Shoes, but...

Old Sep 6, 22, 7:19 am
  #1  
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Shoes, but...

I am looking for a simple ballet flat that will work as both a slipper and a "comfy enough to walk all day in" shoe. Something that doesn't look sneaker like but that has support and non slip soles*. My current go to is a pair of Puma Vegas from maybe 6 years ago but that style is long gone. They are more sneaker-y than not but they worked so well for travel and could easily slip into my carry on in case I needed to run through the airport. I prefer some support in the foot bed and I'm seeing lots of different options (rothys, allbirds, birdies, etc) but I would appreciate some real world experience from the women in the know. The allbirds tree breezers intrigue me but they look way too flat.

* non slip is a must. I've had a couple of slow motion slides courtesy of my leather soled flats. Thankfully I didn't get hurt but I'd prefer not to take chances.

I know we've had shoe threads here before and the mods are welcome to combine this with an existing thread but since so many brands and styles have come and gone I thought a new one might be useful.
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Old Sep 6, 22, 11:14 am
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My comfy slip-on right now is ECCO - I have 2 pr (different) slip on sneakers, brown nubuck and black suede. I have a couple pr more minimalist (more like ballet flat than sneaker) from Vionic and fitflop. (vionic actually a ballet flat but has arch padding, LOVE) and the fitflop is closer to a loafer look with a higher vamp. Not sure I can still wear that pair - it's been a couple years of basically wearing nothing but birkenstock, so.....
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Old Sep 6, 22, 11:15 am
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I have not tried any of the woven shoes - my feet are so difficult to find comfy shoes for, I'm scared to order something that's only online and doesn't seem to have the support I need/want.
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Old Sep 6, 22, 2:28 pm
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Mine take

For background...I am an older woman. Slight tendency to plantar fasciitis if I wear too many flats. Worst is high metatarsal bones on top of foot making most shoes that cut across the top painful after a few hours. Bottom line,,,I'm very fussy about shoes.

My go-to airport shoes are Allbirds--the original wool ones, not the "tree" types. I tried them once and they are too flat, as you fear. They have so much "give" in them they are comfortable for a long time. The footbed is enough for me but I think one could easily use an orthotic if you wanted. A slight minus is the backs have a slight tendency to be a bit floppy--just requires holding them up when putting the shoe on. I am not a fashionista but I love to get the interesting colors they offer. It's a rare trip through an airport when another woman doesn't ask me "Are those Allbirds?"

I usually take a spare pair of ballet flats for when my feet tire of the Allbirds or I want to be dressier. I have gone through phases. I did like Tieks but prefer more foot bed. On next week's trip I am trying out these Born Juliannes--so I can give you a full report later

Speaking of woven shoes, I LOVE Bernie Mev's but most probably don't have the foot bed you seem to be looking for,
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Old Sep 6, 22, 4:58 pm
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As far as flats, the two I pack frequently don't have great insoles but they're pretty comfy. The first are Rothy's - they're woven, washable, with a removable insole which helps if you go sockless a lot and need to launder your footwear! I worked in a hospital so the washable part was important to me, and they were comfortable enough for all day wear plus pack like nothing. The second, which are not woven but the leather is super pliable, are these flats from Everlane which are versatile and comfy enough to be worn all day. I have a few pair of Fitflop ballet flats also, but they're more clunky than I like. Allbirds' wool woven flat that packs well, but support there is lacking and they look almost childish to me. I've almost purchased these flats as I have some of their loafers, and the quilted lining is quite comfortable, but like a previous poster mentioned, I'm finding that flats are less comfy than they used to be and am moving towards a low wedge or heel or a nice tennis shoe (Paul Green or Hoff are my favorites)

Here's a side by side comparison of some of those shoes, which sometimes helps -


top to bottom - fit flop, allbirds, everlane, rothy's, birdies.

bottoms
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Last edited by QT31415; Sep 6, 22 at 5:07 pm Reason: added photo
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Old Sep 7, 22, 9:36 am
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Originally Posted by Hoyaheel View Post
My comfy slip-on right now is ECCO - I have 2 pr (different) slip on sneakers, brown nubuck and black suede. I have a couple pr more minimalist (more like ballet flat than sneaker) from Vionic and fitflop. (vionic actually a ballet flat but has arch padding, LOVE) and the fitflop is closer to a loafer look with a higher vamp. Not sure I can still wear that pair - it's been a couple years of basically wearing nothing but birkenstock, so.....
This is really helpful and exactly the kind of information that I was hoping for. And yes, two years of living in sneakers have me realizing that my definition of "comfortable" has changed.

