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21 Types of Unisex Shoes and Footwear (Women & Men – List)

Epic list of all the different types of unisex shoes and footwear options for women and men. We include unisex list and then separate lists for women and men.

Pairs of unisex footwear.

When it comes to footwear, it is not just a necessity, but also a way to showcase your personal identity. Your choice in footwear tells a lot about your personality – are you fun or funky? Are you adventurous or safe? Whether you are a man or a woman, shoes are something that you can’t live without. A good pair of shoes is not only comfortable but also durable. They make you feel confident and smart.

Are you planning to buy some new footwear? There are so many choices that it is easy to get confused and overwhelmed. Worry not, because we are here to solve that problem for you.

Explore the different types of footwear for both men and women to find which styles suit you best.

A. Types of Unisex Shoes and Footwear

There are some shoes that look perfect on both men and women. No matter what your gender is, these shoes don’t pick any sides! These are the types of footwear that every woman and man should have in their closet.

Chart: Top 10 Unisex Shoes

By Gender

=> Women: See all the types of shoes and footwear specifically for women

=> Men: See the different types of shoes and footwear specifically for men

All Types of Unisex Shoes

1. Sneakers


Sneakers for Men | Sneakers for Women

Sneakers are like the comfort food we all crave. This lightweight and simple sports shoe are a must-have for everyone. Sneakers are not only comfortable but also go with every look. There are so many colors and patterns available that you can find a match for your every outfit. If you are planning on exploring the city and looking for a comfortable shoe, then sneakers are the appropriate footwear.

Are you planning a lazy weekend? Sneakers will help you achieve that.


There are few footwear types that are as epic and iconic as sneakers. These shoes have pretty much been worn by everyone, from the most royal royals to athletes in all disciplines to the biggest A-list stars to politicians to the trendsetters across all walks of fashion. And while they look and feel super modern, sneakers were actually invented way back in the 1700s.

Plimsolls were the first sneakers. These rubber-soled shoes were invented in the late 18th century. The design was hardly refined. In this early version of sneakers, there was no difference in the right or left foot.

The U.S. Rubber Company invented more comfortable and functional sneakers in 1892. This design still had rubbers soles but now the uppers were made of canvas. These were the first modern sneakers. They were called Keds.

Sneakers were mass-produced in 1917 and soon evolved. It was in this same year that the first basketball shoes were invented, an offshoot of the sneaker. These were the now-famous Converse All-Stars. They became known as Chuck Taylor All-Stars in 1923.

To this day, Chuck Taylor All-Stars are the best-selling basketball shoes of all time. In 1924, a German man created his own sneaker. His name was Adi Dassler, so he named his shoes Adidas. The brand soon became the most popular athletic shoe in the entire world, according to FactMonster.

In the 1950s, sneakers went from the athletic scene to the fashion scene when people began wearing these shoes as everyday wear for the first time. Sneakers are now a fashion staple. You probably have more than one pair in your closet.


There are many types of sneakers these days.

Sneakers are low-cut shoes with rubber soles. Within this basic design, sneakers can be anything. There are found in lace-up designs, Velcro closure designs, and may have all sorts of bells and whistles. They are made in any color or pattern you can imagine and with every material that shoes can be made with, everything from real leather to recycle plastic to every type of cloth and hide in-between.


Sneakers are also called athletic shoesjoggerstrainers, and tennis shoes.

=> High-top sneakers combine classic with comfort. These sneakers are often called athletic shoes as many professional players, especially basketball players, wear them.

=> Plimsoll sneakers happen to be the most common type of sneakers and the most famous ones, too. They can be easily teamed up with all sorts of outfits whether it is casual or party wear. To rock a retro style, always go for classic white plimsolls, as they will make your otherwise plain tee and jeans cooler.

=> Running shoes are a must-have for every athlete, runner, or sports enthusiast. These shoes provide lightweight support, shock absorption, and cushioning to allow runners to maintain stability. Running shoes are a great walking shoe choice, too.


Cross country running began as a game practiced by school children in England in the early 1800s. The game was known as paper chasing or hate and hounds. It was an imitation of the sport of hunting, with some children playing foxes and some hounds. The foxes, or hares, would run ahead of the others, leaving a trail of papers. The hounds would follow, chasing the other runners.

One of the oldest running shoe designs dates to 1865 in Northampton, England. They were oxford shoes with nails hammered through the soles to provide grip and traction.

When rubber roles were introduced in 1917, they were a game-changer for shoes. The first pair of Nike shoes went on sale on June 18, 1971. The sponge rubber midsole made Nike running shoe impact-absorbing, which was then-cutting edge technology. Nike helped established the tech and style of running shoes, pacing the way for modern designs we wear today.

