Feb
21
2017

Tips for Picking the Right Men’s Shoes and Belts

by Mae Williams for Men's Fashion

Shoes and Belt Styles and Tips

Photo courtesy of 1musicnetworks.com.

It has been said that the shoes make the man. Having the right accessories complement a men’s fashion style and brings their look all together.  Hats are a very important part of a man’s wardrobe as we mentioned in an earlier blog post, but what a man puts on his feet will determine their look.  On the other hand, a belt serves two purposes: to correctly hold up pants and to share a certain look.

Shoes have very different needs from utilitarian to dress-up depending on where a man works throughout the day. Therefore, what a man wears on his feet are very important. There are many brands of shoes and belts on the market including Johnson and Murphy, Allen Edmonds, Calvin Klein or Tommy Bahama. These brands can be found at various stores in the Cleveland area including Macy’s and Dillard’s. If you prefer shopping online, check out My Subscription Addiction for fun socks and great birthday or Father’s Day gift ideas. 

Choosing the Right Shoe Style

Most men are comfortable in certain types of shoes and rarely vary from that style.  There are others that don’t know what type of shoes they should choose for occasions, so they just avoid doing so. There are casual shoes such as sandals (no flipflops) and sneakers to boots and dress shoes and everything in between.

When choosing shoes, there are a few rules to follow:

  • Conservative styles always look good over edgy. These styles will last longer and won’t look dated after a few months.
  • Choose a shoe that matches or is darker than the pants you are wearing
  • Types of shoes: Loafers, Wingtips, Brown Oxfords, at least one nice pair of boots.
  • Always choose fit over style.
  • Shoes should be the most expensive part of the wardrobe. Spend more on a good pair of shoes then on shirts and pants. Shoes are an investment.
  • Don’t wear socks with sandals ever.
  • Do not wear flip-flops at work or if you have gross-looking feet.
  • Invest in new flip-flops every year or a new pair of sandals every year.
  • Don’t wear sneakers with khakis. It makes a person look older than they are.
  • Get fitted for running shoes if you are serious about running or working out. Don’t just buy these shoes off the rack.]
  • Dress shoes should always be shined and look good.

Matching Shoes with Clothing

Shoes should be chosen to wear with specific types of outfits. Obviously, sneakers or even cowboy boots should not be worn with a nice suit. Below are a few more tips of what types of shoes to wear with certain clothes.

Jeans:  Almost any color or style of shoes can be paired with jeans, but do not wear very shiny dress shoes what are more fit for dressier occasions. Boots, sneakers, loafers and sandals work well with jeans, so the type of shirt being worn will come into play with a shoe choice. A polo shirt will work with a loafer, t-shirts with sneakers or retro-style shoes and long button downs work well with sandals.

Khakis or Casual Pants: There are a variety of shoe styles that can be worn with khakis, chinos or casual pants. Loafer, oxfords work very well with these styles of pants.  Black shoes match well with navy, grey or black pants. Brown shoes go well with tan, brown, beige, greens and other darker earth tones. Tan shoes work well with lighter earth tones, blue, beige, lighter tan or white.

Dress Pants: When wearing dress pants, men should wear the same type of shoe that they would wear with a suit. Shinier materials indicate a dressier shoe. Shoes should be the same color or darker than the pants. 

Don’t Forget the Belt

There is and ongoing debate about matching shoe and belt color. Some don’t think that matching shoe and belt color is needed, while others believe it is a requirement. A brown belt should never be worn with black shoes.

There are some basics about wearing a belt that needs to be remembered:

  • Belt Length: Dress belts should have a few inches of leather to the left of the buckle once it is fastened. Just enough length to tuck under the first belt look. It is better to err on the side of shortness than wrapping a long tail of a belt around the hip another time. The looks for casual belts are a bit more flexible, but an overly long belt tail is an awkward look.  Dress belts are usually measured with the same size range as pants. However, a belt should be two to three sizes larger than the usual pant size to get a good fit.
  • Belt Colors: As mentioned earlier, a belt color should match the shoe color. Leather belts should match the color of leather shoes. Glossy belts should go with dressier shined shoes.
  • Belt Buckle: The bigger the belt buckle, the more casual it is. Dress belts will have a gold or silver colored finish. The most common belt buckle is one with a tongue where the belt slides through a loop of metal and a metal tongue is slipped through a hole in the belt to hold it in place. There are also buckles with a hook, sliding hatch and a braid.

To go along with having the right accessories, it is important to have the right hair style for your look. Compliment your style by updating your hair style at Men’s Cuts.  We offer a relaxing, friendly low-key alternative to the typical men’s haircut approach. Our stylists consult with our clients to discuss their look and style and give the customers what they want. Find out more about our services by booking an appointment on line or calling us at 440-799-8887 today!