8 "Boring" Shoe Styles You Should Always Have on Hand

essential shoe styles


Christian Vierig/Getty Images

In most cases, the word "boring" has negative connotations. But when it comes to "boring" shoes, we beg to differ. Think about it: You probably wear your so-called "boring" shoes much more often than your fun, trend-driven, statement-making pairs because they're significantly more versatile. Those plain white sneakers in your closet? You probably wore them this past weekend. And those black pumps you might even be wearing right now? Think of how many times you've worn them to work. While it's great to balance your shoe collection out with pairs that are fun and festive each season, the ultimate shoe capsule wardrobe that everyone should build consists of eight styles that are considerably more simple and timeless. These "boring" shoe styles are neutral enough to pair with a variety of outfits season after season. There are options for the office, travel, the weekends, and everything in between.

So read on to find out exactly what they are and to shop our picks for each style.

Neutral Pumps

The most classic of heel styles is one that effortlessly adds polish to any outfit that they're paired with. A flattering pair of pumps in a neutral color is a wardrobe workhorse you'll never regret investing in.

Minimal Strappy Sandals

There's a reason the most popular shoes among celebrities are Stuart Weitzman's Nudist heels: They don't distract from any outfit they're worn with and they never go out of style.

Block-Heel Ankle Boots

This ultra-walkable boot style is probably already in your closet. Keep it that way.


The original "ugly" sandals are no longer considered crunchy. These days, they're a summertime basic that's perfect for warm off-duty days.

White Sneakers

White sneakers started as a trend and quickly turned into a classic. While other sneaker styles come and go, these have stood the test of time. (Plus, nothing makes a pretty dress look cooler.)

Pointed-Toe Mules

Pointed-toe mules are one of those shoe styles that make you look like you know what you're doing. Whether it's a kitten-heel, block-heel, or flat version, they're sure to make your jeans (and everything else) look forward.


When you really want to wear sneakers but the circumstances require something with a little more polish, it pays to have a pair of loafers on hand. You can probably even get away with wearing them to work.

Simple Slides

When you want the ease of flip-flops but seek a chicer look, slides are your summertime savior. Stock up on simple versions that can be worn with your entire summer wardrobe.

If you'd like to receive more useful info on how to build the perfect wardrobe, sign up for Who What Wear's daily newsletter.

Related Stories