=> Slip-on sneakers are lace-less sneakers that are easy to wear, an ideal choice for those looking for utmost comfort and simplicity. Available in plenty of colors and styles, slip-on sneakers are minimalist yet extremely trendy.

=> Wedge sneakers debuted on the fashion scene in spring 2012. Designer Isabel Marant has been credited with creating a distinct style. They were certainly inspired by elevator shoes, a style originally invented for men.

2. Boots (Women and Men)

A group of women wearing different boots.

Discover 70 Types of Boots Here

Discover all the different types of boots for women and men. Casual, dress, functional, outdoor, rugged, stylish, heels, no heels and more.

Epic list!

3. Clogs

Sanita Manuella Clogs

Clogs and Crocs are cousins of a sort. Just like its cousin, clogs are very comfortable to wear and are perfect for people who have demanding jobs that require a lot of standing and walking. Clogs are often worn among nurses and doctors, as they are easily removable.

Clogs come in many different colors and patterns.


Clog shoes are known for being made of wood. They traditionally served as protective footwear for mines, factories and agricultural activities. Even though they are considered as folkloric footwear, certain types of clogs have found huge popularity on the runway.

In simplest terms, traditional clothes are wooden shoes. Each shoe is carved from a single piece of wood. And yes, this is pretty uncomfortable footwear. But oddly enough, many cultures around the world have created their own style of clogs, which are also known as klompen.

The oldest clogs ever found in the Netherlands date to the year 1230. Dutch clogs are perhaps the most recognizable of all wooden clog styles. These shoes are distinctive for their simple shape. Usually, these clogs are made with rounded or pointed toes in a mule-like style with an open or partially open heel.


=> Cantabrian albarcas are traditional footwear in the northern region of Spain. These wooden shoes have tree thick pegs on the bottom that provide support and lift the wearer up to get them up and out of the mud and snow. Since these shoes are worn in rural areas, the elevated design also keeps you out of manure. Typically, these shoes are made from walnut, beech or birch wood.

=> Another type of clog shoe is the Japanese geta, which is a combination of clogs and flip-flops and is typically worn under the yukata dress. They have two blocks of elevated wood attached underneath them with a fabric strap on the toe.

=> Traskor, the Swedish clog, is either made from pine, alder or birch. The upper of the traskor is made of leather, while the soles are made from wood. They are usually vibrantly painted with floral designs.

And yet another type of clog are the synthetic clogs made famous by Crocs.

4. Crocs

Crocs Work Bistro Unisex

Crocs got famous with their “rubber” clogs. It’s not really rubber, it’s actually a proprietary synthetic material…but you get the point.


A lot of people believe Crocs to be indoor shoes. The truth is, you can wear them outdoors, too. This footwear is very popular among travel enthusiasts, as they need comfy shoes during their hectic days.

Crocs come in different colors and patterns, making it easy for you to match them to your outfit. The Crocs brand is known for its amazing quality. And let’s face it, crocs are a classic and deserve a space in everyone’s closet.

5. Earth Shoes

Earth Scenic Valiant Cream Pink Fly Knit 7.5 B (M)

Unless you were around back then or you have a ton of interest in vintage fashion, you’ve probably never heard of Earth shoes. These shoes were a strong fad in the 1970s and they have an extremely distinct sole profile that was designed to enhance posture, reduce back pain and even encourage deep breathing.


Eleanor Jacobs was on vacation in Copenhagen in 1969 when she found an early version of the Earth shoe design that would soon change her life. She was impressed with how comfortable the shoes were and how much her back pain improved. She shared the story of Earth shoes with the Wall Street Journal.

The shoes Elanor tried on that day had slanting heels with somewhat thicker and taller midsoles and sloping toes. This created an almost boat-like profile for the soles of the shoes. This design was created by a former yoga teacher who lived in Denmark. She felt that this design maintained the foot’s natural position more than other, more standard shoe styles.

Eleanor and her husband called the shoe designer to ask her if they could sell the shoes in the U.S. In 1970, the couple opened up a Manhattan shoe store. The day was April 22, 1970, and Eleanor was a little disheartened to see lots of young people flocking through the streets but none stopping into her shop.

She flagged down one young man and asked him what was going on. He told her it was Earth Day. This is a commonplace event now, but 1970 was the first year that Earth Day was ever celebrated, amid a growing movement to honor and preserve the environment.

