Women’s dress shoes can be a necessary evil: You need them to look professional and structured enough for work, but they’re usually uncomfortable and painful by the end of the day. But there’s no need to sacrifice your comfort at work — it’s time to upgrade so that you can stay comfy all day.
When shopping for new dress shoes, comfort is the most important, so don’t rely on a break-in period — they should be comfy from the start. Always try on each pair with the socks, pantyhose or tights you plan on wearing with them to ensure the fit is accurate. Finally, before committing to a new pair of dress shoes, try them on in both the morning and night, as your feet can actually swell during the day.
To put together this list of the best women’s dress shoes that are supportive but don’t cause foot pain, the Good Housekeeping Institute Textiles Lab experts looked for the most comfortable shoe styles with built-in arch support, cushioning footbeds and lower heels. When testing footwear, GH Institute fiber scientists evaluate comfort, fit and support from testers’ feedback; they also have podiatrists look at each footbed cut in half to determine if the shoe provides sufficient support and stability. In the Lab’s latest test of walking shoes, experts analyzed hundreds of data points to find top-performing brands and features that helped determine these picks for the most comfortable dress shoes for women, including fashionable heels, loafers, booties, ballet flats and more:
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Most Comfortable Women’s Dress Shoe
For ultimate comfort in the office, these loafers from Italeau feature supple leather with a high cushioning footbed that provides excellent arch support. The leather is treated to be waterproof and stain-resistant. Available in 10 neutral shades, these trendy shoes feature a front tassel and pointed toebox.
- Soft leather
- Cushioning footbed with arch support
- 10 neutral shades
Best Value Comfortable Women’s Dress Shoe
Women’s Ballet Flat
For less than $25, these basic ballet flats from Amazon have over 15,000 rave reviews for being supportive, comfy and excellent value for the price. They’re available in 14 colors and patterns, including cheetah, snakeskin and metallics. Reviewers say they run true to size and fit both wide and narrow feet alike.
- 15,000 rave Amazon reviews
- Less than $25
- Tons of colors and patterns
- Cheaper synthetic faux leather
Most Comfortable Dress Booties
The Glove Boot ReKnit
These boots from Everlane are best sellers for the brand, thanks to the soft knit fabric and low heel. Because of the versatile design, these booties are comfortable to wear to the office, brunch, and out on the town. Reviewers say they love the five stylish shades with many owning more than one pair!
- Soft fabric prevents irritation
- Two-inch heel
- Made with 88% recycled polyester
- Reviewers note they run a bit narrow
Most Comfortable Low-Heel Dress Shoes
A shorter heel is a great way to still look formal without the typical pain from high heels. Naturalizer heels are popular for reducing foot pain with a cushioning on the footbed and arch support. The slingback style is easy to put on and off while the pointy toe is on trend. Reviewers love the 10 shades, especially the “Hot Sauce” red.
- 1.5″ heel
- Sizes 4-11 with narrow, normal, and wide options
- Cushioned footbed
- Pointy toe uncomfortable for some
Most Comfortable Ballet Flats
Lena Ballet Flat
Vionic designs fashionable shoes that you would never know feature orthotic footbeds unless you’re wearing them. The Lena ballet flats feature the brand’s signature Vio-Motion support, designed for stability in the heel, support for your arch, and cushioning in the ball of your foot. The brand recommends wearing around your home to break them in before wearing them out.
- Leather, snakeskin, tortoise and polka dot patterns
- Signature comfy footbed
- Durable rubber outsole
- Requires a bit of breaking in for ultimate comfort
Most Comfortable Dress Pumps
Women’s Saldana Pump
Pumps are a must for your heel collection as they’re versatile for a variety of occasions and outfits. This style from LifeStride features a soft, flexible footbed that cushions your feet. The rubber outsole helps prevent sliding on slick floors. With 13 shades available and wide sizes, these popular heels have over 2,000 rave reviews on Amazon.