Originally Posted by Hoyaheel View Post
I have not tried any of the woven shoes - my feet are so difficult to find comfy shoes for, I'm scared to order something that's only online and doesn't seem to have the support I need/want.
This is a real concern for me too. I have found that flats can be too flat and cause back and leg pain as a result.

Originally Posted by gretchendz View Post
For background...I am an older woman. Slight tendency to plantar fasciitis if I wear too many flats. Worst is high metatarsal bones on top of foot making most shoes that cut across the top painful after a few hours. Bottom line,,,I'm very fussy about shoes.

My go-to airport shoes are Allbirds--the original wool ones, not the "tree" types. I tried them once and they are too flat, as you fear. They have so much "give" in them they are comfortable for a long time. The footbed is enough for me but I think one could easily use an orthotic if you wanted. A slight minus is the backs have a slight tendency to be a bit floppy--just requires holding them up when putting the shoe on. I am not a fashionista but I love to get the interesting colors they offer. It's a rare trip through an airport when another woman doesn't ask me "Are those Allbirds?"

I usually take a spare pair of ballet flats for when my feet tire of the Allbirds or I want to be dressier. I have gone through phases. I did like Tieks but prefer more foot bed. On next week's trip I am trying out these Born Juliannes--so I can give you a full report later

Speaking of woven shoes, I LOVE Bernie Mev's but most probably don't have the foot bed you seem to be looking for,
More of the kind of information that I was looking for, thank you so much! And your Allbirds comment made me smile because I've had that same experience with the Lo and Sons bags.

Originally Posted by QT31415 View Post
As far as flats, the two I pack frequently don't have great insoles but they're pretty comfy. The first are Rothy's - they're woven, washable, with a removable insole which helps if you go sockless a lot and need to launder your footwear! I worked in a hospital so the washable part was important to me, and they were comfortable enough for all day wear plus pack like nothing. The second, which are not woven but the leather is super pliable, are these flats from Everlane which are versatile and comfy enough to be worn all day. I have a few pair of Fitflop ballet flats also, but they're more clunky than I like. Allbirds' wool woven flat that packs well, but support there is lacking and they look almost childish to me. I've almost purchased these flats as I have some of their loafers, and the quilted lining is quite comfortable, but like a previous poster mentioned, I'm finding that flats are less comfy than they used to be and am moving towards a low wedge or heel or a nice tennis shoe (Paul Green or Hoff are my favorites)
This is huge and the photo with the side by side, real life comparisons is perfect! Especially the soles.

I fortunately live close to an outlet center that definitely has Ecco and Vionic stores and may have some of the other brands as well, so it gives me an opportunity to make a list and go check out the shoes in person. Outlets are hit and miss as far as styles and colors but being able to actually try the shoes on will be a big help in the hunt. And yes, I do look for washable if possible since I like to have the option for flats that double as slippers (and also to remove the yech once I'm back home). That's why the Pumas were so great....a find courtesy of this forum.
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Old Sep 7, 22, 12:55 pm
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Originally Posted by rsqrott View Post
I am looking for a simple ballet flat that will work as both a slipper and a "comfy enough to walk all day in" shoe. Something that doesn't look sneaker like but that has support and non slip soles*. (snip)
* non slip is a must. I've had a couple of slow motion slides courtesy of my leather soled flats. Thankfully I didn't get hurt but I'd prefer not to take chances.
My #1 priority these days is comfy enough to walk all day, followed closely by arch support. The majority of my shoes are Propt, with a few pairs of SAS sandals thrown in. On a trip earlier this year, I averaged 7 miles walking per day, and my Propt Tour Knit shoes, which are sneakers, were great. They've gone a thicker sole, which really helped. Propt also makes a variety of slip-ons, casual but not sneakers. I haven't tried them, but am considering some.

