Looking for the best shoes for men? Look no further! We've curated a list of the most essential and stylish footwear options you need in your wardrobe. From elegant dress shoes to comfortable sneakers, we've got you covered for every occasion. Whether you're a fashion aficionado or simply looking for functional footwear, this article is a must-read. Discover the perfect shoes to elevate your style and keep you on-trend from head to toe. Get ready to step up your shoe game and find your perfect pair.
ESSENTIAL SHOES FOR MEN
Essential Shoes For Men | 9 Shoes Every Guy Needs (My Collection)
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When you’re getting ready for a date night, wedding, or any other formal occasion, a pair of sleek and shiny dress shoes is the way to go.
The most classic form of dress shoe, Oxfords, also known as balmorals, feature a sleek and formal look with the vamp sewn on top of the eyelets.
Cap toe shoes have an extra layer of leather on the toe, providing both added protection and visual interest.
Originally designed to keep water out, brogues have decorative holes and a heavier build, making them perfect for pairing with wool trousers.
The Monkstrap Shoe
Technically a loafer, the monkstrap is slip-on shoe with a single, double, or triple strap. It's a stylish option for men.
Where To Buy Men’s Monkstrap Shoes
» Quick Note: You might like this in-depth comparison of Cole Haan vs Beckett Simonon.
Mo’ Money No Problem
Leather & Suede Monk Straps: Mr. Porter | St. John’s Double Monk Strap: Allen Edmonds | Brown Suede Double Monk Strap: SuitSupply
Ballin’ On A Budget
Williams Single Monk Strap: Cole Haan | Fletcher Double Monk Strap: Johnston & Murphy | Hoyt Monkstrap: Beckett Simonon
Did you know that the name comes from an era in Europe when monks used to wear shoes with a buckle as an alternative to sandals?
The monkstrap is a stylish shoe that can be worn with a suit for formal occasions or more casually with jeans and a blazer.
The Brown Loafer
Casual, comfortable, and cool, loafers are a go-to option for the summer. They can be worn year-round, dressed up or down.
Where To Buy Men’s Loafers
» Quick Note: You might like this review of Jay Butler loafers.
Mo’ Money No Problem
Suede Loafers: Mr. Porter | Donovan Tassel Loafer: Stacy Adams | Camden Penny Loafer: J. Crew | Cognac Antique Penny Loafer: Ace Marks | Suede Bit & Penny Loafers: Jay Butler
Ballin’ On A Budget
Howland Penny Loafer: Cole Haan | Oval Penny Driving Shoe: Florsheim | Concours Driving Style Loafer: Lacoste | Wyatt Driving Penny Loafer: Cole Haan | Gunnison Driver Mocassin: Cole Haan | Lewis Penny Loafer: Frye
Did you know that tassel loafers originate from the same design found today in boat shoes?
Loafers are versatile shoes that can be worn with both formal and casual outfits. They add a touch of sophistication to any look.
Comfortable shoes for those long days on your feet.
When it comes to footwear, we've seen a shift towards a balance between aesthetics and comfort. Comfortable shoes have become prominent in men's fashion, offering fit, breathability, and support.
The Brown Leather Boot
The brown leather boot is an essential stylish shoe for men. It adds sartorial sophistication or ruggedness to any look. There are various styles available including dress boots, work boots, chukkas, chelsea boots, and cowboy boots.
Where To Buy Men’s Leather Boots
» Quick Note: You might like this long term review of Thursday Boots.
Mo’ Money No Problem
First Avenue Dress Boot: Allen Edmonds | Dalton Wingtip Dress Boot: Allen Edmonds | Heritage Moc-Toe Boot: Redwing | Evans 1000 Mile Boot: Wolverine | Iron Ranger 6″ Boot: Red Wing | 6″ Service Utility Boot: Chippewa
Ballin’ On A Budget
Captain Boot: Thursday | Lace Up Boot: Aldo | Full Grain Leather Wingtip Boot: Thursday | Rome Cap-Toe Boot: Taft | Dowler Cap Toe Boot: Beckett Simonon
Did you know that many heritage brand boots like Red Wing, Thorogood, and Wolverine have been around for well over a hundred years?
Well-worn boots have a certain character to them. They can be paired with dark wash denim, corduroy, chinos, or wool trousers.
