I’m being asked a lot about UGGS at the moment. I’ve had at least five emails about them in the last three months, which comprises my entire Spike postbag (summer is slow).
Is there an alternative, I am asked. There must be! I know I must stop wearing my UGGs, but what can take their place?
I am astounded by this. There is nothing wrong with UGGs or UGG-style boots. Why would you feel like you have to stop wearing them?
I truly believe that the popularity and acceptance of UGGs is a thing of which the proto-feminist movement would be happy and proud. I have written before about how women will never let go of their skinny jeans, flat shoes, leggings and cross-body bags, now we’ve been granted them. They make life too easy. They’re too good. We’re not giving them up.
So it is with UGGs. They’re so lovely! They’re so warm! If you feel like you’re having a bit of a fat bum day they even out your beam so cleverly.
People who go about sneering “I’d never be caught dead in a pair of UGGs” probably don’t have to take the dog out in the freezing cold for a wee at 0630am then quickly make 8 packed lunches do 9 school runs, fetch the dry cleaning and then run back to the house to do a VAT return.
The same people who are snobby about UGGs are the same people who are snobby about Crocs. They just do it out of some inner insecurity about something. Probably that they are worried people will think they are working class or something. I have no time for them. I have no time for class issue stuff. So boring.
Okay, yes, there is an alternative to the UGG and it’s called the Mou boot – prices start at £189. But, do you know? It’s just an UGG-style boot, really – isn’t it? If you really want to move on from your UGGs then this is the only viable alternative.
But I don’t see why you should. As long as your UGGs aren’t really shabby and dirty (and the fewer bells and whistles on them – buttons, laces, ribbons etc the better) you have my permission to wear them for as long as you damn want.
Personally, I’ve got my eye on a waterproof pair of UGG-style boots from that snuggly haven Celtic Sheepskin. I am not that in need of UGGs in my life, but I am tempted to buy them out of sheer cussedness. The haters can go to hell! With cold feet.
I’ve heard a lot of negative stuff about Uggs too like they’re bad for your feet….? and it actually made me go and buy a different model (Bear Paw and just recently Rocket Dog). I think that Uggs are more comfortable and wish I’d ignored the snobbery
Sadly I’m an UGG hater. But it’s because of the horrible shuffling sound they create and the broken down instep that seems inevitable. My daughter longs for a pair but i just can’t believe they are good for your feet? I can absolutely see the attraction otherwise…
Well, it’s all about wearing them at appropriate times. Not ALL the time…
It’s a matter of Style vs Functionality. Surely you can keep your feet warm without looking like you’ve got elephant feet? Plus it is really a class matter as I don’t wish to look like a Council Estate mom.
You wrote about Style Influence in your last post, a beautiful post… for me personally, French women well, Parisenne women have always been an influence. A Parisenne would never, ever wear such an attrocity.
Isabella it is NOT a Council Estate “mom” look. This is just the kind of class snobbery I was talking about. Really, come on.
I used to have the same Ugg-fear, like I would be a massive shuffling dolt if I wore them, and also someone once said they make your feet look like baked potatoes. But do you know what? I live in the North of Scotland, it’s very cold, and if I want to wear enormous sheepskin foot-comforters then I will. So I am going to buy some this year.
I’m from the home of the Ugg (Australia) and, honestly, if you wear them out of the house in Australia people will raise an eyebrow. In Australia they’re slippers for the home. I’ve weakened a bit since moving to the UK, and had to do a quick run to the shop for milk on Sunday whilst wearing them – my own husband raised an eyebrow (and he’s Scottish!). I’m not really comfortable wearing them out of the house, and I really don’t think they provide the support or structure that your foot or leg needs – I’m wearing mine now and my ankles have fallen in while standing here. Great slippers though, and madly overpriced here in the UK.
I never saw the need for them until we moved out of our house with lovely under floor heating last year. On the A/W shopping list now although am leaning towards Celtic & Co for some reason.
Hello…have you come across Kiwi Sheepskins? – their extra tall musketeer boots are the best – non slip soles, and really light, and lined with sheepskin – I think they’re on sale now too….I discovered them when I saw the price of Uggs!
I’ve had mine for five years and it’s finally time to replace them
Love this. I got some last year after being the only lemon freezing their extremities off at playgroup in converse envying everyone looking so damn cosy in their Uggs. Agree totally about the even beam too (laughed at that). I don’t use them for hiking in wet weather, but aforementioned situations where you’re in a drafty hall or icy playground having to stand around, where you’re in and out of the car dropping off or picking up, they are brilliant and you would have to prise them from my (not) cold (not) dead feet.
I’ve got a pair of the Celtic & Co Aqualambs, and I must admit to wearing them on every walk to and from the local school when the weather is bad. I’ve also got a pair of their Toscana boots that I wear indoors during the winter … so maybe I do wear them too much! I ordered a pair of Sorels in the sale after I saw Uggs described as ‘Slag Wellies’ on Instagram (I follow some choice people, I guess) but they were massive – the length was fine but they were so wide! Plus the tread on the Aqualambs was much better. So I will be cracking out the Uggs again this winter. And I don’t care!! I think snobbery regarding certain clothing or brands can be levelled at anything an individual doesn’t like – recently I’ve also recently heard the same thing levelled at Michael Kors watches and bags, a bit like Burberry was years ago. And they turned it around!
