How Rihanna Saved Puma
When I rack my brain to think of the most popular sneaker brand right now, Puma is definitely not in the forefront of my mind seeing as everyone and their mother loves themselves a good pair of Adidas Stan Smiths or Superstars. Now I don’t know if you know this, but Rihanna was named the creative director for the women’s vertical in 2014 and ever since then, Puma’s upward trend began, slowly at first, and then, all at once. WWD reported that Puma’s overall profits had dropped overall by more than a third this past quarter, but under the watch of Bad Gal Ri Ri, the women’s side, especially sneakers, began to steadily increase.
The first move Rihanna made with Puma that was visible to the public was when she Instagramed a photo of an unknown sneaker with the caption “pRIHview.” When gossip as to whether or not the shoe was a part of her collaboration began to circulate, the photo was quickly deleted, which only added to suspicion that it might be
The next time we saw the sneaker is when her tattoo artist posted a picture of one of her new tattoos on Instagram that featured the same sneaker yet again. There were speculations that the shoe might not have been a product from her partnership with Puma and that it might have been custom work from Mr. Completely.
But just a month after the pictures were posted, our suspicions were confirmed. In September, Rihanna had released a small series of women’s shoes, a suede creeper in three different colorways. When just these three sneakers first released on September 14th, they sold out completely in the time span of three hours, proving that Rihanna’s design was a force to be reckoned with. Due to high demand, yet another drop happened on September 25th and again, they sold out incredibly fast.
After the drop, we did learn that the sneakers actually did have design input from Mr. Completely and it is stated that the shoe takes inspiration from 80’s punk bands in cities like New York City and London.
The shoes are made for women however they are made up to a women’s size 10, which fits a men’s 8.5 (which is why you’ll see Travi$ Scott wearing them as a part of the ad campaign).
The hype around this sneaker has set the precedent for the future of Puma and for the rest of Rihanna’s line, set to drop in March 2016.