The 21 Most Comfortable Dress Shoes for Women, According to Podiatrists

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Now more than ever, a certain excitement comes with dressing up for work or a special occasion. Putting something on that’s sophisticated and polished has become an activity many women cherish because it makes them look good and feel good — and prepared to conquer the day ahead. But even still, it’s often counteracted by the dread of squeezing into too-tight pumps or those beautiful but stiff leather loafers that might look cute but always leave behind blisters.

The truth is that women’s dress shoes have earned a reputation for being uncomfortable. Beyond temporary soreness and abrasions, wearing ill-fitting or unsupportive shoes can negatively impact the health of your feet and your entire body. According to a report from the American Osteopathic Association (AOA), high heels place the foot at an angle and often throw the joints and muscles out of alignment. This leads to poor posture, resulting in lower back, neck, and shoulder pain. Moreover, sporting styles with too-tight toe boxes can cause you to develop painful and unsightly bunions.

Sure, the most comfortable sneakers will always be your number one choice, but thanks to innovations over the last few years, comfortable dress shoes for women(even heels!) are now more wearable and available than ever. You just have to know what to look for.

Considering all this, we rounded up the most comfortable dress shoes for women that you’ll want to wear even while standing all day. Whether you have flat feet, wide feet, high arches, or a foot condition like plantar fasciitis, our list includes specific options to suit every need. Backed by hundreds of glowing customer reviews and our own testing, these styles come courtesy of top comfort brands and other popular labels who are getting it right in the support (and style) departments.

Comfy Dress Shoes for 2023

Vionic Josie Kitten Heels

  • Size range: 5-11
  • Colorways: Light Grey, Snake White, Leopard Tan, Black, Navy, Tort, Denim, Wine Croc
  • Materials: Leather, Novelty Leather, Printed Cow Hair, Suede
  • Additional features: Concealed biomechanics contours, metatarsal dome padding
  • Pros: Strong arch support
  • Cons: Not for those with wide feet

What Reviewers Say:I love these shoes! They look really stylish, yet you can wear them all day in comfort. Extremely good quality I have them in a number of colors.”

Vionic proves that comfort-driven footwear doesn’t have to look orthotic. This on-trend kitten heel style from the brand is done in a sleek tortoiseshell finish with a front seam on the toe box for leg-lengthening effects. Like the rest of the brand’s offerings, these comfortable dress shoes with a low heel are designed with the help of podiatrists (including New York-based podiatrist and Vionic Innovation Lab member Dr. Jackie Sutera) and features a deep heel cup for stability, a proprietary molded footbed with arch support and added metatarsal padding. If your work attire centers around tights and a skirt, make these a part of your rotation.

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CREDIT: Courtesy of Vionic

Dr. Scholl’s Webster Loafers

  • Size range: 6-11
  • Colorways: Black, Black Patent
  • Materials: Patent, microsuede, faux leather
  • Additional features: Comfort Insole Technology, 1-inch heel
  • Pros: Supportive
  • Cons: The insole is non-removable

What Reviewers Say: “It’s very comfortable and stylish, I wore it for about 10 hours with no problems, no feet complaints at all. I received a lot of compliments.”

Dr. Scholl’s is here to provide you with one of the most comfortable loafers for women that won’t kill your feet on your daily commute. The brand’s Webster loafers are flexible and lightweight, which makes these dress shoes feel like sneakers. The style is offered in two colorway and includes a strap accent, a durable lug sole, a 1-inch platform quilted heel, and a softly pointed silhouette that won’t crush toes. Plus, the easy slip-on fit and anatomical cushioning with shock absorption and arch support ward off foot fatigue throughout the day. And if all that wasn’t enough to sell you on these, the style is versatile for dressing up or down. Pair them with a pants suit or leather leggings to make your commute to work stylish and enjoyable.

Lifestride Gigi Sling Pumps

  • Size range: 5-12
  • Colorways: Black, Pino Noir, Almond
  • Materials: Faux Leather, Microsuede
  • Additional features: Slingback strap with an adjustable metallic buckle, 2.75-inch heel
  • Pros: Comfortable heel height
  • Cons: Not as supportive as other options

What Reviewers Say:This shoe is just what I was looking for — comfortable but not frumpy. The heel is a good height, and it is supportive. Was able to stay in them 4 hours the first time I wore them without being in excoriating pain.”

