Through the years, there have been a handful of Nike silhouettes that have managed to transcend the sneaker community and earn a permanent spot within mainstream pop culture. The Air Force 1, multiple Air Jordans, and Air Max series are a few of the most noteworthy crossovers, but there's also another sneaker that deserves a mention: the Cortez.
Ever since Kendrick Lamar's "White tees and Nike Cortez" line on one of 2013's biggest songs, the Cortez has been in the midst of a resurgence, but it's actually been a long time coming for this historic model. Designed by Bill Bowerman in 1972, the Cortez's original purpose was to be equally comfortable and durable, providing runners with something that would last through miles and miles.
Before long, the Cortez was adopted by the hip-hop set and started popping up on the feet of West Coast stand outs like Eazy-E. In 1991, Whitney Houston rocked the Cortez during her halftime performance at Super Bowl XXV (pictured above), and by the time Tom Hanks laced up a pair in 1994's Forest Gump, the sneaker had become a mainstream sensation.
These days, it's worn by names like Kendrick Lamar, Lil Wayne, YG, and Stalley, but you'll have to head over to the Champs Sports blog for the full rundown.