Sneakers You Can Actually Wear To Work For Any Dress Code
Yes, business casual sneakers are a thing.
In plenty of work environments, comfortable shoes, like sneakers, arent just allowed, theyre welcomed. Thousands of business casual sneakers and similar footwear crowd virtual shelves at this very second. While it can be a major work perk to don any footwear to the office, its not always the norm. There are just as many offices with strict dress codes like business casual, business formal, or even business professional as there are workplaces with no dress codes whatsoever.
In these formal work domains, a run-of-the-mill sneaker may not go over well with the big boss. That being said, sneakers dont have to be out of the picture all together. Hard to believe? Hear me out. Tons of brands are making business casual sneakers and luxury sneakers that can actually look the part for work, thanks to sleek, clean designs and materials that rival leather loafers. Sure, theres no denying that there are some cases where sneakers just wont fly in the workplace, but ahead, youll find some tips to walk through the workday feeling footloose and fancy free, no matter the dress code at hand.
Nautica Mens Wingdeck For Work Shoes Youll Want To Put On
Lacing these shoes up is a great way to start a week or weekend day.
These Nautica sneakers, made with a convincing synthetic leather upper and light, airy rubber soles, have all the style of a pair of Oxfords without the pinching feel. Putting them on gives the wearer an athletic-yet-polished look that should feel at home in any office. They also provide ample arch support, which reviewers love for walking around.
I wear these shoes every day for work, writes an . Part of my day involves being on my feet and walking to many places. These shoes are night and day when it comes to the feeling of your feet after wearing normal dress shoes and walking around.
The Nautica Mens Wingdeck comes in mens sizes 7 to 13.5 and are true to size.
Comfy Everyday Sneakers Self Editors Are Loving This Summer
I always used to spend my summers sliding into my favorite flip-flops or sandals and walking all overwhether I was working or off exploring a new city. No matter how comfortable I thought those sandals were, I still usually ended up with some type of blister. As I’ve grown older and wiser, I’ve discovered how much more comfortable life becomes when you just throw on a pair of sneakers instead.
Especially as someone who is always on my feetwhether running to off-site work meetings and new product launches, or traveling on the weekendsI have come to recognize and appreciate what makes a great pair of sneakers. The important things for me are that one, they’re comfortable, and two, I can wear them with a lot of my clothes, making them easy to pack when I travel. That way I can explore for a full day uninterrupted by foot aches and pains. Other bonuses in the summer: breathability and a light or bright color.
Here at SELF, all of our editors spend a lot of time in sneakers between working out and trekking around New York City every day, so it wasn’t hard for me to get some glowing recommendations for the best everyday pairs. While I can’t say I personally tested all 10 of these pairs, I can say that they’re definitely a favorite of at least one person on #TeamSELF.
Here are our top picks for sneakers to sport when you’re spending a lot of time on your feet.
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White Sneakers With A Suit / Sport Coat
White sneakers with suits are for the daring gentlemen among us. Not everyone can pull off the looks, but those that can, do so with a sartorial sophistication thats as nonchalant as it is divergent.
In order for this to work though, there are 3 things to keep in mind:
For example, a textured linen suit is much more suitable to be worn with white sneakers than say a suit made from worsted wool. And another way to create harmony between the suit and sneakers is to combine them with more casual tops like breton stripes or an unbuttoned OCBD.
Alternatively you can wear white sneakers with a sportcoat and odd trousers like chinos or even jeans. The rules are more lax here as youre going decidedly more casual. Feel free to play around with a pocket square. For your top, you can opt for a polo shirt, basic white t-shirt or even the more refined rollneck sweater.
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Olukai Nohea Mokus For The Outdoorsman Who Still Has To Show Up To The Office
These shoes say “I’d rather be outside,” but not in a bad way.
For a rugged look that still jives with the folks up in corporate, look to the OluKai Nohea Moku sneakers. Theyre made of a quick-drying, water-friendly microfiber, so theyre ideal for rainy days when you dont want to break out galoshes. They also have no-tie laces, which makes them easy to slide on and off.
I’ve been wearing them every day all day for about three weeks, writes one REI reviewer. I wouldn’t take them on a trail but for work and day-to-day they’re perfect and they don’t look like the same shoe everyone else is wearing.
The OluKai Nohea Moku sneakers come in mens sizes 8 to 13 and run half a size large for some people.
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Dockers For Balanced Blend Of Business And Casual
These are like running shoes you can wear to work.
These Dockers offer the best of both worlds. This is to say they have the comfy soles, laces, and knitted, breathable upper you might expect on a pair of athletic shoes, but they also have leather pieces sewn onto the heels and around the laces, so, at first glance you might think theyre a pair of dress shoesalthough they certainly dont feel like it.
