Home Blog Blog | Decision 2016 – Boots Edition

The NPD Group Blog

Insights and Opinions From Analysts and Experts in More Than 20 Industries

Even if you remain undecided in terms of which presidential candidate to back, I’m sure by now you’ve taken a stand on one of the key issues on the trail that has recently emerged – Marco Rubio’s boots.

Last week, The New York Times reported on the “surprising focus on Senator Marco Rubio’s shiny, stack-heeled ankle boots.” Other candidates weighed in via Twitter. Senator Ted Cruz’s communications director posted “A Vote for Marco Rubio Is a Vote for Men’s High-Heeled Booties.” Carly Fiorina posted a photo of her own high-heeled boots and the comment “Yeah, @marcorubio, but can you rock these?” The media weighed in as well, trying to guess the brand and comparing Rubio to musicians and other celebrities.*

Rubio’s campaign shared that the boots are from Florsheim, likely the Duke style that has a retail price of a relatively modest $135. And it turns out that he’s right on trend. According to NPD’s Retail Tracking Service, for the fall retail season so far (August-November ’15), men’s fashion boots grew 6 percent vs. the prior year, compared to the total men’s fashion footwear market which increased 4 percent. This growth was driven by ankle-height shaft styles, like Senator Rubio’s.

However the fuss is not really about the shaft height of Senator Rubio’s boots, it’s about the height of the heels. At 1.75 inches high, I wouldn’t exactly call these “high-heeled” – I don’t think any woman that is used to struggling with four inch heels would. Yes, they are taller than what we typically expect to see on a man. And at 5’10”, Rubio is among the shortest of the presidential candidates, so I don’t blame him for wanting to pick up a couple of inches. At 5’1”, I’ve certainly been there.

What do you think about the boots?

Source: The NPD Group, Inc. / Retail Tracking Service
*Source: The New York Times, Marco Rubio’s Shiny Boots Stir Up the Presidential Race, January 7, 2016


Related Blog Posts


Where Will the Payless Sales Go?
Where Will the Payless Sales Go?

After the going out of business sales are over, the most likely beneficiaries of Payless’s demise will be Walmart and, to a lesser extent, Target, followed by Kohl’s. According to NPD’s Checkout, almost half of Payless footwear in-store buyers also bought footwear at Walmart in 2018. Twenty percent also bought from Target, and coming in third was Kohl’s, though Kohl’s average price per pair is approximately double that of Payless

Fashion Footwear & Accessories: Keeping Up the Momentum in 2019
Fashion Footwear & Accessories: Keeping Up the Momentum in 2019

2018 was an impressive year for the U.S. fashion footwear market—its strongest performance in recent years—and most accessories categories saw improved sales results. Though at a slower pace, footwear’s momentum will likely continue, and the accessories market will continue to level out. The most significant trends to watch will be an amplification of the familiar, including athleisure, comfortability, online’s growth and social/environment concerns.

A Fashionable and Functional Holiday for Footwear
A Fashionable and Functional Holiday for Footwear

Fashion sneakers and boots are positioned to sell well this holiday season, as are the brands and retailers that speak to the consumer priorities of comfort, coziness, convenience and versatility. Beth Goldstein outlines the trends and her expectations for the footwear industry this holiday.

Welcome to the neighborhood Nordstrom Rack
Welcome to the neighborhood Nordstrom Rack

It’s been quite some time since Nordstrom announced that they were going to be opening their first Nordstrom Rack store in Canada; and since then, there has been significant buzz around when this was going to happen.

Subscribe to our blog

Newsletter

Subscribe and get key market trends and insights relevant to your industry each month.

We will not sell your information. View privacy notice.

Follow Us

© The NPD Group, Inc.