Socks are great and all, and in many instances, they’re completely necessary. But when warm weather rolls around, many people are ready to give ankle socks the boot. While many people opt for beach sandals when warmer weather hits, there are lots of footwear styles you can rock sans socks.
But, what are the best shoes to wear without socks? The innovative footwear enthusiasts at Vionic know a thing or two about how shoes should fit, what to wear them with, and what not to wear them with. This helpful guide will evaluate which shoe styles look and feel best without white socks.
The Best Men’s and Women’s Shoes to Wear Without Socks
The sockless look is surprisingly versatile. Wearing dress shoes without socks is a fashion choice most often seen in the summer. And yet, there are plenty of formal shoe styles that work throughout the rest of the year, too. As long as you’ve got the right black shoes, you can go sockless for both casual events and fancier occasions.
Got a trip to the beach, a business event, a night out on the town, or a formal dinner coming up? These are all perfectly acceptable opportunities to leave your white socks behind. If you’re feeling inspired to show some ankle and maybe expose your toes, check out the following no-socks-approved shoe styles.
Men’s Sockless Shoe Styles
For men, the best leather shoes to wear without socks are loafers, slip-on sneakers, low-top lace-ups, boat shoes, and driving moccasins. Get details and styling tips here.
For guys, the sockless loafer look was most famously popularized on the 1980s TV show, Miami Vice. Over the decades, there’s been an ongoing debate on whether it’s OK for guys to wear this type of shoe without socks. With a semi-formal or business casual ensemble, it’s an acceptable, sharp look. In fact, if you want to wear comfortable dress shoes without crew socks, loafers are your best bet. However, with a formal suit, it’s best to wear a pair of dress socks .
To nail this rebellious semi-fancy look, opt for a pair of chinos or dress trousers with a t-shirt or button-down top. If you’re heading out at night, a blazer will complete the outfit. And if you’re worried about being uncomfortable, a pair of no-show socks can also be a happy medium. You’ll achieve the sockless look while avoiding blisters and overly sweaty feet.
Slip-On Sneakers and Low-Top Lace-Ups
Slip-on sneakers are a laid-back, cool, and highly versatile shoe. They lend to both a timeless and contemporary vibe and go with basically any casual outfit. Whether you’re wearing canvas shoes or a leather pair, you can definitely get away with skipping the socks.
The same goes for low-top lace-up sneakers . As long as the shoe style leans more toward streetwear (as opposed to running shoes and other athletic footwear), you don’t have to wear socks. However, similar to loafers, you can always opt for a pair of no-show socks.
Boat shoes are another excellent closed-toe option for men who wish to opt out of wearing socks, especially in the summer. The nautical, preppy style can be worn with shorts, chinos, or trousers and a t-shirt, polo, button-down shirt on top .
Boat shoes aren’t just for boating, either. You can sport these slip-on, loafer-adjacent kicks to work, out to dinner, to a barbeque, and almost anywhere else you’re headed. To dress them up or go out at night, throw on a simple blazer or sports coat.
Driving moccasins (or driving mocs) are similar to traditional Native American moccasins, but with thicker soles and sturdier uppers. The contemporary shoe is super comfortable and versatile, almost like an indoor-outdoor slipper.
Driving mocs look almost like a cross between boat shoes and loafers. And while they’re more sophisticated than slippers, they’re not really considered to be a formal shoe. That said, driving mocs are approved sock-free footwear, and they go with most shorts, jeans, or chinos for a laid-back look.
Women’s Sockless Shoes
When it comes to sockless shoe styles, women have a few more choices than men. Options include flats, loafers, mules, high heels, wedges, espadrilles, slip-on sneakers, and low-top lace-ups. Find styling tips and advice below.
Flats, Loafers, and Mules
For ladies, flats are a go-to footwear style that can be worn with virtually any outfit. And within the category of flats, there are tons of great options. A few of our favorite no-sock styles are ballet flats, loafers, and mules.
Of the three, ballet flats offer the most feminine look, while assertive and sophisticated loafers are perfect for professional occasions. Both are excellent choices to wear without socks, but they also work with tights or nylons. Mules are an iconic women’s shoe style that can and should always be worn without socks. Essentially all styles of women’s flats are seasonless. Wear them day or night with dresses, skirts, jeans, trousers, or jumpsuits.
We probably don’t need to tell you that high-heeled shoes are meant to be worn without socks. However, this list wouldn’t be complete if we didn’t mention them. Some of the most popular styles include pumps, stilettos, block heels, and kitten heels.
High heels are usually fancier than flat shoes, but they’re an appropriate choice for a wide range of occasions. Work, happy hour, date night, brunch, birthday parties, baby showers—you name it. They can be worn any time of year with dresses, pants, skirts, or jumpsuits. And although socks are a definite no-no with high heels, you can wear tights or nylons for a little extra warmth.
Wedges and Espadrilles
Aside from high heels, other elevated shoe styles to wear without socks are wedge heels and espadrilles. Both offer a solid, sturdy sole. This makes them easier to walk in than regular high heels while still offering some added height.
Wedges usually have rubber, cork, or wood soles, and espadrilles have jute-wrapped soles. If you’re in the market for beachy, summer-ready footwear, wedges and espadrilles are the way to go. You can find closed-toe options and sandals with varying designs and detailing. Rock them with shorts, sundresses, maxi dresses, skirts, a romper, or a swimsuit by the pool.
Slip-On Sneakers and Low-Top Lace-Ups
Slip-on sneakers and low-top lace-ups are an excellent sockless pick for both women and men. If you’re going for a casual, closed-toe vibe, opt for a pair of comfortable women’s sneakers. Leather, canvas, cotton, and cotton tennis shoes are all flattering without socks, but canvas and cotton are more breathable. Just make sure they’re everyday street shoes instead of active shoes or trainers.
Check out the sand-ready Pismo and Malibu sneakers from Vionic’s collection of beach sandals and sneakers. Our Pismo sneakers come in 12 summery colors and feature stretchy laces, while the Malibus come in 12 cute hues with a slip-on design. These are perfect for everyday wear, or if you prefer strolls on the beach during the warmer weather, these sneakers are some of the best shoes for beach walking.
We love this look with jeans, shorts, capri pants, jumpsuits, and even some dresses. To avoid blisters and sweaty feet, you can always sneak on a pair of no-show socks—no one will know! Sprinkling a little baby powder in your shoes can also help with perspiration and foot odor.
Sandals and Flip Flops for All
There’s no question that sandals and flip flops are meant to be worn without socks. While many closed-toe footwear styles can look great, we recommend having at least one pair of comfortable walking sandals or flip flops on hand. When the weather warms up, you’ll be glad to have a wear-anywhere pair to slip into. After all, sandals and flip flops are some of the best shoes to wear on the beach.
Browse No-Sock Shoe Styles from Vionic
Some people hate wearing socks no matter what the weather is, and others simply want to have the option to not wear them every single day. In any case, it’s good to know what shoes can be worn without socks and how to style them.
Having said that, the key to successfully going sockless is comfortable stylish shoes. And that’s where Vionic comes in. We’re dedicated to designing comfy, supportive footwear for men and women. With every pair of shoes, you’ll get premium arch support, deep heel cups, lightweight yet sturdy soles, and flexible uppers.
Not only that, but the orthotic components are concealed within each pair of Vionic shoes. You can find ultimate comfort in a style you love.
If you’re new to the sockless shoe game, you might find it kind of liberating. And with the right ensemble, you can sport this carefree, dapper look with confidence.
Browse men’s and women’s shoes from Vionic today.