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Air Jordan 5 Buyers Guide

Air Jordan 5 Buyers Guide
Air Jordan 5 Buyers Guide

Air Jordan 5 history and background.

Original Air Jordan 5 sketch by Tinker Hatfield (1989)
Original Air Jordan 5 sketch by Tinker Hatfield (1989)

By the dawn of the new decade, Michael Jordan's Jordan Brand had already established itself as a basketball shoe powerhouse that was prepared to take on anyone who was in its way. From the icon that was the Air Jordan 1, to the ever-popular Air Jordan 4, His Airness was dropping hit after hit after hit. So in February 1990, MJ was more than ready to reveal his fifth signature silhouette to the world. Aptly named the Air Jordan 5, the model was, and still is, widely regarded by many sneakerheads to be one of the most legendary Jordans ever made. The brainchild of Tinker Hatfield, who also famously designed the AJ 3 and AJ 4, the AJ 5 was the first in the Jumpman line to receive a clear rubber sole. Unbeknownst to many, this feature was actually inspired by Marty McFly's Nike MAG from Back to the Future Part II, which Hatfield also created.

Aside from this, the Air Jordan 5 was also renowned for its flame-like Nike Air midsole. Inspired by a World War 2 Mustang fighter jet, it became quite clear that this silhouette was made for battle. Equipped with an oversized reflective tongue, mesh netting, and a toggle switch lacing system that offered a rugged and utilitarian look, it took basketball shoes to a whole new level, making it the perfect pair to kick off the '90s era.

Whether you're a hardcore Air Jordan 5 collector or you're searching for your very first pair, you're in luck, as the Sole Retriever Air Jordan 5 Buyers Guide is here to answer all of your questions about the AJ 5. What are some of the best colorways? What are they made of? How do they fit? What do they cost? You'll find out everything you need to know, and more, right here.

Did Michael Jordan wear the Air Jordan 5?

Michael Jordan wearing the Air Jordan 5 Black Metallic (1990)
Michael Jordan wearing the Air Jordan 5 Black Metallic (1990)

In the first half of the '89-'90 season, Michael Jordan wore the Air Jordan 4. However, during the All-Star Game in February, he decided to flip the script and officially reveal the Air Jordan 5. The Black Cat wore the four original colorways religiously, including the "White," the "Black Metallic," the "Fire Red," which he donned for the first half of the '90-'91 NBA season, and of course, the "Grape," which is arguably one of the greatest Air Jordans in history. Over the years, MJ would continue to rock the J5s, such as the "Laney" which paid homage to his high school, and the "Toro Bravo" Pack.

What are the best Air Jordan 5 colorways?

Over the years we've been blessed with many must-own Air Jordan 5 colorways. 2020's Off-White x Air Jordan 5 "Sail" is definitely one of the most iconic collaborations of all time. Made in partnership with the late and great Virgil Abloh, this special edition pair celebrated the silhouette's 30th birthday and came with the designer's signature deconstructed details throughout. Other collabs worth mentioning include the Trophy Room x Air Jordan 5 "Ice Blue" which was made with the GOAT's son Marcus Jordan, DJ Khaled's Air Jordan 5 We The Best "Crimson Bliss," and the Supreme x Air Jordan 5 which came in three colorways including "Black," "White," and of course, "Desert Camo." Low-top AJ 5s have also proved extremely popular over the years, with 2022's CLOT and Doernbecher being particularly noteworthy releases.

In terms of none-collaborative Jordan 5s, the "Burgundy," "Green Bean," and "Stealth" are hands down some of the most sought-after sneakers in recent years. You also can't talk about the best colorways without mentioning the "Bel-Air." Boasting a '90s-inspired palette, it nods to Will Smiths’ legendary NBC sitcom, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Keeping up-to-date with all of these colorways can be overwhelming especially if you're new to sneakers, so make sure you follow Sole Retriever over on Twitter and download our official Mobile App if you haven't already.

What material is the Air Jordan 5 made of?

Off-White x Air Jordan 5 Retro Black (2020)
Off-White x Air Jordan 5 Retro Black (2020)

The Air Jordan 5 was originally made from leather, but over the years Nike has been experimenting with a vast range of different materials. Pairs like the "Shattered Backboard" are still made from leather, but you'll also get the "Take Flight" and "Wolf Grey" that opt for supple suede and the "Satin Bred" that's equipped with soft satin finish. 2013's "3Lab5" received a full safari print makeover, while Virgil Abloh's Off-White x Air Jordan 5 "Black" was decked out in a ripstop material throughout for a technical vibe.

How does the Air Jordan 5 fit?

Generally speaking, the Air Jordan 5 fits true to size. However, if your feet are a little on the wider side then feel free to go half a size up, but we would always recommend just going TTS. It's always best to try on a pair in-store before purchasing to be sure you’re getting the correct size.

How much do Air Jordan 5 cost?

When the Air Jordan 5 first released in 1990 it retailed for $125, but things are a little different these days. 2006's "Sunset" retailed for $135, while others like the "Girls That Hoop" and "Oreo" began around $170. Colorways such as the "Blue Suede" and "Easter" can cost even more, but it doesn't end there, as retail prices are known to reach above the $400 mark, for instance, on the "Triple Black" and "Wine." Today, the average GR Air Jordan 5 retails for between $200-$225. For your best chance to cop the AJ 5 at retail, follow us over on Twitter and download our Mobile App today.

Where do I buy Air Jordan 5?

If you're looking to get the Air Jordan 5 for your collection, you're in luck, as most general releases can be bought on release day via Nike, the SNKRS app, and select Jordan Brand retailers worldwide, from chain stores, to boutiques, to mom and pop stores. With that said, special collaborations like the aforementioned Off-White and Trophy Room and limited editions such as the "Chinese New Year" and "What The" will be much harder to come by. While hype surrounding His Airness' fifth signature shoe certainly isn't as high when compared to the Air Jordan 1 and the Air Jordan 4, it's still very popular. If you still don't have a pair in your daily rotation, we’ve got you covered through our Twitter and Mobile App where we’ll alert you on upcoming releases, raffles, and so much more.

What’s the hot take?

Air Jordan 5 Grape Signed By Michael Jordan (1990)
Air Jordan 5 Grape Signed By Michael Jordan (1990)

Back in February 1990, Michael Jordan and Tinker Hatfield kickstarted a new era with the Nike Air Jordan 5. Regarded by sneakerheads and basketball enthusiasts as one of the most iconic silhouettes of all time, the fighter jet-inspired shoe has become available in a vast selection of colorways and styles over the past three decades. For your best chance to cop, make sure you keep it locked to our Twitter and download the Sole Retriever Mobile App. We'll be sure to keep you updated with the latest news, release info, and raffle details for the Air Jordan 5 and more in the sneaker and streetwear world!


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