Confessions of a Sneaker Addict – Part 17

Everyone who collects sneakers or just has a desire to always have the latest kicks knows about multiple trends that are evident among the sneaker culture. Whether they are the hotness or the wackness is up for debate, but the reality is that they are apparent among many people today whether it be the casuals, the shoe collectors, the heat rockers, the celebrities, the kids, the adults, just about anyone you can think of. Now, without any further ado, does the following confession apply to you?

Searching the Bay

When can you say is the year you really got into sneakers and I mean really into sneakers? If it was in the last decade or so, most likely you missed out on past releases that have never been or have yet to be retroed. This puts many sneaker addicts in a predicament, a tough one too.

There are many options that can be taken to go after sneakers released in the past, plenty of sneaker market websites. The problem is, not everyone uses them and more importantly, the people who do more often than not know about what they are trying to sell. That’s where eBay comes in.

eBay is really a gift and a curse to sneaker addicts, it brings many good things but also bad things to us.


1. Grails – When in doubt, hit up eBay. Everything is sold on eBay including sneakers and new pairs show up every day. Missed out on a release? No problem, people resell (I’m not referring to the reselling prices, just the ones who use eBay as a store). When you’re looking for a niche shoe that was released in 1993, most websites will not carry these older sneakers (even consignment sites) so eBay is beneficial to Sn’eads.

2. Daily checkups – Got money to throw on some kicks but have no idea what to get? A quick run through eBay can help you find some gems. A lot of people throw up shoes with $.99 starting bids so with a little bit of luck, it’s possible to grab a pair of shoes for next to none or WAY below retail. Also helps to find shoes that are hard to find in your area. Example: Asics Gel Lyte 3’s are practically non-existence when it comes to finding them in stores. Therefore, eBay is used to find the older releases that I have trouble finding on both consignment shops and in store.


1. Reseller paradise – Goodness, this doesn’t even need an explanation. $800 for South Beach LBJ 8’s, $350 for “Space Jam” 11’s, or $650 for “Tiffany” Nike SB’s, people are straight wilding. Not a great place to search for the most hyped sneakers by any means (grails does not always mean hyped). I think that’s enough though, if you need to know more about resellers, just check the older COASA post on resellers.

2. FAKES – Getting burned on a pair of sneakers is awful and a very bad experience. People who don’t like sneakers like we do will never understand and for anyone who doesn’t understand, think about this. Imagine finding something in an auction that you’ve been looking for for a while. You win the auction and can’t wait for the item to get to your house. Time passes and the item finally arrives and it turns out to be too good to be true, it’s a fake. The quality is atrocious and it differs from the original item you were looking for. To others, they won’t see it, but to you, it kills you inside. That’s what buying a fake sneaker is like, days of anticipation just to be disappointed.

3. Bidding wars – This one is also a short point, you against another bidder or multiple other bidders. It’s not fun and takes away from the chances of receiving the shoes you want. You’re always one second away from being outbid and losing by 50 cents. Think about that, 50 cents, losing a bid for a shoe you’ve been looking for, by a mere 50 cents.

Although there are more curses than gifts, to many, the gifts outweigh the curses. Of course research and being knowledgeable over sneakers will reduce the chances of being burned on an eBay purchase, people still choose to avoid using eBay to grab sneaks.

Do you use eBay to buy sneakers? If so, what shoes do you usually use it for (IE: grails, OG pairs, releases not in your area)?

Leave your thoughts in the comment section below.

Written by: Jedi Jump High aka Jordan Rainey

About The Author

Lord G-Roc from the Great South. Twitter/IG: @GRocSmith

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  • As always, shoutout to REE for Sn’eads. I don’t usually use the term sneakerhead, but Sn’eads rolls off the tongue so easily.

  • javier_TX_teacher

    being wearing jordans since 89 black ivs…but collecting since i was 18 so ebay is heaven and hell for me…I have almost all the jordans that “I have to have” thanks to ebay…but just reading #3 kills me..i lost a decent pair of mocha 3s for 27 cents…so the last two on my must have list and in my ebay search box EVERYDAY is mocha iii and thundar iv…size 12 if anyone has…lol

  • javier_TX_teacher

    “been” wearing i ment

  • Been into kicks for a long time, but only started appreciating em since the last 4 maybe 5 years. To answer your 2nd question, I have a steady Watch List on the electronic Bay, some Favorite Sellers as well. For some reason I buy very little tho. Guess that has to do with some bad experiences. I prefer either the hookup thru a fellow Sn’ead, or the good ol’ fashioned way, hunting em down yourself. Touching, feeling, seeing and smelling the shoe. I think the Bay is great, don’t get me wrong, but I think seeing is believing. On-foot rather than “how would it look?”

