The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

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Students wear crocs for comfort, creativity

At+U-High%2C+crocs+are+a+popular+shoe+choice+for+many+students.+Although+Crocs+was+founded+in+2002%2C+the+shoes+have+recently+started+to+trend+among+people+in+Gen+Z.
Ellis Calleri
At U-High, crocs are a popular shoe choice for many students. Although Crocs was founded in 2002, the shoes have recently started to trend among people in Gen Z.

Lining State Street are a number of hollow and closed stores. They display signs saying “Retail space available” and “For lease” with the original store name scrubbed off the store’s front door. 

One of the few stores still surviving is teeming with life. The store’s neon banners and pop music welcome shoppers in to make their next best purchase: Crocs. 

After the pandemic, more teenagers have purchased Crocs because of what the shoe provides: comfort, practicality and personalization.

According to the New York Times, Crocs sales have doubled since 2019. Although Crocs was founded in 2002, the shoes have recently started to trend among people in Gen Z.

Isabella Alvarez, a junior, got her first pair of crocs in 2021. She now has three. Her Crocs continue to be her go-to shoes for when she travels to and from swim meets, or around her house.

“A big use for me is around the pool because they are waterproof. It’s just really convenient,” Isabella said.

Isabella says Crocs are comfortable, and that is one of the main reasons she wears them instead of flip flops or birkenstocks.

“They are one of the least restraining shoes I can think of,” Isabella said. “They are really comfortable because of their width. They don’t confine your foot too much, and they don’t limit you too much space-wise.”

But for Isabella it is not just about the comfort. The shoe charms, also called jibbitz, on her Crocs represent her interests like Bad Bunny or her dog. She says that she will never come across someone who has the exact same Crocs as her.

“I like how you can personalize them. Like, all of my Crocs have different vibes to them,” Isabella said.

Isabella believes that Crocs are Gen Z shoes, and there is a sense of pride and community that comes with that.

“The fact that Crocs are a new way to express yourself and customize is what is really attractive to the Gen Z audience, because we are really passionate about that,” Isabella said.

Ninth grader Bryce Poston, an avid Croc wearer since 2022, says he wears them pretty much everywhere. 

“I think they are very comfortable,” Bryce said. “They’re very versatile and match with whatever I wear.”

Bryce says Crocs are comfortable because of their material.

“Once you break them in, they are soft, and the shape — they are kind of like lazy shoes,” Bryce said. “I throw them on whenever I feel like it.”

Bryce believes that time spent at home during the pandemic did have an effect on Crocs’ popularity.

“Crocs started popping up again with quarantine happening and with everybody just being lazy and laid-back,” Bryce said. “Crocs came back and were, like, ‘Oh we’re the best shoe for this.’ and now I think they’ve just stuck with people.”

Both Isabella and Bryce believe that even though Crocs are trendy, they are truly worth buying.

Bryce said, “I definitely wear the $40 out of my Crocs. They are useful. That is why they are trendy.”

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About the Contributors
Sohana Schneider
Sohana Schneider, Reporter
Sohana Schneider is a member of the Class of 2026 and is a journalist for the U-High Midway. She began journalism in the 2023-24 school year as a sophomore. She plays soccer, swims and she enjoys listening to music.
Ellis Calleri
Ellis Calleri, Photographer
Ellis Calleri is a member of the class of 2025 and is a beginning photojournalist. His favorite part of photojournalism is being able to grow his skills and knowledge of photography. Outside of photojournalism, Ellis enjoys working with metal and wood. He also enjoys Legos, gaming, hiking and photography.

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