First released in 1989, the Air Jordan 4 is a sneaker icon nowadays. With its distinct design and unrivalled performance on the court, it's one of the greatest shoes to come from Michael Jordan's signature line, transcending its status as mere athletic footwear to become a timeless fashion statement. However, due to its immense success, the sneaker isn't always the easiest to come by, resulting in people turning to shoes like Jordan 4s instead.
What's more, Jordan 4s can sometimes come with fairly hefty price tags considering they're some of the best sneakers ever made. Not only do they retail for quite a lot, but purchasing Jordan 4s on the resale market can typically prove even more costly, hence why it's so important to highlight shoes like Jordan 4s to give you some alternatives.
Fortunately, we're here to help. We've compiled a list of shoes that provide a solid second option to some of the best Jordan 4 colourways on the market. From visually-alike shoes to sneakers that debuted in a similar era of basketball, our list has you covered. So, no need to panic if one of the best basketball shoes of all time is off the cards, as these are some pretty stellar alternatives to consider.
Shoes like Jordan 4s
1. Air Jordan 3
We're starting off with one of the best Air Jordans ever made in the Jordan 3. We're sticking with the Jordan brand here for one very good reason. The Jordan 4 features such a distinct style that few shoes share a visual likeness. There have been a few knock-offs over the years, but if you want something that looks relatively similar and features a quality build, the Jordan 3 is your answer.
There are several reasons why it features a visually similar design, the first being that it too was made by legendary sneaker architect Tinker Hatfield, who went on to design several amazing Jordans thereafter.
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The sneaker was also a product of the late '80s, much like the Jordan 4, and, as it is another Air Jordan, it features all the same iconic branding, including the classic Jumpman on the tongue.
Now, the Jordan 3 may not be any cheaper to buy, but if you're looking for the closest visual likeness, we'd say it's hard to argue against going with a 3.
2. Nike Air Force 1 Mid
Next up is the Nike Air Force 1, specifically the Mid variation. It may not look all that like the Jordan 4 compared to the 3, but the Air Force 1 does have a history in basketball, and its mid-cut collar height gives it somewhat of a similar silhouette.
What's more, the sneaker includes Nike Air technology in the midsole like the Jordan 4, giving the shoe a similar feel when on your feet. As an owner of both models, rest assured both the Jordan 4 and Air Force 1 are comfortable sneakers to wear all day long.
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The key to the Air Force 1 Mid though is that it's often cheaper to buy at retail. Being made by Nike as well, you're getting a similar build quality to the Jordan 4 while still costing less.
So, when it comes to finding a great alternative to the Jordan 4, make sure you consider some of the best Air Force 1s on the market to add to your collection.
3. adidas Forum Mid
Moving away from Nike now to one of the best adidas shoes ever created, the adidas Forum. Again, we're highlighting the Mid variation specifically to try and replicate the Jordan 4s higher-cut collar as best as possible.
That said, we wouldn't say the two are a visual match as very few shoes are. However, there are some similarities in their history, most notably how they were both born in the '80s and designed to perform on the court.
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Also, the adidas Forum Mid is another shoe which is generally cheaper to buy at retail, and is a great alternative if you're looking to go with something that's not made by Nike.
So, don't feel you have to stick to the same brand, as the adidas Forum Mid provides an excellent Jordan 4 alternative for you to consider.
4. New Balance 650
Continuing with another alternative to Nike in the New Balance 650. In our opinion, this one does bear somewhat of a resemblance to the Jordan 4 with its similar padded collar and multilayered colour blocking.
It also boasts a similar history of being a product of the 1980s basketball scene, and going for a 650 over a 550 means you get a collar height that isn't a million miles away from the Jordan 4s.
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This is becoming a consistent theme now but, once again, this New Balance 650 is typically cheaper to buy than the Jordan 4 at retail. This is great if you want to fill out your sneaker collection for less.
Ultimately, the New Balance 650 is a well-rounded, inexpensive alternative to the Jordan 4 which we'd say strikes the closest visual likeness for a sneaker not made by Nike.
5. Air Jordan 4 11Lab4
Okay, this last one may be cheating slightly as it is technically a Jordan 4. The entire shape and silhouette are identical as it is a 4 at its core, but it differs slightly as it is actually a hybrid of a 4 and a Jordan 11, making it incredibly unique and a great alternative option to consider.
As mentioned, it features the same shape as a Jordan 4, but Nike has brought in elements of the 11, namely the patent leather finish which completes almost the entirety of the upper.
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The shoe also features waxy laces and somewhat of a shiny finish to the sole unit to match the rest of the "glossy" design.
The only issue here is that the shoe is fairly rare, with only two colourways ever released at the time of writing. This means the 11Lab4 commands a fairly high price on the resale market. However, you won't find a closer match visually than this alternative Jordan 4 model.