  • Been into kicks for a long time, but only started appreciating em since the last 4 maybe 5 years. To answer your 2nd question, I have a steady Watch List on the electronic Bay, some Favorite Sellers as well. For some reason I buy very little tho. Guess that has to do with some bad experiences. I prefer either the hookup thru a fellow Sn’ead, or the good ol’ fashioned way, hunting em down yourself. Touching, feeling, seeing and smelling the shoe. I think the Bay is great, don’t get me wrong, but I think seeing is believing. On-foot rather than “how would it look?” Even if that does mean the hunt must continue.

  • AlSneaks

    I use Ebay for older releases or cheap steals. it’s getting more and more difficult with the quality of fakes rising while the quality of JB is falling. it seems at some point the will meet in the middle and it will be nearly impossible to tell unless you’re an expert on every shoe. And it’s not just fake JB and Nike. there is fake GR’s of all brands popping up. sometimes I look at them like….is that even really worth producing a fake of?

  • Royal S

    I never used ebay before. I thought about it but I just prefer to look at my kicks in person since most of the time I’m worried about something in the mail getting messed up or there might be something I see on the kicks that I don’t like & can’t return or receive a refund.

  • sal

    1st off…Great Article.

    I have liked sneakers all my life. Didn’t start buying a lot until 05′ when I had more money of my own. Since then It’s too hard to stop. I’ve used eBay maybe twice for sneakers. AJXXI and Zoom LeBron IIs. It’s not that I don’t trust eBay it’s just I’ve heard so many sour stories of non legit kicks. I’m not trying to deal with that. So I go to the usual spots to get what I want.

    And let me say networking with others is a good way to find sneakers too. Meeting and talking to people helps. websites, consignment, mom & pap shops etc.

  • I pretty much agree with 4Mosa. And I don’t use EBay, b/c I find it rather “tedious”.

  • zadehkicks

    Love and despise ebay sometimes. I sell a lot on ebay so could not live without it. BUT could not agree more that it sucks many times due to the sucky resellers (i do not begrudge resellers, just some), and the DAMN fakes.

    Overall ebay has been an amazing boost for the sneaker game. trust me, ebay has helped overall.

  • Hamburga Joe

    Hell Yea I use Ebay for Kicks.
    I just copped the
    Lebron 7 Cool Grey $70
    Nike Terra Sertig ACG – $45
    Copper Foamposites – $120
    Eggplant Foamposite – $130
    Air Jordan 12 Flu Game $80
    Air Jordan 12 Red/White – $70
    Lebron 7 Dunk Man – $160

    Ebay has been nothing but a Gift !
    and a whole in wallet via Paypal !

  • JEDI – appreciate the respect. SALUTE.
    Like i said, SN’EAD is the EVOLUTION of the term SNEAKERHEAD. Just changing with the times.

    NOW, onto EBAY –

    But, I look at eBay more as RESELLER PARADISE these days.
    I’ve actually been studying this shxt for the last month.
    Take the CHEECH & CHONG dunk for example.
    There’s 1000 of these in circulation right?
    Well…About 150 of those have gone up for sale since the release!

    Then you got the SWIZZ BEATS KAMIKAZE:
    I kid you not, not more than maybe an hour after the release
    20 pair of the 84 released were on Ebay.
    The GREEDY resellers sold NO KAMIKAZES.
    They set their starts bids at DUMB numbers.
    This one fool set it at $500.

    The smarter vultures just let the market dictate what the shoe was gonna sell for…
    because obviously…when it’s limited…it’s gonna fetch more than retail.
    Saw one guy make $700 off two pairs.

    I think the problem is that alot of the so-called SN’EADS aren’t really SN’EADS.
    If they were sn’eads, their buying experience wouldn’t be limited to just the internet.

    When you’re a sn’ead,

    You physically go to stores.

    You hunt down kicks in your state.
    In another state that you can get to even!

    Yes, state, cuz I’ve driven 4 hours away from home to go get some ish before. lol
    long story.

