The painted Walmart shoes TikTok trend is inspired by Nike's Air Force 1 sneakers.

TikTokers Are Painting These $15 Walmart Shoes As A Budget-Friendly Air Force 1 Dupe

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TikTok's latest viral trend involves paint, a $15 pair of Walmart shoes that look very similar to Nike's Air Force 1 sneakers, and a whole lot of creativity. While the social media platform is no stranger to DIY projects, this latest challenge has TikTokers creating works of art to wear on their feet — and the results are stunning. If you want to jump on the bandwagon, here's how to do the painted Walmart shoes TikTok trend.

Before you whip out the drop cloth and start painting, here's what you need to know about how painting your shoes even became a ~thing~.

What is the Painted Walmart Shoe TikTok trend?

TikTok fans might remember the OG trend of painting real Air Force 1 shoes went viral in October 2020. The much more affordable Walmart take on the idea started gaining traction in February 2021 and as of March 10, the #WalmartShoes tag has 15.1 million views. It's easy to see why the trend is taking off. In addition to the very colorful looks, the videos are plain fun to watch, with a Siri-like voiceover and step-by-step video instructions of the process.

What supplies do you need to paint Walmart Shoes?

First things first, you'll want to purchase a pair of Walmart’s Time & Tru Platform Sneakers, which have gone viral over the past few weeks for their resemblance to Nike's $90 Air Force 1 kicks. You can also use any other pair of white tennis shoes, but Walmart's version is just $14.97, making it a wallet-friendly option to use as your painting canvas. (If your size is sold out, keep checking back as the company is constantly restocking the popular style.)

Once you've gotten your shoes, it's a good idea to browse the #WalmartShoes hashtag on TikTok to get some inspiration from other TikTokers and get your artistic juices flowing. In addition to using acrylic craft paint to brighten their sneakers, people are bedazzling them with beads and glue. The decorative possibilities are endless, and at the end of your DIY project, you'll have a pair of one-of-a-kind shoes.

Consider purchasing a set of good acrylic paints to let you get creative with many different colors, like these 12 professional artist ones. For a sealant, you'll want a waterproof variety specifically for fabrics, like Scotch Guard Fabric and Upholstery Protective Spray.

When buying your supplies, be sure to follow the most up-to-date guidance from the CDC on social distancing and mask-wearing.

How to paint your Walmart shoes:

When applying your acrylic paint, there are several steps you can take to prevent cracking. First, you'll want to make sure you clean your shoes if they're an old pair. Second, make sure you're using good quality paint and that you're applying paint in thin layers and letting each layer dry before adding the next one. A good rule of thumb is painting in the direction of any areas of flexing, i.e. around the toe, so that any potential cracking is minimized. To finish it off, make sure to use a waterproof sealant to protect your paint job and your shoes if you decide to wear them outside.


Your DIY painted shoes can be anything you want them to be and if you're feeling in a creative rut, check out the #WalmartShoes tag for some inspiration. The possibilities for making them your own are endless, so don't wait on flexing your artistic abilities and creating some one-of-a-kind sneakers without breaking the bank.

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