Skateboarding Product Reviews

Etnies Faction

As soon as you get these on your feet you instantly feel like either Bruce Lee or Hong Kong Phooey!

The vulcanized soles are slim, the shoe has plenty of movement and they almost feel like slippers once on. This can only be good for board control as there is nothing worse than wearing clogs to skate in and can’t feel the grain of the grip tape doing its job.

Etnies have come up with a classic here, in fact i believe they know it too otherwise they would not have sent the wonderful Slam City Skates tribute shoe into production with these and also would not have bothered with so many colourways.

It’s a simple shoe that has a lot of flexibility, the sort of shoe that if performs well for you, will be back on your feet as a fresh pair once the old are annihilated. They are light in weight and generally they are the most impressive shoe I have skated this year. My only concerns with these are the fact that apart from the addition of the Triple-stitched toe cap, the suede could well go through at the point of wear and tear due to ollies but only time will tell and this is an age old problem any skater has to deal with if you skate a lot.

Even though they are light and thin, the STI Foam™ cushioning footbed and the System G2™ inserted into heel should give you what you need for impact but after riding a ditch in these at the weekend, my heel was giving out a bit – but then again when you are hurtling downhill running out on a crap surface you are bound to run into difficulties whatever you are wearing on your feet! No shoe is going to wrap you in cotton wool completely and if they did, there would only be one company in the business.

But it gets better. After 20 years of service, London’s elite skate shop Slam City Skates were handed the accolade of Etnies producing a collaboration show but the biggest accolade of all is that they used the Faction, so possibly expect Etnies to drop these in leather in all colours at some point as they are simply wonderful on your feet, especially once you have skated in the suede versions. Due to the change in fabric these are the ultimate in skate shoe technology. Light, comfortable, straight out the box for use and big on looks. Fingers crossed they will be the next series although the suede versions are more than capable of bringing a big smile to your face.

Elissa Steamer, Kyle Leaper and Ronnie Creager all ride in these beauties and if you add Hong Kong Phooey into the equation then you can work out why you should have these on your feet pretty quickly!

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Chuck Bangers