In Part One(link) of this blog topic, we learned that researchers at the University of Kansas discovered that footwear (more so than other fashion choices) is the most revealing and accurate indicator of personality. If you missed the first part of this series, you can click here (link) to discover just how they managed to figure this out.
Also, if any of you find out if the University of Kansas - or any other university, for that matter - will be repeating this study, and needs women to model free footwear in the interest of science, please do let us know in the comment section. This is important information for those of us who are committed to the pursuit of a deep understanding of the human condition. And/or the pursuit of the perfect pair of ankle booties.
For those of you joining us today, we are in the middle of our own experiment to see if we agree with the results of that former study, using the 2018 line of Ross & Snow women’s footwear. Take a moment to pick your favorite style(s) below, and then see if you agree with the expert findings.
Or if you, like me, still have some questions about what your footwear preferences supposedly reveal about your personality quirks to those who are watching you.
#1. The Luxury Flat: Caterina
My personal favorite shearling item from the Ross & Snow 2018 line is the Caterina, especially the version in Cabernet Metallic: Yum, yum, yum.
I couldn’t find any specific information on slipper psychology, so in order to understand the implications of my choice, I turned to Ross & Snow lead designer Leah Larson. She says that she wanted to make a slipper so luxuriantly comfy, functional, and sophisticated that you could use it for both indoor entertaining (the girls’ wine night gathered in your kitchen) and outdoor errands.
All righty then. What do drivers / flats say about the women who love them?
Well, the experts report that the flat wearer is a woman who works her proverbial butt off behind the scenes. And is allegedly so focused, generous, and humble that she doesn’t require any attention or recognition for her efforts (Kendrick Lamar would approve). The driver lover, by contrast, tends to love the limelight. She is social, extremely confident, and has no problem enjoying her turn as the center of attention.
Hmmmmm. I figure I will navigate this apparent contrast by being focused, low key, and modest when I’m out running errands in my Caterina slippers-as-flats, yet shift to boisterous, attention-eager hostess when I’m home entertaining with my Caterina slippers-as-drivers.
Actually, this one works for me as I tend to be reserved and semi-invisible in public, but almost maniacally chatty with my besties. Literally cannot shut the hell up around my small circle of friends.
So now we need to hear from you, Interweb. Whether you love slippers, flats, or drivers (or any combination of the three) what do you think your favorite casual footwear says about you? Or about your compatriots across the flat-mule aisle?
#2. The Moto Boot: Emilina
Let us now turn to the famous Ross & Snow moto boot, celebrated both because it’s the world’s first totally crowdsource-designed (See more about Betabrand here) shearling moto boot and for the fact that, um, it’s a shearling moto boot. Which is awesome.
Also cool is the fact that the removable leather strap gets you two sophisticated style looks for the price of one. And that the leather is so soft and fine and supple you truly can get away with pairing these boot with a dress without looking like you’re still really mourning the passing of Singles era.
Some social psychologists contend that a moto boot wearer is prepared, grounded, practical, and has a plan. This person is always thinking two or three steps ahead. Other experts in fashion psychology point out that the moto boot lover seeks to express her rebellious side, albeit in a controlled, socially acceptable manner.
The well-prepared socially acceptable rebel might seem like a contradiction in terms, but as we’re now moving into the second decade since the “moto” trend stepped out of the speciality shops and cozied up in the bosom of fashion’s mainstream, I guess it’s a fair call.
What do you think? We’d love to hear from both the moto boot lovers (and leavers) to determine what moto means to you in terms of personality. Especially interested in your take on the difference between the conscious and unconscious agenda of the moto-centric woman.
#3. The Mid Level Heel: The Rosina
The backstory of the debate on “comfortable” heels should raise a lot of flags for today’s feminist, no matter where you might place yourself on that spectrum. Case in point: one prominent footwear interpreter claims that both wide heels and wedges hint insecurity - that women who wear these want to look taller without the discomfort of pointy high heels. “The wider and shorter the heels on a woman’s shoes, the more insecure she may be.”
Uh. Okay. Or maybe she just doesn’t want to fall to her death during a busy day in inclement weather? Or maybe she’s had a lot of knee surgeries or dogs or children and just can’t manage the really extreme heels she used to love in her 20s and 30s?
Yet this same study also asserts that wearing tall riding boots is a sign that you are “ready for anything.” Ross & Snow designer Leah Larson loves this boot for its extremely luxurious leather and its unusual boot jewelry - in the form of its distinctive industrial metal zipper.
One fashion expert asserts that in the event of a crisis, the person wearing a mid-level heeled boot will be the one to take control of the situation: Because this woman is so self-assured, other people feel instantly safer in her hands. What do you think? Would you place your trust in the Rosina-wearer’s leadership?
#4. The High Heel: The Michaela
High heels have gotten a bad rap. Critics used to contend that women who tend to wear high heels must be more insecure, since they are willing to put up with pain and possible long term injury just to look powerful, but the Kansas study says no.
High heel wearers are no more likely to be emotionally unstable than their counterparts. Turns out they just dig looking and feeling powerful and sexy, since these two attributes have been associated with high heels for centuries. After all, if you’re in the high heels, you’re clearly not the person doing all the manual labor.
In fact, high heel boots tend to signal a woman who’s ready to take on a long day of leadership. The Michaela boot’s unique contribution to that authority is that is is completely shearling lined, so you’ll be warm while you’re in charge. You can also cuff this boot to reveal that shearling, making this another Ross & Snow style that offers two distinct looks in one pair. Sadly, I was unable to find any data on the psychology of cuffing. You’ll have to draw your own conclusion there.
So. What do YOU Think? Does Your Favorite Style Reveal Your True Nature?
Some final notes to ponder:
- Fashion footwear psychologists say that if a the price of a women’s shoes is similar to a month’s worth of rent, she may have a “demanding” personality. But if you’re spending this much on shoes, you can probably afford to demand .
- A weirdly unexpected finding: the most uncomfortable looking footwear is most often worn by society’s calmest citizens. By that reasoning, if you, like me, are drawn to the rugged, relaxed, and refined nature of Ross & Snow aesthetics, we must all be extremely volatile.
- Finally, the study reported that people with “boring” shoes were the hardest to peg in personality, but strangers perceived that these lackluster footwear fans were also the most “aloof and reticent” and thus would have trouble forming relationships.
I’m guessing that if you troubled to read this far about the secret language of footwear, you needn’t worry about this last finding too much. Please do leave a comment in the section below - seems to us that there’s some room for argument in shoe-personality interpretation!