Before and After: 15 Celebrities Who Dramatically Improved Their Sneaker Game

With sneakers more popular than ever nowadays and cameras always on celebrities, we look at individuals who have stepped up their kick game in recent years. It's natural that ones interests change as they grow and become older, and lord knows that trends and styles change over time as well. Celebrities no doubt have an easier access to upgrade their sneaker collection than the rest of us and you know they always want to be stunting when they're out in public. Too bad we all can't have a sick Jordan or Nike hookup!

Hulk Hogan

It’s not hard to step your sneaker game up when you’re most famous for rocking super-high yellow wrestling boots. And, outside the ring, the Hulkamaniac was always spotted in some low-key (very un-manaical) New Balance “dad shoes.” But ever since 2012’s Air Jordan Aero Flight “WWF Pack,” it’s become quite obvious that the Hulkster got that Jordan plug!

Wiz Khalifa

Listen, we’re certainly not gonna hate on somebody rocking classic Chucks. But as Wiz has come up, his style has followed suit. Sure, he still goes back to the OG Taylors, but he’s been breaking out that heat recently. Particularly the fantastic JBF Customs “Supreme F&ckery” Air Force 1s. UGH!

Mark Wahlberg

Look, we know there was a time in the 90s when Doc Marten boots and some shorts weren’t just socially acceptable, but pretty fashionable. But man, those were dark days for footwear. That said, as Mark Walhberg’s career ascended, so have his footwear choices. Nowadays, you can catch him having lunch with MJ himself, and sporting those Friends and Family releases, like the “oh-why-don’t-they-just-release” Oregon Ducks Vs. We suppose that sometimes, it’s pretty awesome to be ultra-famous.


Okay, so to our knowledge, Drake has only had one serious footwear misstep. And the internet has never let him forget about it, putting him on blast for rocking fakes. But recently we found out that they weren’t fakes, but just some not so appealing customs. With that said, Drizzy has silenced (some of) the haters by getting his sneaker game shine on, scoring that elusive Air Jordan contract, and rocking straight fire these past few months.

Soulja Boy

We know just saying Soulja Boy’s name will get people feeling some type of way. But regardless of what you think about the man himself, his kick game has evolved tremendously. From rocking some suspect Gucci kicks and letting folks get a view of some super-fake Jordans on MTV Cribs, Soulja Boy has definitely upped the ante in recent years.

Action Bronson

Okay, so we couldn’t find any hard evidence of him actually wearing them. But if you’re a fan of his music, you know Action Bronson is always rapping about the New Balance 992 (or 990) being his favorite shoe(s), noting their comfort and support while he worked long hours in the kitchen. He also did some promo work for Pro Keds a few years back. And, while we’re all about comfort, and diversifying that sneaker portfolio, Bronsalino can (and has) really stepped his sneaker game up as of late. It also helps that he’s from Queens, just like Kith-capo Ronnie Fieg. Oooh, that’s a nice plug to have!

Kim Kardashian

In what is perhaps the biggest step-up on this list, everyone’s favorite “reality” TV star Kim Kardashian has really stepped up the footwear game recently. Of course, she’s always rocked super high heels and such. But, it wasn’t until recently that she started rocking dope Jordans and, of course, them Yeezys. Don’t forget, it wasn’t that long ago that she was the face of a sketchy Sketchers campaign.


Sure, he’s rapped about Jordans for a while now, but Macklemore has been around long before 2013’s Grammy-winning Heist album. But, it wasn’t until recent years that he really stepped his game up. Love it or hate it, he’s even got his own neck-breaking Jordan PEs now. Credit where credit’s due.


Rhianna’s style seems to change weekly, so it’s no surprise that looking at photos from her career’s early days reveals some questionable footwear choices. But, nowadays, if you frequent celebrity sneaker posts you already know RiRi’s got game.

Scott Disick

Scott Disick has always had bank. But, as you know (and, you can see), money doesn’t always equate to good style. However, a few years hanging out with Yeezy and the Kardashian clan, seems to have at least helped. Lately, Lord Disick’s been on that Jordan/Yeezy wave.

Bow Wow

Back in his So So Def days, when he was known as “Lil” Bow Wow, he liked to rock a lot of basic kicks. From adidas Shell Toes to Air Force 1 Highs. All (mostly) respectable, but nothing earth shattering. But, after over a decade in the spotlight, Bow Wow has stepped it up quite a bit. Not just quality, but diversity too.

Justin Timberlake

If you’re old enough to remember, the early 2000s were a strange time for fashion. And, from that top ramen haircut to glittery dress shoes on the cover of Rolling Stone, even Mr. Suit & Tie Justin Timberlake himself wasn’t exempt. In fact, looking back, he’s got more than a few ‘fits we’re sure he’d like erased from our memories, Men In Black style. However, in recent years, JT has really stepped up his style (and sneaker) game. Now he’s got all of us sweating his excellent collection. And don’t forget about those ridiculous Legends of Summer Jordans. Those were crazy.

Nick Cannon

We know. The man formerly known as Mr. Mariah Carey is a love him or hate him kinda guy. However, if you’re looking strictly at footwear evolution, Nick Cannon has had some serious heat lately. Sure, Lugz and Chucks aren’t that bad, but Cannon has really cranked the heat up in recent years. And say what you will, but considering he just had a pair of $2 million, diamond-encrusted Tom Ford loafers commissioned…his kick game is truly on a different level.

Big Boi

Bought some fake Js on eBay by accident? Don’t trip. Even the OGs get caught slipping sometimes. Like back in 2009, when Outkast frontman Big Boi rocked fake Air Jordan VIIIs to perform at a SneakerPimps convention. Ouch. However, we will show Big some love here because, unlike some others who’ve got caught sporting fakes, Sir Lucious Left Foot bit the bullet and copped to being duped. Respect. That, and he’s steadily sported that heat ever since.

Russell Westbrook

Back in his college days, UCLA was (and still is) an adidas school. So, while he was leading his team to the Elite 8, Russ Westbrook was rocking some pretty basic adidas team sneaks. Fast forward to 2014, and your boy Westbrook is one of the flagship signature athletes for Jordan Brand, and is constantly spotted in neck-breaking PEs. We’re particularly fond of those IIIs….that’s a come up!

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