Last Updated on May 8, 2019 by Kristen
Every woman in my world, regardless of her age, will no longer suffer for footwear. We’re no longer here for sky-high stilettos, binding straps and cushionless footbeds. And that means we’re taking another look at the footwear brands that have always put comfort first.
Footwear brands like Aerosoles, Birkenstock and Naturalizer have built their reputation on comfort, and in recent years they’re stepping up their style game, too. They’re delivering sandals with that old lady comfort but with silhouettes that a fashion editor can love. They have arch support and padding, but they don’t look like they were prescribed by an orthopedic surgeon (even though one of the brands was founded by one).
It’s a lot to ask for in a shoe, but the styles below deliver. We can, in part, thank the ugly footwear trend which started years ago with Teva-inspired styles and the resurgence in popularity of Birkenstocks (and the brand’s collaborations with the likes of Rick Owens, Valentino, and High Snobiety). The trend has continued more recently with dad sneakers tromping down virtually every designer’s runway. But we can also thank these brands for paying attention to what women today really want: comfort and elevated design.
Whether you’re looking for something to wear to springtime brunches, summer weddings, poolside, or to work, there’s a comfy and stylish sandal for you.
If you’ve ever tried Aerosoles, you now they don’t mess around when it comes to comfort. This style is super easy to wear with jeans or a fancy dress, and you’ll have so much more fun when your feet don’t hurt.
Camper Oruga Up sandals, $145
This Spanish brand is known for quirky, comfy styles, and this Teva-inspired design one is no exception. They’re good for running errands, running after kids, or running the show.
We don’t have to tell you the suede version of Birkenstock’s classic slide sandal is iconic, comfy, and a lifetime fixture in every fashion editor’s closet. But they’ve never been great poolside, until now. And they come in six additional colors to accompany every kaftan in your travel bag.
Naturalizer is practically synonymous with comfort but unfortunately the brand is sometimes relegated to “old lady” shoe territory. And even old ladies don’t want old lady shoes. So it’s exciting that the brand is breaking the mold with several fashion-forward styles, including this specimen.
Born is another brand known for comfort, and this is the neutral sandal you’ll wear to every Sunday brunch this summer, even if you have to walk 20 blocks to get there.
Taryn Rose was an orthopedic surgeon before launching her shoe brand, which features molded insoles and patented shock absorption. It’s wonderful to have a foot-friendly version of this classic 70s-inspired style.
Vionic Blair suede, $140
Vionic flats are beyond comfy. And while I’m convinced it’s impossible for a heels above three inches to be truly comfortable for hours on end, these come close. The style is basic but stylish enough to get you through your summer wedding rotation—they come in black, gray and snake, too!
Soludos espadrilles are legendary, but this style is unexpected and super versatile. They’re a bit less “I’m on vacation” than some of their other designs, but they’ll be a go-to whether you’re at a resort or on a staycation.