Is it possible to look stylish in Ugg boots?

Britney Spears

Ugg boots. We know you hate them. Because, let’s face it: OF COURSE you hate Ugg boots. God knows, you’ve told us often enough. A better question, then, is simply HOW MUCH do you hate Ugg boots? Do you think they can ever be stylish? That’s not a trick question, by the way: it’s just a question we find ourselves asking today, because as winter approaches, we know we’re about to be plunged into Ugg Hell once more.

That’s not to say that there aren’t plenty of Uggs around in the warmer months of the year too, mind you. Using the excuse that sheepskin boots are designed to keep your feet warm when it’s cold, and cool when it’s hot, many a person goes for the “Ugg boots and mini skirt” look during the summer. Or the “Ugg boots and leggings” look. Or the “Ugg boots and… just about anything, really.”

Boots, Ugg Australia

It’s in the winter, however, that the Ugg boot comes into its own. Not everyone who wears Ugg boots wears them with a sloppy, stained pair of sweatpants and a hoodie, of course. That’s just Britney’s little joke. Many people do, though: there’s just something about Uggs that encourages sloppy dressing. It’s as if people slip their feet into that sheepskin lining and think, “Oh, I’m wearing a pair of Ugg boots: I may as well give up on life.”

Don’t get us wrong: we’re not totally opposed to Uggs. It’s just that we refuse to see them as fashion items. For us, they fall into that category of items which includes running shoes and ski suits: they’re not pretty, sure, but they’re not supposed to be. They have a purely practical purpose, and so, as far as we can tell, have Uggs. They’re for keeping your feet warm on really cold days when you’re out walking your dog under cover of darkness, and you just don’t care what you look like. They’re not for throwing on with a mini skirt and declaring yourself stylish, although as soon as we publish this post, we’re willing to bet that lots of Ugg wearers will suddenly appear to tell us that we “Just don’t understaaaaaand” and we “obviously don’t know ANYTHING about FASHUN”, just like always. (We’re ready to play the Fashion Victim drinking game, if so. ) It’s not the fact that Uggs exist that bothers is: it’s the fact that people want us to view them as a fashion item, when they’re clearly just glorified (and expensive) slippers.

(Also, just to pre-empt the “don’t knock ’em until you’ve tried ’em” comment: the Chief of Police actually owns a pair of Uggs, and loves them for walking the dog on cold winter mornings. She just wouldn’t wear them anywhere else.)

But back to our question: do you think it’s possible to look stylish in Ugg boots? Do you own a pair? Would you wear a pair? (What if we offered to pay you? How much would it cost us?) Finally, what about these celebrities in Ugg boots? (Or in Ugg-style boots, at least: we’re not expert enough in the identification of Uggs to be able to tell which are Ugg Australia, which are Emus, etc, etc. We’d need to call in a specialisy Ugg Identification Officer for that.) Do they change your mind at all?

GALLERY: Celebrities in Ugg boots [Images: Fame Pictures]

35 Comments

  • September 1, 2011

    ayemiy

    Ah, d’ya know what? I have five pairs. I love them. I don’t like the cheap ones that collapse, so alas I have about £700 worth of UGGs. Call me sad, call my feet hideous, but I bloody love them. I wear them all the time, with sweatpants, with jeans, with leggings, with skirts and tights and when I’m just downright slobbing. I can’t apologise for them; I love them. I love how the chunky soled ones support my feet (I have stupid high arches, so my feet hurt in most things) and I love how I can just slip them on for a quick fix. I’m not the most stylish of people, maybe, but I have been known to score a date for looking “cute” in them. That’s worth something to me!

    If uggs are indeed, consigning me to fashion jail, then baby, chain me to the wall.

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    • September 1, 2011

      The Fashion Police

      I have a pair I wear for walking the dog, so as I said, I’m not totally opposed to them – they are fabulously comfortable and warm! I just wouldn’t consider wearing them as a “fashion” thing, mostly because I look a bit like a dwarf in them. OK, a lot like a dwarf 🙂

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  • September 1, 2011

    Holly

    I liked Nicky Hilton’s look okay. That was deff. the best way. The others looked either sloppy or trashy.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Theresa

    I don’t think Uggs are ever the best choice of footwear in terms of fashion. Some ways of wearing them are cuter than others, but there is always a better option because they do absolutely nothing to improve your appearance. They do, however, keep your feet toasty, so the decision to wear them ultimately comes down to whether or not you want fashion or practicality.

