According to a Time magazine poll the average man owns around 12 pairs of shoes, that was back in 2006 and we think that that number might have increased significantly since then.
So seeing as men have so many pairs of shoes we wanted to make sure they were the right ones. After all; it’s all well having so many shoes but if they’re all ill-fitting or battered old trainers then that kind of defeats the point.
These days there is so much choice when it comes to footwear for men that we wouldn’t blame you if you hardly knew where to start! But when you start to look at it logically you can make sure you don’t waste money buying shoes that you will end up never wearing and instead invest in those amazing items you will get lots of use from.
All you need to do is separate your shoe collection into different sections; work shoes, smart casual shoes, off-duty shoes and options that cater for different weather conditions (you don’t want to be stuck on a beach with only a pair of wellies!)
Once you have sorted your footwear collection you need to do some shoe closet weeding, you can’t start a good edit of shoes without chucking out some of the ‘weeds’. First of all throw away anything that has a hole in any part of it, especially the sole, unless they are worth fixing. If they are worth fixing then make a little pile of shoes to save from the bin and take them to a cobbler. Any cobbler worth his salt will be able to patch up a hole although if the damage is too severe it might be time to say goodbye!
Any shoes that have visible damage such as suede that has become bobbly or leather that is noticeably scratched either save or salvage. It’s always a good idea to make sure you have a properly kitted out shoe kit for moments like these; a suede brush, suede spray, shoe polish, a brush, soft cloth and shoe cream and anything else that you might need for shoes emergencies.
Once you have slimmed down the numbers you will be able to see where exactly your shoe collection needs padding out, here’s where we come in. Don’t rush out to grab the first pair of shoes you see, have a little read through our top ten most essential men’s shoes for a little inspiration and put together the ultimate collection of shoes that you will be truly proud of and ready for any occasion.
1. The Super Smart Ones
Opt for a classic long wing brogue for those occasions that call for a smart shoe, nothing beats a brogue, ideal for formal and informal business meetings. Choose a classic black style or if you’re looking for something a little different then these brilliant burgundy pair from Grenson are stylish but still formal enough for even the smartest occasion.
2. Chelsea Boots
The perfect pair of Chelsea boots are an absolute essential to any self-respecting shoe collection, this brown pair from Santoni are ideal for most occasions; smart enough to wear with a suit but also easily dressed down with jeans and a t-shirt for a fashion forward off-duty ensemble.
3. The Casual Boot
Whatever the occasion you simply can’t go wrong with a fantastically stylish casual boot whether lace-up or otherwise. Whether you’re going on a five mile hike or just hitting the bars then these shoes are the right choice here. These cool boots from Junya Watanabe are still on the smart side of casual, which in our opinion is not a bad thing!
4. The Off-Duty Shoe
Without a doubt our favourite men’s casual shoe is the desert boot, it truly is one of the most versatile forms of footwear and can be worn with anything from jeans to a pair of mustard colored chinos. You can find these babies in a huge variety of colors so if you’re really feeling flush then why not treat yourself to another pair in a different color-way.
5. The everyday staple
These perennially stylish kicks never go out of fashion and for less than $60 for a pair of hi-tops and around $35 for these bad boys you’re on to a winner. Converse shoes are made of canvas which makes them ideal for warm weather and they’re easy to get on and off in a hurry, not to mention that there are literally hundreds of colors and styles to choose from!
6. The Ones that Keep you fit – Nike Flex
With a pair of running trainers this nice you will want to hit the gym every day, both stylish and fantastic technically these Nike Flex trainers really are the perfect running shoes. Because they’re so on-trend at the moment you can even wear them as a casual off-duty shoe and not look strange!
7. The Perfect Beach Options – Kamaleonik
Espadrilles are a holiday essential so if you’re planning on going away anywhere warm over the holiday season then make sure you don’t leave home without a pair of these in your luggage. Lightweight made of canvas and featuring raffia soles, espadrilles will make sure your feet don’t get too hot. We especially like these bi-color ones from Kamaleonik but if you’re worried about splashing the cash you can definitely find much more budget friendly styles online or in any store.
8. The Posh Holiday Shoe- Boat Shoe
If you’re looking for the ideal holiday shoe then a boat shoe is a fantastic choice, designed with comfort and style in mind you don’t need to own a boat anymore to own a pair of these (although it wouldn’t hurt).
9. The Trendy Trainer – New Balance
Every year it seems there is a different sneaker brand that creep up on our radar, this year New Balance have definitely stolen the title of the coolest trainers in town. With their simple almost retro aesthetic these shoes are sure to earn you some style kudos wherever you go!
10. The Ultimate Luxury – Giorgio Armani
Most men might over-look the loafer thinking that they’re reserved for the lords and gentlemen of society but loafers are seeing a bit of a surge in popularity of late. Wear yours sockless and roll up your trousers to really showcase these first class shoes!