Eleanor grabbed a piece of white cardboard and wrote “Earth shoes” on it. For the rest of the day, the young environmentalists came in and out of the shop to take a better look.

A few years later, the shoes were on shelves and in display windows at more than 130 stores all across the U.S.

Like all fads, Earth shoes fell out of fashion. In 1977, the couple had to declare bankruptcy and liquidate their short-lived shoe empire. Eleanor saved enough Earth shoes to wear them for the rest of her life.

6. Flip-Flops

Vionic Unisex Wave Toe-Post Sandal - Flip-Flop with Concealed Orthotic Arch Support Black/Black Men's 8 Medium US/Women's 9 Medium US

What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when we say the beach? Yes, it’s flip flops! They are the perfect beach accessory that you can ask for. Flip flops are comfy, stylish, and available in every color and pattern. Flip flops are also called thongs.


Flip flops are the ultimate footwear for the summer season and a popular choice of footwear for men, women and children alike.

Flip flops are the ultimate summer footwear and are especially worn for pool parties, beaches and hot hangouts. They’re generally made with an extremely comfortable foam sole and sturdy plastic toe support that helps keep your feet together. If you’ve recently gotten a pedicure, flip flops are the best footwear to flaunt your feet while also keeping them intact.

Heading to the beach or running a few errands, flip-flops make for an easy and comfortable shoe option. These are the most casual sandals out there, easy to slip on and slip off. Other than being casual and comfortable, flip flops happen to be cheap as well.

7. Galoshes

SWIMS Mobster Galosh

Galoshes, also called gumshoes, are technically boots that go over other footwear. A galosh boot is waterproof and it was designed for both men and women, so they could protect their feet and their footwear from rain and mud.


The word galosh dates to the medieval era, a style of boots worn in France called gallicae, or Gaulish shoes. Gaul is the ancient name for France. These shoes had leather uppers and wooden soles.

However, this style of boots is actually much older than even ancient France. Galoshes-style boots date to 13,000 B.C.E., when leggings were wrapped around the lower legs just above moccasins to extend the shoes and add more weather protection.

It was the Egyptians who were the first to make galoshes out of rubber, according to After the Egyptian empire fell, rubber technology largely faded from popular use. it wasn’t until Charles Macintosh discovered a new way to waterproof materials using liquid rubber that the material became popular again.


Traditional galoshes are still made with liquid rubber or sheet rubber. Sometimes, galoshes are lined with fabric.

8. Huaraches

Nike Air Huarache "All Black"

There are two very different types of shoes that are called huaraches, which makes things pretty confusing. Either you’re talking about truly historic footwear that’s been worn through the centuries….or you’re talking about a sort of strange shoe design from Nike. You might even be talking about a type of street food. Yeah, huaraches definitely have an interesting story.


Handmade, woven sandals were made in Mexico before Columbus ever sailed across the ocean in 1492. These shoes were widely worn by farmworkers in Mexico and became popular with the hippie culture of the 1960s.

The huarache shoes became even more popular throughout Mexico and the U.S. in the following decades. Now, they’re part of mainstream fashion.

The Other Huarache Shoes

Nike created athletic shoes called huaraches that were distinct for their bright color combinations. This style evolved over time and now Nike huaraches are styled in all sorts of colors, including basic black.

Huarache is also a Mexican street food that’s very popular. It’s a large tortilla with beans, potato, meat, cilantro, cheese, onions, and salsa. Huaraches are named after the Mexican sandals because their shape somewhat resembles the footwear, according to Culture Trip.

9. Jika-tabi Shoes

Marugo Tabi Boots Ninja Shoes Jikatabi (Outdoor tabi) MANNEN Nuitsuke (Sewn Rubber Outsole) 12 hock 26.0cm Black

Jika-tabi shoes, also known as jikatabi or just tabi shoes, are traditional Japanese footwear that is still worn today. These shoes are distinctive for the split design. Tabi shoes have a split between the big toe and the rest of the toes.


Tabi shoes started out as leather socks, footwear that caught on and became popular throughout Japan. Modern tabi shoes were created in 1919 with the use of rubber manufacturing.

10. Moccasins

UGG Dakota Moccasins

Made from soft leather, notably suede, moccasins are a soft, comfortable pair of shoes. They are often mistaken for loafers but they are entirely different from them. One of the main distinguishing factors is that moccasins have laces, while loafers don’t. That being said, moccasins offer the same slip-on quality as loafers.

Moccasin shoes are one of the earliest shoe styles ever worn by humankind. They are strongly associated with Native American culture, but it’s likely that these shoes came to the continent some 30,000 years ago with the very first settlers from Asia.


