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Comfortable Dress Shoes for Women

Published on February 4th, 2016 | by Kirsten Borrink

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6 Comfortable, Beautiful Dress Shoes for Women

Comfortable Dress Shoes for Women

Comfortable dress shoes for women that are suitable for a special occasion can be difficult to come by. You may identify with our reader as she searches for the perfect shoe for her son’s wedding…

Dear Kirsten,

First, I have to tell you how much I appreciate your blog! As a 48 year-old mom with RA since age 23, I have to wear good shoes. I am wondering if you can provide an update to your blog on special occasion low-heel shoes. My son is getting married in May, and I really need to find something that won’t hurt my feet to wear. Thank you.

Dear reader,

Congratulations to your son! What an exciting time in your life too. Let’s get your feet dressed up while staying comfortable in a lower heel. Recently, I attended the wedding of my cousin. Knowing there’d be a dance floor and I’d be on it, I took an extra pair of dressy flats to change into. I highly recommend taking a change of shoes for the reception. Whether you’re dancing or visiting tables, your feet will thank you.

The comfortable dress shoes for women featured above range in heel heights from 1 3/4″ to 2 3/4″ and get good grades for comfort–obviously, not at the same level as a Birkenstock but you understand that a rocker sole or super-wide toe box doesn’t befit a special occasion shoe. Let’s get going:

  1. Hotter DonnaComfortable Dress Shoes for Women: Here’s a rounded toe pump that doesn’t look dowdy. I like the Victorian look to the shoe with its shapely heel and high-cut vamp (doesn’t cut across bunions). The Donna is lightweight with a fully cushioned insole and roomy toe box. Available in medium and wide widths in darker jewel tones and new pastels. Hotter is a UK company, so don’t expect Zappos lightening fast shipping. $150 with free shipping and returns with code MPAFSR.

Comfortable Dress Shoes for Women2. Anyi Lu Gemma: A splurge shoe for sure, but pumps as gorgeous as these don’t normally come with PORON® cushioned and arch-supported insoles, but the Anyi Lu Gemma does.  The heel may be low at 1 3/4″ but it’s mirrored and mod and magnificent! See these comfortable dress shoes in action at AnyiLu.com, also available at Nordstrom for $445 with free shipping and returns. No reviews exist yet, but get an idea of fit and feel from reading reviews of the Anyi Lu Gigi, a similar shoe to the Gemma built on the same last.

3. Easy Spirit Rovana: Size 10.5 narrow? 11 wide? Not a problem. This comfortable dress shoe for women comes in three widths and whole and half sizes up to 12. The Rovana features an almond toe (comes to a soft, tapered point), cushioned insole, criss cross adjustable closure and a 2 3/4″ heel. Read the reviews at EasySpirit.com, it’s a winner! $89 with free shipping.

Comfortable Dress Shoes for Women4. Adrianna Papell Lois: The following Nordstrom review drew me to consider this shoe:

I highly recommend these for the Mother of the Bride or the Mother of the Groom. Both pair have a subtle elegance that I could not find at any other store. They are the perfect heel height and the color is beautiful without looking too glittery.

I would recommend this Cinderella shoe for fairly normal feet without many issues like bunions or fallen arches (perhaps not RA feet). But if you can handle a 2″ kitten heel, you won’t find a more beautiful shoe for the price. $119 at Zappos, $119.95 at Nordstrom, free shipping and returns.

5. Sacha London Vera: This ankle-strap platform
doesn’t intend to be a comfort shoe, but it comes pretty darn close. I have these in gray suede (see small inset photo) and wore them to my cousin’s wedding this fall. While I did change into flats for the dance floor, my Sacha Londons kept me standing comfortably during the service. The 1″ platform offsets the height of the heel, which is only 2 3/4″. The toe box is accommodating of mild to moderate bunions and the footbed is cushioned. Available in leather and richly-hued suedes for $139-149.95 at OnlineShoes.com, free shipping and exchanges. $99-185 at Amazon, free shipping and free returns on some size/color combos.

Do you have a favorite comfortable dress shoe? Do share!


About the Author

Blogger, Wife, Mom, Dog-Lover, Coffee Drinker, Owl Watcher.



28 Responses to 6 Comfortable, Beautiful Dress Shoes for Women

  1. Bette says:

    Nothing competes with a beautiful heel. However, none of these look comfortable to me! Too pointy and/or too high a heel — makes my feet hurt just to look.

    I recommend a flat or wedge from Taryn Rose. There are some subdued metallics that could be dressy, depending.

    This is a great post. We all need something for a special occasion — given how long it takes me to find ANY shoe, I should start looking NOW!

  2. cedar says:

    I’ve got the Adrianna Papell Lois in my Nordstrom cart until I find the right dress for a wedding I’ll be attending in August. I loathe the pointy toe, but the shoe might work for a few hours.

    Others I’m considering: the Touch Ups Jazz, and the Pelle Moda Fabia, although I don’t prefer the ankle strap. (I’m petite and it chops the leg in a non flattering way) Also, the Sofft Vanita might be an option, but it’s not as dressy, although it has a metallic touch.

