At one point or another, sneaker collectors always ask themselves, “What’s going to be my next pick-up?” Well, choosing the next sneaker to add to your collection isn’t hard at all—it’s actually securing a pair that can sometimes prove to be difficult. Whether it's the latest pair of Yeezys that slipped away from you on release date or a pair of O.G. Air Jordans that dropped when you were a kid, resellers can play a crucial role in finding what you’re after.
While reselling is often looked down upon in the sneaker community, it’s a necessary part of the game. Sneakerheads will say, “Resellers are killing the sneaker game,” or “Let the people who actually want the sneakers buy them,” but let’s be honest—we’ve all either sold a pair of kicks for a nice come up or wanted a pair so bad that shelling out extra cash wasn’t an issue.
Unauthorized authentic, otherwise known as "UA", are shoes that are produced in the same factories (using the same exact materials) as the authentic product when they were commissioned by shoe manufacturers and companies, but not authorized to be officially sold in public.
Multiple chains of private limited companies owning factories in China have contracts with shoe manufacturers. These limited companies are provided with the blueprints for the shoes from said manufacturer, as well as other materials such as the primeknit and boost, in order to manufacture the authentic product with these essential materials.
So there's no difference between RESELL and UAs?
Not quite, even though unauthorized authentics are produced by the same commissioned factories, by the same employees, with the same original materials... these pairs are not officially authorized or quality checked by the shoe company or manufacturer. These can also simply just be extra leftover pairs that were produced past the shoe company's contract quota. The factories then distribute and sell the UAs to resellers, dealers, and/or online stores who are interested.
This also explains why unauthorized authentics can be priced cheaper than even the original retail price despite coming from the same factory with the same materials! Resellers are able to source directly from the factory as a result and offer reasonable prices for the hottest sneakers currently on the market directly to customers - without the hassle.