10 Classic Flats to Shop for Every Personality

In a world of heels and cool sneakers, the humble flat occupies a perfect middle ground. Life is full of events too casual for heels and too formal for Toms — lunch with your boyfriend's parents, an interview at that Silver Lake juice bar, quick drinks at a new restaurant — and it's during those rocky moments of indecision that flats step calmly to your side, putting a comforting hand on your distraught shoulder and whispering, "It's okay. Pick me."

Every woman needs a go-to pair — those soft, worn-in flats that are practically molded to her feet. And they don't have to be classic ballerina flats, either; loafers, D'Orsay, and smoking shoes are all fair game. The only requirements: no heel, neutral color, and a classic, 365-days-a-year shape.

Image: Tori Telfer

Basic

Cece Leather Ballet Flats, $118, J. Crew

A rounded toe, soft leather, and absolutely zero embellishments make this flat your go-to. It'll never steal attention from the rest of your outfit, but it's definitely got your back.

Pointed Toe

Nine West Auro, $79, Zappos

There's something a little vampy, as Jackie Kennedy would say, about a pointed toe. The cut-outs here make this pair even sexier, but what can your boss say? It's just a flat.

Classic Ballerina

Classic Leather Ballet Flats, $40, GAP

Pirouettes optional, but the bow on the toe is most certainly not.

Two-Tone Ballerina

Prada Bow Ballerina Flat, $550, Nordstrom

When it comes to the two-toned ballerina flat, blush and black are the only two acceptable hues if we're talking classics. Save up for one of the big names, like this Prada shoe, and you'll wear it for years — maybe it'll become your signature look.

D'Orsay

Jeffrey Campbell In Love Leather D'Orsay Flat, $90, Urban Outfitters

D'Orsay flats are characterized by extreme cut-outs on either side, and they're surprisingly flattering on the foot. Best of all, the silhouette is classic enough to be recognizable, but not so classic that it's secretly just boring.

Smoking Flat

Nine West Sossi Leather Smoking Flats, $69, Lord & Taylor

This near-perfect shoe takes the androgynous cred of a smoking flat and reinterprets it in a streamlined, feminine silhouette.

Loafers

Mandem Pointed Flat Shoe, $62, ASOS

A little more masculine and heavy-duty than a smoking flat, loafers are the perfect choice for the Alexa Chungs of the world, and those of us who wish to be Alexa Chungs. Fringe forever.

Quilted

New Look Black Quilted Metal Toe Cap Flat Shoes, $32, ASOS

If you can't look at a quilted flat without dreaming of the Chanel classic, here's a consolation prize — and it's got a gold-capped toe to really cheer you up.

Ankle Strap

Erica Ankle Strap Flat, $250, Loeffler Randall

If your average flat is just a little too one-dimensional for your taste, a delicate ankle strap brings the silhouette higher without adding a heel.

Very Ladylike

Marah Flat, $198, Coach

Blush leather, a neat bow, and clean lines. This flat knows how to behave — we can't help feeling like Audrey Hepburn would approve.