It's about time that someone talked about your shoe game. No, I'm not talking about how many pairs of Jordans you own. This is a topic that many ladies hold dear to their hearts. Believe it or not, we do care about what you put on your feet and we will judge you on your decision.
It has been this way for me for as long as I can remember. It goes a little something like this… Walk into room, spot attractive guy, go through mental check-list: Nice hair, great smile, decent outfit… oh, no tell me he's not wearing THOSE shoes. It must be a mistake. It's like you made it to the last mile of a marathon and decided to go home. This is critical, folks.
For those of you guilty of footwear faux pas, don't fret, we can do this. Before you know it, you'll be crossing the finish line of that marathon with an extra hop in your step.
DO invest in a nice pair of dress shoes. This is probably one of the best things you can do for yourself. It doesn't have to be that hard and they don't have to be all that fancy. Find a style that fits you and that YOU feel powerful in. No suit is complete without a solid pair of kicks. By the way, don't forget about those dress socks. I once saw a young gentleman in a business meeting who was wearing one high sock and one low sock with a suit and dress shoes. His pants were hiked up a bit and I swear every time I glanced down I felt secondhand embarrassment for the poor guy.
DON'T substitute dress shoes for your "going out" shoes. Happy hour after work, yes. Beer garden on the weekend, no. I know you want to spice up that henley and jeans combo you wear every weekend, but this is not the answer. It's almost as bad as the 2009 bubble dress and leggings trend that us girls thought was so cute. It didn't work, still doesn't work and will never work. Luckily you have many options. Clarks, Top-Siders, a clean pair of Vans lace-ups… get on that.
DO wear chukkas with jeans. I'm actually begging you to do this. It's a no brainer. They’re casual, yet you still appear to have made an effort to look stylish. These shoes are great for just about anything… bar, date night, work, you name it. Jeans too basic? Throw them on with a pair of colored chinos. It really does work and it's really very easy. Team chukkas all the way.
DON'T wear running shoes with jeans. Or anywhere unless you are involved in an athletic activity. This was okay when we were in middle school and our moms still dressed us every day. Nikes, new balance, adidas (remember the three stripes?)… if you are over the age of 13, please refrain. Don't waste a perfectly good outfit on your 3 year old gym shoes.
DO wear sandals… but please use caution. We are walking a fine line between "oh my gosh, a cave man just entered the building" and "wow, that guy is rocking those Reef's." Tame your toes, people. No one wants to discriminate against a guy’s sandal game, but I probably won't approach you if you have mangled feet.
DON'T spend your life savings on your "sick collection of Jordans." I know that it was cool when you were a frat bro in college, but we now have bigger fish to fry. Invest in the basics and spend your money on the classics. I know you can probably go on eBay and get a great deal on a really "fresh pair of kicks," but no one wants to see a millennial man who is too concerned with getting his shoes stepped on, than meeting that girl who is eyeing him at the end of the bar.
What are your go-to shoes? Think about trying something outside your comfort zone. Always keep in mind that your appearance speaks from head to toe, so up the ante and put your best (and most stylish) foot forward.