Don’t tiptoe around this fundamental style staple

Shoes lay the foundation for any outfit—especially at the office. They anchor your suit, and they’ll always enter the boardroom before you do.
Ready to revamp your dress shoe selection? Read on for the smartest new styles to shop—and tips to upgrade the kicks that are already in your closet.

GRADUATE FROM OXFORD

Only have lace-up oxfords? That’s the case for a lot of guys. There’s no shame in that game, but you’re not making any lasting impressions.

Double monk straps are an easy way to instantly upgrade your entire look. Opt for a pair in oxblood. They’ll look excellent with 99 percent of suits, and edgy with your dark jeans on casual Friday.

LOAF AROUND

The classic loafer tiptoed back onto runways everywhere this year, complete with studs, spikes, and other bedazzling updates. Gucci rolled out a particularly biting revamp, with velvet and snake emblems.

But for the more conservative man, a black or navy leather loafer with a single tassel is a playful-but-still-professional choice.

Wear them sockless or with a thin dress sock. Just avoid a loafer with an overly square toe; you’ll look grandfatherly—and not in an “older and wiser” kind of way.

WORK WITH WHAT YOU’VE GOT

If your shoes aren’t too far gone, you might be surprised by how far a new set of laces can go in improving their overall appearance.

Don’t be afraid to go for a different colour, either.
Bonus: A great pair of patterned socks can also be one of the quickest, most inexpensive ways to kick up your style when working with a pair of veteran dress shoes.

NOURISH YOUR SOLES

A truly stylish man has three people in his corner: his barber, his tailor, and his cobbler. Yes, a real-life cobbler—they still exist.

A full resole usually starts at around $25 and will set your mileage clock back to zero, while a simple polish will nourish the leather and protect your shoes from minor scuffs and grazes.