When early humans walked across the ice on the Bering Sea from Asia, they were likely wearing moccasins. The style was adapted and updated over the years. The word moccasin comes from the Algonquian language. Their word “makasin” means shoe.

The Algonquin tribes were the first Native Americans that European settlers met in North America in the early 1600s. The word and the shoe were brought back across the ocean, according to Gentleman’s Gazette.


Often embellished with beads, tassels, and artistic designs, moccasins are fit for runway fashion.  Besides soft-sole moccasins, you can also find these super fashionable shoes with hard, sturdy soles. The level of stiffness hard-soled moccasins provides is ideal for those looking for more character.

Moccasins are, by definition, shoes made with soft leather that have no heel. They are put together with a U-shaped piece of leather that is stitched to the soles, the sides of which rise up to meet the uppers.

These shoes are still worn today and they’ve now made in a huge variety of colors and designs. Moccasins are one of the most enduring footwear styles and they’ve been worn by humans since humans existed.


Driving moc shoes were created specifically because other types of shoes were too stiff-soled to comfortably drive a car for long periods of time and standard moccasins were too casual for a trip out to the country after a long drive.

Driving mocs became the perfect solution: a classic slip-on moccasin made of leather with rubber pads in the soles. The design kept feet flexible but still provided traction while driving, according to He Spoke Style. Driving mocs are also called Tod’s after a brand that popularized the style.

11. Riding Boots

Riding boots

In a way, riding boots are the grandfather of many modern boot styles. Riding boot styles were probably developed even before the first military boots, which makes these a truly enduring icon of both men’s and women’s fashion.


The riding boot was created out of necessity. As people learned to tame and use horses, it became obvious that humans needed to protect their legs while riding. High boots made sense. A cave painting in Spain suggests that riding boots, a tall boot that wrapped around the lower leg, was worn sometime between 12,000 and 15,000 B.C.E., according to the Maryland Equestrian.

The look of tall riding boots certainly inspired the first military boots, as soldiers also rode horses into battle. In the 1700s, riding boots became more refined. They were made with softer leathers and designed to fit more closely around the leg. The more modern style became known as jockey style boots.


Modern riding boots have all sorts of features that make them comfortable, practical and stylish. Modern riding boots are typically close-fitting around the legs and end just below the knee. They have short heels that are usually less than one inch in height. The heels help feet stay in the stirrups while riding.

Riding boots have stiff toes meant to provide protection should the rider’s foot get stepped on by a horse. The tall shaft of the boot protects the legs from the saddle. But since riding boots are associated with equestrian activities and hunting, they have come to represent a distinct brand of luxury style that is also worn for the sake of fashion.


Riding boots are traditionally made with leather. Field boot styles have laces. These are more commonly seen in riding events that involve jumping. This gives the ankles more flexibility. Dress boots, which are more commonly used in dressage and formal foxhunts, do not have laces at the ankle. Hunt boots, also known as top boots, look like dress boot styles that have a cuff at the top. These are the traditional boots worn in fox hunting.

Paddock boots are also known as Jodhpur boots. These are shorter than standard riding boots, rising up just above the ankle. These are worn for everyday riding and they’re commonly worn by children and juvenile riders who have not yet reached adulthood.

12. Russian Boots

Pajar Canada Russian boots

More properly known as valenki but usually called Russian boots, this style is a staple of Russian fashion and a perfect companion in cold weather.


Valenki is traditional winter footwear in Russia that are made of wool in simple designs that keep the feet and lower legs warm. These boots are worn everywhere in Russia and they’re seen in winter looks around the world.


These boots probably have ancient origins. They were most likely invented by nomads who used felt wool for their clothing and housing structures. They wore boots known as pimy that were mostly made of fur. The woolen boots are known as valenki probably adapted from this earlier style.

Valenki has no differentiation between the left and right feet when brand-new. Through wear, they will begin to conform to the shape of the owner’s foot. This is because the wool shrinks slightly, but only slightly. Valenki boots will last 10 years or longer when well-made.

13. Slide Sandals

Birkenstock Arizona Soft Footbed slides

Known as slides or pool slidesslide sandals started out their life being called shower shoes. They were later rebranded as slides to make them sound a little bit more suitable for daily wear. But these shoes were specifically requested and designed for wear in the shower. Adidas just did so well with the design that soon, people started wearing them everywhere…and they still do.


A German football team, a soccer team to U.S. audiences, asked Adidas for a little help in the 160s. They needed a shoe they could wear in the locker room and in the showers. Adidas developed the Adilette, the world’s first shower shoes.

