6 Shoes You Should Have In Your Closet For Endless Outfit Versatility

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Those of us who relate way too much to Carrie Bradshaw probably have a closet full of shoes, many of which are way too uncomfortable or impractical to wear in our day-to-day life. Others may stick to one pair of sneakers until there's a hole in the toe. But, there are only a few of us who know exactly what shoes everyone should have in their closet to make sure that they never find themselves in a footwear crisis. Well, that's about to change, because we're ready to put an end to the question of shoe staples once and for all. 


After some deliberating, it's been determined that the perfect shoe collection can be boiled down to just six pairs. Of course, a few more will give you plenty of welcome options. But, six is really all you need to ensure that you're equipped for any occasion, any weather, and any time of year. Now's the time to make a checklist and ensure that you do, in fact, have your feet covered, since we're all trying to avoid a fashion emergency –– especially one involving our footwear.


Of all the shoes in the world, none is nearly as versatile as the sneaker. This is why a comfy, low-top sneaker is the number one shoe that everyone should have in their closet. Ideally, this pair would be separate from the athletic shoes you wear to the gym or to work out. These sneakers can be a classic pair of low-top Converse or slip-on sneakers like this Roxy pair. The only rule is that they're extra comfortable. 


Casual sneakers or tennis shoes are perfect to pair with athleisure when you're running errands, jeans and a t-shirt for every day, or even a sundress for a versatile go-to summer 'fit. A white pair is your best bet for something that will work with the largest amount of ensembles. Just be sure to keep your white sneakers pristine, or they may end up designated to just super casual occasions, walks, and errands. If you have room in your closet, you may also want to invest in an extra pair that's more statement-making. A printed pair like these polka dot canvas slip-ons or one in a pop of color like this red pair can add a little bit of interest to any ensemble. 


Next, you'll need a comfortable, versatile sandal. This summer's hottest sandal trends have something for minimalists and maximalists, and most of us want to have a pair of sandals that fits both vibes. Yet, the most important sandal style is the minimalist kind. Opt for one that is neutral — preferably in a nude tone that matches your skin or a shade of beige or brown. Even if you prefer a closed-toe shoe to a sandal on most occasions, it's still important to have a pair that fits you well and is comfortable to walk in for extra hot days or trips to the beach where no other shoe is really appropriate.


If you're prone to blisters, make sure that your staple sandal is built for comfort like this Dr. Scholl's pair, or if you want something that feels more like a slipper that you can sport outside, go for a slide like this pair. The only rule for your neutral go-to sandals is that they shouldn't have a heel. The goal here is versatility and comfort for the warm weather.

Chunky boot

Since we all need a versatile and comfortable pair of shoes for the warm weather, it's easy to see why the same applies to cold weather. As a result, a pair of chunky boots is another closet staple that everyone should own. Your chunky boots are one of the items on this list that are most worth investing in for a few reasons. These boots should be usable in all terrain and all kinds of weather. You should be able to wear them in rain, snow, and on the hiking trail, as well as for normal day-to-day wear. Consequently, they need to be built to hold up well, and you're going to want them to be around for a while, rather than something that you're more willing to replace as trends change.


You can go for a pair of classic Doc Martens, like this lace-up combat boot, or a slip-on Chelsea boot like this pair. Pick the style that's most true to you, but make sure that the boot is comfy and reliable, and take your time breaking them in. Additionally, remember that when it comes to your chunky boots, insoles are your friends. 

Versatile flat

A pair of versatile flats are important for any closet, yet this category probably has more leeway and options than any of the others. The ideal pair of flats to keep in your wardrobe is one that's easy to dress up or down. You want a pair of flats that you could pair with a dress for a special occasion or just your go-to jeans for a regular afternoon out. For these reasons, whichever style of flat you choose, make sure to pick a neutral color palette.


Plenty of us are looking forward to acing the ballet flats revival now that these comfy, classic shoes have made a triumphant return. If this sounds like you, a neutral ballet flat, like this pair, is the perfect go-to flat for your wardrobe. There are plenty of other options, as well –– like casual loafers, slip-ons, or even a modern Mary Jane. Whichever flat best fits your style while also being a good fit for many different outfits is your perfect pick. 

Heeled bootie

Whether you're comfortable in a stiletto, or you prefer a low, sturdy block heel, you should have a heeled bootie or boot of your choice in your closet. Heeled booties are great for slightly dressier occasions where you might want to wear more than a flat but don't feel quite right wearing pumps. Heeled booties can work just as well for a casual wedding as they can for a day out shopping, and they can shield your feet from bad weather and cold days. 


Of course, opting for a tall, heeled boot like this pair is a better pick for keeping you warm on cold and rainy days. Alternatively, some people may find an ankle bootie preferable to a boot, because it can work for warm weather and cold weather, alike. There are tons of options when it comes to heeled booties, but if you're only going to have one pair in your closet, go for something in a neutral color that will work with the maximum amount of outfits, like this beige block heel pair or this black Vince Camuto ankle boot


Last, but certainly not least, you'll want a pair of heels in your closet. Ideally, your shoe collection would contain a heeled sandal as well as a pump, so you're covered for dressing up in all weather and attending special occasions all year round. But if, like many of us, you're not a big fan of heels, opt for one neutral, closed-toe pair. If you're averse to wobbly, high shoes, your single pair of heels doesn't need to have a particularly high or skinny heel. Instead, opt for a pair that works best for you. This beige patent pair is a classic, and this super low-heeled option is perfect if you're looking for something especially accident-proof.


If you have room for a second pair of heels, make it a statement pair. Pick something in a unique print, eye-catching finish, or pop of color. This will give you something to add a little bit of spice to neutral outfits from jeans and a t-shirt to your favorite little black dress.