In anticipation of fall’s big comeback, we’re helping you prep your next-season shopping list, starting with the best fall shoes to wear. Now is the perfect time to snap up a fresh pair, with plenty of new arrivals readily available to help make the transition from strappy slingbacks and slide sandals to zippers and buckles all the more bearable.
Clogs, which are one of this year’s top shoe trends, have officially dethroned dad sneakers as the “ugly shoe” to own—and are easy to work into your everyday rotation. Slim, retro-inspired sneakers have also entered the picture, and play well with everything from baggy denim to workout clothes. Loafers, Chelsea boots, and over-the-knee styles persist as fall mainstays, pairing perfectly with dresses and skirts right now. (Bare legs encouraged.)
It goes without saying that the fashion stakes are different this fall, but there are certain autumnal happenings you can still count on, like apple picking, pie baking, a certain spiced latte we may or may not order, and there will be walking—lots of it—so it’s important to be prepared. Below, the best fall shoes to start incorporating into your wardrobe, including the most badass boots and the fluffiest clogs around.
First spotted clomping down white-plastered spring runways, the wooden clog remains a must-have for fall. Seasonal highlights include See by Chloe’s shearling mule for peak cozy vibes, Birkenstock’s big buckle design, and Loeffler Randall’s (dainty?) gardening clog featuring an adorable gingham ankle strap. Whether you go for flats or something with a thick heel, style with leggings or straight-leg jeans for an on-trend pairing that reads cute yet casual.
Sneakers are undisputed cart champions—and no fall wardrobe is complete without a fresh pair. “Ugly” dad styles reigned supreme for the last few seasons, but designers are now revisiting vintage best sellers to wear with everything from knit dresses to menswear-inspired trousers. Narrower in design and far less heavy to walk in, they hug your foot at the base of the ankle for a sporty yet elegant feel. Pair them with some no-show socks to flash the last of your tan, or make a snuggly pair the star of the show.
The Modern Chelsea Boot
Embrace the autumnal equinox with this season’s most popular fall fashion trend: the Chelsea boot. Reimagined in various materials, colors, and lengths (from knee-high boots to ankle bootie), this is a practical shoe choice you can wear straight through next year. Opt for a creamy leather ankle boot with a lug sole if you’re going for a grungy vibe, or pick up a colorful rubber rain boot to offset an all-black outfit.
Add a finished feel to almost any outfit with a pair of leather loafers, reinvented this season with chunkier soles for edge—and serious walkability. These structured shoes are perfect for day-long wear, not to mention they can instantly dress up casual pieces in your wardrobe like sweatpants, distressed denim, or pajama-like shorts.
The Tall Boot
Do you hear that? It’s the sound of over-the-knee boots being zipped up. That’s right, tall boots have entered the chat, with mock-croc iterations with thin or block heels putting an urban spin on the western trend. These shoes look best paired with skirts, leather shorts, and dresses for a high-low contrast—tights optional, car transportation required.