It’s a fine line. I’m not crazy about Michael Kors stuff, but perhaps only because it’s just bloody everywhere, like that wretched Longchamp nylon tote. I’m pleased to hear the Aqualambs are good value. It’s always a bit nerve wracking spending that sort of cash…
Emma Onslow says
I love Uggs. They are definitely not council mom ! They used to be my go-to Winter look with tights and dresses. Sadly my feet need more support now – I’ve got to wear orthotics all the time otherwise my feet get really sore. Incidently I have been carrying out some class based research on style in my borough of bromley and a lot of the time I think the moms on lower incomes look a darn sight better than the more well off mums. They make so much more of an effort to look groomed. There are also a lot of French moms at my sons school (some Parisienne) & they don’t look all that chic i have to say. Bit disappointing to be honest.
WOW! I love my UGGs had no idea I was such a chav
Celia Mackintosh says
Since having kids Uggs have been a necessary part of my life starting when heavily pregnant and I just had to have one part of my body being comfortable. I love my Uggs and have occasionally worn them in the summer too!! I even wear them with skinny white jeans! I don’t care what ‘class’ people think I am to be honest.
Do think though that fake Uggs look awful and seem to go droopy looking.
Ex husband thinks they are granny boots but obviously I don’t care what he thinks.
One must never give a shit what one’s husband thinks of one’s clothes. The more they hate them the more fabulous it generally means they are
(Mostly) Yummy Mummy says
Well I have two pairs and I couldn’t survive the Yorkshire winters without them quite frankly! I do mainly wear them around the house but I’m not going to lie, they do sometimes sneak on to the school run. I have no shame! Ha!
In winter our house is cold. I like super ugly Quoddy boots to keep warm. (We’re not allowed to put the central heating on)
I did used to love mine but everyone on One Born Every Minute comes into the labour ward wearing them and a nightie and now whenever I see them I feel hot and sick. Last year I got a black pair of the heavier duty biker boots which I LOVE – perfect for the school run, and don’t make you look as much like Hagrid as you might expect, but not so great for padding round the house obvy – they’re a bit like walking in a 4×4. http://m.office.co.uk/view/product/office_catalog/2,10/1478950000
Ffs just noticed they’re on sale too. Annoying.
Heather Allison says
I wear orthotics too, are uggs a complete no no?
Emma Onslow says
Hi Allison, unfortunately my podiatrist said that they were. It might depend on the problem though… I super pronate so I need a really supportive lace up shoe. Brogues and trainers basically.
I have a pair of black biker boot style Uggs which have paid for themselves by keeping me warm for about four winters now. It was a big investment but I don’t regret it. I refuse to be cold for style’s sake, like I refuse to totter on heels for style’s sake if I’m out and I realise I can’t afford to have a chauffeur on the payroll to whisk me home when my feet hurt.
Fuck the snobs! Thanks Esther.
I like Uggs (I have a pair) but have really wide calves and high arches so it is really hard to get boots without zips on.
This is the year I buy them I think. The leather version though- stained suede makes me sad. Never thought they were a class thing… Just a bit unflattering. But why do I need my shoes to be flattering FFS.
I wore my last pair for a happy 12 years before I finally relented and threw them in the bin (because they were falling apart, not because I was worried they’d make me look like a ‘chav mom’??) This post has made me want a new pair of chestnut tall ones like crazy!!
They don’t really stand up in ‘t country – most people seem to wear Dubarrys and wool socks/fur liners. I have a pair of furry “mammal” boots, which have nifty flip down spikes for really icy mornings….
I’m with Kristy above. Uggs are slippers. I wear mine indoors all the time and find myself faintly bemused when I see people wearing them out and about. I feel I should point out to them that they’ve forgotten to put their shoes on before leaving the house.
I forgot to say that my snow boots from last year are quite Ugg-ish, but with the advantage of being completely waterproof. They’re cosy an’all.
Uggs are most definitely slippers – they aren’t supposed to be worn outdoors – yuck!
I was really amused to see them worn as outdoor shoes when I moved to the UK. They are atrocious for your feet and would get so grubby.
I have just experienced my first Australian winter in almost a decade and this post reminded me that at no time did I ever see an ugg outside…ever.
Eilidh McFlurry says
The politics of shoes is a strange irrational place- my philosophy is wear what you damn well please if you find it comfy and like them. I wear my DMs all the time and as often as I can whether it’s appropriate or not. Since I’m 31 I’m sure some people will think I look tragic and confused (lesbian chic perhaps? Angry feminist? Wannabe teenager?) but as I stride along in my kevlar footwear – overtaking hobblers in heels and mimsy flats – and feeling like Flyn Lockwood in his spray on shoes I don’t give a fig about how ‘manly’ they look.
I am pretty much permanently cold between October and May and wear uggs as slippers. I would describe myself as a dedicated Ugg wearer – I love them and I don’t know what I’d do without them. I wear orthotics and I could put them in the uggs I guess but what I tend to do is buy a new pair of sheepskin insoles from Amazon or Celtic Sheepskin at the beginning of the winter and that gives more support. I also wear the Uggs with thick ski socks when it gets really cold. I would never wear them outside but that’s purely for hygiene reasons (rather than terrible anxiety about being taken for a ‘council estate mom’) as I don’t fancy tramping the cement dust, dog poo and other crap that covers the pavement all over my carpet. If you only wear uggs indoors they last for yonks – think I am on my 7th winter. I once washed them in the washing machine on a cold wash with 30ml glycerine (bought from Boots) in the fabric dispenser drawer for the final rinse and they came up beautifully.
Annabel thank you for this non-hysterical and staunch defence of the UGG.