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So, How’s It Really: I Traversed The Earth In Moon Boots For A Month

Welcome to Refinery29’s So, How Is It Really? where we take a look at all of the topics that have the internet talking. In studying them up close, we answer the question of what it’s really like to try out a popular trend like Moon Boots, a viral product, or an unexpected TikTok hack.
As an avid Instagram scroller, devout Rico Nasty stan, and secret admirer of early 2010s' emo Myspace culture, it was only a matter of time before a pair of chunky, delightfully cartoonish Moon Boots entered my orbit. Interestingly enough, when one exits the fashion-sphere, these (inter)stellar kicks, aka controlled ankle motion boots, can be found stabilizing ankle injuries around the globe. However, when placed atop Dua Lipa's feet, complementing the aforementioned Rico Nasty's OOTDs, or spotted at New York Fashion Week, we refer to them as the trendiest footwear of the early 2020s.
So I, your average Earth dweller, thought it best to try some on for size — and more specifically, see if I can manage to walk the walk in them for a month around New York City. Below, learn all about the vast Moon Boots universe, see the three different ways I styled my own pair of Icons, and prepare for blast off in three, two, one.

Wait a minute, what are Moon Boots?

My social circle was actually surprised to find out Moon Boots were not just a style of shoe, but a legitimate brand started by Giancarlo Zanatta back in 1969 (ahem, the same year Apollo 11 successfully landed on the great gibbous). Despite the retailer's early start, we noticed the footwear picking up traction on social media last year and continuing into 2022. You, yourself, can find them with limited availability on sites like SSENSE, Saks Fifth Ave, Farfetch, and even Zappos. However, if you want a full pick of the litter, is your best bet.
When I see a Moon Boot, I imagine Neil Armstrong's spacesuit, an UGG boot, and some wellies having a comfy ménage à trois — but in actuality, per Moon Boot's site, they are $140 to $300 expertly-crafted snow boots that "riff on high technology astronaut wear." If you find yourself in Tundra-esque climates often, then you're in luck. The retailer's most recognizable pairs, the Icon & Icon Lows, are insulated, 100% water-repellant, equipped with suction pads on their rubber tread soles, and can be worn on either feet. They also come in a myriad of colorways and were meant to easily slide on and off your toes (if you're in between any of the size ranges, make sure to go up one rather than down). I personally can attest to how lightweight my Icons are and how those rubber soles maintain an impressive amount of traction throughout slushy NYC streets.   

Look #1: Astronaut Off-Duty

Which brings us to my first look that I like to call astronaut off-duty. I'll be honest, after wearing my boots exclusively around my apartment in pajamas, when it was time to style them for the concrete jungle, I panicked. It was a sunny but 45 degree Saturday in NYC — meaning shivering in the shadows but perspiring in a jacket under the sun — and my friend and I had shopping in SoHo confirmed on the docket. So, I emulated celebrities' denim-free looks and opted for a pair of discontinued American Apparel joggers, a cream Zara turtleneck sweater, the Shopping team's favorite Free People puffer jacket, and a simple black & Other Stories shoulder bag.
Let's just say, "one small step for man" does not apply to these shoes. Each footprint felt larger than the next once I hit the sidewalk. I'm a US size 9 and went for the EU 39/41 range, which I don't regret. However, my key to surviving a day's worth (12,421 steps) in these boots is: Lace. Them. Tight. After I constricted the strings around my ankles, I felt totally comfortable moon-walking throughout the crowded streets of Manhattan. Bonus: a style savvy Aritzia employee stopped me to excitedly ask: "Oh my god, are those moon boots?!"

Look #2: Cosmic Curduroy

This funky light-turquoise Urban Outfitters corduroy puffer jacket might be the top-complimented garment in my closet — and, in my opinion, it creates sweet, sweet harmonies with my cream Icons. Perhaps it's because both pieces echo snowy, oversized ski slope fashion or both have equally icy undertones, but I loved the way they complemented one another. To not distract from their love affair, I plopped on a pair of plain straight leg black denim jeans (thrifted), a simple black Zara turtleneck, and my prized Gucci bag. I was nervous that my attire would not be well received at the somewhat subdued restaurant my friend and I reserved a table at, but upon entering, a waitress chimed, "I love those boots!" and quelled any lingering self-conscious thoughts.

Look #3: Sonic BOOM

For the last look, I wanted to carry-out my pastel, extra-femme fantasy and go loud. Also, by this point, I’d worn my Moon Boots to the grocery store, the cafe, etc., so, I no longer felt odd sporting them like this on a casual Thursday afternoon. I wore my lavender Aritzia knit sweater dress, tried & true UO corduroy puffer jacket, black ribbed tights from who knows where, wrapped it all together with a Behno pastel yellow shoulder bag and of course, an iced oat milk latte.
After one month of wear, the boots are not scuffed, not off-color, or any less comfortable. I think I flaunt them so often now because they are truly cozy and pure fun fashion. And, although they keep my shins warm in the cold, you will see me perusing the streets in my pair with ankle socks, bare legs, and a cute spring-y outfit. Full transparency, they will probably hibernate in my closet during the incoming sweltering hot NYC summer.

By the end of my experiment, my goal was not necessarily to get you, the reader, to buy these galactic booties, but instead debunk why astronaut couture is flooding the streets. My answer? Moon Boots are secretly just elevated loungewear slippers blessed with rugged rubber soles that make them fun to scoot around town in. Needless to say, I'll be wearing mine from now, to infinity, and beyond.

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