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  • September 1, 2011

    trav*WAN

    they look good with a dressing grown and a 75 year old woman, i’m just saying…. but they look rather comfortable though.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Debbie

    Live in the country of Uggs. Great to keep feet warm in the winter, but at home! Would only venture out, maybe, wearing black long ones with skinny jeans or leggings, and that would be pushing it. Wear them at home and then make an effort when going out. Have pride in yourself people!

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  • September 1, 2011

    Rachel

    Personaly I don’t really get the ‘comfy’ of the ugg boots. Maybe it’s because I live in Australia, and don’t find it all that cold, maybe I’m just weird… but I cannot stand wearing them. I find they take the chill out when you put them on, but within 10 minutes they’re making my feet hot

    (And yes, I’ve tried the good quality ones. I got a pair for my birthday a few years back.)

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  • September 1, 2011

    Rachel Gray

    Barbara Tuchman once wrote that ‘honesty of purpose’ is what makes for quality. Here in Upstate New York, where snowbanks are the winter norm, Uggs make sense. But it is 80 deg. (F) today, the sun shines through the parting clouds and angels strum harps in the Heavens. Fight Satan and his fashion demon Uggs upon such a glorious day as this.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Emily

    I’ve worn my (fake) Uggs with skinny jeans, a long vest, a leather jacket and a scarf and I don’t think I look awful. They’re not exactly a fashion item but given that 99% of the time I’d rather not be wearing shoes at all, they fit the bill.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Ez

    I think they look really cute with a short dark denim skirt and black opaque tights in the winter. I actually love that look and a lot of men I know like it too. I think the extra width of an UGG boot actually makes your legs look slimmer if you wear them with tights, leggings or skinny jeans. I DON’T like the ‘look’ people sometimes adopt consisting of out of shape, dirty, soggy uggs which I saw a lot when it snowed last winter! And I think they look horrendous with a sloppy outfit but then thats more the outfit’s fault than the boots’ fault!

    I actually have a pair of imitation ugg-style boots from Primark which cos me £6 and have lasted the last 3 winters!!! They are better than standard UGGs for wet weather as they have a proper sole, unlike UGGs which seem to have a soft foam sole and let in water. I don’t think UGGs are worth the price tag as there are plenty of cheaper imitations which actually look more stylish.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Minka

    I really don’t mind UGGs! Apart from pairing them with track-suits and wearing them in summer, I’m a-ok with a pair of UGG boots. I don’t own any, though, but sometimes when it’s cold and wet and ugly outside I wish I had a pair stored somewhere in the depths of my wardrobe. I think UGGs can be stylish, but as people who wear them on the regular bases tend to pair them with nothing short of their PJs, they have somehow lost (or never gained) their appeal as fashion items. But, what do I know – I have been seen in public wearing Crocs. 🙂

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  • September 1, 2011

    naiadknight

    I do own A pair of Old Navy knockoffs: knee high, black, with the option to fold them down and expose the (faux) fur interior, which I rarely take. I’ve worn them with skinny jeans and a tailored top and that’s about it out in public unless it’s Holy Balls cold (read: below 20*F here in West Texas, USA.) If it is that cold, all bets are off.

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    • September 2, 2011

      naiadknight

      Anyone caught wearing Ugg or Ugg offs here in WTX in summer needs to either be shot and put out of their misery (they’re obviously very sick to wear something that hot in 100*F+ weather) or thrown in the looney bin, because obviously they’re delusional.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Nell

    hmmm… Last winter I succumbed to the lure of *fake* Ugg boots because it was so darned cold! I wore them when the weather was bad, then the sole started to fall off (clearly, from reading the comments here, I should have purchased my fake uggs from primark). I will bring them out again this winter to use as slippers because they are warm, and I tend to still pop outside for things in my ‘slippers’ – you know put out the bins, get stuff from the car… hang washing etc. So, yes I wear them, but like you I don’t consider them fashion items. I certainly wouldn’t buy a pair of real ones – Just think how many PRETTY shoes one could buy? Maybe not as warm, but you know what, if my feel look great, they’ll damn well have to feel great too (or at least that what I tell them *yes, I talk to my feet*)

