Along with crop tops, ultra-low-slung jeans and bejewelled, well, everything, UGG boots are an early 2000s trend which most were delighted to see the back of. That is, until they were suddenly everywhere again – on the feet of Dua Lipa, Irina Shayk, Kendall Jenner, and even Cher, who has just been announced as the face of UGG’s new SS22 campaign.
Unlike with other Y2k revival brands such as Hello Kitty and Juicy Couture, it’s not a hot new collaboration or design overhaul that has got the fashion world leaning into UGGs this year. While last year’s Molly Goddard x UGG flatforms had their deserved time in the limelight, and contemporary art devotees are counting down the days until the Tschabalala Self styles are released on March 1, curiously enough, it is the classic chestnut bootie of yore that has come back with a vengeance – and we’re not mad about it.
Originally worn by Aussie surfers in the Sixties before becoming the favourite shoe of Young Hollywood in the early Noughties, the UGG is one of the most hotly debated, love-it-or-hate-it shoes in recent history. But unlike its numerous ‘ugly’ shoe siblings (Crocs, Yeezys et al), it is not worn in a ‘subversively cool’ manner, nor to make a big style statement.
Its resurgence can’t even simply be put down to nostalgia for all things Y2K, one of the biggest trends to emerge from the SS22 season. If anything, we’d much prefer to keep memories of us rocking the ripped denim mini-skirt with knee-high UGGs (top rolled down) look safely locked away until the end of time, thank you very much.
No, it’s definitely not about ‘fashion’ in that sense. This new-found obsession with UGGs is, in fact, all about comfort – and more specifically, sartorial defiance in the face of being told constantly that this is the time that we should be ‘going out-out’ and ‘dressing up-up’. In contrast, we’re still struggling to drag ourselves away from the comfy loungewear and fluffy slippers that have kept us safe and cosy at home for the past two years.
Of course, dressing up when we’ve only been able to dress down for as far as we can remember has its appeal – nothing can make you feel quite as fabulous as a great party dress and sky-high heels. But the rest of the time? Now that WFH has made slouchy, laid-back Cali cool a look we can actually and acceptably emulate on a daily basis, we’re not about to give that up anytime soon. And as demonstrated by the slew of off-duty models and style stars taking their favourite sheepskin boots for a real-world spin lately, it is clear that UGGs are an essential part of the uniform.
The only rules? Save the slippers and sliders for home, keep any outdoor UGGs box-fresh, opt for the Mini styles only, and complete the look with your very best elevated loungewear separates – from cashmere joggers and chic one-pieces, to your softest, most expensive-looking leggings.
And, most importantly, enjoy every second of 2022’s hottest shoe being one which was specifically designed for comfort and warmth – and feels like walking on a snuggly, sheepskin cloud. It’s a sign of the times, and we’re loving every second. Just keep them well away from the office.
From ELLE UK