Holiday Gift Guides

The 10 best holiday gifts for sneakerheads that aren't actually sneakers

You don’t have to fuss over release dates to satisfy the sneakerhead in your life.

If there’s a sneakerhead in your life, don’t be discouraged by trying to find them the perfect holiday gift. Sure, the sneakers they want are likely all but impossible to purchase at retail and then prohibitively expensive on the resale market — but there are plenty of other sneaker-related gifts that don’t require you to figure out how exactly a “drop” works.

From cleaning to storage, there are a variety of accessories that are all but requisite for sneakerheads. There’s also a rich history pivotal the appeal of the most prized sneakers that’s accessible through books, and the most dedicated of enthusiasts will also be able to deck out their home through decor that celebrates the culture.

As the holiday season approaches, we’ve put together a cheat sheet of the 10 best non-sneaker gifts you can buy for any budget. With no sellouts to contend with, you’re on a fast path to a present that’s guaranteed to land.

An absolute must for any sneakerhead who wears their kicks instead of storing them away, the Jason Markk Field Kit contains all the essentials for sneaker cleaning. A sneaker-specific solution, brush, and microfiber towel enable deep cleans at home, while Quick Whipes are a quick fix for anywhere.

While Nike originally released the Dunk in 1985, it was the sneaker’s adoption by Nike SB that would turn it into an icon. Sneaker collaborations as we know them began with Nike’s skateboarding line, and several iterations of the SB Dunk released throughout the aughts have become some of the most valuable shoes in existence. Consider this book a history lesson.

For a wider look at the arc of sneaker culture, Penguin Random House tapped the American Federation of Arts and the Bata Shoe Museum. Photos of rare sneakers are combined with in-depth interviews and essays from designers, collectors, and other experts for the best crash course a sneakerhead can get.

If the sneakerhead in your life is ready for a ritual that doesn’t involve raffles, give them the perfect planter for them to maintain some life. Greenery is not included, and even if they can’t keep a plant alive, this piece will also make for a great bookend, ashtray, or decoration on its own.

A pile of boxes can be unsightly, and leaving sneakers out in the raw is just asking for dust to accumulate. The Container Store’s stackable storage solution doubles as a display case, allowing a sneakerhead to display their treasures while keeping them safe.

Two dedicated pouches bookending this murdered-out duffle bag allows anyone to bring a small sneaker rotation wherever they’re headed without risking any damage to their kicks. Anyone who’s packed sneakers into a regular bag or suitcase knows the pain of the creases that result.

Outsized importance is placed on the Air Jordan 3, the first pair of Js to be designed by the legendary Tinker Hatfield and the sneaker that convinced Michael himself to stay with Nike. The sneaker is crucial to the lore of Jordan Brand, and this print is the perfect addition to any sneakerheads interior.

Unexpected bad weather can spell doom for sneakers, particularly those made of suede. But that won’t be an issue with this easily stashable overshoe for protection, which just so happens to be kind of hot in electric green.

Hand made in Chicago, this incense holder is just one of several molded from iconic sneaker soles by the artist Rob Valentino. We much prefer it to the ubiquitous sneaker-shaped candle, and four sticks of sandlewood are included to get the good vibes started.

No one needs to display a single, levitating sneaker, but don’t let that take away from the fun of this magical device. Our own style editor became obsessed with seeing his kicks in perpetual, floating rotation — and you can rest assured it’s not a gift your intended recipient already has.