Fashion Scavenger Hunt: The Perfect Low Heel For Stomping Around the City

Illustration for article titled Fashion Scavenger Hunt: The Perfect Low Heel For Stomping Around the City
Image: Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images (Getty Images)

Finding the right footwear for city living is a delicate, wretched dance between choosing style and comfort. New York City sidewalks are a minefield, littered with hot trash, slush, and feisty rats, and feet need sturdy armor in case they get trampled in the crush of a subway car. This is why when Jezebel Deputy Editor Alexis Sobel Fitts asked me to find her an everyday sort-of flat shoe she could take from, as a copy of InStyle magazine circa 2002 would say, “day to night,” I cracked my knuckles and accepted the challenge.

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Fitts’ criteria for “an everyday flat/shoe to wear 99 percent of my waking hours” was a pair that she can wear to a nice situation but were comfy enough that she could “tromp around” the city in them, and arch support was a plus. She also had technically found the ideal cute low-heeled shoe in an expensive pair of red Gorman Pebble Pumps, which sold out before she could snatch them up. With Gorman’s cool minimalism in mind, I set out to find comfy flat or low-heeled shoes that were fit for a fancy dinner and a walk through Prospect Park.

Illustration for article titled Fashion Scavenger Hunt: The Perfect Low Heel For Stomping Around the City
Screenshot: Everlane

Everlane Day Heel ($58)

Everlane’s office casual offerings tend to skew a little too plain in my opinion and I’m a firm believer that nobody should wear clothing designed for the office outside of an office (be free!) But the brand’s red Day Heel is the closest, most affordable dupe for Alexis’s ideal Gorman pump, even down to the coral-adjacent red color. Currently on sale in a few sizes for $58, the rounded toe and low-heel combo basically guarantee your feet won’t be blistered from a day walking around.

Illustration for article titled Fashion Scavenger Hunt: The Perfect Low Heel For Stomping Around the City
Screenshot: Hush Puppies

Soft Styles Women’s Angel II ($49.95)

I’m sort of obsessed with these Angel II pumps from Soft Styles, an offshoot of the classic Hush Puppies brand, which promises “extra cushioning for maximum comfort.” The shoes are basic to the point that they sort of like the platonic ideal of a heeled shoe, and they come in a variety of colors including red, white, and baby (or “millennial,” eye roll) pink. This might be my personal affinity for “so ugly it’s good” style or my die-hard love for Working Girl talking, but these pumps are giving me ’80s executive in a good way?! Remember, girlboss style is only cool when it’s camp!

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Illustration for article titled Fashion Scavenger Hunt: The Perfect Low Heel For Stomping Around the City
Screenshot: DSW

Vionic Natalie Pump (139.99)

Vionic is a brand that makes shoes with extreme comfort in mind, emphasizing arch support and “heel health,” and the brand was actually started by a podiatrist. And if all of that screams “oh god these shoes are going to be ugly as hell,” Vionic’s are surprisingly not your grandma’s clunky supportive shoes. They make a wide variety of shoes with no bells and whistles, and their Alexa Flats and Jade Slingback Flats are cute and simple, with a little extra oomph to keep your feet from feeling like hell after a long day. I am extremely into these Natalie pumps, which don’t even look close to being borderline-orthopedic.

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Illustration for article titled Fashion Scavenger Hunt: The Perfect Low Heel For Stomping Around the City
Screenshot: Madewell

Madewell The Cory Flat ($110)

While the Cory might not offer much in the way of arch support (though Madewell promises some cushioned padding) the boxy, soft leather shape makes the shoe a little bit cooler than your basic ballet flat. It’s simple enough to go with literally everything and nobody would blink twice if you wore them with a nice dress to a casual wedding.

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Illustration for article titled Fashion Scavenger Hunt: The Perfect Low Heel For Stomping Around the City
Screenshot: Vagabond

Vagabond Joyce Pumps ($120)

Please don’t scream at me for recommending a suede shoe, but these Vagabond Joyce heels are sort of my ideal “I want to spend most of my waking hours in these” shoe. While they only come in two colors (black and cream) they have just the right amount of heel to elevate them out of flat territory without making the shoe look like it’s meant for a child.

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Readers, do you have any suggestions for Alexis?

Hazel Cills is the Pop Culture Reporter at Jezebel. Her writing has been published by outlets including The Los Angeles Times, Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, The New York Times Magazine, ELLE, and more.

DISCUSSION

shartling1
CorporalTrim'snewaccountbecausethecomputerbroke

I’m a serious tromper and none of these cut it—but if you want a dress shoe that’s adaptable across multiple situations but still comfortable enough to do some walking, I suggest checking out a company known for comfort at a reasonable price, rather than going for fashion (I like the Everlane, but don’t trust its wearability). I just randomly checked out Clarks because they’ve been around forever and they know how to build a pretty comfortable shoe. This one isn’t bad (it’s the Canadian site, so the price isn’t as high as it looks):

https://www.clarkscanada.com/collections/womens-dress-shoes/products/pure-easy-1