Bought a pair for work two weeks ago and fell in love with this shoe, gives you the dress/casual look with all the comfort in the world, one Zappos reviewer writes. I had to order one color of each style.
The Dockers Einstein Knit Dress Casual Oxford come in mens sizes 7 to 13 and are true to size.
Pick Up A Pair Of Formal Sneakers For The Work Uniform Upgrade
Nota bene: If you buy through the links in this article, InsideHook may earn a small share of the profits.
Whether or not youre back to office and posted up in your cubical or still working from your home office, spring is the time to refresh your essentials, from light spring jackets to anything-but-boring chinos. And no item is more important for surviving the in-person nine to five than office-ready sneakers. A staple of everything from casual Friday to the inevitable cant-bear-to-wear-brogues-again day, the dressed-up tennis shoes is a go-to style, especially after a yeah of slippers and slides.
Unfortunately, the formal sneaker has also been noticeably and unfairly pigeonholed into a truly terrible excuse for a shoe. Far too often, the default causal office kicks is a monstrous knit-derby-hybrid. Poorly constructed, throughly uncomfortable, and a general eye sore around the workplace, its time to put the faux-leather footwear to bed and grab an appropriate pair of sneakers for the office.
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J Crew Saturday Sneakers For Supportive Versatility
A pop of pink keeps these shoes fun.
J.Crew is a well-known go-to for prim, stylish flats and sandalsbut they also have a killer pair of prim, stylish sneakers. The shoes, made with a classic white leather, pink trim, and a pair of pink or white laces you can switch out, are ideal for heading to the office and the bar after work.
Bought these as a can wear with anything type sneaker and they have been great, writes a reviewer. Incredibly comfortable and cute enough to pair with a dress or skirt. Feels like nice quality leather and the color of the pink looks exactly like the pictures.
The Saturday Sneakers come in womens sizes 5 to 11 and run half a size large.
Alexander Mcqueen Oversized Low
You can probably see a trend here. The Alexander McQueen Oversized Sneaker is the younger brother of the Stan Smith. Its the younger brother that took all the good bits of the older siblings work and made them bigger, better, and more luxurious in every way. The size of this oversized shoe is impressive, but its nothing for the faint of heart. While you mightve been able to blend in with the stan smith, the AMQ will make you stand out, especially for those who know. The Alexander McQueen oversized sneaker is best worn with a neutral coloured button-down shirt, and casual suit pants . Before you go ahead and cop a pair of these, make sure you have the closet that matches the designer aesthetic these portray. You run the risk of looking just as clunky in these as you would in a pair of Jordans.
Made in: ItalyLining: Leather 100%, Fabric 100%Outer: Calf Leather 100%Features: round toe, chunky rubber solePrice: $780
Reebok Vintage Sneakers With A Throwback Retro Look For Folks Who Get Jealous Every Time They Dig Through Their Parents’ Yearbooks And Realize They Were Born A Generation Too Late
Reviewers recommend ordering a half size down.
Promising review: “These are cute and comfortable! I took the advice from other reviews and sized down. I am usually a 6.5 but got a 6, and they fit perfectly. I have wide feet, and these adjusted very well. I highly recommend to anyone looking for a simple but cute shoe.” ESGF
Get them from Amazon for $13.99+ .
Toms Carmel Sneakers For Shoes That Look Fancier Than They Are
The details on these shoes gives them a nice umph.
These two-tone TOMS have an old-school glamour rarely seen in sneakers, with subtle details on the upper that you might expect to see on a pair of loafers or oxfords. Customers say they are dressier than typical tennis shoes, but dont sacrifice comfort for style.
Wearing right now while I type this review, writes a Nordstrom reviewer. They are incredibly comfortable and versatile. I wear them with everything, dresses, shorts, jeans, etc., and constantly get compliments! They keep my feet feeling great even after walking eight miles.
The TOMS Carmel Sneakers come in womens sizes 5 to 12 and are true to size.
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New Balance Made In Us 990 V5
Get your norm-core Steve Jobs fit off in the office with the New Balance 990 v5. If you shy away from the thought of getting up in the morning and putting together an outfit this is the sneaker for you. This is the sneaker you can wear to work and everywhere else. Pair the 990 with a pair of checkered suit pants for a play on tradition or match it with some baggy corduroy pants for a traditional feel, the choice is yours. If you only had one shoe for the rest of your life, the New Balance 990 V5 would be it. It brings a lot to the table, premium construction, comfort, and a vintage dad shoe vibe that works under all circumstances, including the office.
