You probably have preconceived opinions about Ugg boots. Maybe your college campus had an unofficial uniform highlighted by these poofy sheepskin wonders with wool seemingly spilling out over the top. Maybe you don’t quite consider Tom Brady to be a style icon worthy of emulating (please invite me over Tom). I’m here to tell you to forget that noise, and give your feet a true gift.
I held the same, tired stereotypes about these boots, and never thought I’d actually become a wearer of them, let alone a repeat customer. That all changed one day last year when I was served an ad showing a pretty hip dude, feet kicked up on a couch in a hygge dreamland sporting their Neumel style, a low-cut chukka version of the classic boot with laces. There were laces! There were no wool poofs! This was the first time I thought Uggs looked cool. My interest was piqued.
The next day, I went to the closest retailer stocking the Neumels, and tried them on. It was an instant connection. You know that feeling of love at first sight? Me neither, but I think it probably feels like my feet did that day.
I admit that it took me a few weeks to actually wear them out in public. With age, I’ve started to give less of a shit about what other people think of my outfits, but the potential Ugg shame was hard to get over. They are absolutely “puffier” than a standard boot, and to this day I’ll still get the occasional “cool slippers!” snark from someone named Carol that doesn’t understand that it’s called FASHION and they need to look it up. However, comfort has become increasingly the standard in style these days, and you really can’t get any comfier than the wool lining of Uggs. Hell, even streetwear icon Bape has jumped on the Ugg wagon, so maybe look down next time you find yourself at a Lil Xan show.
After a year of of use, a year in which you’d be hard pressed to find me wearing any other footwear in temperatures below 65℉, they’re still holding up well. The outsoles are surprisingly durable, and grip the pavement in a way that gives me confidence taking on a patch of ice. Based on the amount of walking I do, I’d estimate to have at least another two seasons worth of New York City wear and tear left in them. They provide the warmth you need on frigid days, but as someone who sweats, they’re still breathable enough to wear on mild fall days without worrying about soggy socks.
I loved the Neumels so much, that I recently added a new style to what can now be considered my collection. The Harkley is a tall, laced up shoe that looks more like a soft work boot than a slipper, which may ease your concerns about wearing them out in public.
While they shouldn’t replace your snow boots on a wet winter day, consider Uggs for more casual days, or when you want to put comfort above everything else. Who cares what other people think?