Our list of the most comfortable dress shoes for women wouldn’t be complete without a style from Lifestride. The Gigi Sling pumps check off all the podiatrist-recommended boxes while remaining a timeless silhouette for the modern city-dweller. They feature a three-part comfort system of breathable foam, extra arch and heel support for balance and stability, and a flexible outsole that mimics the responsive feel of a sneaker. There’s so much innovation packed into these heels your feet won’t know what hit them.

CREDIT: Courtesy of Retailer

Hush Puppies Angel II Heels

  • Size range: 5-12
  • Colorways: Tortoise, Nude, White, Putty, Navy, Black, Dark Brown, Red, Bone
  • Materials: Patent leather
  • Additional features: 1 1/4″ heel, tricot lining with foam
  • Pros: Offered in wide or narrow widths
  • Cons: Easily scuffs, runs small
  • Best for: comfortable shoes for work

What Reviewers Say: “Nice dress shoe for work or going out. What I like about these shoes is that they have a nice heel for a low shoe. They don’t look matronly.”

Hush Puppies’ Angel kitten heels offer a heavenly feel for feet with a look that still adheres to most dress codes. Formed with a round toe to let your feet naturally splay, these shoes are set atop a cone-stacked heel for a more balanced, stable fit. The pair is topped off with a soft lining, bouncy foam cushioning, and a molded rubber outsole to keep you stable even when walking across slick hardwood or tile surfaces. They’re the most comfortable dress shoes for walking to your office and running to meet clients.

CREDIT: Courtesy of Retailer

Birdies Starling Loafers

  • Size range: 5-12
  • Colorways: Ocean Flora, Night Flora, Pine, Raspberry, Golden Oak, Navy, Shadow, Chocolate, Lipstick, Black Velvet, Latte Suede, Cheetah Calf Hair
  • Materials: Velvet, Suede, Calf Hair
  • Additional features: No-slip rubber sole, 10 mm heel
  • Pros: 7-layer comfort
  • Cons: Runs small

What Reviewers Say: “I recently purchased my first pair of Birdies for pharmacy school since I needed a shoe that was appropriate for the workplace yet comfortable enough to stand in for multiple hours a day. This shoe has been perfect so far! The cushioned insole and arch support combined with the soft suede make me feel like I’m walking around in supportive slippers all day.”

Not a fan of wearing heels? Birdies’ elegant flat loafers are a great alternative. Created with a luxurious suede upper, these combine the cushiony comfort of a women’s slipper with the elegant appeal of a smoking loafer. Seven-layer memory foam in the insole absorbs shock with each step and supports the arches, as soft quilted satin feels luxurious against the skin. A textured outsole completes the style for slip-free wear on many surfaces. As an added bonus, these come in a range of finishes — including velvet, suede, and calf hair — to suit many wardrobes and occasions.

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CREDIT: Courtesy of Birdies

Naturalizer Tibby Sandals

  • Size range: 4-12
  • Colorways: Black, Nude, Silver
  • Materials: Leather
  • Additional features: Contour+ technology,
  • Pros: Breathable lining
  • Cons: Not for long-wear
  • Best for: comfortable dress shoes for weddings

What Reviewers Say: “These are really cute, practical, and comfy. Sturdy heel even for a 200lb+ person like myself. I will say that if your foot runs wide or you have a higher instep, You may want to size up”

During warmer seasons, your feet should still experience the same level of comfort in sandals without overheating. That’s where Naturalizer’s sandals come into play. The Tibby model offers breathable linings and underfoot cushioning with Contour+ technology that’s crafted to meet every contour and arch of your foot. Plus, the wide strap, sturdy kitten heel, and non-slip outsole help create a smooth and balanced design suitable for any occasion. Make these your go-to comfortable silver dress shoes for weddings, no matter the time of year.

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CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon

Dr. Martens 1461 Classic Oxford Shoes

  • Size range: 5-14
  • Colorways: White, Black
  • Materials: Patent leather
  • Additional features: Padded footbed, lace-up closure, 1.5-inch stacked heel
  • Pros: Durable and timeless
  • Cons: Narrow fit

What Reviewers Say: “These look great with dressy pants or jeans. They’re modern with a bit of Dr Martens edge to them. Comfortable and really sturdy shoes that’ll last for years.”