    I shop on eBay too…but it’s a LAST resort…NEVER MY GO TO.
    Older releases…outside ISS…you really don’t have a choice.
    But that new stuff?? man, you DON’T need eBay for that.
    You gotta do what sn’eads have always done and that’s HUSTLE FOR YOURS.

  • I’m a young guy but because of my brothers I’ve been into sneaks since a wee tod lol. Ebay is most def a gift & curse though. I’ve never ran to ebay for a new release, just my personal hidden gems and sleepers. I actually just sold my Mars IV’s last night. A shame it’s flooded with resellers nowadays, or at least the ridiculous rape artist resellers

  • Now that I look back, it’s actually kinda hard to follow up on R E E’s on point reply haha. Nuff respect man

  • J Dizzle { Lou }

    I deff use ebay. thank god i havnt got burned yet. U deff gotta do research on what the sneaker looks like before you buy them. always ask for more recent pics, question everything about them.

  • I’ve been buying and selling on eBay for years. It all started when I bought 16 pairs of Dinosaur Jr. SB Highs from my local skate shop (before the rest of KY hopped into the SB game, now there is a line and the shop charges double retail for releases so I stay away). I resold them for and average price of $275 and kept a pair in my size. In the end I made some decent change and paid for a pair of dope kicks for myself. I’ve been reselling ever since. Shouts to my homie Joe from @Oneness287 for putting me up on game back in 2005.

    Aside from making good money over the years reselling, I buy shoes on eBay all the time. There is nothing to worry about, I just require a few prerequisites before I buy. Seller must have feedback score of at least 50, feedback must be at 95% positive or better, listing must say 100% authentic with no fewer than 5 pictures of the shoes. That’s it. Follow those guidelines and you won’t get screwed. Oh, and be sure to read the item description carefully so you don’t overlook any important notes about the item like ‘no box’ or ‘replacement box’…things like that.

    Hate on me for making money reselling kicks on eBay if you want, but I’m a business man and when I see opportunity I strike. Nobody is forcing people to pay these prices, it’s simply supply & demand. If the market is bearing a price that’s going to result in me putting money in my families bank account, I’m all in.

  • puerto-black

    I never thought about ebay until the 11′ skunks dropped. I need help with the right people on ebay. I need the cheech&chongs in a 8 half, 9. Help

  • brennanizm

    I still remember getting the OG Air Jordan 1 for Xmas when I was 7 years old. That was the monumental moment that sent me on a lifetime of collecting kicks. To this day I still get amped for release dates, but really only copp the Jordans that bring about personally significant memories. I give (and receive) madd respect to my fellow heads when I’m out and about. You always know when you see someone who has their sneaker game tight.

  • I use it…

    I buy/sell a lot of sneakers. I find myself using ebay, flight club, kixclusive, etc. not more so to buy my shoes but to get a general idea of what the market is asking for. I personally couldn’t purchase anything from ebay that had chances of being faked, but now you have buyer protection so that helps us out some- ebay is great for what I use it for. If the typical reseller is asking for 550, generally I know FC and ebay are a stretch so I keep my sells fair- if they’re asking 550, I might turn and sell my product for 400-425. I’d call ebay a gift for that, but a curse for what the internet itself has done to the sneaker game. Before the days of the “www”, the resell game was much different. The web allows resellers to set up shop to individuals across the country and that allows them to tax people. Especially on LE’s that may not reach that ‘head in a smaller market. Before the days of the web, you’d have to call your cousin in NY, or that friend that graduated from your high school and went to LA for college and get them to buy stuff for you- or that girl that studied abroad (sorry I just thought about that andre 3000 lyric) to get you something nobody in your immediate circle could get. Those were the good days- when a trade meant something, when you sold those 12’s to a friend of a friend of a friend- the game has changed a lot but I’m still in it. You just have to adapt. I love and hate ebay. But I will never hate sneakers.

  • dmy

    i’ve used ebay twice, but only as a last resort. one has to be very careful with ebay though. i.e., know what you’re buying. what i used ebay for was white red reebok questions and some premium air max lights. paid $100 for the questions and i bidded on the lights on ebay but actually bought the shoe from the store’s website for $40.
    i don’t ever see myself buying jordans from ebay. too sketchy. i want to snatch up some ’09 qs og red air max 1s and the dirty air force 2 (a real sneakerhead shoe) but money’s tighter than provacative apparel on a female.