The Chelsea Boot
The chelsea boot is a popular option for its iconic design. It can be worn with jeans, chinos, or even suits.
Where To Buy Men’s Chelsea Boots
Mo’ Money No Problem
Frye Chelsea Boot: Frye | Suede Chelsea Boot: Mr. Porter | The Dean Chelsea Boot: Paul Evans | Troy Chelsea Boot: Ace Marks
Ballin’ On A Budget
Duke Chelsea Boot: Thursday Boots | Vianello Chelsea Boot: Aldo | Chuck Suede Chelsea Boot: Cestfini | Suede Chelsea Boots: ASOS Design | Jude Tonal Chelseas: Taft
Did you know that the chelsea boot has Victorian roots and has been around for over 150 years?
The chelsea boot is a versatile option that can be worn in both formal and casual settings.
The Suede Chukka
Surprised it’s number two on the list? There’s a good reason why.
Though not as formal as brogues, the suede chukka offers more dressiness compared to sneakers. The chukka boot is considered the first dress-casual shoe, making it incredibly versatile. It can be worn with a suit or dressed down with dark wash denim and a white t-shirt.
Where To Buy Men's Chukka Boots
Mo' Money No Problem
Split-Toe Suede Chukka Sneakers: Mr. P | Bowery Chukkas: Frye | Tod's Suede Chukka Boots: Tod's
Ballin' On A Budget
Fudge Suede Desert Boot: Clarks | Gordon Rush: Austin Chukka Boot | Bushacre 2 Chukka Boot: Clarks | Scout Chukka Boot: Thursday Boot Co.
» Related: You might be interested in this Best Chukka Boots Complete Guide.
The chukka is a simple shoe with open lacing and two or three pairs of eyelets. It is commonly made of suede or leather.
Did you know that a style of chukka, known as the desert boot, gained popularity in the British military? Chukkas became popular leisurewear for soldiers due to their comfort and durability in harsh desert conditions.
The well-known Clark's Originals desert boot is a great starting point. I recommend a suede pair, as the texture adds visual interest and a touch of elegance to your look. Chukkas are mostly available in neutral shades of brown and navy. Opt for a darker brown for more elegance and versatility, or a lighter shade for a casual look.
» Quick Note: You might like this long-term Clarks Desert Boots Review.
The bottom line: Chukka boots strike a perfect balance between dressy and casual, leaning more towards the casual side. Chukkas effortlessly elevate suits and offer limitless options for casual outfits.
The Minimalist Sneaker
Sometimes even the most stylish men like to go casual. With the ongoing popularity of the casual aesthetic, it's essential to have a reliable casual footwear option. The canvas sneaker is perfect for all types of casual outings, from ballgames to backyard BBQs.
Where To Buy Men's Minimalist Sneakers
» Quick Note: You might like this long-term review of Ace Marks Duke Sneaker.
Salt Washed Sperrys: Sperry Top-Sider | Vans Washed Canvas Sneaker: J.Crew | Hermosa Plimsolls: SeaVees | The Royale Blanco White: Greats | Kurt Leather Sneaker: New Republic | Capri Triple White: Koio | Duke Sneaker: Ace Marks | Low 1 Sneaker: Oliver Cabell | Stan Smith: Adidas | Reid Full-Grain Leather Sneaker: Beckett Simonon | Veja Esplar Leather Shoe: Veja | Everyday Low Top Sneaker: Nisolo
Did you know that the original canvas sneaker, Keds, was created in 1892 by the U.S. Rubber Company? The term "sneaker" became popularized through an advertising campaign. The shoe's rubber sole was so quiet that you could sneak up on people.
I suggest getting a pair in a neutral shade of beige, white, or gray. This way, you won't have to think too much about what to wear them with. It goes without saying that minimalist sneakers made of leather, suede, or canvas will always be in style.
The bottom line: The canvas sneaker is stylish, versatile, and a great alternative to flip-flops in the summertime. It adds a touch of casualness to any outfit.
» Readers' Favorite: How to Mix and Match Clothing Colors (A Master Class in Styling)
The Oxford or Derby
Completing my top 5 list is the obligatory Oxford or Derby. A black Oxford or Derby is typically a man's first formal pair of shoes. However, I recommend avoiding square-toed varieties. Opt for a more classic rounded toe Oxford or Derby.