    I hope I can find a perfect, cute, sort of minimal dressy shoe/sandal with low heel and a kinder gentler toe.

    • Kirsten says:

      I know–the pointy toe could discourage long-term wear–more than an hour or two. But I love the look of it and thinking the low heel keeps toes from sliding into toe box too much! My wedding MO is go low-heel and fancy and then change into flats for the reception 😉 Let me know what you think if you end up with them. I love my Sacha Londons…

  3. Bonnie says:

    I was going to suggest Sofft. I ordered several pair from zappos and shoebuy.com when my son was getting married. With free shipping and free returns, why not try them and see which fit the best. (I had no luck at all shopping stores, even DSW let me down.)

  4. Tracy says:

    Love the Easy Spirit Rovana. They are pretty, comfortable and come in a 6 1/2 wide. Best of all, I found them at the Easy Spirit outlet on sale! They have padding on the inside and you can walk and dance in them. I’ve also gotten many compliments when I’ve worn them. It isn’t easy to find stylish shoes in 6 1/2 wide and Rovana is a winner!

  5. Kerry says:

    Great shoes! I wish I could wear some. I’m one who thinks anything over 1″ high is very high. When you say “only 2 3/4,” Kristen, I’m amazed! I have such a high instep I can’t wear anything with any real height. I recently came across this Hotter shoe, which has a lovely 1920’s vintage look: http://www.hotter.com/us/en/womens/womens-shoes/viviene-heels In fact, I know a bridge who is going to wear them with her vintage wedding dress. 🙂

  6. Kerry says:

    Kirsten, can you please correct my typo’s–your name! And no bridge that I know of is getting married! Serves me right for not proof reading.

  7. cedar says:

    The Naturalizer Taimi is another possibility I’ve discovered in my searching. Another shoe added to Favorites….

  8. Gitanjali says:

    Hi Kirsten,

    Firstly, i would say thanks to you as your post help me to out from a big confusion. In next month i have to attend my cousin brother marriage and i was totally confused about footwear. But i have seen your article and collection of foot wears. Now, i can choose footwear according to my dress.

  9. Gina Westbrook says:

    Unfortunately all these shoes are beyond my budget. I’d have to give up heat for a week if I got enven the least expensive pair

    • Holly says:

      I agree so expensive and most are so clunky & “vintage”. Aren’t there any dainty pretty shoes that won’t cripple us??

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  11. Sewing Faille says:

    I had high hopes when I saw the title of this post. I have chronic plantar fasciitis, and I have enormous problems finding dress shoes. I can only wear flats, and the flats need to be sturdy and offer some degree of arch and ankle support. The ability to accommodate orthotics is a big plus. Shoes that don’t match these requirements leave me in severe pain.

    So imagine my crushing disappointment when all the shoes you featured are heels.

    When I actually read the letter and your response, it sounds fine– the LW asked a specific question and you answered it– but the fact that you labeled the post “comfortable dress shoes for women” drives home how marginalized someone in my position really is, even from someone who purports to help people with foot problems. I’m sure this wasn’t your intent. But something like “Comfortable dress heels for women” would not have been misleading.

  12. Sewing Faille says:

    Hmmmm. Definitely better than the usual offerings, but I’ve never had success with ballerina flats. I’ve never been able to find a pair that fits my feet, since the front of my foot is wide and I have a narrow heel. Plus, I would run into problems with the lack of cushioning and the lack of stiffness in the sole. Thanks, though.

  13. Val says:

    I purchased the Easy Spirit Rovana after reading this article. It’s a pretty shoe, but it was a little tight across the top of my foot (not related to the tightness of the strap which you can adjust). You also have to be careful guiding your foot into this show with hose on, the velcro on the strap grabs hose! It did not hurt the ball of my foot, and fit true to size. I have RA and bunionettes, and this shoe fit well.

  14. Judy Opie says:

    Dear Kirsten,
    My son is getting married in April and I need a silver dress shoe for a long dress.I have
    a bunion so I do have to be careful with the shoes. It would have to be a very dressy flat
    or a nice heel with arch support. I can’t do a wedge as it would not be dressy enought.
    Its very difficult to find. Your help is appreciated.
    Judy

  15. Jonella says:

    I wanted to let you know my 18 year old daughter wore the Sacha London Vera to her senior prom last weekend because of this blog article. I sent her the pic and article and she asked me to order them and they were perfect. They may not be as dressy as most shoes these girls wear for prom but they matched her style of dress (modern & sassy) and she was the only one still wearing her shoes at the end of photos before prom. She said they never hurt her feet one bit all night! The bad news is when I tried them on it hurt across my bunion where I have a plate and screws. The good news is she can wear them with other outfits and they look so cute – she even put them on with skinny jeans and a tunic the day they were delivered and got compliments. I look forward to your blog!

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  17. Dara says:

    Thanks for this article! My feet are wider in the front , with a narrow back, which means I can only wear slingbacks. are there any available with a 2.5 inch heel ? i wear a 10.5 shoe size. Thanks for your response.

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