Margot Robbie, Laura Harrier and French Women Are All Wearing These Anti-Sandal Flat Shoes

I've noticed a decidedly chic common thread running through the wardrobes of Margot Robbie, Laura Harrier, and the chicest French women I follow. Dressing for the new-found sun, these stylish women have ascended the fashion ranks by elevating their footwear collection with a lesser-known shoe trend that I predict will start catching on very soon.

Instead of the trending sandal styles I'm seeing all around me, I'm following suit and turning my attention to the under-the-radar ballet mules trend this summer.

Celebrity wears ballet mules.

(Image credit: Backgrid)

Pioneering the mule shoe style in the early '90s, Manolo Blahnik's Maysale shoes set the stage for the trend. With a small heel, pointed-toe design and easy slip-on silhouette, the iconic shoe quickly ascended to cult-buy status, paving the way for mules to become what we know them as today.

Now, many seasons on, the humble mule has been treated to a flat-footed makeover and a ballet-inspired re-design. After the roaring success of the ballet flat trend last summer, the hybrid ballet mule takes the best of both styles to create a fresh silhouette that makes chic heatwave dressing a breeze.

Celebrity wears ballet mules.

(Image credit: Backgrid)

Offering all the comfort of your favourite slides but with an infinitely more polished edge, it's no surprise that the fashion set has decreed ballet mules their new favourite shoe. Styling well with jeans—as Harrier, Robbie and influencer Sylvie Mus have all proved—the shoes also look impossibly chic with a full-length skirt or pretty summer dress.

With a backless finish, the shoe's silhouette is, in theory, more casual than its fuller-coverage counterpart, but I've found that with the right outfit, the shoes can act as the perfect alternative to heels.

Influencer wears the backless ballet flats trend.

(Image credit: @sylviemus_)

Designers have already been hard at work crafting elegant iterations. From Zara's pretty rogue style to Manolo Blahnik's iconic black pair, read on to discover our edit of the best ballet mules to shop this summer.


Natalie Munro
News Writer

Natalie Munro is Who What Wear UK’s news writer. Having worked in the fashion industry since her time at university—where she obtained a BA in Journalism from University of the Arts London, Natalie's experience spans journalistic and styling roles. In the early stages of her career Natalie predominately worked on editorial shoots for fashion publications such as British Vogue, Vogue Ukraine, AnOther Magazine and Elle UK, before moving into journalism roles.

On completion of her degree she interned in the editorial team at British Vogue and later went on to freelance for the publication. Here, she developed her interest in reporting on the latest fashion news and trends. Inspired by the dynamic nature of the industry, Natalie went on to write for other lifestyle and fashion brands and publications before taking on the role as News Writer for Who What Wear.

With an interest in uncovering the latest fashion trends, Natalie takes a leading role in identifying news for Who What Wear UK. Focusing on trends on and off the runway, as well as street style and celebrity fashion, Natalie reports on a daily basis, ensuring that she remains ahead of the trends. Natalie also creates content for Who What Wear’s social channels including TikTok and Instagram on a weekly basis.