Love them or hate them, controversial shoe trends are ones that dominated this year’s trend cycle. Celebrities aren’t strangers to questionable footwear choices (lest we forget, Kim Kardashian’s oddly delicious “pantaboot” era), replicating the runways and pushing forward the boundaries of what’s acceptable to wear on your feet.
Every year has a shoe trend that divides the internet into a fiery argument: I still remember the heated debates my friends and I would get into over the furry loafer slides from Gucci back in 2018. Now that 2022 comes to a close and I’m revamping my closet to make space for next year’s trends, one of my New Year’s resolutions is to spice up my wardrobe—including by wearing unconventional footwear that speaks to my personal style, even if the comments section on my ‘fit pics wearing them will burst into flames.
Below, shop some of the most controversial shoe trends of the upcoming year, including one that celebrities are already obsessed with.
Mini Ugg Boots
The resurgence of Ugg boots marks yet another embracement of the mid-2000s aesthetic all while keeping our feet warm. A Juicy Couture tracksuit, oversize sunglasses, and a pair of Ugg boots was practically the It-girl uniform back in the day. Today, micro and mini Ugg booties are far more popular (and, based on the two pairs I have in my closet, by far the best purchase of this year).
Move aside, rounded-toe heels. While this year has seen an uptick in softer silhouettes thanks to ultra-popular styles like the Birkenstock Boston clogs and the Versace satin platform pumps, square-toed boots are set to make a large comeback next year. Consider me obsessed.
This year was the year of kitten heels, and next year will be no different. Although a ton of fashion people love the subtle style, kitten heels definitely have their haters. I’ll admit, before I tried on a pair for myself, I was convinced they were meant only for grandmas. Now, I’m obsessed with these pairs to ring in 2023.
If you’re going to listen to anyone, listen to the experts. Lyst’s 2022 Year in Fashion list came out, and with it, the retailer announced that the Birkenstock Boston clogs were one of the most searched shoes of the year. And for good reason—they’re incredibly chic, in my opinion. If they’re not styled right, clogs can be hard to pull off, making them ripe for debate among fashion circles. At times, they can look like they belong on the feet of nurses or dentists, but TBH, I’m into it.
As a fashion editor who used to live in Miami, I know a good sandal when I see one. Although open-toed shoes are traditionally associated with warmer climates, a quick TikTok scroll does wonders to change my mind. Fashion people have been obsessed with Hermès’ fuzzy Chypre sandals. While the original version is great, the shearling style is delicious. If the teddy-coat trend is any indication, shearling slides will dominate in 2023.
Next, read more about the celebrity-approved shoe trends that the internet loves to hate.