The Worst Shoe Style Mistakes Men Make

Britain's most common footwear crimes, named and shamed

Most Popular

"You can always judge a man by his shoes." It's an age old adage you might have heard from your Granny but it's as pertinent today as it ever was. Shoes, after all, are often the first thing a woman of good taste will sneak a peek at to form those all important first impressions. So why is it that us Brits commit so many apocalyptic shoe crimes up and down the land en masse every day? Will we ever learn?

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

We've scoured the nation's pavements to highlight the footwear sins that need stamping out for good:

1 The Nineties Winkelpicker

Some British men seem to have have had their formal shoe taste frozen in time circa 1996 when they may have had their first job interview, wedding or similar rite of passage. That this narrow, pointy style is still so prevalent on the UK's streets 20 years on is a genuine mystery, especially given the ever-increasing options available for classic derbies and oxfords as an alternative.

Most Popular

2 The Unlaced Combat Boots

David Beckham helped this trend find its feet a few years back but it's now high-time someone finished it. If the sight of jeans tucked into carefully unlaced and faded boots wasn't bad enough, the accompanying pseudo tough guy expression on the wearer's face most definitely is.

3 The Running Shoe And Suit

It's a common site on commuter trains up and down the land – the unsightly clash of a functional running shoe (designed for running, get it?) worn with a tailored suit. Sure, you're on your way home and it probably is more comfortable than the shoes you wore to work but ask yourself this: would an Italian let himself be spotted in public looking this scruffy? 

4 The Flip-Flop And Jeans

A flip-flop is the perfect lazy choice for vrious situations – a beach, a pool, a garden. Worn on a city street bunched under heavy denim, however, with hems getting caught under the soles, it quickly becomes a style disaster area. As Arielle Vandenberg wisely told Esquire: "The number one thing a man shouldn't wear is flip-flops with jeans." Enough said.

5 The Seamed Loafer

Another explicable British favourite that can be spotted in pubs all over the nation on Friday nights. Beloved of men who still have a place in their cupboard for a 'going out' shoe, the seamed loafer is most likely to come in shades which colour match a chicken tikka massala and often sport a weaved seam effect which only adds to the horror.

6 The Walking Shoe In Town

If you're in the Lake District on a hiking trip, then all-terrain walking shoes are recommended, even essential. If you're in a city-centre pub and wearing them with jeans and a fleece, you are on a slippery slope to being labeled as the guy's who's given up.

The Vibram 5 Fingers

Footwear (it's hard to call it a shoe) doesn't come more selfish than this. We don't care how comfortable, how ergonomically advantageous or how natural these 'shoes' might feel, just remember that there other people living in your postcode who will have to look at you wearing them. Barefoot running in the wilderness? Go right ahead. Nipping down the local Tesco Metro? Do us all a favour and put some shoes on.


The Biggest Style Mistakes Of Summer
11 Style Details You Could Be Getting Wrong

What do you think?

Ten Great 1990s Supercars You Totally Forgot
Only 1990s kids will remember these supercars
David Bowie
The 10 Commandments Of Wearing A Suit
The sacrosanct​rules that will help you get the most out of your tailoring​
Esquire Edit: The Best of John Lewis' New PRESENTING Collection
The department store demonstrates how the high street is still a great place for new designers
Burberry show
Welcome To The Burberry Revolution
​How one of the biggest names in menswear just changed the fashion game for good​
iphone 7
Why Downloading iOS 10 Could Be The Worst Thing For Your iPhone
​​iPhone 5ers beware​
Idris Elba
The 4 Overcoat Trends You Need To Know About This Autumn
Because there's no more important purchase at this time of year​
Best mens watches under 200
The Best Watches Under £200
It used to be nigh on impossible to get a decent man's watch at this price. Once you'd tried Argos and the petrol station you were running...
Cara Delevingne Puma Campaign
Rihanna Directs Cara Delevingne In Edgy New Puma Campaign
​Crossing the road has never looked so good​​
Paul Newman
20 Things Every Man Should Have In His Wardrobe
The essential building blocks of your personal style
Brad Pitt Fury
The 12 Most Iconic Haircuts In Movie History (And How To Get Them)
How to ask your barber for that 'Brad Pitt in Fury' you've always wanted​