If you've ever tried to get through a work event or social gathering with achy feet, you've probably lamented at some point: "Why can't they just make dressy
sneakers?" Well, guess what: this elusive footwear does indeed exist — you just need to dig around a bit. Lucky for you, I've spent some time surfing Amazon and have rounded up a list of the best dressy sneakers I could find.
But first, what exactly do I mean when I say "dressy" sneakers? Basically, I'm talking about sneakers that have the comfort features of an athletic shoe — like cushioned insoles and shock-absorbing footbeds — but the aesthetic features of a more formal shoe. Often, this means drawing inspiration from another style of dress shoe. For example, instead of the standard sporty look reminiscent of your intramural soccer league, they might pay homage to classics, like Oxfords or a pair of Mary Janes.
In other cases, the design may be similar to your regular kicks, but with a little more focus on fashion, thanks to upgraded materials like suede, brushed jersey, or knit fabric, or added style elements like tassels, bows, or faux fur trim.
If you're on the prowl for a great pair of dress shoes that still have the feel of your comfiest athletic shoes, take a look at this list of the
best dressy sneakers below. Bustle may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was created independently of Bustle's editorial and sales departments.
A Pair Of Lace-Up Oxfords That Are Fully Water-Resistant
What's great about them: Made with water-resistant leather and wingtip broguing (read: perforations), these lace-up Oxfords with platform soles are a classic choice. They have a chic retro look, but they're versatile enough to mix and match with more contemporary wardrobe pieces. On top of that, fans have noted that they're extremely comfortable. Choose from four colors: white, black, apricot, and red. One reviewer wrote: "These are AMAZING. I walked over 7 miles in them the other night at work. No pain. No problems. Just compliments!"
A Pair Of Fashionable Flats That Are Perfect For Casual Friday
What's great about them: Available in several color choices in both quilted fabric and faux snakeskin designs, these Jenn Ardor slip-on sneakers are a great blend of convenience and style. The latex padded insoles and breathable material keep feet comfy and cool, while the thick rubber soles absorb shock with every step. One reviewer says: "For the price, these are incredible shoes! Thick, comfy soles and the material is super nice. [...] I’m ordering the pink ones now because I love these so much!"
A Pair Of Steve Madden Wedges Made From 100% Suede
What's great about them: These adorable Steve Madden sneakers feature 100% suede uppers and dual-sided zippers for a look that's laidback and a little bit rock 'n' roll. The hidden wedges give you an additional 2.75 inches of height, and the platform soles give you a little extra shock absorption. Reviewers wrote that they're comfy to walk in, even for long stretches of time. Just note that the sizing runs small. Choose from five neutral colors. One reviewer wrote: "Amazingly cute and comfortable. [...] You really can’t tell you’re in heels but you are a bit taller which for me at 5’3” is a huge difference. Love!"
A Pair Of Sharp-Looking Anne Kleins With Sculpted Midsoles
What's great about them: These sleek Anne Klein sneakers feature extra-lightweight midsoles that provide excellent cushioning, along with extra-thick soles for superior traction. The synthetic uppers make them just the right amount of casual, while the arch sculpting and smooth elastic bands across the front add a pop of style. Plus, they're available in four pattern options, including a whimsical floral print. One reviewer wrote: "Great dressy sneaker for casual date nights or semi dressy attire that requires comfort."
A Pair Of Simple Slip-Ons That Are Available in 23 Colors And Patterns
What's great about them: If you're looking for a versatile shoe that's chic enough to wear with just about everything, these Dr. Scholl's slip-ons are just the ticket. With more than 3,000 reviews on Amazon, buyers have praised their style and comfort, which comes courtesy of the memory foam footbeds and soft collar lining. Available in regular and wide options, they're some of the best sneakers for wide feet, too. Choose from 23 colors and patterns (even leopard print), in materials like leather, velvet, and microfiber. One reviewer wrote: "From the time I started walking in them they were like slippers! I cannot recommend these enough! I wore them constantly for five days right out of the box and have never felt more comfortable." Available sizes: 6 — 11 (regular and wide)
These Flexible, Lightweight Sneakers That Will Turn Heads
What's great about them: These knit Mark Nason sneakers are made with soft, flexible fabric that's both lightweight and breathable. The air-cooled memory foam and shock-absorbing midsoles offer great support, while the synthetic soles offer targeted traction. As far as looks go, these are definitely the most bold choice, with leopard, cheetah, or zebra print designs. One reviewer wrote: "These shoes are so comfy. I can wear them all day. In addition, I receive compliments each time I wear them."