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  • September 1, 2011

    Natasha

    I don’t own Uggs, but I own a pair of similar (fake) fur-lined boots. They are not stylish, but I wear them on those days when it’s snowing, and freezing cold and I have to venture out. I find that paired with skinny jeans they are not so hideous. I think of them like I think of wellies: they’re neither pretty nor fashionable, but they serve a particular purpose. And I just don’t get those Hollywood stars who wear them in hot weather. I don’t buy the whole sheepskin story: when it’s hot enough for shorts, your feet are likely to be sweating even in sandals, let alone boots. It would be completely the same thing as wearing a woolen sweater in 30°C.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Jesse

    What really gets me is when you see people in Uggs who appear to be walking entirely on the side of their feet, fallen off the inside (or sometimes outside) edge of the sole. It just looks sososososo uncomfy and they are totally ruining their knees!

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    • September 1, 2011

      Nell

      Yep – that makes me wonder too – don’t they know that they look ridiculous?

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  • September 1, 2011

    Moni

    There’s not a single picture in this gallery in which the person wouldn’t have looked better wearing regular boots or shoes.
    The best look is Nicky Hiltons, mainly because she has higher bootlegs and manages to keep her jeans inside them. And it’s a forgiving angle.

    What I like least regarding Uggs is that they make the foot look big and shapeless, and that’s the death of most outfits. Wide trouser legs seem even wider, and legs in leggings or tights do look stumpy.
    Additionally, I’ve seen a lot of people who don’t walk straight in them, but whose feet move to the inner side of the sole. (I don’t know how to describe it in Englisch…) The heels of their feet are not on the sole, but next to it, which looks silly and makes them waddle. Do you know what I mean?
    I don’t know if that only happens with the cheap knock-offs or if all Uggs do have such a bad footbed, but I don’t think it’s healthy.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Marianne S.

    I figure any celeb wearing shapeless clothing, huge, face-concealing sunglasses, and Uggs is not wearing their ‘public’ persona, and I tend to issue them a pass. We all have to run to the store for milk or walk the dog sometime. Wearing them with fitted clothing and an open, exposed face (‘here I am!’) = fashion crime.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Monica

    The only reason I am looking forward to winter is the being able to wear my comfy, cosy boots again. However, these boots are not UGGs or an imitation. I can’t stand UGGs. You completely summed up my views on UGGs in paragraph four. I completely understand that they are comfortable and the like but don’t try to pass them off as being stylish. The absolute worst look for me is wearing sweatpants with them. I haven’t seen a single person pull this look off. It just looks awful. When a student in England, this is the look every other person had and I was just constantly in disbelief. I wouldn’t dream of going out to see friends etc. wearing sweats and UGGs. There are much better alternatives for comfortable, practical winter boots that also look good. I don’t know why others don’t go for these and I can’t stand it when people look at you pitifully when you say you don’t own UGGs… it is out of CHOICE.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Katie

    I don’t like UGG boots that much any more (I have owned a pair of boots in this style though, but these were a lot nicer, and as I’m 15, I felt obligated), but some of the others shoes made by UGG are suprisingly nice- expensive, but some of the wedges are really lovely, and I expect very comfortable. I think it is possible to wear traditional UGG boots and look half decent (if you are a teenager that is, I think a blanket ban on women over the age of 25 wearing them in public would be sensible- I’m running out of eyeball bleach after seeing countless older women wearing Juicy tracksuits, UGGs and clutching Jack Wills shopping bags. It’s just wrong.), say, with a pair of dark wash skinny jeans, an oversized crochet sweater (NOT A HOODIE), plus a scarf and leather bag for shopping, or other casual activities.
    P.S. If you must buy some, save yourself a hundred quid and get some from a high street shop, but make sure that they have a proper rubber sole, not this foam stuff UGG are so obsessed with using. It’s not only strange-looking, but very impractical.
    P.P.S. In our typical English weather, they get dirty very quickly. I mean it.

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    • September 1, 2011

      drea

      Agreed with the teenage thing. I’ve seen some teens pull it off, but they are blessed with slim legs and height.

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  • September 1, 2011

    drea

    You would have to pay me a hell of a lot to make me wear them. I’ve seen people in them and the walk on the the side of the boot instead of the sole. Once I saw a woman walking along and the sole of her boot was at the side of her foot and she was walking on the upper! While the warmth appeals to me they can’t be good in wet weather, better off with thick socks and wellies imo.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Zoe

    I have two pairs (one present, one given to me by my sister who moved to Israel where there is no need for warm shoes). I wear them around the house in the winters when I’m worried I will freeze my toes off but want to wear slippers. The only time I would go outside in them is if I am going no further than the end of my drive or I am sick and need to go to the pharmacy for my prescription. Basically the same rules I have for pajamas or sweatpants.