Made in: United States
Rothys For A Chelsea Boot
These shoes have all the style of a Chelsea boot with the comfort of a high-top sneaker.
Earlier this year, we reviewed Rothy’s, the cult-favorite flat brand you see everywhere on Instagram. This indestructible brand recently released a new offering to its catalog: a slide-on shoe with a Chelsea boot-style upper and springy rubber soles. This combination gives them the appearance of high-top sneakers, but without laces, so theyre streamlined enough to be office-friendly. As an added bonus, the shoe is made of recycled plastic bottles, and, like all Rothys offerings, is machine-washable.
Rothys always has the perfect fit for me, writes a reviewer. Nice to have style and comfort all wrapped up in one great shoe.
The Rothys Chelsea Boots come in womens sizes 5 to 13 and are true to size.
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Johnston & Murphy Waterproof Prentiss For A Fashionable Durable Sneaker
Sleek leather and cushy soles make for a great, comfy work shoes.
These Johnston & Murphy sneaks have the silhouette of a running shoe but the sleek leather upper of a sophisticated pair of brogues or loafers. Reviewers love that they are waterproof, durable, and comfortable enough to justify the price.
Was a little unsure about buying and keeping them due to the price, however, after wearing them all week to work everyday, I am very satisfied and happy to have kept them, writes a Zappos reviewer. Very comfortable, and I like the style.
Johnston & Murphy Waterproof Prentiss shoes come in mens sizes 8 to 16 and are true to size.
White Sneakers With Chinos
One of the smarter ways to wear white sneakers is with a pair of chinos that have a gradual taper towards the ankle and no break. Combine that with a light sweater layered over a button down shirt and youve got yourself a clean and classic sharp casual outfit.
Finally, in a more minimal approach, you could opt for a contrasting long sleeve or short sleeve t-shirt up top while sporting a simple accessory like a casual wrist watch. Its simple, but thoroughly effective. Ultimately, wearing sneakers with chinos is a wonderful way to elevate the inherent casualness of white sneakers.
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Sneakers For Casual Work Environments
When it comes to the sneaker game at work, casual work environments with little to no dress code are the easiest to navigate. Many startups, digital media companies, and creative professions fall in this category. The key here is not to take advantage of the free dress code. Youre still at work after all, so use discretion and go for clean-looking sneaks. While a favorite pair of old, beat-up sneakers may technically be OK, its a better look to leave your well-loved sneakers for the weekends. If all your sneakers fall under the well-loved category, there’s no better excuse than to buy a new pair exclusively for work. In other words, you can be expressive with your sneakers, but if you covered them in dirt recently, its probably best you skip those.
A great example of a sneaker that reigns supreme in a casual work environment are styles like these Converse Chuck 70 high tops . This pair of sneakers looks upscale while maintaining its cool factor. In a work environment that loves sneakers, these are a great choice with some social clout. If you happen to work in an environment that is super lax when it comes to dress code, go all in with a cool, athletic pair of sneakers that are extremely comfortable, too, like these Adidas Ozweego Celox Sneakers . Of course, Commes Des Garçonsclassic heart logo sneakers are both quirky and upscale. These are a great for-work sneaker in a casual, creative environment where people still look very put together.
Which Dress Sneakers Do You Like Best
All white? All black? Brown leather?
If youre still unsure about dressy sneakers and wondering if it makes sense for your work environment, first observe what everyone else around you is wearing and that includes the people above you on the ladder.
From there, assess how dressed up you need to be. If its imperative you wear brogues and a suit every day, dress sneakers may not fare so well in your workplace .
If your boss consistently shows up in a hoodie and jeans Id say youre clear to sport some nice dress sneakers with your smart sharp outfit to the office.
Hopefully this article helps you put together awesome smart, sharp, casual outfits for work, especially in those business-casual-but-more-casual-than-business environments.
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Steve Madden Gills Slip
The platform on these shoes gives any outfit a boost.
Youve probably seen these shoesor similar pairsaround your office or on well-dressed professionals on public transportation or corporate office parks. Their popularity is well-earned. The platform soles offer an elevated look to typical slide-on shoes, and the wide range of patterns available, from camouflage to snakeskin to classic black leather, ensure variety amongst the legions of people who wear the shoes.
Perfect casual winter shoe when you don’t want to wear booties, writes a Nordstrom reviewer. I loved so much I bought in both black and grey. The platform makes them so trendy and versatile! These can definitely be worn for any occasion.
The Steve Madden Gills Slip-on Sneakers come in womens sizes 5 to 11 and are true to size.