The Vans x truth® Collection: Lace up. Stand for Something

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Release Date:

September 5, 2014


Patricia McLaughlin


(202) 454-5560

Starla Stiles


(202) 454-5799

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Washington, D.C.; September 5, 2014 – Teens across the country can now engage with the nation’s largest smoking prevention campaign through fashion. Vans®, the original action sports footwear and apparel brand, has teamed up with the truth smoking prevention campaign to launch a limited edition collection of footwear and apparel.  This collection features a Vans shoe, tee and socks, all adorned with a one-of-a-kind “smoke monster” design. 

Like the truth campaign, which is all about empowerment, the Vans brand is driven by creative self-expression, brought to life through the worlds of art, music, action sports and street culture. Research shows that nearly 3,200 young people try their first cigarette every day, and one-in-three youth smokers will eventually die from a tobacco related disease. This partnership gives truth a bold and innovative new way to empower young people to reject tobacco. 

“Great design and fashion have always been important parts of the truth brand. The Vans x truth collection is the logical next step in our partnership with Vans, and it helps us get our message out in a way that’s relevant and allows people to participate directly,” said Eric Asche, Chief Marketing Officer at Legacy, the national public health foundation that directs and funds the truth campaign. “Everyone here at truth is genuinely excited for our first major retail launch because a collaboration like this allows us to reach an even larger number of people.  And we couldn’t be more proud that it’s with Vans, our longtime partners and friends.” 

Vans and truth have a longstanding history of bringing lifesaving messages to teens about tobacco’s negative health consequences. The truth summer tour has partnered with the Vans Warped Tour for more than a decade, and truth has also appeared at other Vans events like the Vans US Open of Surfing and Vans House Parties. For the past two years, truth has added an additional element to Vans Custom Culture high school art competition by offering schools a chance to design a skate deck inspired by tobacco facts. 

“Our continuing partnership with truth enables Vans to make a difference by encouraging young people to make the right choices,” said Kevin Bailey, president of Vans. “We are pleased to expand our relationship with truth through the development of this collection that we know young people will embrace both for the style and social impact.” 

For this special project, truth tapped Austin-based graphic designer and lifelong skateboarder Brett Stiles to create the custom graphic based on truth fact #240: Big Tobacco’s products kill 113 people from secondhand smoke every day. The shoe features a stylized “smoke monster” in various shades of gray and white across the vamp, mid-foot panels and heel. truth fact #240 is printed on the inside sole of the left shoe. 

The entire Vans x truth collection is currently available online at and will be available at the top 50 Vans stores across the country beginning September 4, 2014. The Vans truth Authentic shoe will retail for $55, the tee for $22, and the socks for $10. A portion of the proceeds will support truth’s lifesaving mission.

A video of Brett Stiles at work showing off his creative process around the truth project is running now on and will begin airing in Vans stores September 1. Shorter versions of the video are being posted on Instagram and to promote the collection. Also beginning on September 1, Vans stores will place postcard-style bag stuffers into each bag that feature the shoe design with the message “Lace up. Stand for something,” reiterating that this collection is fashion with meaning. 


truth® is the largest national youth smoking prevention campaign and the only national campaign not directed by the tobacco industry. The campaign exposes the tactics of the tobacco industry, the truth about addiction, and the health effects and social consequences of smoking. truth gives teens facts and information about the tobacco industry and its products, allowing them to make their own informed choices about tobacco use. Research-proven as an effective public health intervention, the campaign is credited with keeping hundreds of thousands of teens from starting to smoke. To learn more, visit truth is directed and funded by Legacy, a national public health foundation located in Washington, D.C. Legacy was created as a result of the November 1998 Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) reached between attorneys general from 46 states, five U.S. territories and the tobacco industry. To learn more about Legacy’s life-saving programs, visit Follow us on Twitter .


About Vans

Vans®, a VF Corporation (NYSE: VFC) brand, is the original action sports footwear and apparel brand.  Vans collections include authentic footwear, apparel, accessories and snowboard boots that are sold globally in more than 170 countries through a network of subsidiaries, distributors and international offices. VF Outdoor, Inc. owns and operates more than 415 stores of the Vans brand in the United States and internationally, each offering a range of Vans footwear and apparel while communicating the brand’s rich heritage. The Vans brand promotes the action sports lifestyle, youth culture and creative self-expression through the support of musicians, artists and athletes on boards and bikes all over the globe and through progressive events such as the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing®, the Vans Downtown Showdown, the Vans Pool Party, the Vans Warped Tour® and surfing’s most prestigious contest, the Vans US Open of Surfing. Vans, “Off the Wall” Since ’66

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