When it comes to comfortable flats for women, style and support should play equal importance.
Great shoes are a wardrobe essential and comfortable flats should certainly form part of your capsule wardrobe. The idea that your feet should suffer for fashion is an outdated notion. While wearing the best designer heels used to be the only way to feel stylish and on-trend, designers have thankfully acknowledged this sea change and as a result, runways and stores have been packed with beautiful and fancy flat shoes, that are comfortable too.
The latest shoe trends 2022, are full of gorgeous shoe styles, many of which forgo a heel, ensuring you can have on-trend style and happy feet. From wedding guest styles to office-ready shoes, comfortable flats for women are more attainable than ever. And don't forget, if you're going for an accessories refresh, pair your new-season shoes with any of the latest handbag trends 2022 to slide easily into spring.
Comfortable flats for women—what to look for
Stylist Antonia Kraskowski suggests, "When looking for a comfortable flat shoe, the footbed is very important to consider. A molded style such as Birkenstock sandals will give your foot support where it needs it. With a molded footbed, you may find that you need to size up or down in order for your foot to sit in the correct position for a truly impactful fit.
"Styles with additional padding such as Marks & Spencer’s Insolia technology will ease the impact on your joints. Vans have also introduced the ComfyCush to many of their styles—an outer sole with additionally cushioning that promises to make you feel like you’re walking on a cloud.
"If you find that the back of your shoes rubs on your Achilles heel, consider adding a small orthopedic lift to your shoes. Traditionally made from leather-topped cork, these will bring your heel into alignment with modern designs which sometimes have a higher back."
Comfortable flats for women—shopping links
- Clarks—great for comfort and style, prices from $85 / £45
- FitFlop—known for their comfort technology, you can guarantee good ergonomics here, prices from $95 / £75
- Gabor—another brand that combines function and fit with ease, prices from £75 (international shipping available)
- Hobbs—for instant style and polish, Hobbs do great shoes, prices from $130 / £69
- Hotter—offering plenty of support and cushioning, prices from $129 / £69
- Hush Puppies—packed full of clever shaping and cushioning for all-day comfort, prices from £90 (UK only)
- Kurt Geiger—give your feet a fashion makeover, best for dressy styles, prices from $150 / £149
- LK Bennett—take inspiration from Kate Middleton with this brand, prices from $230 / £129
- Manolo Blahnik—classic designer styles that will certainly turn heads, prices from $645 / £475
- Marks and Spencer—an array of trend-leaning flats with added comfort, prices from $39 / £29.50
- Office—so much choice at this international shoe retailer, from own brand to branded, prices from $30 / £10
- Pretty Ballerinas—known for their ballet pumps, if it's the dancewear style your after, this is a great place to start, prices from £95 (UK only)
- Roger Vivier—quirky and fabulous, for a real feet treat, prices from $650 / £430
- Russell & Bromley—classic British design, they combine trends with wearability and quality, prices from £145 (UK only)
- Sole Bliss—great for those who need stylish shoes that work for wider fits, bunion issues, and want extra cushioning, prices from $199 / £149
- Tod's—the best place for Italian leather loafers, prices from $545 / £390
- White Stuff—easy style and great color options, prices from $51.50 / £35
- Zara—great for affordable on-trend styles, prices from $49.90 / £29.99
Comfortable dressy flats
Choosing the best shoes when getting all dressed up is no easy task and if you're not keen on wearing heels, then getting ready for a glam night out can cause a lot of anxiety. But have no fear, dressy flats are far easier to shop for than you think and they come with the added bonus of allowing you to dance all night long. Drawing inspiration from the catwalks of Dior, who sent models down in delicately bejeweled flats, new season shoes have benefited from a host of new embellishments.
ASOS Glitter Flat Shoes
RRP: $18 / £12 | A glittery pair of flats are a wardrobe essential for special occasions. This bargain pair will ensure you can shimmy the night away, wearing with everything from dresses to trousers. They're a great lightweight, dressy shoe option for trips away, slip into your wardrobe stat.
M&S Silver Basket Weave Ballet Flats
RRP: $77.50 / £45 | Adding a little touch of metallic goes a long way with any outfit and these gorgeous basketweave pumps from M&S are bang on-trend. The artisanal weaving really adds an extra layer of luxe. They'll dress up everything from your best jeans, to floral midi dresses and flattering jumpsuits.
Kurt Geiger Otter Love Mules
RRP: $150 / £149 | Kurt Geiger is well known for their fancy flats, these gorgeous mules are just one pair in a long line of brilliant party-ready mules that the brand offers. Mules might take a little getting used to, but if you struggle with the backs of your heels and scratched-up feet, then these will be truly dreamy.
