I Finally Caved and Bought a Pair of Crocs — and They Changed My Home Life for the Better

published May 2, 2021
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Courtesy Crocs
Credit: Crocs

For better or worse, the pandemic has changed people, including how they dress and present themselves. Some people who once lived in jeans now can’t imagine jumping into them. Others who wore make-up day in and day out can no longer be bothered. And then there’s me: a woman who prided herself on being a specific kind of “fashionable” — one in which shoes like Crocs served no purpose — and now, cannot imagine her wardrobe without them.

Yes, Crocs, the attention-grabbing foam clogs that people either wear proudly or very, very ironically. The company’s founders actually acquired the shoe’s design from a Canadian company called Foam Creations after they saw a pair on a sailing trip in the Caribbean, and decided they wanted to improve its design and produce the shoe as a boating shoe

Fast-forward almost 20 years later — not to mention celebrity collaborations, as well as riffs on the theme by brands like Balenciaga — and Crocs has sold over 720 million pairs of shoes in over 90 countries. They’re not just for boating, they’re for gardening, going to the store, and even just walking around the house. People of all generations rock the Crocs, mainly because they’re just so dang comfortable and colorful. They’re also doctor-approved: The shoes have been certified by the U.S. Ergonomics Council and the American Podiatric Medical Association for their medical benefits, as the shoe’s foam forms itself to the wearer’s feet. Hanson, the company’s co-founder boasted that what their shoes “lack in aesthetic value, they make up for in therapeutic benefits.”

Even so, people have debated the shoes for their looks more than their personality. Are Crocs making a comeback? Were they always cool? Am I dreaming, or are Crocs actually really cute? Perception is reality, and months of stay-at-home orders can change the way a person sees the world. I should know: Throughout the pandemic, I’ve barely had the bandwidth to change out of my night-time pajamas into daytime pajamas, let alone put on a pair of shoes. That was when I started changing my tune on Crocs.

In the late summer of 2020, I considered buying a pair of Crocs after I realized that I wasn’t moving back to New York City anytime soon. The notorious shoes sat in my cart for months before I finally gave in and confirmed my order in October. Buying a pair felt like a step in the wrong direction at first, away from the stylish New Yorker I used to be. Then I realized that my life had changed in so many ways, I wasn’t quite sure what the “right” direction was anymore — and maybe it didn’t even exist the way I thought it did. 

Moving back into my parents’ suburban home in New Jersey changed my everyday needs and, in turn, my sense of style — I didn’t have the energy to put on a cute pair of boots whenever I had to go out in my yard. After months and months of spending the majority of my days indoors, getting out the door felt like a chore, and going outside to complete a chore… forget it. Simple tasks like getting the mail were a draining expedition in my mind. My parents’ driveway is long and often feels like a mile away whenever I need to wheel the garbage bin down to the curb or back to the garage. If I had to leave the house — whether I needed to pick up a prescription or walk the dog — putting on a pair of shoes was an additional hurdle. 

Crocs successfully eliminated that obstacle. Now, I leave my Crocs in the garage so I’m already out the door before I seamlessly slip into them. I also wear them for a lot of activities, including going to the store, walking my dog in the neighborhood, and painting in my backyard. 

I never considered wearing Crocs before because they served no purpose on concrete sidewalks and cement streets, but the pandemic forced me to step out of city living and find my footing again in suburbia. After moving back to New Jersey, I thought I was slowly losing a part of myself because I stopped expressing myself through the fashion I knew, when really, I was just trying to figure out what clothes worked best for my new environment. Owning a pair of Crocs allowed me to understand that I wasn’t becoming a different person — I simply needed to learn how to best support myself and my feet during this time.

I’ve also found that I frequently curate outfits centered around whichever pair I’m wearing, thus rendering moot my old bias against Crocs as a fashion statement. Today, I own a pair of cantaloupe Crocs, strawberry-print Crocs, and an orchid pair with the most comfortable platform I’ve ever experienced. And you could say I’m a total convert: I was so excited to receive the last pair, that soon after they arrived, I dressed up, did my hair, and makeup for a little photo shoot in my backyard. 

Credit: Andie Kanaras

Even thinking about wearing Crocs makes me excited to get out the door, be my best self, and live my best life. My sister even bought herself a pair after borrowing mine whenever she had to pick up a package outside. More recently, we wore our Crocs together on a chilly morning beach walk and took a picture of our adorable shoes by the shore. 

We had no reason to be embarrassed about our shoes — we felt happy and free in them. Crocs have allowed me to form a new and marvelous relationship to clothes’ function. In turn, I feel more comfortable and motivated than ever to express myself and look after my everyday needs.