How a Teenage Sneaker Restorer Is Literally Turning Trash Into Treasure

Meet the 17-year-old who's turning trashed sneakers into prized pairs.

Photo Removed
Complex Original

Blank pixel used during image takedowns

Photo Removed

The age-old idiom "one man's trash is another man's treasure" may be cliché, but it couldn't be anymore true for 17-year-old sneaker restorer Jose Armando Bustamante of Houston, Texas.

Bustamante, a budding YouTube star and restoration specialist, was recently profiled by KAGS and revealed of the few trade secrets that allow him to flourish in a crowded culture of customizers, restorers, and enthusiasts. 

"You can find them anywhere from thrift stores to eBay, even the trash cans, because I found the original Air Jordans in the garbage can, and I was able to sell them for $400," Bustamante said in reference to the O.G. "Military Blue" Jordan IVs pictured above. 

Before you go digging around in your local dumpster for rare O.G.s, you should know that Bustamante's talents extend far beyond the picking aspect. It's his tireless dedication to restoration work, which you can check out in the clip below, that enabled him to turn the IVs back into a $400 sneaker.

Today, the high school senior's business is thriving, which is thanks in large part to his successful YouTube channel, RetroSnickers. According to KAGS, Houston rapper Bun B has shown interest in Bustamante's work, and he's also been approached by potential sponsors.

Keep an eye on this young man, you may be seeing a lot more from him soon.

View this video on YouTube