Perfect sandals sought!
February 25, 2013 7:18 AM   Subscribe

I need the perfect sandals.

They need to be comfortable, first and foremost. I'll be walking a ton and I have low tolerance for uncomfortable shoes. But they also need to be professional looking and stylish.

Here are some sandals that are getting close to what I want.

Suggestions for brands or specific models are welcome!
posted by k8t to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (15 answers total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
Birkenstock's Yara and Tatami ranges look like your first link.
posted by MuffinMan at 7:24 AM on February 25, 2013

These have the typical Keen footbed, which might be too sporty, depending on what professional means in your field. I can vouch for them being super-comfy, though. I wear them to work in an academic library all summer.
posted by MsMolly at 7:26 AM on February 25, 2013

I have a cute, comfy pair of Naturalizers. I find that more padding on the bottom, especially at the ball of the foot, makes for a more comfortable pair of shoes.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 7:27 AM on February 25, 2013 [1 favorite]

I find Tevas to be really, really easy to walk in. I had a pair like this but they come in dressier versions, suck as this one, this one, and this one.
posted by showbiz_liz at 7:33 AM on February 25, 2013

I generally have good luck with Born shoes being really comfortable. These look maybe similar to what you're looking for, though I can't vouch for the comfort of that specific pair. And seconding Naturalizers--maybe something like this?

Whatever you get, make sure you break them in before doing all your walking--even really comfortable shoes have the potential to give blisters if you wear them for too long while they're still stiff.
posted by tan_coul at 7:46 AM on February 25, 2013 [2 favorites]

Are these professional enough? 1,010 reviewers on Zappos have resulted in a 5-star rating. Ridiculously comfortable. Some of the colors and materials are slightly dressier than others.
posted by barnone at 7:56 AM on February 25, 2013 [1 favorite]

Cork footbeds and tred-like soles are probably not professional enough.
posted by k8t at 7:59 AM on February 25, 2013 [1 favorite]

Some dressier Keens.
posted by MsMolly at 8:02 AM on February 25, 2013 [2 favorites]

And I can't vouch for any of these in particular, but Clarks are usually very comfy.
posted by MsMolly at 8:03 AM on February 25, 2013 [2 favorites]

For reference, I wear Salomon trail runners every single day and a pair of Dansko sandals (irreplaceable, given the newer Dansko styles) during the summer. I do a lot of walking on pavement on a college campus; I am devoted to comfort and don't mind spending some cash to get a pair that will last for a long time.

I bought these Cole Haans last year and they're really great, but they're also nice enough to wear with my concert black in a formal summer choir gig. The Nike Air does really make a difference, even in the thinner-soled ones.

Donald J. Pliner is the go-to brand for many professional women I know. They may skew a little older/gaudier, but because they have so very many styles, chances are you'll find a pair that really work for you. That "Fifi" style is not quite right for me, but that footbed is one of their base styles that I think works well for many different looks.

These days Dansko is a bit of a crapshoot. Some of their new styles are really cute but have features I'm not as fond of. Dani, for example, is a classic style that they used to make several years ago, but the current model has a fabric insole instead of a leather one, and that is Not Good. Their quality is not as good as it used to be. But if you find something that works for you, I know many people in an academic setting who stick with these.

However, Sanita is the brand that used to make many of Dansko's clogs, and they've continued some of the styles. This style (in red, without the stitching) is my go-to Dansko sandal for the summer, which I bought in 2005. They look cute and less-clompy on actual feet :) There will be many other styles available soon.

I have a pair of Cordanis that I bought in... hmmm... 2007? They're my favorite "nicer" sandal, and they've held up beautifully. And they're also surprisingly comfortable.

Sofft is pretty great.
posted by Madamina at 8:55 AM on February 25, 2013 [1 favorite]

I have a couple of pairs of Cole Haan sandals with the Nike soles and they are insanely comfortable. This pair is similar to the style that you're seeking.
posted by suki at 9:10 AM on February 25, 2013 [1 favorite]

I wear these Eccos for miles and miles of city walking.
posted by DMelanogaster at 11:15 AM on February 25, 2013

I am also on the quest for super comfy sandals that are also work appropriate for a fairly formal office.

I liked the looks of (though have not actually tried out) these Bass Margies and the Born Safron sandals.
posted by forkisbetter at 12:56 PM on February 25, 2013 [1 favorite]

Oh, and popping back in to say that a nice pedicure can class up sandals that fall on the borderline between dressy and casual.
posted by tan_coul at 1:57 PM on February 25, 2013

I've had my eye on these Bass Clementines for a while.

I have great luck with Borns. Mine are too casual to recommend, but they have a lot of good professional options.

You might also look into the Keen Emerald City line.
posted by elizeh at 8:14 PM on March 5, 2013

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