Distinguishing casual from formal shoes is like telling dusk from dawn. Some shoes can go either way depending on the height of the heels, the ornaments, or sometimes on the clothes that are paired with them. It’s that complicated, but that’s fashion for you. And even as you read, the grey areas between the two could already be growing.
But you can be sure about two things. With casual shoes, (1) comfort should precede style, and (2) style shouldn’t involve sparkly ornaments and/or pointed, towering heels.
Heels vs Flats
All women’s casual shoes can be classified under two categories: heels or flats. The distinction is obvious; heels raise the back end of the foot a few inches from the ground putting a user into a sort of tip-toe stance while flats keep the entire sole on the ground.
Flats are definitely more comfortable to wear but wearing heels not only helps vertically challenged ladies, but also accentuates womanly features as well.
Heels push the buttocks up, give the back more arch and force the chest forward. Not to mention that it also gives a woman more pride and air of confidence.
Types of Casual Shoes
Pumps can cover most of the foot except for the top part. Like any other casual shoes, pumps can either be heeled or flat, and can be made out of leather, rubber or cloth. This type can be considered the most proliferate and the “safest” choice among casual shoes because it goes well with almost any types of getups. It even throws in one benefit: since the top of the foot is exposed, it will look like an extension of the leg making it look longer.
Though they can also be used in formal occasions, sandals can be considered as one of the most casual type shoes simply because of how much skin it exposes. They are usually slightly elevated and come in three types: Birkenstock, flip-flops and gladiator sandals. Sandals work great with a nice pair of feet and a nice set of nails which is why girls who don’t pay much attention to their toes must stay clear from this type.
Boots are closed shoes that may extend to the legs in varying lengths and may be made of rubber, natural or synthetic leather or suede. This type exudes a touch of ruggedness in the outfit which has its unique appeal, but some women might be bothered by too much confinement.
Wedge shoes are thick-heeled shoes that can either be closed or open. Because of its characteristic wedge heels, it makes the ankles look thinner, though women with already thin ankles will look excessively skinnier. When buying wedges, one should remember that they’re also buying all the pros, as well as the cons, of a high-heeled pair of shoes.
Mules, also known as step-ins, are backless shoes while the front end can either be closed or peek-toed. The main advantage of wearing this type is that the foot can easily slip in and out of the shoe whenever needed. Since the back end of the foot is exposed, other people can easily compare the width of the ankles to the heels, which is why one must make sure that the two are proportional; the thicker the ankle, the wider the heel should be and vice versa.
D’Orsays were originally a man’s shoes. They’re open on both the lateral and medial side of the feet to accomodate the width of men’s feet. Today, D’Orsays are made more slender for the opposite sex, but the side openings make it an ideal choice for wide-footed ladies.