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7 Shoe Styles Every Man Should Own

By : Trent Bartlett

Guide To Mens Dress Shoes

The cliché goes that women usually have a good selection shoes in their wardrobe. If you want to risk starting an argument, pick out a random shoe from your girlfriend’s collection and ask her when she last wore it. Dozens of shoes, some of which never worn, yet all of them somehow necessary. Men are usually a little more practical with their shoe collection. The well-dressed gent need not worry himself with so many pairs of shoes.

We’ve put together a practical list of shoes that every man should own. These styles will cover you in almost any occasion. Of course, we are not saying that you must limit yourself to only these styles, but they do make for a solid base to your wardrobe. From sneakers to boots, these are the seven shoe styles that should find a home in every man’s wardrobe.

The Brogue

Like so many types of dress shoes, the brogue was conceived as a far more utilitarian shoe than the way we wear it today. The holes and perforations in brogues were originally there to help drain water after crossing bogs and swamps in muddy Ireland. Today, we think of the brogue with a little more respect. Hopefully, you won’t find yourself knee-deep in muck when wearing them.

For versatility, we suggest a pair of half brogues (perforated toe cap, but no wings). Opt for dark brown brogues for formal occasions and lighter brogues for casual days. Black brogues work best with a suit but don’t get carried away and wear them to a black tie event. When buying brogues remember as a rule of thumb, the more broguing on the shoe, the less formal it is.



+ Foot The Coacher Suede And Leather Brogues
Algy Leather Wingtip Oxford Brogues
Bourton Leather Wingtip Brogues
Felix Leather Wingtip Brogues

The Suede Chukka

Chukkas have surged back in popularity over recent years, having first become popular in the ‘40s. The shoe is a minimal, round-toe, ankle-high boot with just two or three lacing eyelets. Traditionally featuring just two panels, the style is not big on embellishments. Reject over-the-top trimmings, a suede pair of chukkas lets the texture of the shoe do its talking.

We suggest opting for a pair of tan or cream suede chukkas as the next addition to your wardrobe. These shoes find themselves at a more casual end of the pool, offering an elegant alternative to sneakers. Combine chukkas with a pair of jeans or chinos and a polo shirt for the best look. They also give you a safe option to dress down an outfit that threatened to become too formal with brogues. By combining a pair of chukkas with a sports jacket, you can make your outfit appear more approachable.



Shanklin Suede Chukka Boots

The Leather Boot

It is hard to pinpoint one style of men’s leather boots as the must-have for all wardrobes. The range of ankle high boots is so varied that one could become carried away and develop a boot-buying habit. Few shoes can convey as much personality as the boot. The great thing about a leather boot is with continued wear, the shoe begins to tell a story. While we don’t suggest wearing boots that are falling apart and covered in mud, a well-worn pair of creased leather boots have their own character.

A pair of leather lace-up boots is a must-have addition to every man’s winter wardrobe. Opt for an ankle-high, black or dark brown boot and cuff your pants for a casual, edgier aesthetic. You can also pull your trousers over the top of the boots for a more conservative look. Invest in a quality pair and they will last you years, and begin to tell their story.




The White Low Top Trainer

If you are going for a more casual look, we cannot thumb our noses at a simple pair of white low top trainers. While we will never condone the high-top ‘sneans’ that were popularised by dads everywhere, we do think a minimal pair of sneakers is a must-have for all men.

White low tops are perfect when styled with black jeans for a monochromatic look. A minimal pair of white trainers is fantastic at portraying a casual yet neat look for when boots or chukkas are too much.

White Mens Sneakers


Selected Homme Dylan White Leather Trainers
Original Achilles Leather Sneakers
Fred Perry Spencer White Leather Trainers

The Loafer

Originally of Scandinavian origin, the loafer has developed into the sartorial styling of preppy culture and is now a streamlined shoe style. Low and lace-free, loafers are a mainstay of smart casual dress and are a favourite shoe style for summer months.

