There are certain accessories that are essential to anyone who loves sneakers, like a cleaning kit that's going to ensure your pairs are always looking and staying fresh. Then there are others that don't exactly have a functional purpose but are great to flex your collection, like a $250 display stand that makes your sneakers levitate — because why not? That's the Hypelev, a device that helps sneakerheads and hypebeasts showcase their prized possessions in the most unconventional way possible, by turning sneakers into floating decorations that can spin around in the air. Yes, you read that right.
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Magnets, magnets, magnets — So, how does the magic behind the Hypelev work? It's simpler than you might imagine, actually: It uses electromagnetic currents to "change the course of physics," as the company says, and create a visual effect that's definitely going to blow the minds of anybody who comes over to your home, office, or wherever you choose to place the stand. Design-wise, the Hypelev display is quite minimal. Aside from the bright, white LED light that acts as a backdrop for your floating shoes, there's a small vent that blows air to make the rotating and gliding possible.
One minor annoyance I had is that the built-in fan is kind of loud (like when your laptop is being overworked), so you'll have to get used that every time the Hypelev is turned on. On the back of it, meanwhile, there's a 1-10 dial that lets you control the magnetic strength, which you'll need to do depending on how heavy the sneakers you're trying to see levitate are. Speaking of, the setup process is fairly simple: You plug in the Hypelev, turn it on, put the included magnet on the inside of the heel of your shoe, and, finally, you place it about an inch below the roof of the Hypelev. You'll feel a magnetic pull instantly and, as soon as you do, you let the sneaker go and, voila, let the levitation commence.
Enjoy it for what it is — There's no denying the Hypelev is purely a gimmicky gadget, but don't forget people into streetwear culture would pay hundreds of dollars for a literal brick from Supreme. So, when you take into consideration how hypebeasts like to spend their money, suddenly the idea of a $250 display stand that can make things levitate doesn't seem that wild — oh yeah, I also put a Supreme "box logo" teddy bear on the Hypelev, and it stayed on there without any issues.
While I have the black version you see here, Hypelev also makes a white one for those of you who prefer a lighter theme. And as my boss Joshua Topolsky mentioned, if anything, these could be good for brands and retailers to have at their stores, since right now when you walk into most sneaker shops they all have their boring, static setups. The Hypelev, at the very least, makes the concept of displaying your sneakers exciting — even if it's just in your home.