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7 work-appropriate shoe styles

blue flats adorned with studded crystals and flower-shaped bauble of beads on top

For women who work nine-to-five office jobs, spending the whole day in one pair of shoes means one thing: they have to be comfortable.

It’s also important to feel great and look appropriate, though. The good news is, no matter how formal or informal your office is, the shoes you wear to work can be suitable for the dress code, stylish and comfortable all at the same time. Take a look at these seven styles of shoes you can wear to the office:

1. Black Pumps

Black, nude, grey and other neutral-colored pumps are a staple of business-formal and business-casual offices, which means if you’re ever in doubt about what to wear, these are a go-to option. Go for a heel height of less than two inches and a more rounded toe to get the most comfort for all-day wear, and pair them with anything from suits to skirts to jeans.

Black pump
Eleni II Pump by Sofft

2. Printed and Patterned Heels

Colorful pumps or heels with patterns and prints are a little less formal than black ones, but can still be suitable for most office dress codes. If you work in a business-casual or smart-casual setting, it can be fun to take advantage of these styles to show some personality, so don’t’ be afraid to go for animal prints or color-block  footwear.

Multi snake print pump with elastic straps at arch
Nina Pump by Monroe and Main

3. Slingbacks

Slingback closed-toed heels are another staple in business-formal offices, but peep-toed and colorful styles can be a fun office shoe as well. Slingback  styles include a strap around the back of the ankle, which helps attach the shoe more securely to your feet. This makes them ideal for all-day wear, unlike slip-on heels that you have to grip with your toes to stay secure while walking around.

Black, double buckle upper slingback
Bijou Cami Slingback

4. Boots

Everything from booties to under-the-knee boots can be appropriate for the office, making them perfect work shoes for the colder months. For more corporate environments, go for sleek black, brown or grey-heeled booties that can replace pumps. For everything from business-casual to casual, feel free to go with distressed or taller styles.

tall, black boot with gold and silver embellishments on upper
Monroe & Main Embellished Tall Boot

5. Ballet Flats

Another wardrobe essential for corporate or formal office environments is a pair of black or brown ballet flats. For the ladies who prefer to go without heels, these can easily replace pumps while still looking stylish. As with pumps, more colorful and patterned versions can be worn in most offices to add some fun and flair to your outfits.

blue flats adorned with studded crystals and flower-shaped bauble of beads on top
Geezelouise Flat by J.Reneé

6. Loafers

Loafers are a good shoe for keeping comfortable because the toe area tends to be a little roomier compared to other work-appropriate styles. This spring, embrace the warming weather by wearing loafers with slacks or jeans and a blazer. Top the look with a thin scarf for less formal office environments!

Black, slipper-soft leather loafer
Viva Loafer by Life Stride

7. Sandals

For casual and smart-casual offices, sandals are a summer work shoe staple. Heeled or wedge sandals are a great option for style and suitability, but there are various work-appropriate flat sandals as well. Wear them with a knee-length summery dress or a pair of cropped pants. Just don’t wear flip-flops to the office!

Orange suede sandal with back zip
Sacha London Gina Sandal

8 thoughts on “7 work-appropriate shoe styles

  1. Stylish and comfortable shoes for woman……

  2. I just got a new job that requires professional dress, and you’ve really helped me figure out what I can wear in terms of shoes. Personally, I’ve always loved sandals, and it’s been really hot here lately, so it’s good to know that wedge sandals work so well in professional dress. I’ll be sure to go shopping for some heeled and wedged sandals (wedges are my favorite; you get more stability that way) as soon as possible.

    1. Hi, Rhianna. We’re so glad to hear you’ve been able to pick up some tips on pairing shoes with your professional dress items. Happy shopping!

  3. Love your shoe samples. Where can wide widths be purchased?

    1. Hello, the wide widths we offered are available on our website: Happy shopping!

    2. You need men’s shoes not women’s!

  4. Great Ideas! I’m a pumps and ballet flats girl myself. They look great and go with any outfit. I got mine from Queen’s landing. And they are so comfortable I can’t tell you.

  5. hi…can red slingback heel worn for business meetings?

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