Whether you’re on the hunt for footwear for your return to the office or simply looking for a versatile option for the cooler weather, look no further than Dr. Martens’ 1461 Classic Oxfords. This style is on-trend for the season ahead and will help you transition to fall in style. They feature a black leather upper with a waxy matte finish and are built to take a beating. In addition, the sole features the label’s signature Air Cushioned, designed to make standing all day comfortable. These comfortable dress shoes may lean more casual than other options, but they will please almost everyone and are appropriate for women with flat feet. “In general, flat arches make feet more flexible, so women with fleet feet should opt for shoes that have more structure and support in the midfoot, along with the sole of the shoe,” Dr. Sutera says. “Women with flat feet should avoid shoes that are super flexible, thin, and soft.”

Everlane The Day Heels

  • Size range: 5-11
  • Colorways: Bone Stacked, Black
  • Materials: 100% Italian Leather
  • Additional features: Two-inch block heel, elasticized back
  • Pros: Durable and timeless
  • Cons: Narrow fit
  • Best for: Occasions where you need a low-heel comfortable dress shoe

What Reviewers Say: Shoe fits like a glove, it is crafted with exquisite soft leather. The heel is the perfect size and height. This is my second pair, and I highly recommend them.”

There’s a reason Everlane’s Day Heel has earned a cult following. Available with a smooth leather upper, the design features a sturdy two-inch block heel for an appropriate lift with a ballet flat-inspired silhouette that sits comfortably on the foot. The elasticized heel stretches to fit every shape as a rounded toe follows the natural curves of the foot to reduce pinching at the toe, making these a great wide dress shoe for those in need.

Rothy’s Mary Jane Flats

  • Size range: 5-13
  • Colorways: Black
  • Materials: Rothy’s sustainable signature thread, vegan leather
  • Additional features: Soft straps that can be tied into bows, pointed toe, flexible back
  • Pros: Machine washable
  • Cons: Not best for those who need arch support

What Reviewers Say: “I love these shoes. Years ago, I had a pair of shoes with bows that always made me feel so chic! Now I have the best of both worlds, comfort, and style.”

If you’re in the market for comfortable flats that are dressy and eco-friendly, this pair is for you. This Mary Jane-inspired flat from Rothy’s is made from recycled plastic water bottles and is soft, durable, and machine washable. The pointed-toe silhouette and bow across the vamp offer dressier appeal. And even better, the upper fabric is flexible, so you can customize the fit. This makes them great for those with wide feet since the “soft mesh on the upper will help reduce pinching,” says California-based podiatrist Dr. Najwa Javed. This black dress shoe is comfortable, minimalist friendly, and pairs equally well with a monochromatic pants suit or a statement-making dress.

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CREDIT: Courtesy of Rothy's

Madewell The Corinne Loafers

  • Size range: 5-9.5
  • Colorways: Dried Maple, True Black
  • Materials: ISA™ LITE (Low Impact To the Environment) leather
  • Additional features: One-inch heel, elasticized back
  • Pros: Versatile
  • Cons: Tight-fitting
  • Best for: Women who love combat boots

What Reviewers Say: “Since my purchase, they’ve been my go-to shoes as they practically match every occasion. If you have bony and thin-skin feet, though, it’ll take a few days to break in, but really worth it in the end.”

The chunky lug-sole loafer is a must-have shoe for the fall and winter as it delivers class, comfort, and ease. “I think the lug-sole loafer really resonates with customers because it’s familiar, not too out-of-the-box, yet still very fashion-forward,” says celebrity stylist and costume fashion designer Tyler Minor. While these might look like your typical loafers, Madewell’s Corinne Loafers sure make it feel like you’re wearing sneakers. You’ll find ISA™ LITE (Low Impact To the Environment) leather that’s good for the environment and durable. Plus, the rubber sole makes walking easy on the knees and offers traction — a plus when the weather is chilly or mercurial. Combined with a timeless look, this style definitely earns a spot in any woman’s wardrobe.


Sarto by Franco Sarto Diva Pointed Toe Pumps

  • Size range: 5-11
  • Colorways: Whiskey, Fuschia, Black
  • Materials: Leather, Nubuck
  • Additional features: Metatarsal padding at the ball of the foot, 1 3/4″ heel
  • Pros: Well-made
  • Cons: Narrow fit
  • Best for: job interview outfits

What Reviewers Say: “These are very classic doable pumps that are very comfortable. I’m very happy with the style, comfort, and overall shoe.”

