The Nike Air Kukini may be one of the brand’s weirdest silhouette’s they’ve ever released. However, with most out-there Nike shoes, they have gathered a cult following since their introduction to the lineup in 2000. Now, the Kukini is set to make a comeback in 2022.

On New Years Day in 1999, Nike introduced the Alpha Project, a new series of shoes focused on identifying and solving performance problems in their products. The Alpha line produced a number of out-of-the-box silhouettes that remain popular to this day, like the Air Presto, as well as some lesser known models, like the Air Kukini, which is set to return in retro form this year. Originally released in 2000, the Air Kukini was built around removing a traditional lacing system, and instead offering a shoe that adapts itself to the feet of the wearer. Featuring a Lycra and sandwich mesh upper, the Kukini’s semi-elastic plastic cage would compress the upper to your foot, stretching out to fit wherever needed. Now, more than two decades later, Nike is gearing up to re-release the Air Kukini, starting in the ‘Topography’ and ‘Leopard’ colorways seen here. Featuring two distinct patterns, both pairs feature a white midsole and clear cage unit, while extra layers reinforce the toes and heels of the shoe. 


Nike’s first new colorways of the retro Air Kukini have not yet been announced for release, though we are expecting the laceless model to return sometime in Spring 2022. Seen here in ‘Leopard’ and ‘Topographic’ colorways, each pair will be available from both Nike and select retailers for $135. Check out the official images below for a better look, and stay tuned to JustFreshKicks for more Nike release news. 

UPDATE 9/4/22: Nike’s first releases of the retro Air Kukini have been scheduled to drop later this month, on September 20th, 2022. Pairs will be available via the SNKRS app for $140. 

Nike Air Kukini “Topography”
Release Date: 2022
Price: $135
Color: Summit White/Aviator Grey-Mystic Navy
Style Code: DV1894-100

Nike Air Kukini “Leopard”
Release Date: 2022
Price: $135
Color: Black/Multi-Color/Kumquat-White
Style Code: DJ6418-001

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