Best Types of Shoes for Men

Best Types of Men’s Footwear

I firmly believe that with the right footwear one can rule the world. — Bette Midler

No need to be a “Hitler” to rule the world. Just get the right footwear and you are good to go.

Apart from the aesthetics, having the right shoe is regarded as a savior mainly because it can help keep your feet healthy and your body safe from injury. It is, therefore important to note that, there is always a shoe for every terrain, activity, or event out there. Having the right footwear means that the shoe fits well, suits the type of activity, cushions the foot, supports the foot, and feels comfortable. In case you feel getting the right types of shoes for men might be thorny for you there are always options to assist you especially when you buy from a specialty store.

There are two simple rules for a versatile fit for men shoes:

  • Rule #1: Forgo fashion and embrace the classic styles
  • Rule # 2: Be ready to spend

Every man needs a solid shoe closet. It is, for this reason, we have come up with an exclusive guide for men on the various types of footwear including activities that match the right fit.

Anytime-Anywhere Footwear

Minimalist sneaker

Based on retro tennis footwear, the minimalist sneaker is a true wardrobe hero. It is a simple and yet essential classic element that goes with almost every outfit. Minimalist footwear is a go-anywhere-anytime option and the gist of it is the fact that you can wear them with jeans, shorts, tees, chinos, and anything informal. The interesting bit is that the moment these shoes start looking past their best you can use them within the house by relegating them to loafers.

A polite reminder though; do not use the sneakers for exercise. Ensure you clean them well and best practices call for popping some deodorized insoles now and then. Some of the top brands you should try include, Common Projects, C.QP, and Axel Arigato.


Nine-to-Five Shoes

Derby Shoe

The derby shoe shares the same family with the Oxfords. It is a smart casual shoe type with the power to sharpen your look in case you decide to adorn a raw denim or even decide to tone down to a black-tie event. A notable difference with the Oxfords is technically in the design where the tongue and vamp are not stitched separately, plus it is an open lacing type of footwear.

Another key component is the sole. It is either rubber or leather for much-needed grip and resilience. This is a technique patented by Charles Goodyear in the 1870s with the upper part stitched to the welt, then attached to the insole. Goodyear’s design is considered a game-changer up to date because it is the one that practically made shoes waterproof. The wider feet as well as higher in-step guys are accommodated by the derby shoes. They may look simple but Derbies are a savior since they look good with almost any wear you decide to go with. Grenson is a top brand for triple-welted derby.

Dinner Date footwear

Leather Slip-On

From penny to tassel loafers, this type of shoes for men offers a range of stylish footwear. It is most popular in the U.S. with celebrities like the late MJ sliding to the moonwalk and we cannot miss out on the preppy ‘Ivy League’ mien. The original maker of penny loafer was G.H Bass & Co. a company founded in 1876 by George Henry Bass.

For a touch of class, you can brace the classic combination of loafers and chinos, and if you feel uncomfortable wear them without socks. However, the best loafer experience is in trying it out with various colors, prints, and patterns. Remember the rolled-up cuff for guys to peep the different artsy shades and designs. Slip-ons are simple yet offer versatile options judging by the diverse range of official and casual wear that match with it. From bankers to sports lovers, recreational or official, leather slip-ons do not disappoint at all. Some of the celebrated slip-on brands include Gucci’s Horsebit, Alessandro Michele, just to mention a few.


Smart Occasion Footwear

Black Oxfords

Black Oxfords are in the classic ‘schooling’ shoe category. As suggested by its name, the Black Oxford half boot design was inspired by a style in the 1800s braced by most scholars at Oxford University. This type of official footwear is recommended for formal occasions such as job interviews, christenings, weddings, and funerals. Black Oxford is the ultimate choice whenever a black-tie or a good suit is involved. Most guys consider it as the shoe type for ‘pros’ especially because they were formerly a must-have for bankers in the city. It is the perfect choice in hand – or feet in this regard – for those in a white-collar environment as it has the power to spice up the official attire.