Shower shoes exploded on the fashion scene in the 1990s. Soon, they could be seen everywhere. They were a necessity for college campus dorms, they were a favorite with athletes in all disciplines and they even made it into the corporate world as a favorite footwear choice for Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, according to Stylecaster.


Slides are so named because you can just slide your feet into them. They are a simple design that can be embellished with colors and patterns consisting of a single flat sole with a wide band attached to the sole horizontally that covers the top of the foot. The toes are left exposed. Sometimes, slides have a flip flop-style thong between the big toe and second toe. In some designs, the upper band is the only thing holding the shoe in place.

14. Sandals

Birkenstock Milano - Leather Sandals

Another popular form of footwear among both men and women in sandals. They are not only stylish but also very comfortable. Not to mention they go with just about everything casual. Whether you are wearing jeans or shorts, a maxi dress or tailored trousers, sandals look gorgeous on everything.

Sandals are perfect for the summer season, as they let your feet breathe. They also make great vacation footwear, as they are comfortable and easy to slip on and off. Sandals come in different colors and styles for both men and women.


=> Fisherman sandals are a distinct, open design with high sides, two upper straps, and a heel band that buckles in the back. The style is centuries old and was worn by numerous ancient cultures, according to Wisegeek.

=> Kolhapuri chappal is an ancient sandal design dating to the 1200s in India. These sandals are handcrafted and colored with vegetable dyes.

=> Geta shoes have a lot in common with clogs because they’re made of wood, but the style more closely resembles sandals. These shoes are the traditional footwear of Japan and they are still worn today. Geta shoes are worn with Kimono. The bottom part of geta shoes is made of wood, with a flat platform for the foot to sit up. A supporting piece of wood lifts the platform up and provides additional support. Straps keep the shoes on the feet. According to the Kyoto Project, geta styles date to at least 300 B.C.E.

=> Peshawari Chappal Sandals

If you happen to keep up with fashion controversies and scandals, you may already be familiar with the peshawari chappal sandal. But many people, especially though in western society, are not familiar with this traditional Middle Eastern shoe design.


Peshawari chappel sandals are part of the traditional dress of people in the Pashtun culture, an indo-European group who live primarily in southeastern Afghanistan and northern and southwestern Pakistan.


This traditional sandal has a distinct look that is created by two wide strips that are joined directly to the sole to create a semi-open sandal design. The style is suitable for both warm and cold weather.

Modern designers have drawn inspiration from this traditional footwear. Designer Paul Smith made headlines when he released a couture sandal strongly resembling the peshawari chappal that retailed for over $500 USD. The design drew a lot of criticism for cultural appropriation, sparking online protests, and public outcry.

Either way, the style has made its way into mainstream fashion. You can now shop for sandals in this design on Amazon.

15. Slippers

Haflinger classic slippers

Everyone needs a pair of comfy slippers to roam around in when you are in the house. Actually, you need two pairs, one for the summer and one for winter.

The summer ones could be furry, adorable and comfy. While the winter one should have padding to keep your feet warm and cozy when you get out of your warm and comfy bed.

There are leather slippers available as well if you’re looking for something more luxurious.

16. Snow Boots

Sorel Snow boots

Snow boots, also called winter boots, are a necessity for winter activities of all types. These boots are heavier and thicker than rain boots and made with insulation to keep the feet and lower legs warm. Typically, snow boots are higher than the ankle and may go all the way up to the knee.

17. Ugg Boots

Ugg Classic Short II Boots

Ugg boots, also spelled ug, are really much older than people think. Ugg is a brand-name that has become synonymous with a specific type of boot but Ugg didn’t invent the style. Warm, sheepskin boots have been popular since the late 1800s. They originated in Australia, where shepherds used leather straps to keep warm sheepskin around their legs and feet. Many manufacturers made sheepskin boots in the 1930s. There were worn by Australian pilots in WWI, who may have been the first to call them “ug” boots, short for “ugly.”

Surfers in Australia in the 1970s often wore sheepskin boots on the chilly beaches between catching waves. One such surfer trademarked “ugh-boot” and then sold the rights to another surfer in California, who started selling Ugg boots. The rest, as they say, is fashion history.

18. Oxfords

Dr. Martens Women's 1461 W Oxford,Black Patent,5 UK/7 M US

Oxfords are traditional footwear that lends you an elegant academic look. They look neat because of their closed lacing under the vamp. Yes, these shoes are linked to the University of Oxford itself. However, there’s more to their history.

