What the Hell Does Matty Healy Have on His Feet?

It’s that time of year again. Time for me to write about Matty Healy’s footwear.

The big general-interest news this week is that the 1975 frontman is reportedly engaged to mononymous model Gabbriette (born Gabriella Bechtel), which she announced via an Instagram Story photo snapped at Charli XCX’s Brat album-release concert earlier this week in downtown Brooklyn. (Another detail to note: Charli is engaged to Healy’s bandmate George Daniel.) But in more menswear-specific news, Healy has a new pair of biomorphic shoes, and boy, are they unnerving!

On Monday, the day before Charli’s NYC show, Healy stopped by a Los Angeles coffee shop wearing a prime-time dust fit: a fraying University of Notre Dame sweatshirt, marled gray joggers, and blackish-green, barefoot-style sock shoes. Then, back on the West Coast a couple days later, he wore the sock shoes again—this time, with a grape-purple T-shirt and a pair of sky-blue, flared-and-pleated Adidas track pants that are apparently a fan favorite—while stopping by an LA cannabis dispensary. The grippy shoes’ flat-soled profile—which, similar to water shoe, hews to and mimics the foot’s natural shape—gave the appearance of the singer walking in socks on the asphalt. It’s an unsettling silhouette we’ve seen crop up in recent years, most notably worn to provocative effect by Kanye “Ye” West, who began selling his void-black Yeezy Pod sock shoes (a style he’s been riffing on for years) in late 2023 following his dismissal from Adidas, and previously popularized by the brothers Gvasalia, at both Demna’s Balenciaga and Guram’s Vetements.

Indeed, given Matty Healy’s whole deal, some fans—of Healy, Taylor Swift, and otherwise—expressed concern that the frontman’s oddball shoes could actually be Ye’s Yeezy Pods, which, if true, would have been enough to unspool another few months’ worth of sinister conspiracy theories. But after digging around some 1975-adjacent subreddits, and reviewing a video Gabbriette posted last week of Matty doing a weird little walk to Tinashe’s “Nasty,” Healy’s sock shoes most closely resemble this $30 “minimalist” pair off Amazon, which may be this story’s most disquieting turn yet.


Minimalist Barefoot Sock Shoes

Are you brave enough to rock the Matty Healy 1s?

Healy, who generally seems to be tuned into most discourses including fashion trends, has exhausted the hype-menswear-shoe cycle over the past year, ping-ponging from last summer’s clunky Asics Gel-Kayano 14s to his newfound amphibious anti-sneakers. Though Healy’s approach to footwear is almost certainly (and characteristically) trollish—he previously professed to being a socks-and-sandals enthusiast—his arc does mirror the market’s. After the dad shoe cast its hulking shadow over the late 2010s into 2020s, partially thanks to Balenciaga’s progressively cartoonish offerings, the bloated trend has yielded to increasingly lower-profile footwear for guys, from dainty mules to coquettish ballet flats. On that note: let’s all check back in here at the same time, next year?

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