The Ultimate Men’s Shoe Color Guide


Of late, footwear trends have got less rigid. Men are now found donning Oxfords with jeans and slip-ons with a suit. No matter what kind of shoes you wear, the key to pulling off each look lies in color-coordination; a wrong shade can make you look like a car seller partying in a night club.

It’s easy to stick to the BASICS – like black shoes paired with black trousers or brown shoes with tan pants. The tonal combinations are an easy bet. They swiftly lead to sartorial perfection acing up any formal look.

“A black pair of shoes would be the smartest color in my opinion, because it’s an absolute must-have in every man’s wardrobe,” says Andrew Nicholas Vieira at Aldo. “Everyone needs a clean, simple black leather lace-up.”

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Next to black, tan is a smart color; we would recommend designer brogue shoes online as they come with detailing and luxurious texture. Though black is our eternal favorite, there’s no harm if you explore your options. Here, we’ve rounded up a few fundamental rules to navigate through your morning attire choices:

  • Tonal shades are sharp than multicolored variants.
  • Usually, darker colors look smarter than lighter ones. They are even more versatile.
  • Smartness depends on decoration and color: black monk straps are chicer than tan, but burgundy Oxfords are more urbane than both.
  • Formal shoes and trainers follow different rules: for example, white Oxfords are difficult to nail but white trainers will almost go with anything in your closet.
  • It hardly matters what colors are your shoes if they are not polished well. Look for a polish that matches. This helps!
  • If you are wearing a pop of color, try to offset the effect with neutrals elsewhere. Pulling off a pair of bold shoes is no mean feat.

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Besides black and tan, we’ve now another forgiving shade, i.e. brown. Brown leather shoes for men are one of the safest options. They are available in myriad shades and there’s always something to match any situation or event. Adding in, brown shoes add a dash of élan and personality to your ensemble. “The lighter the shade, the more relaxed the look,” shares one of the fashion stalwarts, “particularly if you add detail, too.”

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Lastly, we would like to talk about blue shoes though it can be a bit offbeat color for formal shoes. Blue is forever neutral when it comes to more casual ensembles. However, it is the perfect way to introduce some class and character in your looks. Blue suede brogues when paired with a natty outfit look considered rather than flamboyant.

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Take a note, stay away from anything too-much-colorful. Multicolored trainers are a strict no-no. Though they have crawled from the streets into the steel-and-glass offices, they are still away from acceptance. “But all those colors make them much less versatile; in fact, they only really work with neutrals, unless you’re able to pull off some very advanced color-matching,” says a men’s style expert.


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