As the ubiquitous producers of Air Jordans, Lebrons and Janoskis, no-one has had better success in making sports footwear than Nike. It was only a matter of time before it got involved in snowboard boots, and ever since the first pairs dropped in 2010 they’ve been simply impossible to ignore. Even if you’ve never tried a pair, you’ve probably heard plenty about their reputation for being among the most comfortable around. We’ve listened to everyone from Whitelines readers right up to Nicolas Müller gush about how good Nikes feel as soon as you lace them up, with no painful breaking-in period.
The Nike Women’s Vapen is no different, made to flex plenty right from the word go and to stay that way for the life of the boot. As it’s never going to be really rigid, it’s best suited to either the laid-back rider who likes to mess around, or the beginner. It’s by no means low-tech, though, with heat-mouldable liners and plenty of cushioning under the heel. Despite all this, Nike has managed to keep the price right down. It’s actually the cheapest boot in this year’s 100 at a mere £160, and male riders will be pleased to here that their version costs the same – although sorry lads, that Spinal Tap-esque none-more-black colour scheme is just for the girls. It’s got the classic fat lace, but both genders can pick up the Boa-laced version for an extra £30.