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Go-To Tips on Shopping for Comfortable and Stylish Shoes

When it comes to striking a balance between shoes that are fashionable and shoes that are functional, many of us lose our balance and fall to one side or the other. If you favor the function that your shoe serves far more than the style it showcases, you may be sacrificing your expression of personality and altering how others perceive you. On the other hand, if you favor a fashion-forward shoe far more than a functional one, you’re bound to be sacrificing some serious comfort and even see bunions and a bad back depending on your specific shoe preferences. Luckily, stylish shoes for women with bunions are easy to shop for! Comfortable shoes for women who prioritize style and personality are also easy to shop for — and these could even end up being the same pair of shoes for both situations!

Shopping for comfortable and stylish shoes is all about embracing versatility, quality features and, of course, your personality! So next time you’re shopping for shoes, aim for function and fashion by considering the following:

Comfortable and Stylish Shoes

Cushioned Footbeds

Regardless of whether it's a pair of loafers, peep toe kitten heels or full 4-inch pumps, the one thing you want to make sure of is that your feet are being cushioned on a comfy surface. This surface (when it’s in your shoe) is known as the footbed — and no matter how cute the shoes look on your feet, if a soft and comfortable footbed is missing, you might as well be walking on pavement! Especially around areas like the balls and heels of your feet, some sort of soft inner cushioning is absolutely essential. If you’re aware of this and aim to amplify the effect as much as possible, options like orthopedic shoes exist in all sorts of styles from sandals to sneakers, and quality cushioned sole inserts are always accessible and easy to shop for! 

Flexible Soles

Your style may not fall flat… but do your feet? Flat and inflexible soles on shoes can cause your graceful gait to change, along with causing some significant issues when it comes to your safety and well-being and limiting you when it comes to adventures, exploring and excitement. Your shoe should support you with a certain amount of structure, yes, but it should still be functional enough to flex with the environment and natural movement of your foot from the heel to the toe. If you find yourself frequently exploring interesting environments, active, stylish athletic shoes for women are essential! 

In combination with this flexibility, it’s essential to pay attention to the arches of your feet and compare them to how flat the shoe is. The arches of your feet are highly involved in your balance and stability initiatives, so along with improved functionality, good arch support will help you to actively improve your posture. For added benefit, consider buying a shoe or insole with thick memory foam support in order to accurately and affordably mimic your natural foot shape after it’s been compressed enough times! 

active, stylish athletic shoes for women

Breathable Materials

Besides cushioned footbeds and flexibility, another major component of comfort comes from a shoe that is built to breathe. And while (even excessive) perspiration from the feet is a very real and very common issue, a significant number of stylish footwear brands still don't appropriately accommodate for this issue or the demand for a solution. Luckily, a simple solution does exist — and if you struggle with sweaty feet, it is essential! 

Shoes that are mindfully designed with more breathable materials are unrivaled when it comes to keeping your feet dry, odor-free, infection-free and the proper temperature (or in other words, comfortable!). That’s because these types of shoes allow air and water vapor to escape from inside of the shoe effortlessly, while simultaneously allowing the fresh air from outside of the shoe to enter. Along with being crucial, breathable shoes come in equally cute styles — so don’t sweat incorporating this sweet feature! 

A Versatile Style

Introducing the crowd favorite when it comes to both fashionable and functional versatility: flats! Most flats make for an amazing side bag shoe as they’re super-slim and can be tucked easily into your bag in case of any last-minute function or emergency. Along with being slim and easily stored, flats are functional for most activities and environments, almost always comfortable and can be found in fashion options that go from casual to formal — but without the foreboding pain of heels. As if that weren't enough, comfortable flats for women in cool styles can be found as easily as they’re stored, so consider keeping more than one pair around!

Shock-Resistant Bottoms

If you're the adventurous or athletic type who enjoys running, skipping rope, skateboarding, exploring nature or something in between, the best shoe for you is going to incorporate a thick, shock-absorbing rubber sole. With that in mind, be cautious and make sure not to confuse a thick quality sole for what may just be a super heavy sole. Thick quality rubber soles are excellent at gripping wet or slippery surfaces and they evenly distribute the force of your body weight. Their impact on you is significant, but the impact of their weight hitting the ground should not be. Shoes with a super heavy platform sole, on the other hand, will hit the ground hard and demand much more energy from you to move them around.

Shock-Resistant Bottoms

Take It One Step at a Time

Once you know what to look FOR in terms of quality features and versatility and you’ve found a good pair of shoes, the next step is to look AT these shoes and make sure that they’re as fashion-appropriate to you as they are function-appropriate. 

This means that once you’ve found your functional pair, make sure that they suit your style! If you know your style well enough, there’s a good chance that the shoes stood out to you and spoke to your style before you even knew that they were functional — but if you don’t know your style so well or you’re trying to reinvent your image? The safest aesthetic choices when it comes to shoes include limiting patterns and bling, embracing ever-crisp and easily-maintained materials like leather, canvas and suede and adopting neutral colors like blacks, grays, navy blues, browns, beiges and nudes.

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