In the menswear market, the slippers on offer are no longer the dowdy and dull offerings you’d associate with your granddad. With a range of different styles and colours, there are now slippers available that wouldn’t look out of place with your best suit.
Adopting a range of different luxe materials, from leather to fleece, it is now possible to keep your feet comfortable and slipper clad, as well as stylish.
To celebrate the successful transformation of the classic men’s slipper, we’ve compiled 5 fun facts about them that you may not have known…
1. The word slipper dates back to 1478
The word ‘slipper’ was first recorded in English in 1478! That’s 536 years of cosy feet! The word originated from the verb ‘to slip’, presumably referring to the fact we are able to simply ‘slip’ them on.
However, the dictionary also lists the word as a verb, meaning ‘to strike or beat with a slipper’. As a form of punishment, ‘slippering’ was very popular in schools, with one establishment in Liverpool recording more than 1,800 official ‘slipperings’ in 1980!
Luckily, all punishment of this type is now banned, so slippers can be enjoyed solely as the luxurious footwear we have come to love today.
2. “The Slipper Man” wore slippers for 23 years straight
Slippers for men are a popular choice, but for Derek “The Slipper Man” Fan they were his only choice! He holds the Guinness World Record for wearing a pair of dress slippers for 23 years straight as of June 30, 2007!
Another record winner, Darlene Flynn, was renowned for her crazy collection of 14,684 shoe-related items, a stockpile which was verified by Guinness World Records in 2012 as the world’s biggest. Within her collection, which spanned across her entire home, Darlene treasured a replica of Cinderella’s infamous glass slipper. Following her record verification, Darlene raved that the achievement “is awesome and a dream come true.” Shockingly, the ‘Queen of Sole’ was murdered by her toyboy boyfriend in 2013.
3. Japanese custom means slippers only indoors
In Japan it is customary to remove your outdoor shoes when entering an establishment, and exchange them for a pair of slippers. The Japanese also have ‘toilet slippers’ because this area of a home is considered unsanitary. Most traditional restaurants, community centres, or Japanese schools will supply plastic shoes for people to change into when they go inside the bathroom.
However, the slipper customs don’t stop there, you are not supposed to wear slippers on the tatami mats inside a traditional Japanese house. We certainly admire a culture that is so slipper friendly, and with slippers like this available, we don’t mind if we do!
4. World’s best exam taker credited slippers for success
The world’s most successful exam taker, who passed 70 O-levels, 16 A-levels, one S-level and gained an Open University degree, actually gave credit to his slippers when reflecting on his success. In 1995 he argued, ‘It is important to have comfortable feet.”
At first we wondered if perhaps they were magic slippers?! However, while that fact may seem kooky, research has found that there is an effect of clothing comfort on academic performance. The study found that the more formal the attire, the lower the comfort rating of that attire and the therefore the lower the exam score! So perhaps there’s actually something to be said for donning your most casual slippers to an exam!
5. Dorothy’s slippers are the most expensive pair
Can you guess the world’s most expensive slipper? It’s Dorothy’s ruby red pair from the original Wizard of Oz. The sparkly shoes sold at auction for $660,000 US Dollars on June 2, 2000. Let’s hope for that price they were comfy!
There are four pairs of these slippers known to exist. One pair of the remaining sequinned ruby red shoes is in the Smithsonian Museum in Washington DC, another is privately owned, while the last was stolen from the Judy Garland museum in Minnesota!
So there you have it, facts ranging from fascinating to quirky! So, with winter just around the corner, now is definitely the time to invest in a stylish new pair of slippers to keep your tootsies toasty ahead of the colder months. We recommend a fleece lined set, which will offer both comfort and sophistication. However, slippers can still be worn in the warmer seasons, and will offer your feet protection indoors and out. As demonstrated, there is a slipper for every occasion and in a range of different styles to suit every taste.