Stretchy, second-skin boots have been making waves since they debuted on runways in 2017, with Balenciaga being one of the first designers to champion the style. Thanks to enduring athleisure trends, the French house’s Knife boots aren’t going anywhere — making fans of countless street-style stars and celebrities. Cardi B proclaimed, “I like those Balenciagas, the ones that look like socks,” in her hit single “I Like It.” And although she’s partnered with Steve Madden and Fashion Nova, she’s proved time and again she’s loyal to the brand. Even former first lady Michelle Obama has stepped out in the luxurious look, rocking a glittering version of the boots during her book tour last year.
Available in midcalf and knee-high silhouettes, the Knife boots feature a jersey knit upper, sharp pointed toe and towering 4.5-inch heel. Although they may seem somewhat intimidating to pull off, they’re actually pretty versatile — able to elevate casual jeans-and-tee combos, and complement more polished midi dresses.
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The high-end boots will set you back nearly $1,000, but thankfully, they’ve spawned plenty of affordable iterations to help you copy the look without spending a designer fortune.
Here, we’ve done the shopping for you and rounded up a range of chic and wallet-friendly alternatives to the style you’ll be eager to add to your wardrobe. Shop all our must-have picks below from brands like Asos Design, Calvin Klein and more — starting at just $37.
Maclin J Ankle Boots
Retailing for just $41 on Amazon, this turquoise-colored option offers the sharp pointed toe and jersey upper of the Balenciaga style, plus a clear kitten heel.
Steve Madden Claire
Ribbed sock detailing at the ankle adds a soft touch to this edgy look.
Donald J Pliner Gerrie
For a block-heel alternative, this option from Donald Pliner is a great pick. This one features a square toe, plus a padded insole for extra comfort.
Asos Design Elope Pointed Sock Boots
If you love the look of the Knife boot in bright fuchsia, this pink style from Asos is just for you. It offers a snug textile upper as well as a triangular heel for an arty twist on the original.
Schutz Sciarpe Glitter Sock Booties
A sparkly take on the high-end pair, this boot from Schutz features a glitter stretch upper and wrapped stiletto heel.
Similar to the Knife boots, this stunning option from Mia offers a noticeably tall shaft that hits midcalf — yet is set on a kitten heel.
Calvin Klein Mada Stretch Bootie
The tallest option on our list, this pair features a lofty 4-inch heel accompanied by a sleek pointy toe.
Tony Bianco Davis
This Tony Bianco boot offers quintessentially sexy vibes with a stretch satin upper, center front seam and 3.75-inch heel height.
All products featured have been independently selected and curated by our editorial team. If you buy something through the links included on our site, FN may earn a commission.
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