SAS, not as dowdy as they used to be, and usually have excellent arch support.

In the past I wore a lot of Rockport walking shoes, but haven't tried them in recent years.
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Old Sep 7, 22, 3:50 pm
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A couple other people have recommended SAS recently - I should try and see if they work for my feet! My current water/active sandal are propet but I haven't had great luck with other styles styles.

Wore my old school dansko sandals to my office today. First real work day in office for ages. (Met new Director, the dansko seemed a little dressier than the birks I've been wearing)
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Old Sep 8, 22, 5:39 am
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Oh, and Vogue says the shoe fall is the loafer - I haven't had any in years, though in the early to mid-90s, I wore OUT my black patent loafers. My mom said I'd never wear them - I wore them EVERYWHERE. Ah well. Haven't tried many on recently so not sure my feet will like the style, but there are so many cute options now! (question is - can I find cute AND comfortable??)

https://www.vogue.com/article/best-loafers-for-women
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Old Sep 8, 22, 11:28 am
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Originally Posted by Hoyaheel View Post
Oh, and Vogue says the shoe fall is the loafer - I haven't had any in years, though in the early to mid-90s, I wore OUT my black patent loafers. My mom said I'd never wear them - I wore them EVERYWHERE. Ah well. Haven't tried many on recently so not sure my feet will like the style, but there are so many cute options now! (question is - can I find cute AND comfortable??)

https://www.vogue.com/article/best-loafers-for-women
It must be so! Have seen similar articles and options, and have tried on many pairs without luck. Years ago I had a Sperry loafer that got worn to death, anyone have an option with good footbed and soft soft upper? The style seems to be versatile and functional and appropriate for travel.
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Old Sep 8, 22, 12:54 pm
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Originally Posted by Hoyaheel View Post
Oh, and Vogue says the shoe fall is the loafer - I haven't had any in years, though in the early to mid-90s, I wore OUT my black patent loafers. My mom said I'd never wear them - I wore them EVERYWHERE. Ah well. Haven't tried many on recently so not sure my feet will like the style, but there are so many cute options now! (question is - can I find cute AND comfortable??)

https://www.vogue.com/article/best-loafers-for-women
Oh how exciting, I'll be on trend again...until I'm not .

I have found some really nice leather loafers by both Bally and Chloe that have backs designed to crush down so that you can wear them as either a loafer or a mule. I love them for travel because they're 2 pairs of shoes in 1. Beautiful and comfortable but with leather soles. I expect that there are other brands doing a similar style. Since I seem to be prone to getting blisters on the back of my heel the crush down backs have been a lifesaver.
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Old Sep 11, 22, 5:48 pm
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Originally Posted by rsqrott View Post
Oh how exciting, I'll be on trend again...until I'm not .

I have found some really nice leather loafers by both Bally and Chloe that have backs designed to crush down so that you can wear them as either a loafer or a mule. I love them for travel because they're 2 pairs of shoes in 1. Beautiful and comfortable but with leather soles. I expect that there are other brands doing a similar style. Since I seem to be prone to getting blisters on the back of my heel the crush down backs have been a lifesaver.
thats exactly what I'm looking for! I like the Gucci ones but the price!!
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Old Sep 12, 22, 7:03 am
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Originally Posted by QT31415 View Post
thats exactly what I'm looking for! I like the Gucci ones but the price!!
I know! For something that I'm going to put on the floor .
If you have a Bally's outlet within a reasonable distance give them a look as they have a few different styles with the crush down back. I like pricey things but have a PBR budget and have scored some great shoes there for maybe a quarter of what they sell for at retail. Am I worth it, of course I am! But if I can get something equally as luscious for significantly less money I'm all over it.
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Old Sep 12, 22, 8:13 am
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I wear almost entirely Hotter shoes. They have broad ranging styles and colors. I can walk comfortably in them for hours.

https://www.hotter.com/us/en/womens-ballet-pumps
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Old Sep 12, 22, 8:33 am
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me too

Originally Posted by SanDiego1K View Post
I wear almost entirely Hotter shoes. They have broad ranging styles and colors. I can walk comfortably in them for hours.

https://www.hotter.com/us/en/womens-ballet-pumps
I've always been happy with Hotters
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