According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (2022)

It’s tiring enough to be on your feet all day, so why wear shoes that are going to make that experience even worse? No shoes may be more comfortable than the slippers you put on at the end of the day, but some shoes can come close. The best part: Supportive shoes don’t have to be ugly. Comfortable walking sneakers are the way to go if you’re going the distance, but if you work in an office or corporate environment that requires dress shoes, you might be wondering about the best women's dress shoes for standing all day. Whether you're shopping for a work conference that will have you on your feet for hours on end, or you just want a solid pair of shoes that aren't sneakers to wear out and about, Woman's Day spoke to two experts for their best advice and specific shoe picks.

Meet the Experts

  • Marion Yau (a.k.a. Miss Foot Fixer) is a celebrity podiatrist at the Harley Street Medical Foot and Nail Laser Clinic in London.
  • Cindy Conroy is a New York- and Toronto-based television personality and celebrity stylist.

    The best comfortable dress shoes to buy in 2022

      What to look for when shopping for work shoes you'll be standing in all day

      ✔️ Support: If you know you'll be standing in your shoes all day, Yau says the most important thing to consider is whether the shoe will give you support and cushioning. "As a foot expert, I always recommend shoes that have a little bit of arch support and cushion inside," she explains. Arch support is what gives your foot stability, while cushioning can help evenly distribute pressure from the ground to all parts of your foot so it causes less stress and strain.

      ✔️ Comfort: When you think of professional shoes, the first word that comes to mind likely isn’t "comfy" — but comfort really is imperative. If a shoe feels uncomfortable or constricting the moment you put it on, then it's not going to feel any better later on in the day. As Conroy explains, "You’ll know an all day pick as soon as your foot slides into the shoe. If it’s not comfortable in the first 10 seconds, she’s not the one for you. Hours into your day your feet will be miserable if a pair can’t even deliver for five minutes."

      ✔️ Confidence: "For women who spend all day long on their feet, wearing the correct shoes is so important," Yau stresses."The most important thing is that you feel comfortable and confident in your shoes, and generally, there are a few rules in picking out the right pair of shoes so that your feet may be pain-free and well supported."

          1

          best overall

          Birdies

          The Starling

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (1)

          Birdies

          • Available in tons of colors and fabrics
          • Roomy toe box and cushioned footbeds
          • Run a little wide

          When it comes to finding comfy shoes, Yao says a wide toe box is essential. "If the toe box is too narrow and does not fit correctly, the toes can be injured and deformities may form," she explains. That's probably why so many people love these luxe flats from Birdies, which feature a rectangular toe, quilted satin footbed, and tons of fabric options, like velvet, raffia, and suede.

          2

          best pumps

          Margaux

          The Heel

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (2)

          Margaux

          • Available in eight colors
          • Low block heel and foam padding
          • On the pricey side

          They may be pricier, but Conroy believes that natural fibers — like leather and suede — beat synthetic materials every time. "Reminiscent of fluffy clouds, leather shoes are a gal's best friend for all day wear," she says. "Unlike restrictive synthetic styles, genuine leather shoes whisper comfort." Enter: this gorgeous leather pump from Margaux, which comes in eight colors and has just the right amount of heel (as well as cushy foam padding inside).

          3

          best flats

          Rothy's

          The Flat

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (3)

          Rothy's

          • Available in 20 colors
          • Machine washable and sustainable
          • Run small

          You may love the look of pointed-toe shoes, but there's a good chance your feet won't enjoy the feel all day long. "Pointed toe heels and flats are ultra posh, but by design they squish your toes," Conroy explains. "While you’ll be able to handle the sandwich effect for one to four hours, a full day on your feet is a whole other story." With its rounded toe, these soft yet durable ballet flats from Rothy's are the perfect wardrobe staple.

          4

          best heeled booties

          Everlane

          The Glove Boot

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (4)

          Everlane

          A lower heel always beats a super-high one, especially when you're on your feet all day. "Extremely high heel height can put the foot at an awkward angle, tipping the foot forward," Yao says. "This will put pressure on the toes and force the toes to claw and jam, leading to pain and deformities." These ribbed booties from Everlane have just enough height to keep you feeling polished and supremely comfortable.

