Ugly shoes are everywhere. We're having an ugly shoe moment. In an interview about ANTM, Vogue Editor-At-Large Andre Leon Talley sighed:
"I was constantly repulsed by the complete popularity of what I call the Cult of the Ugly Shoe - that is, a very clodhopper, high platform-y, clunky-clunk sort of shoe… I kept saying to [the contestants], 'You can also be very elegant in a Sabrina flat.'"
To make matters worse, today's New York Post reports, "the clog is back." One of the ugliest forms of footwear ever! And yet? Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs: All making clogs. And we saw flowery ones in the J. Peterman catalog.
But the question is, of all of the ugly shoes in the world, which are the most hideous? This gallery attempts an answer.
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13. "Terra Incognita" Booties
Anthropologie can be counted on for fug footwear. As previously described: "If the sides are cheeks and the toe opening is a mouth, they look like a person with bad skin, vomiting."
12. Sperry Top-Sider-inspired heels by Derek Lam
Seen in the April 2010 issue of Vogue, a trusted source in ugly shoes. The laces, the Natntucket-esque webbing, the plastic triangles, the eyelets! So much to hate in one shoe.
11. A Tie: Beaded Sandals/Flag Booties from Guiseppe Zanotti.
Not so bad, you say? Well: Consider that the "Brasil" sandal is over $1600. And the $635 "American Flag" bootie has a matching purse. As the kids say, vom.
10. Fringed Zebra Boots
Seen at the Blumarine show, these slouchy zebra boots should go right back in the back of David Lee Roth's closet where they belong.
9. Pink Strappy Oxford
A commenter pointed our attention to the Givenchy "Bondage" oxford, which we found wretched and terrible. Then we found out that it was designed to be worn by men, and we shuddered.
8. The "Faux Leather Thong Knee Height Sandal Boot"
This item comes in black, blue and brown. But "mustard" truly leaves a bad taste in your mouth.
7. Uggs and The Ugg-Like
Uggs are controversial. There's a fierce division between those who loathe them and those who love them. But here is a fact: Uggs are ugly. That's how they got the name! In today's Telegraph, Bryony Gordon writes: "Ugg boots are so darn awful that the very sight of them makes my toes curl." In addition, the Daily News informs us that all the knockoffs of these boots — with their complete lack of support — are "harming the feet of a generation of young women." Dr. Ian Drysdale, head of the British College of Osteopathic Medicine, told the Mirror:
"Because these boots are warm and soft, young girls think they are giving their feet a break. In fact, they are literally breaking their feet… Their feet are sliding around inside. With each step, the force falls towards the inside of the foot and the feet splay. This flattens the arch and makes it drop. The result can be significant problems with the foot, the ankle, and, ultimately, the hip."
Folks, let's end the long national nightmare. Let us proclaim The End Of Uggs. Please?
6. The Floral Slouch Clog.
Even though Irregular Choice has other insane shoes, the "Floral Slouch Clog" is still, hands down, the fugliest item the brand has conceived.
5. Commes Des Garçons Toe Shoes
Style blogger Tavi may own a version of the Commes Des Garcons "toe" shoes, but that don't make 'em right! These must have been designed in cahoots with the powerful Pedicure Mafia, who dream of forcing all women to have polished toes at all times.
4. Dior Idol Heels
For Spring 2009, the Christian Dior runway featured fertility idol heels. Here, it's the idea that is ugly. What comes to mind is how the French walked all over — and colonized — Africa. Not pretty.
3. Vibram Five Finger Spirit
The people behind Vibram Five Fingers are interested in comfort and performance, not fashion. However. the "Five Fingers Sprint" shoe is terrifying. A reader named Carolyn emailed us about these, adding: "If I saw the Five Fingers Sprint coming toward me, I would quickly move to the other side of the street." They also come in camouflage. The better to ambush you with, my dear!
2. Pad Slippers
Maxi-pad slippers have been floating around on the web for a while now, soaking up laughter and tears and mysterious blue liquid, which is not included.
And the number one ugliest shoe in the world?
1. Elephant Dung Shoes.
That's right. Elephant dung.
Here's the info, according to High Snobbette:
London-based-fine artist and designer, INSA, was one of six artists asked by Tate Britain gallery to create a response to a recent exhibit by artist Chris Ofili (New Yorker may remember him from his paintings, "The Holy Virgin Mary," which used elephant dung as a material and which then mayor Rudy Guiliani tried to have banned from a Brooklyn Museum exhibit). INSA responded with the 10-inch (!!) elephant-dung heels featured here. According to the press release, "INSA retraced the footsteps Chris Ofili made over 15 years ago and sourced dung from the same family of elephants that produced the dung used in Chris's infamous paintings of the nineties."
All of these shoes may be crappy, but INSA's are actually shit.
Clogs Are Out Of The '70s Closet & Back On NYC Street [NY Post]
Wearing Ugg Boots For Long Periods Of Time Ruining Women's Feet, Experts Say [NYDN]
Cheaper Makes Of Trendy Ugg Boot Are 'Crippling' Young Women [Mirror]