Skip to content

Nike Air Max 270 Review: React vs the Original - Which is Best?


It's easy to fall in love with the Nike Air Max 270. This fantastic sneaker blends style and comfort in unique ways, building upon the rich history of the entire lineup while delivering something new.

The 270 in the name refers to how much of the air unit is visible in the heel. It shows 270 degrees around the back and is more than an aesthetic choice in the design. Nike equipped it with the largest unit of its type when it was released in 2018.

That means each footfall is a soft ride when you slip on the 270s. Although the heel can look big or bubbly to some, it is an ideal choice for all-day wear.

Nike Air Max 270 React vs the Original

While both sneakers provide excellent cushioning, the Air Max 270 focuses on the heel's large air unit, making it ideal for those who need extra heel support. The 270 React takes it a step further by integrating React foam, offering a more comprehensive cushioning experience that's responsive and comfortable across the entire foot.

The Air Max 270's mesh upper offers breathability and flexibility, and is designed for a comfortable, snug fit. The 270 React, meanwhile, uses a more complex construction that combines lightweight fabric with synthetic materials, aimed at providing a soft and durable upper.

With the Air Max 270, you’ll find a more straightforward, sporty look, while the 270 React introduces an artsy, more nuanced design with its layered upper and use of bold colourways influenced by various art movements.

Initially, both shoes were positioned as lifestyle sneakers, but the inclusion of React foam in the 270 React nudges it towards being more versatile for light sports activities.

The good news is that all 270s deliver a proud visual statement. Your choice depends on what support levels your feet want and the colourways needed for your fit.

Nike Air Max 270 Collaborations

While the Air Max 270 itself is a bit newer compared to other models in the Air Max lineage, its innovative design and the significance of the Air unit have made it an attractive canvas for collaborators.

These partnerships help keep the model fresh and relevant, continually introducing it to new audiences and reinvigorating interest among existing fans. Here’s a closer look at some of the best options out there right now.

Nike Air Max 270 React ENG Travis Scott

This shoe features a wavy design and Scott’s signature earth tones to create a subtle, yet distinctive look. It takes a lace-agnostic approach and uses several materials, including a welded TPU overlay and fleece around the ankle, to deliver a distinctive aesthetic.

Nike Air Max 270 x UNDERCOVER

This fashion label led by Jun Takahashi took on a collaboration with the React version of the 270s. It’s a little different than the standard design because it uses the Air Max tech in the heel with foam for the remainder of the sole. It features a mix of patterns and colours that stands out while delivering a satisfying performance with its comfort specs.

Who Designed the Nike Air Max 270?

A senior creative director at Nike, Dylan Raasch designed the Air Max 270. Over the years, he has helped develop several sneakers for the brand, including the Roshe Run. His efforts focus on minimalism while adding as much comfort as possible.

For the 270, Raasch wanted to create a product that blended form and function. His team pushed the boundaries of the Air Max technology to deliver a striking and innovative unit that offered the most comfort possible.

The result was the 270-degree Air Max unit, the first 100% lifestyle shoe in the lineup.

Blending old and new while embracing heritage and innovation is a hallmark of Raasch's design philosophy and can be seen throughout the Air Max 270.

Additional Design Elements

The Air Max 270 draws inspiration from two classic designs: the 180 and the 93. You receive the rounded outsole design that supports runners while getting extra support around the sides and heel for ongoing stability.

A higher heel design with a pull table for faster on and off is a nod to Nike’s history, while the wave-like components in the upper flow like many others in the Air Max series.

Arguably, Nike has been its most creative self when adopting the colourways for the Air Max 270. You can find monochromatic choices, understated options with subtle variations, and bold and vibrant ones that go to the extreme. Finding something that matches your fit is relatively simple, while the sneaker maintains a competitive price.

How the Nike Air Max 270 Is Constructed

When comparing the 270 to other Air Max designs, the tongue stands out the most. It is integrated directly into the upper to create a seamless interior that wraps gently around the foot.

This design eliminates the seams that sometimes cause rubbing for some people, reducing the redness and irritation impacting some people when wearing their shoes for a long time.

It also makes the shoe easier to slip on and off, contributing to a more comfortable, sock-like fit.

The Air Max 270's lacing system is straightforward. It allows for easy adjustments to the tightness, helping to secure the foot and provide a customized fit. The eyelets are strategically placed to distribute pressure evenly when the laces are tightened, enhancing overall comfort.

As for the sole, it's a combination of a soft foam midsole and solid rubber. Nike places the latter in strategic locations to offer more durability in high-wear locations. You receive traction and responsiveness without putting wear and tear on the design itself.

That means the 270 functions well for most athletic activities or for your streetwear needs. It’s dynamic and versatile while maintaining a visually striking silhouette.