How to Lace Your Air Force 1s


Let's be honest… Who can't recognise an Air Force 1 when they see one? This pair of basketball footwear has revolutionised how we see shoe wear since its launch in 1982. Since then, it's rapidly gained popularity among world-class athletes and fashion enthusiasts.

There are many lacing styles, in this blog, we wanted to go through 3 popular ways on how to lace your Air Force 1s in a style that screams you. Ready to figure out how to make your Air Force 1s uniquely yours? Before we get to that, here's a question you might be wondering…

Why are Air Force 1s so popular?

Air Force 1s, especially the all-white ones, are famous for their versatile design and clean look. They can be paired up with practically any outfit or theme. For instance, many brides have chosen to walk down the aisle wearing Air Force 1s; meanwhile, thousands of college students still consider Air Force 1s their must-have shoe for college.

How to Lace your Air Force 1s?

Lacing up a pair of Nike Air Force 1s isn't just about functionality; it's an art form that expresses your style and personality through your kicks. Whether you prefer a clean and classic look or something more intricate and eye-catching, how you lace your Air Force 1s can make all the difference.

First and foremost, choosing the right laces for your Air Force 1s is essential. While the shoes typically come with standard flat laces, you can always switch them out for different colours or materials to customise your look. Experimenting with waxed laces or swapping in trendy rope laces can add a unique touch to your sneakers.

Apart from adding a personal touch through different colours and lace materials, you can also set yourself apart by tying your laces in the techniques we discuss below to help you get that trendy look going well.

Straight Bar Lacing

One of the most straightforward lacing methods is the straight bar lace.

  1. Start: Begin with both ends of the shoelace at the bottom of the shoe, with an equal length on each side.
  2. Insert: Insert one end of the lace straight across the bottom eyelets, going from the outside of the shoe to the inside.
  3. Repeat with the other end, so both ends are on the inside of the shoe.
  4. Cross: Take one end of the lace and bring it diagonally up to the next eyelet on the opposite side. Thread it through from the inside to the outside.
  5. Repeat: Take the other end of the lace and do the same, crossing it diagonally to the next eyelet on the opposite side and threading it through from the inside to the outside.
  6. Continue: Repeat the process, alternating sides, crossing the lace diagonally and threading it through each consecutive pair of eyelets until you reach the top of the shoe.
  7. Tighten: Once you've laced all the eyelets, pull both ends of the lace to tighten the lacing evenly.
  8. Finish: Tie the ends of the lace into a bow or knot at the top of the shoe.
  9. Adjust: If necessary, adjust the tightness of the lacing by loosening or tightening specific sections until you achieve a comfortable fit.

This method works well for those who prefer a minimalist aesthetic or want to showcase a bold colourway without distractions.


Criss-Cross Lace

For those looking to add a bit of flair to their Air Force 1s, the criss-cross lacing technique is a popular choice.

  1. Begin at the bottom: Insert the lace into the bottom eyelets of the shoe, ensuring that both ends are even.
  2. Cross the laces: Throw the right lace through the left eyelet directly above it. Then, thread the left lace through the right eyelet directly above it. This creates the first criss-cross.
  3. Continue criss-crossing: Repeat the criss-cross pattern, alternating sides as you work your way up the shoe. Pull the laces snugly after each cross to maintain consistent tension.
  4. Adjust as needed: Ensure that the tension is comfortable and even across the shoe. You can adjust the tightness by pulling or loosening the laces as necessary.
  5. Finish at the top: Once you reach the top eyelets, cross the laces one final time and pull them snugly. You can tie them in a bow or knot at this point.
  6. Tie the knot: Tie a standard bow or knot to secure the laces. Make sure the knot is tight enough to keep the shoe securely on your foot but not too tight to restrict circulation.
  7. Adjust for comfort: After tying the knot, adjust the tightness of the laces as needed for comfort and fit. Ensure that the shoe feels secure but not overly tight.

The result is a visually dynamic look that adds dimension and depth to your sneakers.


Loose Lacing

Whether you're a sneaker aficionado or just looking for a way to give your kicks a relaxed vibe, loose lacing is the perfect solution.