You may be wondering what sets the two apart. In short, Oxfords have closed lacing, while Derbys have open lacing. The Oxford is considered more formal. If you're curious about the difference between them, you can read this article here.
Did you know that the Oxford is named after Oxford University in the UK? Before that, the shoe had its origins in Scotland and Ireland, where it was known as Balmorals.
Where To Buy Men's Oxfords Or Derbies
Mo' Money No Problem
John Lobb Oxford: Mr. Porter | Church's Oxford: Farfetch | Cagney Cap-Toe Oxford: Paul Evans | Carlyle Plain-Toe Oxford: Allen Edmonds
Ballin' On A Budget
Noicien-w Oxford: Aldo | Jarrahflex-w Oxford: Aldo | Craosa Oxford: Aldo | Dean Oxford: Beckett Simonon | Cap Toe Oxford in Black: Grant Stone | The Original: Amberjack
I recommend investing in a quality pair of Oxfords. The two main factors to consider are the price and construction.
A good pair of welted leather shoes usually costs around $360. While it may seem pricey, investing in a quality pair will last you for decades. Look for brands that have been established for 20 or more years, as they have built a reputation over time.
» Related: You might like this roundup/guide on the Best Wingtips For Men.
Brands to know:
- Allen Edmonds
- Foster & Son
- Edward Green
- John Lobb
When it comes to color, I recommend going for black or brown. Black is suitable for formal occasions like funerals, weddings, and black tie events. Brown is more casual and versatile. The lighter the shade, the more casual the look. A nice cap-toe Oxford or Derby is a great choice for a first dress shoe.
The bottom line: Oxfords and Derbies are essential in men's style. They are sleek, dressy, and set you apart from the rest.
» You Might Like This Guide on the Best Men's Sock Brands (10 Quality Pairs for Every Activity).
The Brown Brogue
What's at the top of the list of must-have shoes for every man? The brown brogue. It quickly becomes a staple in any man's wardrobe, combining versatility with style. Fun fact: the term "brogue" comes from the Gaelic word "bro," meaning shoe. Brogues are known for the decorative perforations or punching along the leather uppers.
Where To Buy Brown Brogue Shoes
» Readers' Favorite: 10 Men's Dress Shoe Types: Oxfords, Not Brogues (Everything You Need to Know).
Mo' Money No Problem
Fifth Avenue Cap-Toe Oxfords: Allen Edmonds | Strand Cap-Toe Oxfords: Allen Edmonds | Grenson Leather Wingtips: Mr. Porter
Ballin' On A Budget
Lisbon Brogue Oxford: Ecco | Meliot Derby: Aldo | Larethienflex Oxford: Aldo | OriginalGrand Ultra Wingtip Oxford: Cole Haan
Did you know that brogues were originally designed with decorative perforations as drains for muddy water?
I recommend getting a semi or quarter-brogue in a dark brown for your first pair. If you're feeling more sartorially inclined, a full-brogue (wingtip) in a tan or cognac shade is a great choice. Keep in mind that a standout pair like this is sure to attract attention, so if you're not comfortable with that, stick with a darker brown with minimal broguing. This allows you to ease into the world of brogues and gives you endless options to pair them with jeans, chinos, or wool trousers.
» Quick Note: You might like this comparison between Beckett Simonon vs Allen Edmonds.
The bottom line: The brown brogue is a cornerstone of the smart casual wardrobe. It can elevate well-fitting jeans or add a touch of casualness to a tailored suit. It serves you well from the office to the dance floor.
The construction of dress shoes meets the casual slip-on style of sneakers. There is an endless array of loafers available, from fancier bit loafers to classic penny loafers to heavy-duty versions with big lug soles. They effortlessly dress up or down and bring a sense of nonchalance to a summer suit or add classiness to a laid-back polo and shorts look.
Common Projects Retro Low Leather-Trimmed Suede Sneakers
These are the Common Projects Retro Low Leather-Trimmed Suede Sneakers.
The Casual Sneaker
credit: J.CrewFinally, we have the classic casual running sneaker. Although not specifically designed for running anymore, these shoes are perfect for casual outfits and the trendy athleisure look. Check out this Nike Internationalist Review to see how this popular running shoe can be styled.