A pair of brown loafers will suit a range of palettes and will work for both casual and formal looks. Navy is also a good colour to consider and works well to complement tones like whites, beige and greens. Burgundy is also a great colour and can work well to brighten up your wardrobe. If you are after a pair of loafers to suit neutrals, beige will work well, and complements tanned skin.

Mens Loafers Shoes


Horsebit Leather Loafers 1
Burnished-Leather Tasselled Loafers
Haring Polished-Leather Tassel Loafers
George Cleverley Newport Suede Loafers

The Oxford

The Oxford is characterised by its closed lacing unlike the open lacing system of the Derby shoe. The design was originally a plain shoe made of leather, but over the years it has evolved and now includes a broad range of fabrics and detailing.

Most men already own a good pair of black Oxfords which they wear for more formal occasions; however this shoe also looks great in a tan colour for casual events.




The Running Sneaker

We mentioned that we would be practical in our approach, so here are the most functional shoes in the list. A pair of comfortable but stylish running sneakers is a must-have for every wardrobe.

While running sneakers are designed to feel good, rather than look good, we do have a few tips on choosing the right pair. For versatility, choose a style with minimal branding. Bright colours also work well for a statement street look. White running shoes will appear beaten and bruised within a few weeks so a good shoe care routine will need to be in order.



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8 mens fashion trends to keep for 2017


With a constant drip of new-ins and new-outs, it can be hard on both your wallet and your wardrobe to be constantly playing catch up on the latest collections.

Luckily, this season sees some of 2016’s biggest trends spill over into 2017. So as well as breaking down what you should be holding on to in order to nail the key looks, we caught up with some of the industry’s top insiders to get the styling tips that’ll maximise the wears of last year’s investments.

Retro Sportswear

Unless you’ve been living under a soundproof rock (and/or failing to keep up with FashionBeans), you will already know that sportswear has been one of the biggest risers in menswear over the past couple of seasons.

Last year’s retro take on athleisure was a 1980s affair, but for 2017 expect brands and retailers to go even further back in time to the 1970s. That’s not to say you need to start again, though. Like most staples, pieces in subdued colourways will last the course, and anything that looks like it’s from The Royal Tenenbaums is for the keep pile.

(Related: 8 Classic Sportswear Brands That Are Back On Trend)

How To Wear

“Key pieces include matching two-piece tracksuits, zip-up nylon jumpers and drawstring trousers, as well as burnt orange or tobacco brown chevron prints, in luxury fabrics with careful attention to detail. Top this look off with a vintage leather bomber for the ultimate 1970s sartorial statement.”
Olie Arnold, Mr Porter style director.

Men's Retro Sportswear Outfit Inspiration Lookbook

boohoo ss16 new look ss17 reiss ss17 urban outfitters 2017

MONCLER Jersey Zip-Up Sweatshirt - Click to buy REEBOK LF VECTOR TRACK TOP - Click to buy ADIDAS RELAXED SUPERSTAR TRACK PANT - Click to buy OUR LEGACY Striped Cotton-Blend Jersey Sweatpants - Click to buy


Checks have been a constant part of the male wardrobe for centuries. However, that didn’t stop tartan being one of the most surprising comeback trends of 2016.

Although a plaid shirt or Prince of Wales check blazer will always be a sound investment, this year will see designers apply checks to everything from knitwear and T-shirts to trousers and bomber jackets. So if you went big in 2016, great. Even better if what you have is in a muted grey or neutral (see below) shade.

How To Wear

“Checks started off as quite subtle and have moved on to be bolder as guys have become more confident when wearing them. On suits, the trend for a classic Prince of Wales check has now developed to a tonal windowpane.”
Alex Field, Reiss head of menswear design.

