palette. Cushiony panels bulge out on either side and come in a purplish hue similar to a Tyrian dye (the name originates from Tyre, Lebanon) believed to have been used by the ancient Phoenicians in 1500 BC.
Yeezy 500 Shows
Its One True Color
Another hallmark of the 500 is its monochromatic palette. The original colorway of the adidas Yeezy 500 was a light yellow, dubbed Super Moon Yellow. It was initially released in December 2017 and restocked at retailers in March 2018.
Yeezy 500: Premium
The 500 is the first Yeezy not to feature adidas Boost technology. Instead, West opted for a distinctive midsole with adidas Adiprene technology for a stiffer, more supportive feel while maintaining cushioned support with a curved gum rubber outsole. Other unique features include:
The "Feet You Wear" sole, designed to help prevent basketball players from rolling their ankles, is a throwback to the late 1990s, with technology originally debuted on Kobe Bryant's signature Adidas KB8 III sneakers in 1999
Oversized look that deftly extends the chunky sneaker trend of the late 2010s
Paneled mesh body for breathability with a luxe suede upper
Massive retro sole with an otherworldly retro look (some say it looks like a shoe meant to be worn on Mars)
The first release was dubbed the Yeezy Desert Rat 500 (it quickly became known simply as Yeezy 500) in December 2017. The design was only available at the Yeezy Supply store as part of a $760 bundle pack where the buyer was also on the hook for a Yeezy sweatshirt and shorts. The 500 went solo in May 2018 at adidas retailers and specialty shops, with an original retail price of $200.
Yeezy 500: Paging Kim K
Like most versions of the adidas Yeezy line, the 500 put family first, with Kanye and wife Kim Kardashian showing off the kicks in early 2017.
The 500 was part of the Yeezy Season 6 fashion line that, unlike its predecessor, wasn't supported with a high-profile runway show (Season 5 debuted at Madison Square Garden).
Kim took it upon herself to showcase the line, including a very public outing in Los Angeles that featured her wearing nine pieces of the Yeezy Season 6 line styled by superstar fashion editor and West confidante Carine Roitfeld.