Whether you're running errands or meeting up with friends, the casual running sneaker is the most comfortable option available. Pair them with joggers and a ball cap for a relaxed look, or wear them with rolled-up jeans and a blazer for a more put-together outfit.
Speaking of shoe odor, I highly recommend using this premium shoe spray to freshen up and eliminate any unpleasant smells.
Where To Buy Men's Casual Sneakers
» Quick Note: You might like the Nike Killshot 2 from J.Crew.
Serrano Sneakers: Onitsuka Tiger | New Balance Sneakers: J.Crew | Classic Sneaker: Reebok | Internationalist Sneaker: Nike | Killshot 2: Nike | Capri Triple White: Koio | Royal Blanco: Greats | Original Achilles Low: Common Projects | Wool Runners: AllbirdsDid you know that the sneaker, originally called plimsolls, dates back to the late 1700s? During this time there was no difference between the left and right shoe, believe it or not.
I recommend choosing a pair with neutral shades, although you can opt for a pair with a pop of color if you prefer. There's no harm in experimenting.
In conclusion: Casual sneakers are comfortable and can add a stylish, laid-back vibe to your wardrobe.
Tods Gommino Driving Shoes in Leather
These are the Tods Gommino Driving Shoes in Leather.
Polo Ralph Lauren Merton Leather Boat Shoe
Designed to age beautifully, these saddle brown leather boat shoes from Polo Ralph Lauren will be your go-to footwear for summer after summer.
Size Range: 7-15
Best Sustainable Shoes
Veja V-10 Rubber-Trimmed Leather Sneakers
You can't call yourself a sneakerhead without owning at least one pair of Vejas. These V-10 sneakers are sustainably made, comfortable, and incredibly stylish. Even royals are obsessed.
Material: Raw Materials
Size Range: EU39-EU46
When it comes to versatility, nothing beats a chukka. These ankle-length boots are easy to style with a wide range of outfits, and their high-quality construction ensures durability.
Size Range: 7-14
Best Penny Loafers
Thursday Boot Company Men's Captain Cap Toe Leather Boots
Best Combat Boots
Paraboot Coraux Loafer
Best Penny Loafers
Sandals are more versatile than you think
As the weather heats up and summer beckons, it's time to reconsider your footwear choices. Sandals have emerged as a game-changer, going beyond their beach-side stereotype and becoming a staple for style-conscious men everywhere. Explore Highsnobiety's article on socks with sandals to see how this once-derided combination has become a testament to the versatility of sandals.
Sandals now serve dual purposes. They offer a comfortable and breathable option in hot weather while also allowing for personal expression through various styles.
Their popularity has even led to the resurgence of once-dismissed combinations, such as socks with sandals. From chunky flip-flops on urban streets to classic Birkenstocks, the celebration of "toe-freedom" has never been more fashionable. As we head into 2023, it's clear that sandals are not just a passing trend but a must-have staple for the season.
Hiking boots for urban hikes and weekend adventures
In the ever-evolving world of men's fashion, hiking boots have firmly established themselves as one of the best choices for footwear. These durable essentials have transitioned from utilitarian gear to influential fashion statements, catching the attention of the footwear community.
Hiking boots offer a unique blend of practicality and aesthetics that make them a versatile option for both rugged trails and city streets. They balance an adventurous spirit with sophisticated elegance, seamlessly fitting into a variety of styles from casual streetwear to upscale fashion.
Their architectural designs and technical features make them capable of handling tough conditions, while their stylish craftsmanship allows them to blend effortlessly with different outfits. Hiking boots have become a statement of lifestyle and personal aesthetic, making them a standout choice in men's footwear.
Running shoes can help you hit new milestones
As the world adapts to new norms, running has experienced a remarkable resurgence as a powerful fitness activity. Running requires little more than the right pair of shoes and a willingness to move. However, it's essential to understand that not all shoes are created equal.
Running shoes elevate your fitness journey by balancing performance and comfort. Lightweight options focus on energy return, converting each stride into forward momentum. Plush variants prioritize cushioning, reducing the impact on your feet.
Hybrid shoes offer a combination of cushioning and energy return for a balanced running experience. The key is to choose a pair that complements your natural running style and enhances your overall performance.
