Shoe Name Reebok Instapump Fury CLSHX
Colourway: Steel/desert stone
Date Acquired: June 17, 2016
Place Acquired: Understudy shop
Size: 9.5 (true to size)
Price: $185 CAD (purchased on sale for $135)
I first noticed these shoes on Understudy's site back in May right after I had finished school for the semester. Anything with a subtle colourway and uncommon accent colours (the dusty pink inner) usually catches my eye, however that in combination with the uncompromisingly unique design had me hooked. However, being that it was right after my semester, I had no money for the $185 price tag and had to figuratively shelf them.
On Friday afternoon, I was meeting with 6Streets' Andy Nguyen down in Mission and we started to talk about his brand new pair of Reebok Classics in white leather. This reminded me of the Instapump, so i pulled up the Understudy site to get Andy's opinion, and realized they were now on sale (and I had started my summer job). Next thing I knew it, I was headed down to the store and trying them on. The 9.5 was perfectly true to size and I picked up a pair immediately. I have worn and tested them over the weekend to bring you my first impressions on them.
Fit and Materials
Aside from the unique design and understated colourway, the first thing I noticed about these was the fit and comfort. As somebody with notoriously wide duck feet, any hint of roughness or hardness on the inner toebox can guarantee that I won't be able to wear a pair of kicks all day without taking them off every couple hours. The material choice and air system on these completely quashed these concerns. These have possibly the best and most comfortable fit out of any sneakers I currently own or ever have owned
The shoe upper is made of a soft padded mesh that is encased in an inflatable soft fabric cage that can be used to adjust the tightness (somewhat similar to the Reebok Pump skates, sans laces). However, I have found I can wear them with or without inflating them, as the plush materials have so much give and flexibility. Another great benefit of the material choice here is that there is a huge amount of ventilation for your feet through both the mesh and the gaps between the cage. Hence, the ability to be the only one amongst your friends who can wear mid-tops in the summer (with socks) without making your feet sweat.
Another great benefit I found with these over the weekend is how well they pair with tapered slim jeans. My personal choice was the Rag & Bone Standard Issue Fit 1 jean (shown here in the blue destroyed variation), which was practically made to be cuffed into the shoe's wide opening. I didn't get the chance to try, but I suspect that another perfect pairing may be a pair of Zanerobe Sureshot shorts. I opted to pair mine with tonally-consistent white socks, but the neutral colourway definitely leaves room for experimentation; navy blue and army green would also be easy pairings, and if you're bold enough you could certainly pull off grey digital camo as well.
The only major downside I found while wearing these over the weekend is that inflating them took longer than I would normally take to tie regular laces (which I rarely even do on my laced shoes either). However, as mentioned, I was perfectly happy wearing them deflated, and the comfort that the system offers far outweighs the extra time. On a minor note, I am also slightly concerned about how easy they will be to clean given the complexity and the mesh material, but that's a topic for a later update.
Overall, so far I find the Instapump fury CLSHX possibly unmatched in comfort out of all the sneakers I own. The design fully speaks to me as somebody who enjoys offbeat and unique pieces, and the simple colourway speaks to me as somebody who looks for a really high level of wearability. Some of my favorite comparable shoes around this price range are the New Balance MRT580DR and the Nike Flyknit Racers, and the Instapump Fury more than stands up to these in comfort and design in my mind. Check back here later this year for updates as I wear these further throughout the summer.