          5

          best wedge booties

          Sorel

          Evie Zip Wedge Bootie

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (5)

          Sorel

          • Available in four colors
          • Subtle heel height and cushioned footbeds
          • May feel a bit heavy

          Nothing will ruin your day faster than squished toes, which is why it's so important to pay attention to the width of your toe box. "Poorly fitted shoes with small or narrow toe boxes can cause corns to form and lead to a lot of pain," Yao says. Luckily, even reviewers with wide feet praised these wedge booties from Sorel for their unmatched comfort and roomy toe box.

          6

          best loafers

          Dr. Scholl's

          Webster Loafer

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (6)

          Dr. Scholl's

          • Some reviewers recommend a heel insert

          No matter your arch height, your feet require arch support. "As your feet get tired during the day, your natural arch will get lazy. But thankfully, built-in support can take the stress off," Conroy says. Like all Dr. Scholl's shoes, these super-popular lug sole loafers feature anatomical cushioning and arch support to keep your feet happy.

          7

          best mules

          Nisolo

          Ama Woven Mule

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (7)

          Nisolo

          • Available in five colors
          • Buttery soft and water resistant
          • May be too narrow for some

          Along with arch support, a comfortable shoe must have plenty of shock absorption. "Cushioning helps move and evenly distributes pressure from the ground so that pressure is not isolated in one part of the foot," Yao explains. That's why the shock-absorbing, cushioned insoles in these woven leather mules are ideal for women who spend hours on their feet.

          8

          best heeled sandals

          Naturalizer

          Rose Sandal

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (8)

          Naturalizer

          • Low block heel and buckle closure
          • Available in wide sizes
          • Only available in tan and black

          Conroy suggests skipping shoes with heels all together if you know you're going to be on your feet all day. However, if you just can't resist, then she suggests a modest heel that's not much more than two inches, like these contouring slingback sandals from Naturalizer, which feature a chunky flared block heel and a buckle strap to keep you secure.

          9

          best wedge sandals

          Rockport

          Briah Perf Sling

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (9)

          Rockport

          Now 49% off

          • Available in five colors and wide sizes
          • Low wedge heel and tons of cushion
          • Some wish the ankle strap could be made tighter

          Instead of heels, you may opt for a pair of wedges, which tend to be more comfortable and stable than traditional high heels because they allow for even weight distribution. Some of the most comfortable wedges around: these slings from Rockport, which have a modest heel and tons of cushioning, as well as a supportive outsole.

          10

          best flat sandals

          KAANAS

          Coco Braided Slides

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (10)

          Kaanas

          • Available in four colors
          • Pillowy and luxuriously soft
          • May be stretched out too easily

          For Conroy, leather shoes are unmatched when it comes to comfort. "Thanks to the natural fibers, they stretch and conform to the mold of your feet," says Conroy. "With unmatched breathability, they’ll further adjust throughout the day as your feet swell." And that's why these leather braided slides (which are handmade by artisans in Colombia) are the perfect blend of sophistication and comfort.

          11

          best heels

          Soludos

          Gemma Heel

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (11)

          Soludos

          • Available in four colors
          • Low block heel and buckle closure
          • May be too narrow for some

          Cushioned footbeds don't just feel nice beneath your feet — they actually serve an important purpose. "As you move around, especially on hard surfaces like concrete, the added material will lessen the tension as it wraps your feet in support," Conroy explains. And that's why dozens of reviewers have raved about these strappy suede heels from Soludos, which have added padding for long-term comfort.

          12

          best fashion sneakers

          Ponto

          The Pacific

          According to Experts, These Are the Best Dress Shoes for Women Who Spend All Day on Their Feet (12)

          Ponto

          • Super versatile and available in six colors
          • Naturally moisture-wicking insoles
          • Run slightly small

          Hate the feeling of sweaty feet? That can be avoided if you get the right materials. "Wearing shoes all day and standing all day can make your feet sweat and smell," Yao says. "Bamboo fibers are antimicrobial and can help fight bacteria and fungus that can make your feet smell." With a lining made from eucalyptus, oak, and birch wood, this moisture-wicking dress shoe/sneaker hybrid will make sweaty feet a thing of the past — even without socks!

          Corinne SullivanContributing WriterCorinne Sullivan is a digital writer and editor who covers a variety of beats, including lifestyle, entertainment, relationships, holidays and more.

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