Shoe trends 2022—the must-have styles to invest in now and wear all year

Step into the new season with the best shoe trends 2022, as chosen by our fashion team

Models and influencers wearing shoe trends 2022 including sporty sandals, mules and square toe loafers
(Image credit: Future/Getty)

A new year is a perfect time to shake up your wardrobe and the shoe trends 2022 are guaranteed to do just that.

Dopamine dressing—which means wearing the pieces that make you feel good—is one of the key fashion trends 2022, so it’s no surprise this cheerful aesthetic has trickled down to our feet too. If you’re not yet brave enough to don a new trend head-to-toe, investing in one of the key shoe trends is the perfect way to tap into the trend without veering too far from your personal style.

From statement platform heels to sporty sandals, this year's shoe trends will lift any look and give your wardrobe essentials a new lease of life. Whether you want to give the best midi dresses a sporty twist or you want to give your best jeans a retro twist, these shoe trends will upgrade your look in one stylish swoop. "It is clear comfort remains a priority for new season footwear but it’s great to see designers embrace color, embellishment, and statement features as we emerge from lockdown life," says Katie Eastwood, Style Ambassador at Stitch Fix UK. "Trainers will always be integral to our wardrobes but I, like many, will be adding some larger-than-life footwear to my wardrobe this season, ready for a brighter year ahead—quite literally!”

1. Sporty Sandals

Sporty sandals on the catwalk

Chloe/Stella McCartney

(Image credit: Getty)

Our love of the comfy sandal is showing no signs of slowing down. Spotted on the runways of Chloe and Stella McCartney, sporty sandals are once again stealing the limelight and who are we to complain when this shoe trend is both fashionable and functional. 

"The athleisure trend lives on and sporty sandals are set to be popular this Spring, as seen across the Spring/Summer catwalks of Hermes and Chloe. Chunky soles are key and combined with super comfortable neoprene fabric and functional velcro straps, these sandals epitomize our want for both style and comfort," says Eastwood.

Incredibly versatile, there are no rules when it comes to wearing your sporty sandals. Try teaming a colorful pair with your favorite denim or keep it chic in sleek neutrals and tailored trousers. A worthy addition to your spring capsule wardrobe, the possibilities are endless.

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2. Platform Heels

Models wearing platform heels on the catwalk

Sportmax/Ermanno Scervino

(Image credit: Getty)

Take your feet to new heights (literally!) with some sky-high platform heels. Dominating the catwalks from Sportmax to Ermanno Scervino and spotted on our favorite fictional fashion icon Carrie Bradshaw, the stompy heel proves that we’re finally ready to dress up again, and if you want some more inspiration in this vein, check out our guide on how to dress like Carrie Bradshaw in Just Like That...)

"We can definitely see the '90s inspiration coming through, with chunky block heels and colorful platforms—once favored by our beloved Spice Girls and devoted fans everywhere—appearing all over Spring/Summer catwalks," says Eastwood.

"Create a maximalist look by pairing these heels with a bold mini or a printed midi dress and complete the look with a colorful clutch. For a more subtle look, add these statement shoes to an oversized shirt, jeans, and chunky gold jewelry."

Easier to wear than a stiletto thanks to the block sole, experiment with vibrant Crayola hues, or add a preppy twist with some Mary Janes.

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3. Ballet flats

models wearing ballet flats on the catwalk

Giambattista Valli /Tory Burch

(Image credit: Getty)

On the other end of the heel spectrum is the simple ballet pump which has made a recent comeback. With the early noughties being a huge trend for 2022, it’s no surprise the ballet pump has resurfaced, especially as it has that comfy element too which can resemble slipping into the best slippers—bliss! 

Timeless and chic, ballet pumps work with anything from your jeans to skirts. For a modern update, look to a pointed toe silhouette which will leave a flattering finish too, and add a feminine flourish with embellished details and ribbon fastenings.

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4. '90s Mules

Mules worn on the catwalk and street style

Rokh/Street Style

(Image credit: Getty)

Mules have pretty much cemented themselves into our spring wardrobes the past few seasons thanks to that quilted style from Bottega Veneta and the '90s-inspired style is still going strong in 2022. Defined by one simple strap and a low-to-mid heel this year's iteration has a playful spin—from animal prints to sparkly details.

With no fussy fastenings or laces, these mules can be easily slipped on and off as you dash in and out of the door. Team with mom jeans and a simple tee for a brunch-ready look that gives a little nod to nostalgia.

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5. Square Toe Loafers

Loafers on the catwalk and street style

Street Style/Tod’s

(Image credit: Getty)

Another flat shoe our feet are very grateful for is the polished loafer. Classic and timeless they add an androgynous spin to any outfit and will earn you some serious cool points. Looking for a 2022 update? Go for a square toe silhouette as seen on the Tod’s runway. The chunky sole also gives it a '90s twist that will look great paired with a cute plaid mini skirt.

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woman&home thanks Katie Eastwood, Style Ambassador at Stitch Fix UK, for her time and expertise. 

Charlie is the Acting Deputy Fashion Editor across multiple women’s magazines and also a freelance fashion, beauty and lifestyle editor. 

She bagged her first magazine job in 2009 and has previously written for titles including Woman & Home, Closer and Dare. Over the years Charlie has embraced anything that was thrown at her from styling celebrities to testing out the best jeans on the high street to writing about must-have beauty buys. 

With a weakness for a printed midi dress, Charlie is on a mission to shop more sustainably and loves finding new ethical brands and second-hand buys. You can follow her on Instagram @fashionabell_