Here are some tips on how to wear Black Oxfords;

Black Oxfords are worth every man’s investment since they will never let a man down especially when it comes to smart dress-up events. It is a type of shoes for men with close laces, the outside, and the inside quarters tacked below the vamp with the tongue stitched separately. Crockett & Jones, John Lobb, Loake, Tricker’s, and Church’s represent some of the top brands made in England.

Weekend Shoes

Work Boots

Talk of work boots and what comes in mind is Northampton, the British shoe capital. The city was popular for supplying the British army including workers during world war as well as the industrial revolution. Work boots have since remained an essential among types of shoes for men within and outside Britain. Most guys love them for their resilience in tricky terrain, wet conditions, including harsher weather conditions.


The laced Derby is close to hiking boots and the fact that they go well with heavy fabrics cropped above ankle makes them a classic choice for men. What more do you need than to brace a fancy boot that James Bond wore in a number of scenes in SPECTRE? Sleekness comes at a price, and the price you need to afford is adorning the work boots.

Beach Footwear


Espadrilles are epic when it comes to types of shoes for men. Believe it or not, this elegant footwear has been around in Europe since the 14th century. The term might be French but it all began in Greece with the name originating from esparto, Greek meaning for tough Mediterranean grass popular for making ropes, baskets, rugs, and plaited soles. It is an affordable type of shoe with the price determined by the design.

It is interesting how the sole of an espadrille is made

When you compare espadrilles with flip flops, they are fairly comfy especially for short distances and a favorable choice for sandy beaches including a walk to the bar. The upper part is designed with breathable canvas and of course they cover the nails for those of us who feel they are not ready to expose their nails. Hit the espadrilles in linen, shorts, beachwear, light jeans, chinos, almost anything that is light enough to dance to the wind. A polite reminder by the experts is to avoid socks when you choose this type of men’s shoe.

Gym Shoes


It all begun by a lady known as Carolyn Davidson, the brain behind the Nike Swoosh logo. A logo that earned her, wait for it, $35 only – hope you are not looking for zeros here. Fast forward today and the athletic footwear is a market worth billions. A niche that has had much success in innovations and collaborations. It entices youngsters and oldsters to dig deeper into their pockets for the unique runner experience.

Luckily today, men can own a number of sneakers with different styles in almost anything. Those that need to tone down can decide to have it the old way of having the sneakers match with denim jeans or sportswear. It is important to have the right fit when you hit the gym – I usually have my New Balance ready to begin my daily dosage in training. There are lots of sneaker styles out there but only a few stand out from the rest. Top on the list are; Balenciaga’s Triple-S, Dior Homme’s B01, and Rockrunner by Valentino Garavani. 

Whether you use them to dress up for the occasion, or simply as a mode of movement, the seven types of shoes for men form the different styles and brands that will get you the greater joy of slipping into classic pair of shoes.

The Measure of a Man!

I recently bumped on a famous quote I’d like to share with you, “the root of every great endeavor begins at the feet” it went further to note that a man can indeed carry the world on his shoulders but when he does that the shoe would be carrying the man. It is therefore critical to dress to the occasion as it might be the day you get the whole world in your hands. All in all, you need to make the right choice and have the right fit with or without the big day. Get whatever looks great and is best suited for particular events or situations. Whatever path you decide to follow, remember to wear the best shoes for the journey.

Related Questions

What are the best shoe brands for men?

A man needs to look smart at all times no matter the event or place. Here is a list of some of the top types of shoes for men by brand:

  • Nike
  • Vans
  • Adidas
  • Clarks
  • Timberland
  • New Balance

How to clean up a suede shoe?

Suede shoes are considered the most vulnerable type because of the random scuffs, stains, and scratches. Here are 4 tricks to keep you going and maintain the clean:

  • Use a suede brush on the dry shoes
  • Brush gently for dirt removal
  • Brush vigorously for scuff mark removal
  • An eraser can be used for tough marks
  • Spray a coat of suede protector

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