Men's Checked Pieces Outfit Inspiration Lookbook

next ss17 bershka 2017 next ss16 brooks brothers 2016

CHECKED BLAZER - Click to buy LORENZO HOUNDSTOOTH CHECK SHIRT - Click to buy Charcoal Check Smart Skinny Trousers - Click to buy Grey Check Stretch Skinny Trousers - Click to buy


Neutrals have long been deployed by men as a way of anchoring other, more vibrant pieces. However, 2016 was the year we learned to go top-to-toe tonal with our subtler shades. Which means your wardrobe should already be fully stocked with the pieces you need to pull off this key 2017 look.

(Related: 5 Go-To Light Neutrals Combinations)

Don’t just carry on doing the same old outfits, though. Learn to layer in different ways and use new styling tricks, such as tucking in a polo shirt or mixing the trend with another, like wide-leg trousers.

How To Wear

“To keep neutrals modern, we incorporated a more relaxed fit and use of technical fabrications within our SS17 collection. Colours have now shifted to earthier tones. Top with saffron yellow and spicy hues for a rich and warm look for spring and summer.”
Delphine Ninous, Belstaff collection creative director.

Men's Neutral Pieces Outfit Inspiration Lookbook

j crew spring 2017 massimo dutti 2017 river island ss17 massimo dutti aw16

JAMIESON'S OF SHETLAND CREW KNIT - Click to buy Tan smart overcoat - Click to buy Long Sleeve Polo - Click to buy DUNHILL Slim-Fit Brushed-Cotton Twill Trousers - Click to buy

Wide-Leg Trousers

For the past few seasons, looser cuts and shapes – whether that’s on coats, hoodies or, indeed, trousers – have been working their way from the runways to the mainstream. The more relaxed way of dressing, which started to be picked up by brands and retailers in 2016, is set to reach a peak over the next 12 months according to our expert style predictions.

(Related: From The Experts: Men’s Style Predictions For 2017)

Although the look has been a slow-burner (and no doubt we’ll all get skinny jean withdrawals now and again), if you snapped up a more relaxed fit last year, keep hold of it – the shape has serious staying power.

How To Wear

“The easiest entry into the world of wider fits is with denim. No need to go full Slim Shady though, a straight leg is a good first step. Try a rugged dark selvedge or black jean with a chunky turn-up and brogue boots.

“For something smarter, it’s wise to wear something with weight like a wool-mix. This will gather nicely on your shoe rather than just looking like you’ve got your dad’s trousers on.”
Giles Farnham, River Island Style Studio chief.

Men's Wide-Leg Trousers/Chinos/Jeans Outfit Inspiration Lookbook

j crew aw16 whistles aw16 selected homme ss16 burton ss17

NORSE PROJECTS Harri Wide-Leg Tech-Cotton Poplin Trousers - Click to buy INCOTEX Four Season Relaxed-Fit Cotton-Blend Chinos - Click to buy Straight-fit black Bob jeans - Click to buy WIDE-LEG LINEN TROUSERS - Click to buy

Vertical Stripes

Much like checks, it’s hard to remember a time when stripes weren’t in favour. Offering an alternative to the classic Breton stripe, last year’s motifs variegated in both colour and size.

Any investment in deckchair prints is about to pay dividends. Vertical stripes were all over the runways at the recent London Fashion Week Men’s, applied to everything from T-shirts to tailoring.

How To Wear

“Stripes have always been a menswear staple, particularly over the last few seasons. Their popularity stems from their versatility; they really can work for any style, bold or subtle. A classic crew neck T-shirt works under a casual blazer, or for a bolder look try a multi-coloured stripe.”
James Doidge, Marks & Spencer head of menswear design.

Men's Stripes Outfit Inspiration Lookbook

scotch & soda ss17 river island ss17 zara 2016 river island ss17

M&S Pure Linen Boating Striped Jacket - Click to buy Vertical Stripe T-Shirt - Click to buy Regular-fit bowling shirt - Click to buy Yarn Dyed Dress Shorts - Click to buy

Refined Athleisure

If you didn’t go for the Harlem Globetrotters look but bought into a more Ryan Gosling approach to athleisure, then hold onto your bombers, because they’re going nowhere.

