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Your wedding shoes are an important part of your bridal look, but no one wants to be nursing painful feet on their honeymoon—or during the reception. So, we’ve gathered 10 of the most stylish comfortable shoe options to wear at your reception. From preppy to sporty chic, we’ve got the perfect comfy shoe for any bride’s aesthetic. Because trust us, it’s hard to make the most of your big day when your feet feel like they’re literally about to fall off.
Thought you could only have that classy look in heels? Think again. These ballet flats are timeless and oh so elegant. The low-key design features subtle but eye-catching embellished straps. Plus, the behind-the-heel support means you can dance as much as you want and your feet will stay secure all night.
With a 2-inch platform and full rhinestone covering, these shoes are not your average sneaker. However, they do provide that same supportive fit, meaning if you have any experience with a little bit of platform shoe, you can run around in these for hours. Seriously, you could breakdance in these things (not sure you’d want to in your wedding dress, but the option is there).
The perfect shoe for any nostalgic bride looking to take inspiration from the past, mules are back, baby. These flats are proper enough to complete your formal reception look without sacrificing any comfort. The pointed toe and circular details add a subtle retro look, and we’re totally here for it.
For the sporty bride, you need these athletic shoes. Feel like you’re walking (and tearing up the dance floor) on a cloud all night with extra cushioning we bet you won’t find in stilettos. Plus, the re-wear value of these babies is off the charts.
If you want comfort, but just can’t sacrifice that luxurious look, these are the sneakers for you. The perfect cross of preppy and chic, with delicate cut-outs that will complement any reception dress detailing. And they last literally forever—consider them a long-term investment.
Hello?! Your dream shoe just arrived. We promise these shoes will make you feel like the belle of the ball when you take to the dance floor—without letting any foot pain steal your spotlight. Plus, how many people can say their reception shoes have crystal-embellished detailing?
This backless mule is the perfect addition to your comfortable wedding day wardrobe. With crocodile print and a decorative bow, the design complements any look without distracting from the statement piece: you! Plus, it’s the perfect shoe to dress up or dress down after the big day, so you’ll get tons of re-wear.
These adorable platform sandals are perfect for an outdoor wedding. We’re getting major boho bride vibes here. These shoes will have your back from the first slow dance to the cake cutting.
Slide-on sandals are the holy grail of easy-to-wear shoes. With a flat sole, this pair is perfect for any anti-heel bride. Plus, the square toe and detailed strap give any reception look a wedding-worthy classy upgrade.
For the bride that loves all the sparkle, keep all eyes on you with these rhinestone-covered sneakers. These shoes are sure to get you on the floor and dancing the night away (and worry-free of any long-term foot pain). Seriously, who can deny footwear that literally shines like a disco ball?
Images: Leah Flores / Stocksy.com
Weddings can be a pretty big f*cking deal—I mean, they don’t say it’s the biggest day of your life for nothing. It takes about a year to plan, an average of $36,000 to put on, and determining the place seatings alone is a strategic maneuver requiring a level of diplomacy that rivals the formation of many political alliances. Between pressures and conflicting desires from family, friends, in-laws, and the bride and grooms themselves, what is supposed to be the celebration of a newlywed couple can end up turning into a never-ending sh*tstorm of people to please, to not disappoint. So imagine planning your wedding for over a year, having a great time, thinking you’d pulled off a classy affair that still managed to showcase your personality, and then finding out that you’d become internet famous… for how bad it was.
That actually happened to Juliette Brandman, a New York-based bride. An avid Betches fan and listener of the Betches Brides podcast, she sent us an email: “So upon returning from my honeymoon, I see myself all over the Daily Mail Snapchat story shaming my wedding dress and shoe choices,” she wrote. The offender was, as Brandman explained, “an ex-girlfriend of a boy I knew in college” who had posted her wedding pictures to a Facebook group dedicated to talking sh*t about people’s weddings. Brandman had worn a short dress with feather details along the hem and sleeves for her reception, as well as sneakers, which were Christian Louboutin and, as members of the group pointed out in the comments, cost $1,000. But Facebook wasn’t where Brandman learned about it. She found out when The Sun picked up the post, and then the Daily Mail did a spin-off article (which has since been taken down). She saw it for herself when the Daily Mail put it on their Snapchat story and her friends started sending it to her.