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  • September 1, 2011

    Rock Hyrax

    Black Ugg boots worn with black trousers can look acceptable. But never stylish.

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  • September 2, 2011

    Sonya

    I think that the best shot Uggs have got are knee-high black ones, and even then they’re only remotely acceptable to be worn in public. That is, of course, canceled out if they are worn with anything short.

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  • September 2, 2011

    EricB

    The appeal of Ugg(ly)s has always eluded me, just like the appeal of corduroy trousers actually. Didn’t like them as a kid even.

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  • September 2, 2011

    Ez

    I think this is the perfect way to wear UGG style boots (image found on Google):

    http://images0.chictopia.com/photos/claudiasivilla/6435065882/dark-brown-ugg-boots-black-leggings-dark-brown-macys-scarf-black-jessica-s_400.jpg

    Classy, cosy, stylish and comfortable!

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  • September 2, 2011

    Ami

    I own a pair of long black uggs, they are indeed very confortable, but in winter… when around here it’s 25 bellow 0 (celsius)…
    I can’t call them a fashion item, but they look OK with skiny jeans and thick jackest…
    What I don’t understand, is how could you wear them in summer (we have 30 – 35 degrees celsius)
    As a conclusion: i love my uggs, but they are rather practical then fashionable… and only in winter…

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  • September 3, 2011

    Aline C

    I’ve seen some girls look good in UGGs around campus, but I wouldn’t call the outfits stylish.
    The fUGGs are just one of those “practical” shoes that every university girl has in her closet (sadly, including me).

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  • September 3, 2011

    Panthera

    I live in Norway, and even if it’s -20 degrees out, I just can’t get myself to wear Uggs. I’ve tried them on in the store, and I just feel they are floppy wool socks with a big rubber “plank” attached to the bottom, and couldn’t stand walking for more than a few steps in them. I had about the same reaction when Crocs were the new rage; I tried a pair on and found them really uncomfortable and annoying.
    Personally I find Uggs to be the new “trashy, white chick” look, and just as I didn’t find the pajamas pants (that were all the rage in high schools here a few years back) very fashionable, I don’t think Uggs are either, even though every teenager is wearing them here (though rubber boots are the new big “fad”)..

    But then, I have a tendency to be strangely warm on my extremities, even when it’s really cold outside, and can’t wear gloves for more than a few minutes before I pull them off because my hands feel like they’re burning up.

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  • September 7, 2011

    Emily

    I’m looking to get my first pair of uggs this winter. However, there will be rules:

    1. They have to be black, with stiff uppers to ensure no sagging.
    2. They will only be worn with dark colored bottoms.
    3. They will be cleaned regularly so as not to accumulate a ‘salt crust’.
    4. Under no circumstances will they be worn with bare legs.
    5. They will only be worn when there is snow on the ground.
    6. Under no circumstances will they be worn with sweatpants.
    6. While wearing them, I am not allowed to assume I am being stylish.

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  • September 8, 2011

    Kate

    No. No it is not. They are called “Uggs” for a reason.

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  • September 9, 2011

    Kim

    I bought a pair of these in black from Rocketdog and I love them because they have a proper sole, meaning your feet don’t fall off them and leave you walking on the side of your feet. More expensive than other imitation Uggs, but worth it. (I got mine on sale for around £25, but are usually around £40 I think).

    I certainly wouldn’t wear them during the summer or to a party, but they do have their place – I never wear trousers, so team mine with a dress/denim skirt, black leggings and a leather jacket, which is perfectly fine for wandering around the shops in the winter.

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  • September 11, 2011

    Isabel

    No. They are good for comfortable, warm boots, but if they are mixed with an otherwise stylish outfit they make the outfit seem (to me) as if it loses all its style!

    This being said, I think that they can kinda make sense where I live (New England) because in the winter it is nice to have something warm on your feet if you are waiting for a bus, especially boots that are a mite more stylish than the rubber and waterproof cloth snow boots that we wore to school when we were eight. (I am currently a high school student)
    I’ve never worn a pair of Uggs though…

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