It’s safe to say the menswear world has been under siege from sportswear for countless years, and with each season, key casual pieces have become more acceptable in all situations.

If our recent guide on how to not look boring at work proved anything, it’s that they can even be used to nail smart-casual without trying too hard.

Team last season’s key athleisure pieces with more tailored touches for a contemporary take on one of 2016’s biggest trends.

(Related: Everything You Need To Know About The ‘Athleisure’ Trend)

How To Wear

“Take your sports knit or sweat and tuck it into your trousers – this subtle styling tool has been seen across the menswear shows and street style snaps. Or modernise a classic suit by wearing a track top underneath. New styling techniques can modernise your look without the need for a wardrobe overhaul.”
Topman design team.

Men's Refined Athleisure/Sports Luxe Outfit Inspiration Lookbook

massimo dutti 2017 de fursac ss17 brunello cucinelli aw17 topman ss17

NAVY KNITTED BOMBER - Click to buy GREY PIQUE HOODIE - Click to buy Grey And White Track Top - Click to buy KENZO FLANNEL DRAWSTRING JOGGER - Click to buy

Printed T-Shirts

It’s isn’t just with sportswear pieces that we’re heading back in time. Last season’s overload of 1990s nostalgia meant we were all reaching for printed T-shirts. Admit it – you bought some Justin Bieber tour merch, didn’t you?

If your wardrobe now rivals Marty McFly’s, don’t panic. Slogan tees can stay, but keep it fresh by combining them with smarter attire, such as unstructured tailoring or expertly-fitted chinos, rather than layering underneath flannel shirts and distressed denim jackets.

(Related: How To Wear Prints This Summer)

How To Wear

“There’s a strong rave theme emerging in menswear at the moment, which will really begin to take hold later in the summer season. If you want to try a bold print but you’re not quite ready to go full ‘Summer of Love’, opt for something poppy and graphic in a simple grey, white or navy colourway.”
Giles Farnham, River Island Style Studio chief.

Men's Printed T-Shirts Outfit Inspiration Lookbook

scotch & soda aw16 zara aw16 i love ugly ss16 asos 2017

Men's Printed T-Shirts

SKULL CREST T-SHIRT - Click to buy AMPLIFIED Johnny Cash Eagle T-Shirt - Click to buy Rich Artwork T-Shirt - Click to buy Black New York scribble print T-shirt - Click to buy

Cuban Collars

If there was one piece we couldn’t move for last year, it was the Cuban collar shirt. Such was the influence of Mr Montana, open necklines ran the gamut from high street to high end. And rightly so – the cut can look extremely sleek and we’re happy to report it’s here to stay.

Hawaiian prints (think Baz Lurman’s Romeo + Juliet) might have calmed down, but if you picked up a muted botanical print or plain Cuban collar shirt, keep hold of it. This year, combine with a leather jacket and some slim-fit jeans for a rock ’n’ roll update of an old-school classic.

(Related: 10 Street Style Trends From Men’s Fashion Week SS17)

How To Wear

“I think Cuban collars are here to stay for a few summers because they’re practical. The best of these shirts come in cotton or linen, so light and airy on a hot day – and flattering. I’ll often recommend these collars on guys with narrow shoulders, because it makes them look broader.”
Millie Rich, Thread stylist.

Men's Cuban Collar Shirts Outfit Inspiration Lookbook

mango man ss16 m&s reiss ss17 burton ss17

J.CREW Camp-Collar Printed Silk And Linen-Blend Shirt - Click to buy BEAMS PLUS Camp-Collar Printed Cotton Shirt - Click to buy PRINTED SHIRT - Click to buy PRINTED BOWLING SHIRT - Click to buy