Uggs. Really??

My wife asked me to buy her a pair of UGGS and I didn’t know what she was talking about.

“Boots”, she says, like that is supposed to make the light-bulb turn on in my head.  She can buy boots at Walmart so why is she telling me this?

So off to the internet I go to look up “Uggs”.  And I find they have quite a history.

First, they are from “down under”, specifically from Australia and New Zealand, and are unisex, meaning that they can be worn by men or women.  Well, I know right away I won’t be sharing her boots.

Next, I find they are made from sheepshin, with fleece insides.  They were designed for warmth.

Of course, the USA can’t be left out, and they are also made in the USA by a USA company (in California, where they don’t need warm boots).  The California company was able to get fashionable celebrity (feet) to wear them and they became the fashion rage.  Go figure.

There are constant disputes on the origin of the name “ugg”; some believe they came from “Fug Boots” from the military.

Of course, when I was growing up, anything that was “Fug” was actually a contraction of two words … “F-ing” and “Ugly”. :)

Wait! I’m not alone!  According to Australian fashion stylist Justin Craig: “The only people who get away with wearing them are models, who give out the message: ‘I’m so beautiful, I can look good in any crap.”

In the end, it is argued that the term “Ugg” or “ugh” boots refers to any type of pull-on sheepshin slipper-boot.

Uggs – The Winter Flip-Flop

You couldn’t go outside this winter without seeing a parade of women of all ages wearing the squat sheepskin booties. So pervasive are Ugg boots that more than a quarter of American women now own a pair, according to a 2013 study conducted for shopping website Beso by Bizrate Insights. Indeed, the UGG Australia brand did remarkably well for parent company Deckers in 2013. Aided by record-low temperatures in parts of the U.S., the warm shoes posted a 9.7 percent sales increase, to nearly $1.3 billion.

“They have become the winter flip-flop,” said stylist and fashion consultant Kate Schelter, who has worked with brands like Victoria’s Secret and TOMS. “A banal essential that people cling to out of comfort and freezing temperatures.”

Once an obscure surfer favorite in Australia, Ugg boots — Deckers shuns the term “Uggs” — exploded in popularity in the early 2000s thanks to the feverish embrace of America’s teenage girls. Teens could be seen shuffling around shopping malls outfitted in a puzzling combination of toasty footwear and short skirts.

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Not Everyone was Happy about the Trend

In 2007 actress Pamela Andersons denounced the type of boots she had helped popularize on the widely-viewed Baywatch television series:

Animal lover and former “Baywatch” bombshell Pamela Anderson is giving her Ugg boots the boot after learning that the furry fashion statements are made from shaved sheepskin.Anderson, who is often credited with first turning the Australian-made Uggs into a major fashion trend, posted a diary entry on her Web site denouncing the boots and asking fans to stop wearing them once she realized they were unfriendly to animals.

“I’m getting rid of our Uggs — I feel so guilty for that craze being started around Baywatch days — I used to wear them with my red swim suit to keep warm — never realizing that they were SKIN!” she wrote on her Web site.

The buxom blonde is an outspoken supporter of PETA and animal rights causes.

“I thought they were shaved kindly? People like to tell me all the time that I started that trend — yikes! Well let’s start a new one — do NOT buy Uggs! Buy Stella McCartney or juicy boots,” Anderson wrote.

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