Many records claim that the oxford shoes were originally made in Scotland and named balmorals. Nonetheless, oxfords are flat-heeled, foot-friendly, and look extremely sophisticated.

19. Saddle Shoes

Eastland Women's Sadie Oxford, Black/White, 7 M US

When you see saddle shoes, you probably think of poodle skirts, classic cars, and Olivia Newton-John in “Grease.” These black and white shoes are strongly linked to preppy 1950s fashion. But actually, saddle shoes have a much longer history. It took a long, long time for these shoes to become popular. And when they did, they really became popular.


Saddle shoes were actually invented in the 1920s, having evolved from a style of golf shoes that were fashionable in the 1910s. The style was originally made for men, but saddle shoes caught on with women who liked the sporty look of the two-tone design.

It was teenage girls in the 1940s who made saddle shoes the must-have style for youth of the day. By 1949, saddle shoes were the number one shoe worn by teen girls. Saddle shoes were extremely popular until styles changed drastically in the 1960s, though they were still a standard part of many school cheerleading uniforms well into the 1980s, according to History Daily.


Saddle shoes haven’t really made a comeback as a popular everyday shoe. They’re typically only worn as part of a costume meant to resemble 1950s looks. This iconic shoe is clearly overdue for a new surge of fashion popularity.

20. Cleats

Hawkwell Men's Outdoor Firm Ground Soccer Cleats, Black PU, 9 M US

If you enjoy playing sports, especially soccer, then you need to invest in some cleats. A lot of people wear their sneakers or joggers, but that is not right. Sure, they provide your feet with comfort, but cleats go one step further than that. It not only gives your feet the comfort it needs, but it also provides you with stability and speed. There will be no missed goals when you are playing soccer wearing your brand-new cleats. Cleats give you the much-needed traction on the soccer ground and will help you get the MVP award.

There are different brands that offer different colors for cleats. You can go for something funky that will make you stand out in the pitch.

21. Calf Boots

DREAM PAIRS Women's BLVD Black Knee High Pull On Fall Weather Boots Wide Calf Size 9.5 M US

Calf boots may actually be the oldest style of footwear. Like, ever. The oldest image ever discovered of footwear dates to a cave painting in Spain that was created sometime between 12,000 and 15,000 B.C.E. This image shows a man and a woman wearing calf boots.


Boots have been found in Egyptian tombs. The ancient Persians depicted boots on their funerary jars. And according to the Greeks, the Scythians wore boots in 1000 B.C.E. These were simple boots that were lashed to the leg with a leather thong.

Footwear played a major role in ancient style. Boots often represented military and ruling power. Kings, generals and emperors wore ornate boots, while the lower class population usually wore no shoes at all, according to LoveToKnow.


Calf boots have never really gone out of style and there is ample evidence to suggest that they have pretty much always been worn by people since footwear began. They can be made in just about any style or heel height. Cowboy boot designs, Wellington boots and many other styles are all calf boot designs

Boots are not only classy but stylish as well. They portray a regal style that suits everyone. No matter what you are wearing (tailored trousers, a denim skirt or jeans), boots go with every look.

22. Barefoot Shoes

Vibram Men's KSO EVO Cross Training Shoe,Black,47 EU/12-12.5 M US

Mass-marketed barefoot shoes are a relatively new phenomenon. However, the concept of running barefoot is not. Many foot experts say that bare feet are already perfectly designed for all the running and walking humans need to do. Marathons and even Olympic medals have been won by barefoot runners. Barefoot shoes are also called toe shoes because of the articulated design.


Barefoot shoes are designed to be as lightweight as possible. They are not padded. Barefoot shoes come in a huge range of styles in both men’s and women’s designs. Walking barefoot isn’t always safe but you can get the same effect with these shoes.

The First Shoe in History

You’ll be surprised to find out that the oldest shoe in the world was actually just deerskin glued together with a stuffing of hay.

Ancient Footwear

There are other historical pieces of evidence that have brought out another type of shoe. These are known as bast shoes and are stitched from tree barks. Incredible, isn’t it? Bast shoes date back to the Neolithic period and were found to be worn by people from the Russian countryside.

The first prototype of modern sandals appeared during the time of the Egyptians. These sandals were made with raw leather and palm leaves. Although they looked extremely unrefined, the Egyptians were the true pioneers of modern-day shoes.

Moving into the Antiquity Age, the famous Grecian gladiator sandals remained the most famous footwear for the aristocrats. They were typically worn by Greek men when they walked and inspected the cities. Now they’re a trending shoe style for women.

Changing Times

The Middle Ages emerged with a new wave of footwear that was entirely different from their previous prototypes. They were pointed and richly dark in color.