These modern and sophisticated pumps come in a variety of colors to go with any outfit. They have a leather or nubuck upper finish, synthetic lining, a 1 3/4-inch kitten heel for additional height, along with a cushioned footbed that leaves ample room for your foot to move and grow naturally. The pointed toe is sleek while still being roomy enough so as not to pinch or cramp toes. In fact, the shoes’ near-perfect customer reviews prove how comfortable they really are. For a business look, style them with a long pencil skirt and a blazer.

Stuart Weitzman Tieback Flats

  • Size range: 5-12
  • Colorways: Adobe, Nice Blue, Black
  • Materials: 100% Leather
  • Additional features: 0.8-inch heel, round toe, roped bow
  • Pros: Durable and timeless
  • Cons: Narrow fit
  • Best for: Travel shoes
Since 1986, Stuart Weitzman’s shoes have been engineered for elegance and precision. This pair of comfortable dress shoes, which leans into the ballet flat resurgence, has a tiny .8-inch heel that’s practical and dressy. They also feature an almond shape toe that will make your leg appear longer than a rounded style and a low vamp that looks pretty on the foot. Plus, the subtle bow detail on the heel adds a feminine finish to any look. Each pair is handmade with exceptional attention to detail and craftsmanship with the most supple leather. Once you break them in, these modern-casual dress shoes will feel custom-made to your foot.

Sarah Flint Perfect Emma Shoes

  • Size range: 4-13
  • Colorways: Gold Saffiano, Gold Floral Jacquard, Black Suede, Navy Suede, Leopard Suede, Taupe Suede, Sand Calf, Espresso Suede, Olive Filigree Suede, Merlot Suede
  • Materials: Triple-dyed Italian suede, patent leather, rubber
  • Additional features: Inset block heel, 6mm of extra padding, anatomical arch support, 2-inch heel
  • Pros: Quality arch support, wide toe box
  • Cons: Runs small

What Reviewers Say: “I wore my Perfect Emma (chocolate leopard) for a daytime date and stroll with my beloved that involved traipsing through Central Park (west to east and back!). By the late afternoon, I had not a single cut, and I’d put them on straight out of the box. I couldn’t be more pleased. Who doesn’t love not having to “break in” your shoes before enjoying them

If you’re unsure of what type of shoes to wear with a dress, meet the Perfect Emma shoe. Beloved by stars like Amal Clooney and Meghan Markle, Sarah Flint’s designs are just as comfortable as they are chic. You’ll find an inset footbed, which means you get the support of a block heel without the typical weight, and thick padding in the arch area to relieve stress in the area with every step. They’re great for people with plantar fasciitis and can accommodate bunions, thanks to their expanded toe box. They make great travel shoes, so pack them with a wool duster coat and slacks for your next work trip.

CREDIT: Courtesy of Retailers

Gucci Princetown Leather Slippers

  • Size range: 4-13
  • Colorways: White, Black, Brown
  • Materials: Leather
  • Additional features: .4-inch heel, leather sole, horsebit detail
  • Pros: Classic
  • Cons: Runs small

Sure, everyone seems to have Gucci Princetown mules these days, but that’s because they’re straight-up timeless. This women’s work shoe is an easy on-off style that can be dressed up and down without ever compromising on comfort. The slight centimeter heel actually makes a difference in your stride, aiding in proper posture. Plus, we’d be remiss not to mention the heavenliness of Gucci’s signature leather that’s made to last season after season, year after year. When you’re unsure of what to throw on in the morning, these will do the trick.

CREDIT: Courtesy of Retailer

Marc Fisher Zala Block Heel Pumps

  • Size range: 5-12
  • Colorways: Black, Yellow, Medium Pink, Medium Blue, Medium Purple, Orange, Medium Green, Brown, Lite Latte Leather, Black Leather, Tan Suede, Black Suede, Navy Suede, Teal Suede, Dark Green, Silver, Light Natural
  • Materials: Leather, suede
  • Additional features: 2 1/2″ heel, pointed toe
  • Pros: Classic and chic
  • Cons: Runs narrow

What Reviewers Say: “I’ve been looking for a pair of block-heel pumps that had the right height and was chic at the same time. The Zala Pump from Marc Fisher was perfect! I didn’t even have to break them in. It fit true to size. I love that it is pointy – it looks sleek and feminine. I’m 7/12M and have flat feet. I’ve worn this pair 4 times and it hasn’t hurt my feet, nor has it given me blisters.”

