cheap ugg style boots Why are sales of Ugg boots STILL soaring
They are shapeless, sexless and make even the most slender of ankles look like mighty oaks. They are also, whisper it, more than a little common.
By rights, Ugg boots the sheepskin lined boots that soared to prominence 15 years ago on the perma tanned legs of It Girls such as Paris Hilton should have been relegated to the fashion graveyard by now, in the plot next to pink Juicy Couture tracksuits and super sticky lipgloss.
And yet the Ugg boot not only refuses to die, it is selling better than ever. You cant wander down your local High Street, whether in Bognor or Belgravia, without seeing armies of the things coming at you. Black, chestnut, grey, covered in ribbons or blinged up with sequins, Ugg has sold so many products and priced at 155 for the classic short boots, they arent cheap that there are three Ugg items for every woman in Britain.
But unlike other trends of the time, like Juicy Couture tracksuits, the passion for the sheep skin shoe, which originated in Australia, has not come to an end
Far from fading into fashion obscurity as many had predicted, and some had prayed for, Ugg sales were up 12.6 per cent in 2015, to a whooping 1.03 billion.
These boots, which flop and sag around your ankles, force you to shuffle rather than walk, and soak up rainwater like sponges, are also regularly seen on the lithe legs of celebrities of every vintage, from supermodels Cara Delevingne and Kate Moss to actresses Goldie Hawn and Helen Mirren.
The sheepskin boot or slag wellie as its charmingly known by its many detractors is still seen everywhere from the school run to the smartest ski resorts, much to the undisguised horror of almost every man on the planet.
As far as men are concerned, Uggs are up there with big knickers and onesies as guaranteed libido killers. And as slovenly, unflattering and strangely reminiscent of grannys slippers as they are, its little wonder.
Yet our other halves hatred of the boots seems to have little bearing on British womens love for them.
When I went to Milan and Paris for the fashion shows, as editor of Elle and Grazia,
the Ugg was our default footwear, stashed in the back of the team car. Six inch stilettoes would be prised off inflamed feet and a pair of Uggs eased on to a collective sigh of relief.
Because that is their secret.
The simple reason why the Ugg boot has become the cockroach of the fashion world, surviving annihilation by new trends, is that they are blissfully, shamefully comfortable.
I defy anyone to take off their shoes after a hard day at work, slip on a pair of Uggs and not emit a suggestive sound of deep satisfaction.
The worlds most unsexy footwear is the most satisfyingly sexy thing in the world to wear. Bliss! Of course, the Joy Of Ugg came late to British women (and the men who dare to brave Ugg ridcule).
As far back as the Sixties, a primitive version of the Ugg was worn by Aussie surfers to warm their feet after a day spent in pounding waves.
In those days, they were random bits of untreated sheepskin, crudely stitched together with a piece of rubber glued to the bottom for a sole.
It was some years before a young Australian entrepreneur called Brian Smith started producing Uggs in California in the late Seventies, where they were quickly snapped up by the surfing community. Walk out of the surf with ice block feet and ten minutes later they would be dry and warm, like a big hug for your feet.
The name was easy. Australians who have a knack for calling a spade a spade had already nicknamed these hideous things Ugg, as in short for Ugly.
As far as men are concerned, Uggs are up there with big knickers and onesies as guaranteed libido killers. Yet Kate Middleton (pictured in 2007), Cameron Diaz and even Helen Mirren have all worn a pair
By the mid Eighties, they were being seen on the feet of West Coast surfer dudes bohemian girlfriends, before migrating to the ski crowd and the trend conscious.
But the big moment when Uggs went from backwater trend to superstar status was in 1994 when Pamela Anderson was pictured in nothing but her red Baywatch swimsuit and a pair of Uggs. Woosh! Sales went off like a rocket.
Initially, the more discerning fashion crowd was reluctant to embrace Uggs to their bosom.
Dismissed for years as nothing but cheap Californian chavvery, the tide turned in 2003 when stars such as Lindsay Lohan started teaming their Juicy Couture velour tracksuits with matching Ugg boots.
By the summer of 2003, Kate Moss had been pictured in a pair, and bang! They were hotter than the sun.
Uggs quickly transcended their tacky roots and were seen on Princess Beatrice and a rosy cheeked and still single Kate Middleton. Yet while they may have drifted out of the limelight in the ensuing decade, they remained firmly in our wardrobes, shoe racks and boot rooms.
Vogue quite rightly calls Uggs our guilty fashion pleasure, with many people refusing to wear them outside the house unlike (left to right) Eva Longoria, Rosie Huntington Whiteley or Glenn Close
The Duchess of Cambridge wouldnt dream of being seen out and about in them nowadays theres nothing very regal about shuffling along with collapsed arches but Im positive shes got a pair hidden away at Anmer Hall, keeping the royal toes warm on all those flagstone floors.
Vogue quite rightly calls Uggs our guilty fashion pleasure. Guilty being the operative word. And now, confession time: I am so in love with the damn things I have two pairs stashed in my wardrobe chestnut and grey which I slob around in at home, with my leggings and a floppy jumper.