These High-End ECCO Sneakers Made From Full-Grain Napa Leather
What's great about them: Made with high-quality, full-grain Napa leather and with leather laces, these dressy ECCO sneakers look (and feel) upscale. They boast anatomical footbed cups that cradle your heels, as well as lightweight, flexible outsoles. The optional insoles offer extra support and can be removed for a roomier fit. They're simple, and come in basic colors, like the black pictured here, or more unexpected colors, like rose, indigo, and brick red. One reviewer wrote: "Love this shoe!!! It’s not only very smart looking, but very comfortable!!!" Available sizes: 4 — 1 1.5
These Knit Bow-Tie Sneakers Made With Air-Cooled Memory Foam
What's great about them: Made with innovative air-cooled memory foam to prevent overheating, these dressy Skechers sneakers offer exceptional comfort, as well as style points. The stretchy slip-ons are made with breathable jersey fabric reminiscent of your favorite T-shirt, but with bows on top for a little extra flair. The cushioning makes them great if you're prone to foot pain, and they're easy to pair with your favorite denim. One reviewer wrote: "Love these shoes. The little bow on top makes the shoe adorable and the foam lining makes them quite comfortable."
These Chic Wedge Sneakers With Anti-Slip Soles
What's great about them: Constructed with faux leather and featuring a chic wedge design, these fashionable Vandimi sneakers are an excellent combination of comfort and style. The bottoms boast durable, anti-slip rubber traction, while the uppers feature a trendy perforated design. Just note that they run wide, so if your feet are narrow, you may want to order a size down. Choose from a handful of colors, including brown, gray, and black. One reviewer wrote: "I wear them almost every day! [...] I walked for miles while sightseeing and was amazed at their comfort." Available sizes: 6 — 10.5
These Wedge Platforms With Amazing Detailing
What's great about them: These platform sneakers come in a variety of colors and patterns, and feature your choice of ankle tassels or faux fur collars, so you really get a chance to express yourself. The hidden heel wedges give you a discreet 4-inch lift, while the padded insoles cushion your feet, so you can wear them all day. This pair comes in 15 different styles and patterns. One reviewer wrote: "I love that these [shoes] are cute enough to wear to the office and comfortable to wear for a day off. The heel is low enough that it’s easy to walk. [...] Overall great shoes!"
These Adorable Oxfords That Feature Molded Footbeds
What's great about them: Whether you're looking for shoes to wear to the office or something to carry you through post-work cocktails, these leather Oxford sneakers are a great choice. They're built with molded and cushioned footbeds that deliver exceptional support, along with ultra-light soles that keep them from feeling heavy. Plus, they're available in black, navy, and pewter. One reviewer wrote: "These shoes are so comfy! I wore them and didn’t have to break them in. They are very stylish." Available sizes: 5 — 12 (regular and wide)
These Knit Loafers That Are Totally Flexible
What's great about them: These flexible Skechers make excellent dress sneakers for work. Like the previous selection, they're built with air-cooled memory foam and soft, breathable jersey to make them extra comfy. The low-profile midsole works to absorb shock, and — best of all — fans have found that they are true to size. Choose from heather black, gray, and navy. One reviewer wrote: "I absolute love these shoes, they are the best shoes I have ever bought. They are like walking on a cloud."
These Shimmery Sneakers That Feature Bouncy Gel Inserts
What's great about them: These slip-on dress sneakers feature comfy gel inserts that offer a weightless bounce with every step. The 1-inch, air-infused outsoles provide even more shock-absorption, and the stretchy fabric moves with your feet, instead of against them. This pair is available in 11 colors and patterns, including black, metallic heather, and red shimmer stripes (featured above). One reviewer wrote: "Great cushion and strong arch support. Non-slip sole that works. Shoes are Lighter than Air, making them ideal footwear for travel, casual walking, on the job, etc." Available sizes: 5 — 12 (regular and wide)