Manolo Blahnik Hangisi Flats
RRP: $985 / £785 | The Hangisi is a classic, featuring a spectacular jeweled front. An iconic shoe for Sex and the City fans, if you've wondered how to dress like Carrie Bradshaw but struggle with high heels, then the flat version of these are the investment shoe for you. These might not be suitable for those with wider feet.
Roger Vivier Buckle Loafers
RRP: $1,295 / £820 | Roger Vivier makes some of the most beautiful statement shoes. These boucle loafers with embellished buckles will work for a myriad of occasions. From important workdays to evening outs. They'll pair effortlessly with trousers and dress options too. We love this grey colorway for a lighter alternative to classic black.
Boden Pointed Toe Mary Janes
RRP: $180 / £120 | We can't resist a Mary Jane and these colorful ones really do offer some serious 'dopamine dressing', a major fashion trend 2022. The cheery hues will brighten up any look, while the embroidery adds a richness far beyond their price tag. Wider feet should be wary of pointy toe shoes, as they're likely to pinch.
Comfortable black flats
When building a capsule wardrobe, comfortable black flats are a must. Appropriate for a host of occasions, from evening wear to your daily commute, whether you slip them on simply to help you arrive at your destination quicker or you need black comfortable flats to get you through the day, a pair of black flats will never lie idle in your wardrobe. Our advice would be to stock up with a couple of pairs when you find a style that really works for you to avoid missing out when designs change.
Hotter Robyn Leather Ballet Pump
RRP: $125 / £69 | Hotter pack their shoes with great tech to ensure you get maximum comfort. Their lightweight Hotter Freesole provides high-energy return to add more power to your walk, and a molded OrthoLite® insole for the utmost comfort, you'll be walking on air with each step.
LK Bennett Pandora Flats
RRP: $340 / £189 | If you love the way Kate Middleton dresses then you might want to take a look at LK Bennett shoes. While we're used to seeing the Duchess in her classic flesh-toned shoes from the brand, they also make some seriously beautiful classic black flats too, like this elegant pair.
Russell & Bromley Brewster Loafer
RRP: £225 / (not available in the US) | Loafers have had a major fashion revival, thanks to brands such as Tod's who's loafers are always present in their Milan Fashion Week shows. This classic style is certainly one to add to your capsule wardrobe and they work particularly well for jeans and trouser wearers.
Dune London Black Plimsolls
RRP: $90 / £65 | This quilted plimsoll will not only offer added comfort but it's packed full of on-trend style too. From the quilted top to the platform style sole, this monochromatic slip-on shoe is really striking. We love the ease on elastic sides for added stretch and movement.
Jimmy Choo Mani Black Flat
RRP: $850 / £675 | You can live that designer dream without wearing heels and these super chic velvet loafers with dressy buckle are a great choice for evening wear. Team with tailored cigarette trousers for a runway-worthy look. Or why not style-up your best jeans with some seriously glorious shoes.
Sam Edelman Lior Loafer
RRP: $130 / £102.96 | If you're a trouser wearer, make a classic Edelman loafer part of your capsule wardrobe. The classic design means these will effortlessly pair up with the rest of your outfit but look elegantly understated at the same time. We love the gold metal hardware for a modern twist.
Comfortable ballet flats
Ballet flats have become a fashion staple, as they offer both style and comfort. A ballet flat as the name suggests is based on a classic ballet shoe but as time has evolved they have gone through multiple style tweaks, giving them a more fashion-forward aesthetic. Ballet flats are effortlessly elegant and are a great choice not only for comfortable flats but also for their ability to be glamorous evening shoes or great for slipping in your bag for when you're feet are tired from heels. While bejeweled and metallic iterations are ideal for special occasions, neutral hues are the solid building blocks of your shoe capsule wardrobe. If you worry about the backs of your heels, look for supple and soft leather styles. With the ability to be paired with everything from the best midi dresses to a well-tailored pair of trousers, these are shoes you can rely on.
White Stuff Ruched Ballerina
RRP: $109 / £69 | These scrunchy flats offer excellent grip to your feet and while these will work for everyday wear, they're equally ideal for something soft and pliable to throw on for a morning commute and then discreetly smuggle into your best tote bag on arrival.
Hobbs Flo Suede Ballerinas
RRP: $130 / £69 | An absolute style steal, we're getting classic Chanel vibes from these two toned ballet pumps. With soft suede body and a polished leather toe, these comfortable flats will take you effortlessly from day to evening, teaming with trousers and skirts.
Pretty Ballerinas Rosario
RRP: £199 / (not available) | Pretty Ballerinas are universally loved for their incredible array of ballet pumps. Popular with all ages, this leopard print pair with hot pink trim is very striking, but as leopard print is now considered neutral, these really won't date. Wear with everything.