Marc Fisher’s Zala block heel pumps are a top-seller season after season. Not only is the style classic, but women simply seem to love how comfortable they are (at Nordstorm alone, almost 500 people rated them with four stars or more). The streamlined silhouette adds elegance to any outfit, while the sturdy block heel will keep you steady for hours. Due to their slim toe box and lack of cushioning, though, keep in mind that these are best suited for women with narrow toes and neutral arches.

Söft Ameera Mules

  • Size range: 6-11
  • Colorways: Baywater, Blush Floral, Caramel Ivory
  • Materials: Leather
  • Additional features: 2-inch heel, padded insole
  • Pros: Slip-on style, tread sole for non-slip walking
  • Cons: Runs slightly large

What Reviewers Say: “These mules were comfortable from the minute I put them on. The first time I wore them was to dinner and a play, had to walk 5 blocks, it was a dream to walk in these. If you are thinking about buying these……do it!”

If you’ve never owned a pair of Söft shoes, you’re missing out. This clog-style mule from the brand is cool and relaxed while bringing height and sophistication to any look. It offers a smooth leather upper, chunky stacked heel, and the brand’s signature arch-supporting footbed for ultimate comfort. For casual Fridays in the office, style them with straight-leg denim jeans, a simple white t-shirt, and a leather jacket.

CREDIT: Courtesy of Retailer

Tod’s Heeled Loafers

  • Size range: 4-12
  • Colorways: Black and red
  • Materials: Leather and rubber
  • Additional features: 2.2-inch leather block heel, handmade stitching
  • Pros: Durable and timeless
  • Cons: Requires breaking in

There’s nothing quite like the soft Italian leather of a classic Tod’s shoe. The iconic brand is known for perfecting the driving loafer, including this block heel take on the classic style. These comfortable designer dress shoes feature a 2.2-inch block heel, sturdy rubber sole, and square toe, which add a contemporary element to the timeless design.  Like a fine wine, these loafers get better with age as the leather molds to your foot. Thus, they make a worthy investment your feet will love and are best for fall weekdays spent in the office.

AGL Tracy Block Heel Pumps

  • Size range: 5-13
  • Colorways: Sand, Black
  • Materials: Italian leather
  • Additional features: Two-inch heel
  • Pros: Easy to walk in
  • Cons: Runs small

What Reviewers Say: “Super comfy, easy to walk in, I was actually sad to take them off to dance (didn’t want to step on anyone not wearing shoes, which was everyone) I purchased the lighter color for the summer but fully intend on purchasing the black closet to fall!”

AGL is another Italian footwear brand that prioritizes craftsmanship. When modern design meets lasting comfort, everybody wins. In this style, you’ll find a luxurious Italian leather upper and a classic block heel just over two inches with a roomy yet supportive footbed for breathability and support. The rubber outsole makes for good traction, while the pointed adds a touch of sophistication. It’s a well-executed and practical pump with a lightweight design and works exceptionally well for professional settings.

Vince Camuto Hamden Pumps

  • Size range: 5-11
  • Colorways: Black, Cognac, Brown/Black Snake Print
  • Materials: Embossed leather
  • Additional features: 2½” covered block heel, synthetic sole, synthetic lining
  • Pros: Elegant and comfortable
  • Cons: Not for wide feet

What Reviewers Say: “This shoe looks exactly like the picture. The height and width of the heel provide a sense of security which I appreciate. It looks nice on my foot even though it was a little snug. I expect it will stretch.”

Vince Camuto is an Italian-American designer who has dominated the realm of footwear and thus has been worn by A-listers like Jennifer Lopez, Jessica Alba, and Olivia Culpo. Its Hamden Pump is a cult favorite thanks to heel height that balances comfort and style. The quality design has a slingback feature that stays put and a genuine leather composition that makes them a staple. With its pointed-toe silhouette, the style adds a sophisticated touch to any outfit and a subtle lift. It’s available in a mix of colorways ranging from black to a brown snake print, so you’re sure to find one to suit your mood. The best part? They will pair with everything in your closet — from high-waisted jeans to all dresses.

