As an East Coast transplant (from sunny Southern California), I could wax poetic about how liberated I feel once spring comes around. It doesn't matter that 10 years have passed since I made the move. Getting to shed the bulky winter layers, reintroduce sleeveless tops into my lexicon, and most importantly, embrace less practical shoes make the seasonal transition something I await with bated breath every March. Thanks to the upcoming season's milder climate, my heavy-duty winter boots can take a back seat to silhouettes and styles that don't tout the words "weather-proof" nor "heat-retaining." Bring on the open-toed sandals and traction-less heels. But living in a city in which I typically commute on foot means I still need to consider some level of practicality. So it's just my luck that this spring's lineup of shoe trends is fraught with comfortable options.
While there are plenty of flats styles I'll be embracing—slingback flats are making a big return—I'm not discounting a comfortable heel or two. If there's one thing I've learned over the years of running around New York City, it's that sturdy, chunky heels can be as comfortable as they are chic.
From Prada-approved loafers to the return of clogs, ahead are six spring shoe trends that have received my stamp of comfort approval.
We've said it before, and we'll say it again: Loafers are coming for your closet this year. The traditionally preppy style is receiving a 2020 makeover. While you'll still be able to find the classics, this year's take involves bold colors, platform soles, and lots of fun color blocking.
Thank you to Katie Holmes for alerting me to this one. Another preppy shoe trend, lace-up oxfords and brogues will be seen on feet everywhere this season. In case you're feeling a little ho-hum about this one, take a look through the new iterations the style is seeing, from animal prints to added hardware.
Blair Waldorf would be proud to see this one come up on our list. The 2020 Mary Jane is much less buttoned-up than before. The modern take ranges from chunkier-than-life heels to true retro-inspired versions reminiscent of our school days (ruffle socks not included).
Arguably the most divisive trend on this list is clogs. No matter which side of the spectrum you're on—love 'em or hate 'em—the silhouette was a mainstay on a handful of S/S 20 runways. For those willing to embrace the trend, be on the lookout for bold prints and unique new takes on the chunky shoes.
Wedge sandals have slowly been making a return as a spring and summer mainstay. While there are still plenty of open-toed wedge slides to be found, this season's styles are getting a bit more creative with their shapes. Be on the lookout for wedge booties and conceptual heel styles when making your spring shopping rounds.
I promised you true flats, didn't I? But don't just take my word for it. This one is even Anna Wintour–approved. Any flats are likely to be comfortable, but I love that slingbacks offer a bit more fitted security. You won't catch my feet slipping and sliding in the New York City humidity this year.