Helen Jon x Cougar Shoes
Helen Jon loves learning about companies that make excellent products to pair with our swim and resort wear. We’d like to introduce Cougar Shoes, a family-owned Canadian business that has been around for 75 years, and to share more about how this company with roots in cold weather is now making beautiful shoes for sunny summer days. We know you’ll love them as much as we do!
How would you describe Cougar to someone who hasn’t discovered it yet?
I would say it’s the perfect marriage of function and fashion. Our footwear is on trend and looks great, but still has all the function you’d want. You don’t have to sacrifice style for comfort. You can look great in a rain or snowstorm and know our boots will keep your feet warm and dry. We always say, “no rain required” to wear our rain boots. They are just as great on a sunny day!
Tell us about your new summer footwear. What are some standout pieces that are perfect for a sunny day?
Our standout summer styles have our new COUGAR LUXMOTION Comfort Technology built into them. Essentially, we’ve constructed a collection around combining layers of cushiony premium materials that absorb shock, diffuse pressure, and maximize comfort. It’s pretty cool.
They feel like you are walking on clouds, and they are full-on fashion! We’ve used a runway-inspired palette, artisanal-inspired stitching, and ribbed outsoles that have an organic vibe.
There is a platform waterproof sneaker called “Sayah.” It’s a personal fav – I have them in four different colors! They are easy to dress up or down and I can walk all day in them, no problem.
There’s also a stunning slide – the Soprato. It has really luxe buttery leather with a padded strap – super comfy and it looks beautiful on.
Which Cougar shoes would be perfect to pair with Helen Jon swimwear, Helen Jon coverups, and Helen Jon loungewear?
The Soprato for sure. You can easily wear it to the beach or pool, but out for dinner as well – great for doing double-duty on vacation.
Our new Pool Party EVA slide is fab to pair with swimwear and coverups. So lightweight, water-friendly and lots of colors to choose from – neutrals or brights!
I also love Nina. It’s got two hidden adjustable straps with designer-stitching details on them (I love adjustability, it’s great for when it’s really hot out).
We’d love to hear more about your focuses and inspirations for upcoming Cougar designs.
Our initial LUXMOTION Collection was well received by our customers. We are focused on expanding this, not only for summer but into our fall/winter collection as well.
We love your Pool Party Molded EVA Water-Friendly Slide (of course!). Which Helen Jon swimsuit & coverup do you think would work best with them?
There are so many ways to go with this!
I’m a big fan of your "beach cabana" print – our Berry-Merlot would look great paired with it! The Liliana and Flamenco -colored suits would look lovely with our coral color. And, of course, our Dove will work with anything if you prefer neutrals.
Tell us about your “Always Waterproof” line. What are your favorite pieces from the collection?
Our “Always Waterproof” guarantee applies to our closed-toe shoes and boots. Our process for waterproofing is different; our suedes and leathers are treated early in the tanning stage, before the boot is assembled, versus after. This adds an extra layer of protection. Secondly, we have a membrane added under the lining which acts like a waterproof sock as a barrier against leaks and seams.
For summer, my favorite waterproof style would be the Sayah LUXMOTION Platform Sneaker and for fall/winter I’m obsessed with our Shani leather boot – I wore it all fall and winter; it has Primaloft® insulation to keep you warm, but doesn’t look like a winter boot - I can’t wait to get the new Almond color we’re introducing this fall!
In addition to your summer sandals, Cougar has a wide variety of boots and shoes to carry you through the fall and winter seasons. What is the most important thing to keep in mind when buying boots?
Make sure you pick a boot that fits well and feels comfortable (over and above loving the way it looks). Fit is so important in cold weather; your toes need room to wiggle and move for good circulation. Cougar elevates winter boots in an innovative way – they are high-performance but also look amazing. I love that.
Cougar was established as a family business back in 1948 and has since grown to become a worldwide footwear staple. Explain how heritage has continued to play a role in your designs to this day.
Cougar started out as a winter boot company known for making no-nonsense boots that kept feet warm and dry. Those “roots” remain in the DNA of our brand. Today, Cougar is a style leader producing footwear playing on its Canadian sensibility, and it remains true to its heritage by mixing fashion with the function the brand has always been known for.