Eileen Fisher Devi Slingback Wedge Sandals

  • Size range: 5-11
  • Colorways: Rye, Latte, Cinnabar, Moon, Black
  • Materials: Nubuck leather
  • Additional features: 2-inch heel, elasticized slingback, pointed toe, cushioned insole, textured bottom
  • Pros: Can be dressed up or down
  • Cons: Not waterproof

What Reviewers Say: “I’ve been looking for shoes that are dressy enough to be worn out to dinner or for meetings but casual enough that they’d look great with jeans, all while still being comfortable. I can’t say enough about this shoe! It’s perfection. The toe is just pointy enough but doesn’t squeeze my toes; the wedge gives me just the right amount of lift without being so high that it’s uncomfortable to walk in. I bought it in Nude and am going to order in the Black too!”

Eileen Fisher’s Devi Sandal takes a traditional slingback design and adds a wedge to make it more modern and updated. It features a pointed, closed-toe front that works especially well for the fall and winter. This comfortable wedge dress shoe also has textured bottom for traction, a 2-inch heel for walking multiple blocks seamlessly, and an elasticized slingback so your foot doesn’t feel cramped. These sandals have a simple yet chic design that can elevate any look — you’ll want them in every colorway.

E’mar Italy Aiden Heels

  • Size range: 35-41
  • Colorways: Cognac
  • Materials: Leather
  • Additional features: 90 mm heel, multilayer foam padding, patent-pending carbon fiber arch inlay, elongated toe box, recessed heel counter
  • Pros: Excelled arch and heel support
  • Cons: One colorway

What Reviewers Say: “Exactly the pumps I’ve been looking for! I’ve been searching for a comfortable pair of pumps in cognac color, and these are it! Perfect sized heel which you can last all day on, very comfortable and soft throughout and a nice twist to the design… nothing like you’ve seen out there!”

Any woman who’s worn a pair of E’mar heels will tell you how great they feel on their feet, all day long. The burgeoning brand was founded by Dr. Javed with a mission to create luxury heels that are actually super wearable. All E’mar shoes feature multilayered foam padding with a patent-pending carbon fiber arch inlay for exceptional support. This chic, multi-textured pair from the brand also has an elongated toe box and recessed heel for better ankle stability. No matter your occupation, these shoes will suit your professional title and take you from work to post-work drinks.

CREDIT: Courtesy of Retailer

What to Look for in Comfortable Dress Shoes

With so many brands in the game, there’s a comfortable and stylish dress shoe for any occasion. But with sartorial norms falling, it’s important to think closely about where you’re headed because not all dress shoes are created equal, and you want to make sure your pick is best for the specific road you’re planning to travel.

Style: Should you have a wedding, cocktail party, or important meeting on the horizon, there are many comfortable dress shoes for women that will get you there in style. You can choose between loafers, ballet flats, boots, pumps, mules, and more. If you want your toes to remain blister and fatigue-free but want height, “find a shoe with no more than a three-inch block heel and wide or flexible toe box,” says Dr. Najwa Javed, an associate at Silicon Valley Podiatry Group and founder of E’Mar Italy. A solid block heel provides posture support and ample balance, while a wider toe area leaves room for feet to expand as they may swell throughout the day.

Construction: Finding a pair of dress shoes that suits your foot type is also essential. “Choose a pair of shoes that match the shape of your foot,” says Dr. Sutera. “For example, if you have a square, wide foot or have bunions or hammertoes, avoid narrow, pointy toe boxes. Instead, opt for a rounder or square toe box.” And for women who experience the painful condition of plantar fasciitis, Dr. Sutera suggests shoes with a cushion, arch support, and a deep-seated heel cup. “Patients with plantar fasciitis usually find relief and reduction in symptoms when wearing shoes with a heel drop (where the heel is higher than the front of the shoe),” she says. “For this reason, they should avoid flat or platform styles.”

Certified pedoritht Michael Fishkin, a colleague of Dr. McEneaney at Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists, stresses the importance of midfoot and arch support. He explains that when body weight is distributed evenly, your foot is less apt to fatigue quicker. Therefore, selecting a breathable shoe constructed from moisture-wicking material will prevent sweaty feet. No matter your foot type, though, variety is key. “Don’t choose the same style in a few different colors, but instead have a few different options [to keep feet happy],” adds Dr. Sutera.