Dune London Woven Ballet Pumps
RRP: $75 / £65 | As we head to warmer months, it's time to think about spring-ready footwear and nothing says the warmer weather is on its way like these white basketweave shoes. With a cute bow detail, these chic pumps will team up with everything from pretty summer dresses to jeans.
Marks & Spencer Ballet Pumps
RRP: $60 / £35 | One of our favorites, M&S really does deliver on the shoe front. With a strong nod to ballet, these dark almond pumps look so incredibly delicate and dainty. Pair with a-line dresses to feel like you're ready to dance down the street. They also come in black if you love the silhouette.
Zara Ballet Wrap Flat Shoes
RRP: $49.90 / £27.99 | If you want to go all-in on the ballet theme, then these will be hard to resist. Great for a summer wedding guest look, these will look truly magical with floral dresses in pastel hues. Want to toughen the look? Pair with cropped jeans, a white t-shirt, and your best leather jacket.
Comfortable work flats
Whether you're on your feet all day or just can't abide heels, comfortable flats for work are a great idea, even if you simply add them to your work capsule wardrobe and rotate them with heels when you have a busier day ahead. When choosing comfortable flats for work, you not only need to be comfortable but you need to look and feel professional too. Ballet pumps can certainly play a role for workwear flats, but loafers also make for excellent comfortable flat shoes for work. Slightly more androgynous, loafers look fantastic paired with tailoring. Ideally styled with trousers, a more feminine loafer, with an elongated toe, will team well with dresses too. For a softer finish opt for pastel hues and suede fabrications.
Office Ballet Flats
RRP: $52 / £39 | These look so much more expensive than their real price tag. The delicate buckle detailing will add just a touch of sparkle to your office attire, but these cute shoes will work for more glamorous occasions too.
Clarks Tassel Shoes
RRP: $120 / £85 | These tasseled loafers are lovely and soft but still incredibly smart. Pair with your best blazer and some well-tailored trousers and you'll look ready for whatever work throws at you. Stock up on the various colors too.
Tod's Kate Loafers
RRP: $795 / £540 | Tod's really are the masters of the loafer. With a huge array, in buttery soft leather, Tod's craft really lovely high-end shoes and if you've struggled to find a luxurious flat pair of shoes, they're well worth a look.
Cos Pointed Ballet Flats
RRP: $150 / £99 | You can really see how soft the leather is on these pointed beauties. Helping to elongate your pins, we'd suggest wearing these with longer-line tailoring pieces, trousers, and wide leg-silhouettes for maximum effect.
Grenson Martha Brogues
RRP: $460 / £295 | Brogues are the flat shoe rarely talked about when it comes to women's flat shoe options. But a great pair of brogues offer comfort and support and are a smart option for the office. This pair comes in three colorways.
Comfortable flats with arch support
One of the biggest issues with flat shoes can be their lack of support. While some women can't wear heels, others find the flip side, a very flat shoe can cause them equal amounts of pain and discomfort. While many flat shoes don't offer huge amounts in terms of support there are several specialist brands which lead with comfort and have developed high tech specs and cushioning for their footwear to help you look and feel great.
FitFlop Allegra Suede Loafers
RRP: $120 / £90 | Once known for their toning flip-flops, the brand has reinvented themselves into the home of comfortable and stylish shoes. These soft little loafers have a secret, high-rebound cushioning tech hidden in the 'flat soles'.
Gabor Scalloped Shoes
RRP: $101.53 / £75 | Scallop detailing remains a key fashion trend and something we've seen creeping into bag styles too, so it makes sense to see it pop up on shoes. Gabor offer great cushioning in their footwear as standard.
Hotter Drift Moccasins in Pink
RRP: $145 / £85 | Comfortable shoes don't have to be boring. These gorgeous pink loafers come in an array of colors and feature blissful cushioning and a padded insole. Put your best foot forward for the new season.
Birkenstock Tracy Shoes
RRP: $130 / £105 | If you've already been converted to the supremely comfortable Birkenstock sandals, did you know they do shoes too? It's not the widest selection of flats, but what they do have will use their great shaping and styling know-how for comfortable shoes.
Hush Puppies Lace Up Shoe
RRP: £90 (UK only) | Hush Puppies are great for comfortable style. Anatomically designed to support the natural movement of your body. BioBevel™ outsole has rounded angles in the front and back to encourage a balanced, walking motion.
Rivkie is a fashion editor, writer and stylist with over fifteen years' experience in the industry. Having studied design and pattern cutting at the London College of Fashion, Rivkie fell in love with styling and journalism, covering fashion weeks in London, Paris and New York.
Specialising in plus size fashion, Rivkie has long championed that style is for everyBODY and has been a regular talking head on a host of radio stations and television shows, pushing for greater representation for plus size women and fashion throughout her career.
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