- Classic pump design
- Flexible footbed with cushioning
- 2,000 rave Amazon reviews
- Reviewers recommend heel inserts for proper fit
Most Comfortable Casual Women’s Dress Shoes
Originally designed as comfortable indoor slippers, these best-selling flats from Birdies double as dress shoes, making them a cult favorite (even Meaghan Markle’s a fan of the brand!). Available in trendy fabrics like velvet and leather, these shoes have over 7,000 rave reviews with one reviewer saying they’re the “most comfortable and cutest flats I’ve ever owned!”
- Seven layer cushioning footbed with arch support
- Velvet and leather fabrics
- 7,000 rave reviews
- Outsole is less durable than other styles
Most Comfortable Wedge Dress Shoes
Women’s Annadel Eirwyn Wedge Sandal
In warmer weather, wedges are the perfect summer sandal. With nearly 3,000 reviews on Amazon, these wedges from Clarks are popular for the cushioning rubber sole that is “absurdly comfortable: Soft, lightweight, and breathable.” They have a 2.75″ heel that provides enough height without the risk of toppling over or twisting an ankle.
- Cushioning rubber sole
- 2.75″ wedge heel
- Available in gold, white, navy, black and sand
- More casual than other picks
Most Comfortable Dress Shoes for Wide Feet
Sole Bliss designed these low block heels for women with wide feet or who have bunions. The deep almond-shaped toe box prevents crowding and any pressure points from forming. There’s ample cushioning to prevent pronation and to alleviate any pain from bunions. These classic heels are built to last wear after wear.
- Wide almond shaped toe box
- Cushioning at arches
- Nappa leather upper
Most Comfortable Women’s Dress Clogs
Women’s Professional Clog
Professional clogs are popular among hospital staff and other workers who are on their feet all day. The Dansko clog continues to reign supreme with nearly 10,000 rave reviews on Amazon. This pair is available in over 100 shades too, so you’re sure to find one in your style.
- Nearly 10,000 reviews on Amazon
- Over 100 color options
- Roomy protected toe box
- Not appropriate for all office environments
Most Comfortable Dress High Heels
The Esatto 90mm
If you love super high heels, invest in a pair with excellent support like M. Gemi’s Esatto heels. These 3.5″ heels feature a suede upper with a soft leather lining and sole. The 90mm wide heel provides excellent stability and control. “Comfortable for all day wear right out of the box,” according to one rave review.
- Supportive heel height and width
- Soft leather lining
- Suede covered heel without any visible seams
Most Popular Comfortable Dress Shoes on Amazon
Women’s Emslie Warren Slip-on Loafer
These best selling slip-on loafers from Clarks have over 5,500 rave reviews on Amazon. Made from 100% real leather, this pair has a rubber sole, 2″ heel, and an Ortholite footbed for extra support. They’re available in narrow, wide, and standard sizing from sizes 5-12. The only color options are dark shades: black, brown and navy.
- Ortholite footbed
- 100% leather upper
- Over 5,500 rave Amazon reviews
- Only available in dark colors
Most Comfortable Women’s Loafers
Women’s Loraine Loafers
Simple loafers are the ideal dress shoe for a variety of professional situations. These loafers from Sam Edelman feature a hardware clasp on the front and are available in 14 styles, including snakeskin and plaid. Reviewers love the extra cushioning on the heel for all day comfort.
- 14 style options
- Stylish hardware detail
- Reviewers say they’re comfy out of the box
- Some reviewers received the wrong color when ordering
Most Comfortable Basic Women’s Dress Shoe
Women’s Emory Bow Wedge
If you absolutely hate heels, but want a bit of lift, try this pair from Cole Haan. With a low wedge heel, these shoes combine the comfort of a ballet flat with the height of a wedge — one reviewer even said her “feet felt heavenly after a full day at work.” In black or blue leather, the cute bow at the front was a favorite among reviewers.
- Look of a ballet flat with a bit of lift
- Cushioning footbed
- Affordable price for 100% leather
- Only available in black and navy
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