Size: “You wouldn’t believe how many people buy shoes that are the wrong size,” says explains Dr. Brad Schaeffer, DPM, board-certified foot surgeon at Sole Podiatry NYC and star of TLC’s “My Feet Are Killing Me,” adding that many foot problems are caused by shoes that don’t fit well, whether they’re too long, too short or too tight. “Some patients need custom-molded shoes with extra-heel depth or arch supports, which your doctor can prescribe,” he explains.

A range of on-trend, affordable labels like Everlane and Birdies and luxury brands like Sarah Flint and Gucci offer chic styles you can wear for hours without hobbling around in pain. From classic pumps to kitten heels and work-ready ankle booties, they include features like plush cushioning, chafe-reducing linings, and expanded toe boxes.

Comfortable Dress Shoes for Different Foot Types and Foot Problems

Dress Shoes for Flat Feet

If you have flat feet, look for wide shoes, “meaning they shouldn’t have an hourglass shape on the bottom,” says Dr. Fishkin. “Instead, they should have a straight-across design underfoot.” These types of shoes offer more space around the forefoot and the ball of the foot. Additionally, since people with flat feet tend to overpronate (meaning their feet roll inward as they walk), he suggests looking for shoes that provide enhanced stability and motion control.

Dress Shoes for Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis, a common inflammatory foot condition resulting in stabbing pain in the bottom of one or both feet, can result from wearing the wrong shoes. Those with tight, stiff feet will benefit from shoes with excellent structure and cushioning. For those with flexible feet, great stability is especially important. “However, no matter what, look for a shoe with arch support to increase the arch for those with flat feet and encourage high arches to drop to a more neutral position,” says Mike Rushton, DPM, co-founder and medical director of Forward Motion Orthotics in St. George, Utah.

Dress Shoes for High Arches

Those with high arches or who need extra arch support should look for shoes with built-in, well-padded, shock-absorbing insoles. “High-arched feet are best treated with supportive, softer, and more flexible, lightweight types of soles to accommodate the high arch,” says Dr. Sutera. “Avoid rigid, stiff, and thin flat shoes. The purpose of insoles and orthotics for those with high-arched feet is to accommodate, absorb shock, and cushion.”

Dress Shoes for Back Pain

If you get sore after standing on your feet all day, a dress shoe with shock absorption and strategic cushioning — labeled as orthopedic — is going to help relieve direct pressure on your pain points. Look for a shoe that doesn’t have a significant heel drop and fits well both in length and width to achieve correct foot alignment. Remember that one heel drop may feel good for one person but not the other, so it’s important to try on the shoe before committing to it.

Dress Shoes for Bunions

Heeled dress shoes may not be best for those with bunions, however, if you want to experiment with the silhouette, look for corrective shoes that stabilize the foot. That means digging around for shoes that have arch support and proper cushioning. Also, avoiding straight or narrow toe beds is important so that your toes have ample room to move around without rubbing uncomfortably against the lining.

Dress Shoes for Heel Spurs

Heel spurs, “a growth of bone on the bottom of your heel,” per Dr. Rushton, grow in the contour of your feet. “If your foot doesn’t have adequate padding beneath it, as you roll forward, you’re more likely to pinch between the bottom of the foot and the ground,” Dr. Rushton says. A cushioned heel and anatomical arch support will help promote healthy foot alignment so that the entire foot will absorb the impact of every step, rather than just the heel.

Dress Shoes for Wide Feet

If you feel pressure on the sides of your feet while wearing shoes, you likely have wide feet. “People with wide feet should avoid pairs with narrow, pointy, or a stiff toe box,” Dr. Sutera says. The forefoot of a pair should have ample room for toes, so wiggle your toes. If your feet feel constricted, the shoes are too tight.