At first, she thought one of her friend’s Snapchat had been hacked, and sending her her own wedding photos as part of the hack. “They’ve really gotten so advanced!” she initially thought. Then she Googled it, and found the story (which, for what it’s worth, was basically just a bunch of screenshots from the Facebook group, amounting to “People On The Internet Don’t Like This Woman’s Fashion Choices”. I know the Daily Mail is not exactly a bastion of investigative journalism, but come on). At that point, reality set in.
“I was like, ‘are you kidding me?’” she said. “It was shocking and I kind of couldn’t believe it. It was definitely hurtful, and you try not to read the comments, but curiosity got the better of me and I totally read them and was like, ‘okay, these are not super nice.’”
What made the Daily Mail and Sun articles especially shocking to her was how the internet’s opinion completely diverged from that of her friends and family. “Every single person at our wedding was obsessed with our shoes,” she said. “Like, people were taking pictures, they were like, ‘omg I can’t believe you are wearing these, these are so cool.’” So to see the internet take delight in having the opposite reaction was pretty jarring. “Those were my special wedding day shoes, and that was a fun part of something that I wanted to bring to my wedding. And I have now hundreds or thousands of people basically telling me I have terrible, hideous taste.” The girl who initially posted the photos to the group tried to qualify that when she initially met the bride, she loved her style—kind of the internet cyberbullying version of “you know I love you, but…”
The other factor that internet commenters didn’t think about when ripping Brandman’s fashion choices apart was the consideration that went into her choosing those items in the first place. “I am a plus sized bride, and, I’m a plus sized human being, so finding a dress, and finding something that I was comfortable in to wear for a second dress, was a big deal.” (The original poster to the group did clarify, “to be fair this was her second outfit,” as if that would help.) Umm yeah, I feel like if any of the commenters had considered that before slamming her, they might not have had as much ammo to rip her to shreds.
So, yeah. If you worked really hard on something and you found out that the internet was tearing it apart (while you were on your honeymoon, no less), you’d probably be pretty devastated. But actually, Brandman seemed surprisingly calm about the whole ordeal, and mainly just thinks it’s embarrassing. “It’s just uncomfortable because I spent over a year and a half dedicating my life to this wedding. I paid for that dress, I paid for those shoes, that was my gift to myself because I wanted to have something really fun at my wedding.” I, on the other hand, would either be scheming up petty ways to ruin the life of whoever posted me to that group in the first place, or orchestrating a relocation off the grid, so I admire her levelheadedness about the whole thing. She credits her friends and family, saying that since they were the ones who discovered the articles while she was on her honeymoon, they were able to come up with an action plan and support her the whole way.
Another wakeup call was the fact that Juliette barely even spoke to the girl who initially put her on blast. She’d added her back in college, but they hadn’t really been in touch since: “We don’t talk. We’re not friends, we don’t really have a lot of mutual friends.” She still doesn’t understand why the girl went to the trouble of sharing her pictures in the wedding shaming group, a concept she was also unaware even existed. (For the uninitiated, the gist is that you post photos sh*tting on someone else’s wedding, decor, fashion choices, or you can post stories about people who acted terribly at your wedding or a wedding you went to.) Talk about a rude awakening to the darker sides of Facebook. “I mean, it’s human nature to be judgemental,” she offered, “and especially with Instagram, you see everyone’s stuff. But like, you take things out and you privately message your friends about it. You don’t, like, put it on blast when you don’t know these people.” Now, Brandman is doing a Facebook purge, but she says she won’t let one salty girl deter her from posting pictures of her wedding.
“Looking back, I’m like, this girl literally spent the time from her day creeped through my photos and was like, ‘You know what? This would be great for the shaming group that I am a part of,’” she rationalized. “Like, I can’t even imagine.”
And as for whether she confronted the girl in question about putting her on blast? “Absolutely not.”
Images: Fred Marcus Studio
Ah, wedding planning: a magical time when all of your little kid dreams come to v expensive fruition. Music, dancing, never-ending vows of love, high fashion, pretty dresses, and f*cking amazing shoes.
