Throughout modern history, so-called “comfort” shoes have gotten a bad rap. Begrudgingly purchased out of necessity by nurses, servers, and people with foot conditions; strapped on by sensible, errand-running moms; and stacked high in the closets of our grandmothers, this supportive footwear category prizes functionality over trend-following, and often gets overlooked by we fashion-seeking shoe magpies.
However, the winds of change are blowing. Our feet are growing tired of flesh-biting straps, hard-as-rock footbeds, and weight distribution made uneven by unsupportive heels. Sure, there’s an endless stream of trendy sneakers out there, but sometimes we want more — the elevated visual statement of our favorite of-the-moment shoes paired with the easy wear of, say, a Dansko.
Luckily, several things are at play. Dorkus malorkus footwear is meeting fashion half-way, with brands like Birkenstocks and Clarks revamping tried-and-true lasts in need-it-now colorways. In addition to this, a new crop of comfort luxury brands have popped up, offering sleek, high-end styling with the same kind of engineering that used to be the sole (ha!) specialty of the comfort brands. There's also the endless wave of divisive granny and dad styles that continue to parade down designer runways, embraced by fashion people who love a good ugly shoe. We’ve included a mix of all here, because our greatest priority is helping you maintain a balance of comfort and style at all times, no matter where it’s coming from.
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