Comfortable Women’s Dress Shoe Trends for 2023

Whether you typically opt for ballet flats, kittens heels, or sky-high dress shoes, this season’s all about comfortability. Designers like Gucci, Prada, and Miu Miu have brought their innovations to the forefront by delivering refined and polished, relaxed silhouettes. Just look to styles like the iconic Princetown Slip-On, record-breaking Prada Lug-Sole Loafers(heeled and flat), and ballet-inspired flats at Miu Miu. Plus, cushioned platforms and rubberized soles are two key trending features that add to the livable nature of the fashion-forward style. If you want an option that adds height, don’t fret. Low-heel comfortable dress shoes such as kitten-heeled slingbacks (think Dior’s J’adior pumps) will become a hero in your wardrobe.

Not only are designers proving that comfortable fashion footwear is relevant, but celebrities are also. Kendall Jenner, Hailey Bieber, and Gigi Hadid are a few who are trading in their stiff stilettos for loafers, ballet flats, and even Mary Janes. They’re styling these shoes with little black dresses, blazers, and midi skirts when running to and from meetings. To put it simply, comfortable dress shoes are timeless; they defy age, height, and season, making them one of the most versatile styles to invest in.

Whether it’s a big meeting or presentation, a conference, an interview, or just day-to-day dressing, you can rely on these styles to be comfortable and chic without being utterly stale.

Meet the Authors

Vanessa Powell is an established editor, journalist, and stylist with over a decade of experience covering fashion, lifestyle, and consumer culture. She has contributed to national publications such as People Magazine, Health Magazine, Men’s Health, and more. Vanessa is at the forefront of all consumer trends with a keen eye for the latest, greatest, and classics of what people wear, buy and love. Whether walking the New York City streets or hiking the LA mountains, Powell is a bicoastal avid walker, always searching for the best new walking shoes for women.

Claudia Miller is a digital editor at Footwear News, where she writes and edits shopping stories on all things shoes. She has contributed to national publications such as MSN, Yahoo, and more. She stays up to date on all the new footwear launches as well as what the It-shoe A-listers are wearing to keep all of Footwear News’ consumers up-to-date.

Nikki Chwatt is Style Commerce Editor for Footwear News and WWD, where she both writes and edits stories on the latest clothing and shoe trends.

Meet the Experts

  • Dr. Najwa Javed is a Board Certified Podiatrist and Founder of E’MAR Italy. Throughout her years of practice, she has focused on achieving an optimal state of health for her patients through mitigating foot and ankle injuries. With specialized training in foot and ankle surgery and clinical research, she integrates biomechanical stability with surgical innovation, biologic therapies, and modern science. With her brand, she is on a mission to shake up the luxury heel market with her line of supportive heels marrying high style with medical innovation, backed by her 15 years of expertise.
  • Dr. Jacquelyn Sutera is an NYC-based surgically trained doctor of podiatric medicine specializing in the prevention and treatment of foot pathology. She graduated from Fordham University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and Philosophy. She later attended the New York College of Podiatric Medicine, where she earned the degree of Doctor of Podiatric Medicine (DPM). She is a proud member and spokesperson for the American Podiatric Medical Association and the New York State Podiatric Medical Society.
  • Michael Fishkin is a certified pedorthist at Northern Illinois Foot & Ankle Specialists. He caters to those who have foot, back or knee problems to ensure they have the quality of life that they deserve.
  • Mike Rushton, DPM, is a co-founder and medical director of Forward Motion Orthotics in St. George, Utah. For over 25 years, he has been focusing on Sports Medicine and Biomechanics. He also travels extensively to promote JM Orthotics, a brand he co-founded, as one of the most forward-thinking Orthotic labs in the country.
  • Tyler Minor is a fashion stylist who found a penchant for fashion at a young age. Inspired by designers such as Heatherette and Zaldy Goco, Tyler decided to attend fashion school, where he graduated with a degree in fashion design and merchandising. Soon after, Tyler found himself working under and with some of the most influential stylists and photographers throughout the United States. Tyler’s keen eye for detail landed his name and work in many renowned publications. Those publications include Vogue, Inside Weddings Magazine, The Knot, Martha Stewart Weddings, Elegant Magazine, iMute Magazine, Country Weekly Magazine, People Magazine, and many others.
  • Dr. Brad Schaeffer, DPM, is a board-certified foot surgeon at Sole Podiatry NYC and star of TLC’s “My Feet Are Killing Me. He trained at a Comprehensive Foot & Ankle Reconstructive Surgical Residency Program at Hoboken University Medical Center. His podiatry focuses include sports medicine, wound care, and foot and ankle reconstructive surgery.

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