Fast forward to the Renaissance and the funkiest shoes you’ve ever seen came into existence. Typically made in bright, vibrant colors like sparkling purple, lime green, light blue and lemon yellow, the shoes of the Renaissance era truly stood out.

Shoes have evolved from simply stitching together animal skin to more elaborate, refined and beautifully jeweled footwear. Let us now break into the modern world of footwear. With this definitive list, we will take a closer look at the different styles and types of shoes for women these days.

Shoe FAQ

Do you still have questions about footwear? Get the answers to some of the most common questions about footwear and satisfy all your burning curiosity about the most important part of your wardrobe.

What shoes should a man own?

It’s a common stereotype that women own a lot of shoes. Perhaps that’s because there are so many different types of footwear for women. However, there are tons of options in men’s shoes, too. So it’s not unusual to feel overwhelmed and for men to have trouble knowing which basic pairs of shoes they should even own. After all, how many dress shoes does a man need?

According to Esquire, men’s style magazine, an adult man should have a couple of pairs of sneakers, a pair of slide sandals, a comfortable pair of slippers, a pair of dress boots like chukkas, a pair of tough winter boots, a pair of work boots, a pair of oxfords and a comfortable loafer. You should have all your style bases covered with this!

What shoes should a woman own?

Do you have lots of pairs of shoes but never the right pair for what you want to wear? it’s an age-old adage that you can have a closet full of options and never find anything to wear. According to Harper’s Bazaar, women can rely on a few different shoe styles and be ready for every outfit and social occasion that life throws their way.

They suggest that every woman own a pair of black pumps, a pair of stylish flat sandals, a strappy heeled sandal, a pair of statement heels, a pair of sneakers, a pair of all-weather hiking boots, a pair of mules, a pair of loafers and a pair of knee-high boots.   Related article – high heels vs pumps.

What are shoe soles made from?

The first shoe soles were made from natural materials, such as leather and bark. In the modern era, there’s a much wider variety of materials available for shoe-making. Shoe and boot soles are most commonly made with rubber, polyurethane (PU), leather, thermoplastic rubber (TPR), plastic or fabric. Some soles are even made with straw or rope. 

What is the difference between a shoe and a boot?

The debate over whether a type of footwear is a shoe or a boot isn’t a new one. The root of the word shoe comes from the word for a metal plate that was put on a horse’s hoof. The root word for boot referred to a covering for the foot and lower leg. A distinction between the two words emerged as early as the 1400s, according to Etymology Online. 

The basic definition of a shoe is that it is not tall enough to cover the wearer’s ankle. A footwear design that covers the ankle is a boot. However, even within these parameters, there are some distinctions. High-top sneakers, for example, cover the ankle but are still considered to be shoes. Hiking shoes in the same style as high-top sneakers, however, might be called hiking boots. In some modern designs, the two words are used interchangeably.

What types of shoes do nurses wear?

There are no specific shoe styles that are “nurse shoes.” However, there are many types of shoes that are marketed to nurses, restaurant professionals and others who spend a lot of time working on their feet. Typically, nurses look for shoes that are slip-resistant, easy to clean, comfortable to wear and tough enough to protect feet from needles and other workplace hazards, according to

Nurses often wear sneakers, sandals, clogs, loafers and orthopedic shoes, among other styles, as long as they fit the main criteria of keeping feet comfortable and safe. 

Which types of shoes are best for dancing?

The type of dancing shoes you wear has everything to do with the type of dancing you’re going to perform, according to the Independent. If you’re going to be doing energetic hip hop dancing, pop and lock or any type of street dancing, sneakers are going to give you the support you need. 

If you’re doing ballroom dancing, including salsa, you don’t want rubber-soled shoes. Ballroom dancing shoes have soft suede soles that allow your feet to move and flex. Ballerina flats are a good choice for ballroom dancing. 

Some women wear high heels while ballroom dancing for the aesthetics. If you choose heels, choose a low heel height and choose a pair of comfortable, supportive heels that firmly fit your feet. 

Which type of shoes are most comfortable for working women?

It can be tough for women to find the right work shoes. Obviously, sneakers are always comfortable but they aren’t always appropriate for some work environments. 

When you need a shoe that looks professional but doesn’t kill your feet, try simple flats like Mary Janes, mules or clogs. A pair of loafers looks great anywhere. Low-heeled pumps are always a perfect professional look, too.

What is considered a dress shoe?