Picking out those amazing shoes, though, should get just as much time and attention as picking out your perfect dress. They need to be practical. They need to be cute. And they need to be comfortable enough that, by the end of the night, you aren’t in tears and/or walking barefoot around the reception hall. That’s gross. We talked to Dr. Miguel Cunha, Founder ofand a leading podiatrist in Manhattan, who gave us some hardcore shoe pointers that can guide you in your efforts shopping for wedding shoes. Here are the wedding shoes rules you need to live by:
1. Comfort, But Make It Fashion
I get that you want to wear a super fashion-forward pump on a teeny, tiny heel that clocks in at 8 inches or whatever, but please chill. Keep in mind that your wedding day is an ACTUAL all-day affair for you. Between waking up and taking pictures, to going to the chapel and gettin’ hitched, to taking more pictures, to dancing all night at the reception, you’re likely going to be on your feet for close to 12-15 hours. Pick something pretty, comfy, and practical. If walking in your potential wedding shoes is challenging or even a BIT uncomfortable when you’re trying them on, you’re going to be absolutely miserable by the time the end of the ceremony rolls around. Trust. Plus, chances are if you’re sporting a long dress, no one’s really going to see your super high, fashion-forward anyway.
2. Ditch Online Sh*t
I know that the internet and online shopping are bae, but don’t leave your shoes to the whims of online shopping. It’s fine to peek around at shoes on department store websites to get an idea of the style you like, but, similar to the wedding dress, you need to go to the store and try any and all wedding shoes on in person.
3. Get Swole
Are your puppies BARKIN’ by 2pm every day? GOOD. That’s the perfect time to buy your wedding shoes. Seriously, if your feet are prone to growing a few sizes by the end of the day thanks to blood, gravity, and the unstoppable pressure that is day-to-day living, use it to your advantage and head to the shoe store right when your feet are at their most swole. Dr. Cunha says, “Our feet tend to swell through the day, so it’s important to shop for shoes when your feet are most swollen. If you try them on then and they’re comfortable then you know they’ll feel comfortable throughout the day.” So even if you’re slightly afraid that your red, sweaty, swollen feet will cause a slight panic in the shoe department at Nieman Marcus, embrace the unsightly spectacle and know that you’ll be comfortable on your big day, even if you’re highly uncomfortable now.
4. Walk The Walk
Once you’ve tried on, thought about, and finally bought your wedding shoes, it’s time to break those f*ckers in. You can wear them in a box. You can wear them with a fox. I don’t really care what you do, but break in your f*cking shoes. Seriously though, all well-made shoes will start to break in, stretch, and form to your foot on their own as you wear them over the course of a few days. But keep in mind that the shoes themselves should be comfortable (to a point) the very first time you slip ’em on in store. After that, says Dr. Cunha, “the best way to break in shoes is to wear them in 2 hours increments per day for four days and then wear all day on the fifth day.”
5. Make The Right Heel Choice
The height of your heel is going to matter a lot during your wedding day. We all kind of get that a 5-inch heel isn’t the best choice for an all-day event, but, according to Dr. Cunha, flats aren’t the answer, either. Say what?? It’s true; we can’t have nice things. Flats, although they seem fun and friendly, actually “will contribute to pronation and collapse of the arch, which may contribute to planter and posterior heel pain, shin splints, knee pain, and back pain,” he warns. Idk what several of those words mean, but I assume it all translates to “your body will be ouch.” Flats can also place a lot of pressure and tension on your Achilles tendon, which will also lead to discomfort as the day wears on.
But wait, there’s more. You may be thinking, “Grool, that means heels are the better choice.” Wrong, bitch. According to Dr. Cunha, “wearing high heels compresses the toes together causing the big toe nail to grow into the skin and eventually resulting in an ingrown toenail. High heels also aggravate the symptoms and progression of bunion deformities as the shape of the shoe does not accommodate the normal structure of the forefoot.” Did we all throw up together? Good.
So what can you like, actually wear? Dr. Cunha says that shoes with a 1-inch heel or wedge are your best option as they’ll be the most comfortable and give you a little boost without hurting you.
