Ask Belle: Commuting Flats

May 19, 2015

Hi Belle!

Love the blog! I know you’ve posted about this before, but I’d love some updated advice on what shoes to wear on the commute to/from work (I walk). With the summer heat, my feet are usually tired and swollen after a day in work shoes. Looking for some cute styles that don’t break the bank!

Thanks! AN

There are a lot of ways you can go with a commuter shoe.  You want to find a balance between chic and comfortable, but there are many places you can draw that line.  Some women will be fine with a simple, casual flat.  But while gym shoes may not be ideal, when your commute requires you to walk several miles, it may be necessary.

Whatever your needs, I’ve compiled a few options.  I ranked them on a five-star scale.  Five stars being the most comfortable, one star being the least.

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Yosi Samra Samara Flat ($77)

When I look for comfortable flats, I search for two phrases: padded/cushioned insole and rubber sole.  The Yosi Samra flat has both.  They also come in a wide variety of colors (I love these toe-cap flats.) and can often be found on discount.

These are a favorite of many commuters because they’re fairly comfortable for a medium length commute.  They also fold up into a small bag that fits easily into almost any bag.  (I’ve tucked them into an envelope clutch.)  If you’re just looking for a simple flat for going to and fro, this is a great candidate.

Looking for an under-$50 version?  These Me Too flats are similar.

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Geox ‘Lola’ Flats ($139)

While the Yosi Samra flats are great, I need something more substantial for regular wear.  These Geox flats offer the rubber outsole, but don’t have a padded footbed.  The extra half-star for comfort comes from Geox’s patented breathable construction, which allows for air to flow.  And on those hot summer days, breathability and moisture evaporation is a nice feature.

These flats can also be found in black patent leather and a perforated-leather version. Need an under-$50 choice?  These Easy Spirit ballet flats have a perforated front and a sleek shape.

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Michael Kors Everett Moccasin ($99)

When I was searching for a spring shoe that wasn’t quite as precious as a ballet flat, I opted for a moccasin. This pair from Michael Kors is a great option.  They have a lot of cushion, and if your feet swell, they have a good amount of stretch.  They also come in a basic tan.  Need a cheaper pair?  Try this coral pair from Anne Klein.

Michael Kors also offers a flat shoe with a cushioned insole and rubber sole.  I’m not crazy about the medallion on top, but square-toe shape is cool.

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adidas by Stella McCartney Ciccura Flats ($140)

I tried these on a few weeks ago, and I luhved them.  Like a gym shoe, they’re really flexible.  The cushioning in the sole is substantial.  And the look is fairly sleek with a versatile silver color.  I couldn’t find anything similar in a lower price-point.  If you know of something, please leave it in the comments.

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  1. Erika says:

    The Flexx ‘Run Perfed” shoe is also really comfortable! I got it at Nordstroms but I think they sell online and through Amazon too.

  2. Maggie says:

    AK Anne Klein has some really sturdy flats that have been my daily commuters for years. Highly recommend them!

  3. Caroline says:

    I personally think a 2 or 3 inch heel is more comfortable than a flat. Sometimes I even walk the whole 6.5 miles home in heels. Every foot’s different, so don’t think you have to wear flats just because everyone else is.

  4. PK says:

    I use my Toms for commute then switch to regular shoes at the office. They are breathable and comfortable in the summer heat and they are a better option than flip flops when you have to deal with the grossness of the metro day to day.

  5. Rachel says:

    I bought some flats similar to the below link from the Bass outlet store in DC. I walk A LOT around DC and they are sturdy, comfortable, and cute:

    https://www.ghbass.com/product/lane+ballet+ii.do?sortby=ourPicks&from=fn

  6. PB says:

    Those suctions around the heel always hurt my feet!

  7. Abigail says:

    I LOVE these Steve Madden flats; I picked up a fair on sale for about $12 or $15 last year.

    Working in the District, we have a tendency to get sudden and massive thunderstorms, especially in the summer, and these flats are great because they’re waterproof. Once I had to make the decision to walk barefoot out of my workplace and to my car (parked quite far away) to save my beloved shoes from getting soaked, I knew something had to be done.

    https://www.dsw.com/shoe/steve+madden+swirly+ballet+flat?prodId=187525

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