Comfortable wedding shoes don’t have to, I implore, be an oxymoron. We are in 2022; there’s no reason we can’t buy some sleek pumps that won’t send our bridesmaids out for dressings by the end of the night. As a bridesmaid and wedding guest on several occasions, no longer married myself a year ago, I browsed several pairs of wedding shoes and several types of wedding shoes. I’ll admit a few episodes of dancing barefoot over the years, but for the most part I was able to keep my wedding shoes on my feet with no blisters, sores, or mysterious bruises the next morning. How, you ask?
The difficulty in choosing the right wedding shoes is that they have to be location specific. A beach party will probably require sandals; a black-tie party breeds heels; a wedding in wine country needs apartments that won’t sink in the mud; a courthouse case might even allow sneakers. To accommodate such an array of aesthetics, I researched 25 pairs of heels, pumps, stilettos, flats, sandals, and sneakers in varying heel lengths, some open toe and some closed toe, which are chic enough to be considered wedding material. (For you brides: many styles are available in white!) While some pairs are more comfortable than others – it’s hard to argue that sneakers feel better than pumps – all should be able to survive a noisy reception. Whether you’re headed for the aisle or the dance floor (or both!), check out our expert picks.
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I never expected to find my perfect wedding shoes on Amazon, but alas, I wore these babies to my wedding last year and didn’t take them off once from 3pm to midnight. After several hours of walking, running, jumping rope and dancing, I suffered from no blisters. I love how elegantly simple these shoes are – every time my toes peeked out from under my skirt, a bedazzled strap didn’t blind anyone in the front row – and the block heel adds a tiny bit (but necessary) of height.
Summer weddings call for pastels, and these light blue slingback block heels from Aerosoles strike the balance between pretty and practical. I have a pair in off-white that is quickly becoming a recurring staple in my wardrobe whether or not I have a wedding to attend.
If you’re a bohemian bride (or bridesmaid or guest!) and heels aren’t your thing, these elegant closed-toe flats are comfortable enough to slip on and off when floating from an event to the other.
Gigi Crystal Pointed Toe Flats
Sometimes a wedding look calls for a little sparkle. These dazzling cream-colored flats would look particularly impressive with a champagne-colored dress. I’d recommend breaking them in a bit – the sides are notorious for chafing – but once fitted these shoes should keep your feet snug all night long.
Carina 60 canvas wedge espadrilles
These Wedge Espadrilles Are So Gorgeous You Should Take Them To Your Beach Wedding and honeymoon. The closed-toe canvas is great for keeping sand out of your shoes, and the lace-up detail is effortlessly stylish for a getaway on the boardwalk.
I’ve been to several weddings where the bride slipped into Converse shortly after the ceremony, so I know a good sneaker is a necessity for modern nuptials. If your adventure is laid back enough to let you weave through the day’s events, these all-white picks from Birdies are a fan favorite.
Knotted Penny Lame sandals
Fair warning: these gorgeous sandals are delicate, so they might not hold up well if you’re prone to breakdancing at the reception. But if you’re a slow-dancer, the pretty pink lamé straps on these heels will keep your heels in place.
A great alternative to the Dream Pairs above, these block heel sandals from Kelly & Katie feature a beaded front strap and a high heel that’s chunky enough to prevent any ankle wobble.
A simpler, heelless answer to the Hildie Pump. Thank you Jessica Simpson.
I am still shocked at how well these mules stick to my feet. So many slip-ons are notorious for slipping off at inopportune times, but these Bells and Becks buttery leather ballet flats are snug, yet soft enough to wear for hours. These are a great streamlined choice for a refined and simple wedding look.
Weddings are a fabulous opportunity to test new trends. These strappy lace-up sandals are a summer 2022 favourite, but the low heel and soft straps make them ideal for long-term wear.
These leather slingback sandals offer just enough height to boost your confidence. Not to mention, the tortoiseshell heel would look great at a rooftop reception.
For winter weddings, consider a moccasin over a boot. The 2.5 inch heel and gold chain on these leather platform loafers add dimension to a classic style.
A super soft wedge in a color tailored for a garden wedding? Grab them before they sell out.
Bridesmaids aren’t the only ones capable of rocking Mary Janes. These cute flats feature a heart-shaped Swarovski buckle for an extra dose of glamour.
So maybe you can’t ride to your best friend’s wedding in pool slides, but you can play sports. these slides, and reviewers say they’re practically as comfortable. Even better? No need to break them before the big day.
If you’d rather go heelless at your next ocean party, these lace-up flat sandals are the perfect island choice. Bonus points that they are durable and versatile enough to wear with many outfits after the wedding.
I took these platform sandals for a spin on vacation earlier this year and was pleasantly surprised at how comfortable I found them. Even walking between multiple events, neither my knees nor my ankles deformed, and the high heel dressed up my otherwise casual look. They are now in permanent rotation.
Sand High Heel Sandals
While significantly more precarious than, say, a flat sandal, these high-heeled stilettos are made well enough to withstand a lot more movement than your average dinner party.
Another brilliant pick for the glitter-loving among us, these ballerina flats from the Journee collection feature soft mesh panels and a chic pointed toe.
The small heel has long been the ideal alternative for those looking for sophistication without risking a sprain. And, what’s more, a bridal shoe doesn’t get any more classic than this all-white heel.
LoveShackFancy x Sophia Webster Alba Mid Sandal
Weddings aren’t always the best time to take fashion risks, but that doesn’t mean you should. never dress outside the box. These colorful block heel sandals from LoveShackFancy featuring a floral pattern are sure to get compliments in wine country.
Gilda Crystal Pointed Pedestal Mules
Designer Amina Muaddi is known for her jaw-dropping shoes, and this pair is certainly no exception. The sculptural heel is enough to draw attention, while the crystal embellishments are subtly whimsical.
Now that bridesmaids in black are a trend rather than a taboo, it’s the perfect time to break out these gorgeous, on-trend sandals, made from luxuriously comfortable leather.
Enduring label Rothy’s have transformed their office-appropriate flats into a bold metallic pair perfect for wedding season. Your feet will never feel happier.
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