What’s considered to be a dress shoe differs on where you are in the world. In the U.S., a dress shoe is really any type of footwear that is not a sneaker or certain types of boots. Combat boots, hiking boots and work boots definitely aren’t dress shoes, but there are boot styles that are considered to be dressy enough for anything. Chukkas, for example, are perfectly fine as formal boots. 

In Europe, however, a dress shoe is a strictly formal shoe that would be suited to a black-tie event. A shiny oxford shoe, for example, would be acceptable, according to Fashion Beans.

What types of shoes should men wear in an office?

They say that shoes make the man. And in office environments, that’s true. You want to dress for success. So when you’re in an office environment, slip into a pair of loafers, oxford shoes, derby shoes, chukka boots or monk strap shoes. According to the Trend Spotter, these are all stylish, smart choices for office wear.

Which shoes pair well with any outfit?

Travel + Leisure recommends a simple ankle boot for anything you wear. A sleek ankle boot in brown or black will look great with dresses, skirts, blue jeans, shorts or a pantsuit. You can’t go wrong with a classic loafer, either. They can be casual or a little bit dressy, sensible and stylish all at the same time.

A pair of pretty flats in basic black can go anywhere and be worn with anything, from a sexy cocktail dress to a pair of khaki pants to some trendy skinny jeans

What are the highest quality shoes?

The cost of a shoe doesn’t necessarily reflect the quality of the shoe. Neither does the brand name. Even the highly expensive, well-known brand names can be poor-quality footwear. Remember that shoemaking is such an art form, it was once all done completely by hand. 

Pay attention to the quality of the materials used to make the shoe and the way the shoe is made. Look carefully at the specifications of the shoe and how it’s put together inside and out. Look for stitching around the sole, which can indicate how well the shoe is put together. Look at the sole of the sole and the uppers of the shoe. What are they made from? 

Look also at the features of the shoe. Are they waterproof? Insulated? Do they have arch support and insole padding? Look at all the little details and you’ll know whether you’re looking at something high quality and well made or something much poorer in quality, according to ShoePassion.

What are the most expensive shoes?

There are a great many expensive shoes in the world because some designers are so highly in-demand. The most expensive shoes ever bought, however, are all very specific shoes that have some special history. Among the most expensive shoes in the world are the actual ruby slippers from “The Wizard of Oz,” the Air Jordans that Michael Jordan himself wore while sick with the flu when he played an amazing game, some diamond-encrusted high heels made by famous designers for fun and fortune and a pair of stiletto high heels made with gold and diamonds that cost $17 million. 

The most expensive shoes that people can actually own, however, aren’t quite as famous as Dorothy’s ruby slippers but they still have a lot to offer.

The most expensive pair of shoes that have been produced more than once are probably the Testoni shoes. They retail for about $40,000, according to Money Inc. They’re made from alligator leather and have a gold and diamond buckle. These shoes are a lace-up oxford style and they definitely do look like money. 

The most expensive casual shoes in the world that were produced multiple times are probably the Nike Air Mag Back to the Future 2016 shoes. Yes, they are a replica of the shoes shown in “Back to the Future 2.” Nike made only 89 pairs and raffled them off for $10 a ticket in 2016. Their estimated worth now is $26,000 a pair. 

If you want something a little more affordable but still ridiculously expensive, turn your gaze to Aubery Diamond shoes. These gorgeous loafers are made for luxury and they’re available in multiple leather colors for a cool $4,500 per pair.

Which types of shoes are in style?

When you want to know which footwear types are in style right now, take a look around. See what actors are wearing on TV shows and talk shows. Get on social media sites like Instagram and search for shoes to see what people are posting. 

In menswear, white low-cut sneakers, chukka boots and loafers without socks are all current hot looks, according to Trend Spotter.

Harper’s Bazaar points to heeled loafers, tall over-the-knee boots and platforms as some of the biggest current shoe trends for women.

What is the most popular shoe?

So what’s the most popular shoe of all time? Moccasins have been worn the longest. Boots may have the most practical uses. High heels completely changed fashion for everyone. But when you get right down to it, one type of footwear is more epic, more iconic, more worn and certainly more purchased than any other: sneakers.

The humble sneaker is probably history’s most popular type of footwear to date. People from all walks of life own a pair of sneakers, from the world’s greatest billionaires to the starving artists who have given up money to focus on nature. 

They are worn by men, women and children of all ages and they are worn for every imaginable activity, from Olympic-worthy athletic training to casual grocery shopping. Sneakers are the most ubiquitous footwear out there, though other types of footwear have been worn for many, many more years. 

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Related: Men and Women Shoe Size Conversion Charts | High Heels vs Flats