  1. Start at the bottom: Begin by unlacing your shoes completely. Remove the laces and start with the bottom set of eyelets.
  2. Cross over: Take one end of the lace and thread it through the bottom set of eyelets, from the outside in. Then, cross it over to the opposite side.
  3. Create a crisscross: Continue threading the lace through the eyelets, crossing over to the opposite side each time. This creates a crisscross pattern as you work your way up the shoe.
  4. Leave some slack: As you lace up, make sure to leave some slack in the lace. This will prevent the shoe from feeling too tight when you wear it.
  5. Use a pen for even spacing: To ensure even spacing between the eyelets, use a pen or similar object to hold the lace taut while threading it through each set of eyelets. This helps maintain consistent tension and spacing.
  6. Tie at the top: Once you reach the top set of eyelets, tie a loose knot or bow to secure the laces in place. Make sure not to pull the laces too tight.
  7. Adjust for comfort: After loosely lacing your shoes, adjust the tension and arrangement of the laces to ensure a comfortable fit. You can tighten or loosen certain sections as needed.
  8. Double-check: Before wearing your shoes, double-check to make sure the laces are evenly spaced and comfortable. Adjust any sections that feel too tight or loose.

Loose lacing your Air Force 1s not only adds a touch of casual elegance to your style but also prioritizes comfort without compromising on aesthetics.


3 Trending Style Tips for Air Force Ones

The iconic Air Force Ones. Loved by sneakerheads, streetwear enthusiasts, and fashion-forward individuals alike, these classic kicks have cemented their status as a timeless wardrobe staple. Whether you're a long-time fan or new to the game, we're here to elevate your style game with three trending tips to rock your Air Force Ones like never before.

Monochrome Minimalism: Embrace the sleek and versatile design of Air Force Ones by opting for a monochrome outfit. Pair your white Air Force Ones with similarly coloured clothing for a clean and minimalist look. Consider wearing all-white or all-black attire, including slim-fit jeans or joggers, a plain tee or hoodie, and a bomber jacket or trench coat. This minimalist approach highlights the iconic silhouette of the Air Force Ones while creating a timeless and effortlessly stylish ensemble.


Streetwear Statement: Elevate your streetwear game by incorporating bold and eye-catching elements into your outfit. Start with a statement piece, such as a graphic hoodie, oversized denim jacket, or patterned shirt. Mix and match different textures and prints for added visual interest. Pair your Air Force Ones with distressed jeans, cargo pants, or track pants for a relaxed yet edgy vibe. Complete the look with accessories like a beanie, chain necklace, or bucket hat to add an extra layer of personality to your streetwear ensemble.


Athleisure Fusion: Fuse athletic and casual elements together for a trendy athleisure look that seamlessly combines style and comfort. Start with performance-inspired pieces like technical joggers, sweat-wicking hoodies, or a sleek tracksuit. Layer with a lightweight bomber jacket or windbreaker for added warmth and dimension. Pair your Air Force Ones with sporty socks and accessorize with a crossbody bag or waist pack for a modern twist. This athleisure fusion allows you to transition effortlessly from the gym to the streets while staying on-trend and comfortable throughout the day.


These three style tips offer versatile and trendy ways to incorporate Air Force Ones into your wardrobe, whether you prefer a minimalist aesthetic, streetwear flair, or athleisure-inspired look. Experiment with different combinations and accessories to make each outfit your own and showcase your personal style.

3 top FAQs for Air Force Ones

How do I clean my Air Force Ones without damaging them?

Keeping your Air Force Ones clean is essential for maintaining their iconic look. To clean them without risking damage, follow these steps:

  • Remove excess dirt with a soft-bristled brush or cloth.
  • Mix a small amount of mild detergent with warm water.
  • Use a soft cloth or sponge to gently scrub the surface of the shoes.
  • Rinse with clean water and air dry away from direct heat.
  • Consider using a specialised sneaker cleaner or stain remover for tougher stains, following the manufacturer's instructions carefully.

Are Air Force Ones true to size?

Air Force Ones typically run true to size, but individual preferences may vary. It's recommended to try them on before purchasing if possible. If you need more clarification about sizing, consider trying on a pair in-store or consulting the sizing guide provided by the manufacturer.

Remember that different models or variations of Air Force Ones may fit slightly differently, so it's essential to find the right fit for your feet.

Can I customise my Air Force Ones?

You can customise your Air Force Ones to reflect your unique style and personality. Many sneaker customisation services and DIY tutorials are available online, offering various options to personalise your shoes.

Common customisation techniques include painting, dyeing, adding patches or decals, and even swapping out laces or adding custom lace locks.

Use high-quality materials and follow proper techniques to ensure your customisations are durable and long-lasting.

These FAQs address common concerns and queries that Air Force Ones enthusiasts may have, providing helpful guidance on cleaning, sizing, and customisation options for these iconic sneakers.

Need help finding laces?

If you want to add a little flair and personality to your shoes, look no further than Kicks Shoelaces. Shop now and find the perfect pair of laces! 


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