Finding the perfect pair of running shoes is crucial. As we approach the warmer months, our guide to the best running shoes for men will help you navigate this journey, ensuring that every run becomes a step towards a fulfilling and healthier lifestyle.
Skate shoes that are not only functional but also stylish
Skate shoes have solidified their status as a staple in men's fashion. They have transitioned from functional gear to a crucial part of personal style. Classic silhouettes have been revamped with cutting-edge technologies, merging style and ride comfort seamlessly.
While maintaining respect for heritage, brands have embraced '90s and '00s aesthetics, constantly collaborating with emerging brands to push the boundaries of skate shoe design.
As skateboarding gains popularity and skates its way into the Olympic spotlight, the skate shoe market continues to diversify. Navigating this diverse market can be challenging, but our selection of top skate shoes reflects the current state of skateboarding. Whether you're a seasoned rider or a rookie, you'll find the perfect shoes to match your board skills and fashion ethos.
Basketball Sneakers: More Than Just for the Court
Immerse yourself in the fascinating world of men's basketball sneakers, where functional athleticism meets unique style. The latest basketball season showcased footwear that seamlessly combines performance and flair.
While the gripping 2022-2023 NBA season may be coming to a close, the basketball sneaker scene is still vibrant. Renowned brands like Nike face competition from innovative creations by Mizuno and adidas. Additionally, there are affordable alternatives that are shaking things up, offering a wider range of choices.
Whether you're an experienced basketball player or simply a fan of basketball sneaker aesthetics, we have carefully compiled this article on the ultimate basketball shoes. Our selection is based on comprehensive reviews and surveys.
We feature globally acclaimed Nike releases as well as fresh signature shoes from legendary basketball players. Each pair promises to enhance both your performance and your style. Whether you're honing your skills on the court or stepping out with confidence, our article presents the basketball shoes that should be part of your wardrobe this season.
Dad Shoes: Adding Normcore to Your Wardrobe
In the vast world of men's footwear, there is a type of shoe that has surpassed conventional style norms. Welcome to the realm of "dad shoes." These boldly chunky silhouettes have not only withstood the test of time but have also become a cultural phenomenon.
"Dad shoes," with their eye-catching bulk and unexpected comfort, have captured the attention of style icons and fashion houses. Leading the trend are labels like ASICS, whose GEL Kayano model propelled the dad shoe into the fashion stratosphere, and New Balance, whose 990 series offers a more reserved take on this trend.
The appeal of dad shoes is multifaceted, whether it's the retro nostalgia they evoke or their defiance of sleek minimalism. These shoes provide a platform for individual expression and a refreshing departure from the norm. They are considered some of the best shoes for men.
As you navigate your footwear journey, consider the dad shoe as more than a passing fad. It is a bold stylistic statement, symbolizing fashion's ongoing evolution by blending comfort with avant-garde design in a surprisingly harmonious way. With their robust aesthetics and defiantly comfortable wear, dad shoes might just win you over. Fashion-forward and undeniably functional, they are suitable for any season, breaking free from traditional conventions.
Mules: Liberating Your Feet
Elevate your style game with top-tier men's mules – the perfect fusion of unapologetic flair and easy-going comfort. Imagine yourself cruising down an open highway, experiencing a sense of wild liberation that is akin to slipping into these masterpieces.
If you've been hesitant to enter the world of mules, it's time to reconsider your style code. As spring arrives in all its vibrancy, mules are the go-to choice for flaunting or airing out your feet. The best part is the option to mix and match with socks, adding an exciting dimension to your ensemble. Instead of merely providing guidance, we have curated a selection of these trendy backless shoes from Dries Van Noten, Martine Rose, and Margiela. They are ready for you to make them your own. Get ready to step up, break conventions, and let your feet steal the spotlight.
In a world where style and comfort go hand in hand, finding the best shoes for men can be a game-changer. From the timeless elegance of dress shoes like the Monkstrap and Oxford to the laid-back cool of casual sneakers like the Common Projects Retro Low, there is something for every occasion. And let's not forget about the versatility of sandals, the durability of hiking boots, and the performance of running shoes. Whether you're stepping into the office or hitting the streets, these essential shoes will not only elevate your look but also keep you at the top of your game. So go ahead, liberate your feet and step into a world of style and comfort.