6. Make Sure They Fit
F*cking duh, fam. And it sounds like, if you invite any foot doctors to your wedding, they’ll be able to tell if you went and bought a size larger in shoes, thinkin’ you were slick. “I can tell a woman is wearing the wrong shoes when her body is not positioned in a 90 degree angle with the ground. Her sway is longer, her chest is pushed forward while her buttocks is further back. The body weight pushes forward so the center of pressure is moved towards the balls of the feet.” Rude, Dr. Cunha; we trusted you. JK, but honestly, having shoes that don’t fit correctly won’t only be uncomfortable, it’ll also look super awkward. And no one wants to feel awkward on their wedding day.
Images: Shutterstock; Giphy (3)
As your resident fashion expert, it may seem odd that I’m suggesting you have some stylish sneaks to wear for your wedding. Not for like, the ceremony of course, but definitely for the reception. Once you’ve gotten through all the ceremonial stuff, it’s time to let go of your Type-A bridezilla tendencies and partayyyyy. You paid all this money for your demonstration of love, so if you don’t let loose to “Yeah” by Usher afterwards, then you’re not doing it right. The problem? Heels are uncomfortable, obviously. That’s where wedding sneakers come in. When done right, they can be a lifesaver that adds a playful touch to your look. But that being said, I’m def not suggesting you throw on your best Nikes that you wear to Barry’s Boot Camp for your big day. Your shoes need to be cute, stylish and go with your bridal look in the least tacky way possible. It’s not an easy feat, but I’m here to help.
1. KEDS for Kate Spade New York Triple Decker Glitter Sneaker
These ones are a collab between Kate Spade and Keds, and are as predictable as it gets for bridal wedding sneakers. They’re sweet, cute, and basic, but unlike other options…not tacky. The platform is great for a little extra height, and the glitter makes them festive in a non JoJo Siwa-adjacent way.
2. Superga 2790 Linea Platform Sneaker
These sneakers are an easy, classic option that you’ll totally rewear post-nuptials. They’re a great everyday sneaker that would look chic and clean with your wedding dress. They’re effortlessly stylish and say “I’m not a regular bride, I’m a cool bride.”
3. Nike Air Force 1 ’07 LXX Sneaker
I’m obsessed with these sneakers, especially for breaking it down at your wedding reception. They’re unique and less predictable than the ones offered at bridal stores. Not to mention, Air Force sneakers are the comfiest of comfy, which will be an amazing relief to put on after your hard day of being your most beautiful self. Hey, beauty is pain!
4. Golden Goose Running Sole Sneaker
Yes, these ones are expensive, but if your soon-to-be hubby tries to give you sh*t, just remind him, “It’s my f*cking wedding day!” *Said in your best Stassi Schroeder impression.* These sneakers are fashionable and cool, but don’t have that dirty old sneaker look that many Golden Goose sneakers are famous for (sry). The last thing you need on your big day is having to explain to your in-laws that yes, you bought your shoes like this. And yes, you did pay for sneakers that look dirty.
5. Marc Jacobs Daisy Studded Slip On Sneaker
I love how feminine and whimsical these slip-on sneakers are! They’re perfect for the bride having her fairytale wedding, who’s too girly to wear a traditional sneaker with her dress. These have the iconic Marc Jacobs daisies on them, so you know they’re both feminine and street style-approved.
6. Moschino Platform Sneakers
Okay, these ones are for the bride who prides herself on her fashionista ways. Again, they’re predictably expensive cause like, they’re Moschino, but if you ask me, I’d tell you they’re worth it. Like, these are totally the sneakers Erika Jayne would wear at her wedding reception. And I mean, if Erika Jayne would wear them, then you should too.
Trust me, after a day full of smiling for the camera and excruciatingly beautiful heels, you’re going to be happy to have a cool pair of wedding sneakers to change into. I mean like, I’ve never been a bride or anything, but I have gone out in heels, and was in so much pain that I HAD to change into those drugstore ballet flats that fit unnaturally into your clutch. No, I wasn’t prepared enough to have had them in my purse, my friend did. But let me tell you, I was glad she did. Don’t be forced to wear your friend’s flats that conveniently yet inexplicably fit into her purse on your big day. Rather, maintain your dignity and prepare by getting one of these stylish pairs of sneakers instead.
Images: @sweeticecreamweddings / Unsplash; Nordstrom; Urban Outfitters (2); Revolve (2); Shopbop
Betches may receive a portion of revenue if you click a link and purchase a product or service. The links are independently placed and do not influence editorial content.