Classics Revisited is intended to give our readers a look back on Nike models that have earned their rightful spots in the historical fabric of the sneaker sub-culture. Looking back at our previous selections, Sneaker News revisited some of the heaviest hitters like the Air Jordan VII Bordeaux and the Supreme x Nike SB Dunk High. Our choice for this latest Classics Revisited segment is the Nike Air Max Light, the third running shoe in Nike history to feature visible Air. The Air Max Light might seem like a mere design upgrade from the Air Max 1, but the technological and engineering advances implemented in the shoe serve as an evolutionary landmark of Air Max timeline. Overshadowed time and time again by other Air Max legacy silhouettes, the Light was excluded in both the History of Air Pack in 2005 and the Nike Air Attack of 2010, making the Light quite possibly the most underrated shoe in Nike Air Max history.
The Nike Air Max Light, also referred to as the Air Max II, was chosen to be the successor to the revolutionary Air Max 1; The Light resembled the original Air Max shoe to the point where differences between the two could not be readily recognized, but the Air Max Light is truly a different shoe from design, structural, and engineering standpoints.
The Air Max Light was lighter than the Air Max 1 as a result of swapping the previous polyurethane midsole for a phylone midsole, and also featured a forefoot Air-Sole Unit not found in the original. Other structural alterations include a two-piece interlocking midsole system, thermoplastic straps for stability, 420 Denier Mesh for breathability, a BRS 1000 Waffle outsole, and a variable width lacing – the last two carrying on to the Nike Air Max 90. The Nike Air Max Light was also featured a plastic NIKE AIR hangtag. Eighteen years later, the Nike Air Max Light was finally re-released with a number of great colorways made available exclusively through JD Sports; the retros made an attempt to keep true to OG by attaching the new shoes with replicas of the novelty hangtag.