As a seasoned New Yorker, keeping my fingers on the pulse of emerging comfortable shoe trends can probably be considered a side hustle. After nearly a decade of living in the city, one too many cliché situations have taught me not to always opt for style over comfort, at least during my commute. Think getting four-inch heels stuck in subway grates, just missing a train while wearing platforms I couldn't run in, and the regret that comes with wearing any pair of open-toed sandals that expose my feet to whatever the city decides to throw at them. Suffice it to say, my wardrobe is now fully stocked with plenty of practical options like sneakers; low, chunky-heeled boots; and good-old closed-toe flats.
As we know, practicality isn't always synonymous with being boring. In fact, one of this season's most prevalent shoe trends is as stylish as it is comfortable. And I'm relieved to report back that the rest of the fashion crowd thinks so too. Square-toe flats are sweeping across my Instagram feed in all shapes and sizes, from your classic nude ballet flats to electric-blue mules. To get in on the trend yourself, shop my picks up ahead.
If you go the route of classic ballet-style flats, look for options in cool colorways. Swapping out basic black flats for metallic square-toes ones is an easy way to turn comfortable shoes into a statement piece.
Schutz Arissa Flats ($120)
Rachel Cox Flat Hesper ($147)
Porte & Paire Chain-Embellished Leather Ballet Flats ($260)
For me, as someone who professionally works from home, slip-on mules are my go-to. I don't have to think twice about socks, laces, or zippers before running a quick errand.
Zara Ruched Flat Leather Mules ($80)
Tagtraume Diana 09 ($96)
Topshop Leah Peach Leather Soft Ballet Flat Shoes ($68)
This Shop-Pêche pair is what first helped me to love the square-toe style. Admittedly, I own these shoes in all three colorways.
Shop-Pêche Heize ($85)
Jeffrey Campbell Sirah Slide in Red Croc ($58)
& Other Stories Square Toe Leather Lace Up Flats ($99)
Where a rounded toe will never go out of style, the square-toe cut gives even the most basic flats a chic edge.
Violeta by Mango Buckle Leather Shoes ($100)
Zara Square Toe Mary Janes ($60)
Staud Gina Mule ($275)
For even more comfort, try slingback flats. The ankle strap will help to keep the shoe in place while you're running up and down sets of stairs.
& Other Stories Leather Square Toe Ballerina Flats ($99)
The Volon Met Mules ($499)
ASOS Design League Mary Jane Ballet Flats ($44)
Square-toe flats are simple enough that they will pair well with just about anything you own.
Tagtraume Cayce Flat Shoes ($85)
Vince Cadya Slingbacks ($275)
ASOS Design Lola Ballet Flats ($29)
The longer and more rectangular the toe box of the shoe is, the more the shoe feels like a modernized version of the elongated '90s shoes from the past.
COS Square Toe Leather Mules ($150)
LoQ Costa Woven Flat ($298)
Reike Nen Riss II ($198)
This article originally appeared on Who What Wear
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