June 12, 2021

50signs

The Fashion Spirit

15 Editor-Approved Summer Shoes for Women to Shop This Season

6 min read

Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

Ask anyone I know to share a fun fact about me; some will tell you I speak fluent German, others will say I’m oddly good at finding things, but I bet most would say something along the lines of: “She has a shoe collection the size of Mount Rushmore!” Sure, this might be a little over exaggerated, but the gist of it is I love shoes, and I have lots of them. 

It’s hard to pick my favorite season for footwear. I grew up in Minnesota, so I have an affinity for really durable but really cute boots (my Timberlands have saved me from many cold feet moments while shoveling outside), but the stark transition from winter to spring and summer has made me really appreciate a good warm-weather shoe. Feet are coming out of hibernation, and of course they have to do that in the cutest way possible.

“Temperatures are up, toes are coming out” is my personal motto, and I can already tell this summer is going to be for the books when it comes to shoe moments — peep-toe and otherwise. There are lots of cute footwear trends emerging on the street-style scene that I’m so eager to take out for a spin, and of course I’ve been getting plenty of inspiration from celebs (pool slides, anyone?). As someone who basically shops for a living, I see countless shoes every day. But there are some spring and summer styles that stand out above the rest, and I’ve curated them all here.

Pool slides have seemingly taken over Hollywood, so you bet there’s a pair of those cushy summer sandals included in this list. Clogs have also made a fierce comeback this season, and with Sarah Jessica Parker as an avid fan, I have become an avid fan, too. Side note: My Dansko clogs have become my best friend this season, sorry in advance to my real BFF. 

Comfy sneakers are always a must (Cariuma’s low-tops are my all-time favorites), and I’m also actually craving some party shoes even if I’m not quite ready to go to a party just yet. Roaring 2021, anyone? Ahead, check out all the cute, classic, and comfy spring and summer shoes I’m lusting after. Maybe you’ll find your sole’s perfect mate below.

Bernardo1946 Sadie Mule

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

Clogs but make it better. I love that these Bernardo1946 mules have a cute bow-tied keyhole that gives them a little more character. They’re made from 100 percent leather that looks sleek, and they have a cushioned insole, which means I can actually wear these all day long.

Anothersole Stella Flat

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

I discovered this brand last year, and I’m so mad I didn’t sooner. Anothersole makes really cute and really comfy genuine leather lace-up flats that are lighter than a can of Coke (per the brand) and cuter than teacup pig (according to me).

Sorel Kinetic Impact Laces Sneaker

Sorel Kinetic Impact Laces Sneaker

I’m a Sorel fan through and through. The shoes are, first and foremost, so comfortable, but they’re also incredibly eye-catching thanks to the cool sole detailing and quirky color combos. These sneakers have been on my wishlist for a long time because a) I love a sock sneaker and b) I love a cool sole — and these have both.

Franco Sarto Trixie Slide Sandal

Franco Sarto Trixie Slide Sandal

Shoes can be works of art, and these Franco Sartos are just that. The asymmetric leather upper turns a classic black slide into a masterpiece of a sandal. Oh, and just look at that cushioned footbed. Bonus: They’re also on sale!

Cariuma OCA Low in Zebra Suede

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

If you don’t yet own a pair of Cariuma’s sustainable sneakers, this is a sign to scoop up a pair now. They don’t rack up thousands-long waitlists for no reason, after all. My hot take? They’re cute. They’re comfy. They’re good for the earth. And that’s more than enough for me.

Stuart Weitzman Sawyer Slide Sandal

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

I’m loving a transparent slide this season. It’s easy to wear and goes with everything. Plus, this style reminds me of a more elevated version of the jelly slides I used to wear when I was younger.

Alohas Dune Mule

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

Alohas has quickly become one of my favorite brands. Its shoes are sustainable and made in Spain (love times two!). I’ve had my eyes on these chocolate-brown mules for quite some time, but seeing that they’re selling out fast, I should really just get them now.

Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Low Top Platform Sneaker

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

I love my classic white Chucks, but that’s not to say I can’t (and won’t) add this upgraded pair to my collection. The toothy sole adds a hard-edged touch, while the leopard spots and camo-print combo offers a fun pattern play.

Steve Madden Pepe Wedge Slide Sandal

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

These Steve Madden wedges deserve a moment and a half. Here’s why: They’re actually a revived version of the brand’s iconic Pepe sandal, which was first introduced in 1999 and became a fan favorite, selling more than 700,000 pairs until the style was discontinued in 2005. Now’s your chance to get this true throwback of a sandal before it’s gone again. You know I am.

Hoka Clifton 7 Running Shoe

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

If you don’t yet own a pair of Hoka sneakers, this is your sign to get them. I don’t think I’ve ever worn such lightweight, bouncy shoes in my life, and that’s why I’ll be replenishing my Clifton 7s this season. Maybe they’ll finally turn me into a runner (or maybe I’ll just stick to doing my power walks). 

Jeffrey Campbell Chauffeur Slide Sandal

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

Okay, listen: This is no time to play it safe with your heels. And these are anything but safe or boring. The floating feather detailing has me ready to dance the night away (probably still in my living room) and will make for some great Instagram photo opps.

Camper Misia Platform Wedge Sandal

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

The anatomy of this shoe is so good. The square-toe front, platform sole, and hidden inset footbed make this one helluva summer sandal. I’ll be wearing them with everything from jeans to dresses.

Steve Madden Scuba Slide Sandal

Steve Madden Women’s Scuba Slide Sandal

Sorry not sorry for liking pool slides. Kendall Jenner and Hailey Bieber are fans of the cushy slides, so naturally I had to try them out myself, and I was sold on them within seconds of putting on my first pair. I’m ready for my third pair, actually, so now I’m adding this crisp white Steve Madden style into my rotation because, well, why not?

Rebecca Minkoff Lia Flatform Sandal

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

In case you didn’t get the hint by now, I love a shoe with a good platform sole. It offers some sturdy height and harkens back on the ’90s (my favorite decade for fashion). These Rebecca Minkoff babies also look exceptionally cool thanks to the chain detailing.

J/Slides Baha Slide Sandal

Summer 2021 Hottest Shoes

Another day, another slide. I love the adjustable buckle detailing on these J/Slides, plus the contoured footbed ensures maximum comfort. The contrasting white platform sole is just the cherry on top. I want them in black and brown.

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