13 Summer Shoe Trends So Good, Ariel Would Trade In Her Tail To Wear Them
Why no, it’s not too early to start shopping summer shoe trends 2020, thanks for asking! Personally, I spent pretty much all of winter daydreaming about warm-weather fashion, so the second the sun came out and my parka went away, I immediately started shopping summer shoes. Too soon? Perhaps. Do I regret it? Hell no—especially since I’m ahead of the game when it comes to predicting this summer’s trendiest footwear. Expect summery hues and sandals (groundbreaking), but get ready for a ton of new silhouettes and styles, too. Bold footwear is taking over, and I’m kissing my trusty walking sandals goodbye in favor of fashion-forward heels, mules, sneakers, and more.
Let’s start with heel trends: from kitten to flare to slim and wide shapes, we’re officially canceling boring block heels and uncomfortable stilettos. This season’s best shoes all meet somewhere in the middle, and keep things low to the ground (where feet should be, TBH) instead of sky-high. As for silhouettes, anything goes, be it an old-school Mary-Jane moment with a new-school twist, a square-toe shape with Lego-sharp edges, or a loafer so cool, you’ll wear it to work and on the weekends. Finally, texture is key to nailing the top trends, and from mesh to crochet, I can assure you there’s a lot to choose from. Read on for all the top trends to be following, and don’t be afraid to try all thirteen. Thirteen pairs of shoes is not too many, and I’ll help you argue with anyone who disagrees. Viva la sandals!
1. Kitten Heels
The heels of summer 2020 aren’t particularly long, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t cute AF. Short and sweet kitten heels are in, and because they’re far more comfortable than taller heels, it’s a win-win all around. Snag these Villa Rouge Ridley Slides for some colorful flair.
2. Square Toe
While extra-pointed toes are still in style, square-toed shapes will slowly but surely take over this summer. Styles like the Jaggar Scallop Croc Heel Slides make the look too cool to resist! Bottom line, any and all shoe silhouettes this season require a bold, defined toe shape. No semi-rounded, half-committed toes will do.
My Dr. Scholl’s shoes are some of the most comfortable footwear I own, so when I found out they made cute, on-trend loafers, I was over the moon. Loafers are the working girl’s go-to for a day of running around and still looking stylish, and the Faxon Loafer in Snake Print Leather gives any look a fun pop of pattern.
5. Slim Block Heel
ICYMI, wedges aren’t big this year, but that doesn’t mean skinny stiletto heels are your only option. This summer, a slim, wide heel will be in style—it looks almost as if you’ve cut off a vertical chunk of your block heel, leaving just the back sliver to support your shoe. Try the botkier Emily Mules in Cognac and see if you fall in love with this unique silhouette.
6. Super Strappy
When I say I have literal dreams about Kat Marconi’s Spring/Summer 2020 footwear collection, I’m in no way being dramatic. The lineup is full of eye-catching colors and chunky fantasy shapes, but the super-strappy pairs are the most on-trend of the season. Treat yourself to the Pari Highlighter Strappy Slide Sandals and prepare for endless compliments.
7. Sporty Sandals
Sorry, but you can’t wear your chunky dad sneakers to the beach. It’s all good, though, because sporty sandals will totally fill the sneaker-sized hole in your heart—and your wardrobe. Pair the Fila Disruptor Sandal with your best street style look or a cute bikini and denim shorts for a funky flex.
When you’re busy frolicking from the beach to the bar, who has time to buckle their sandals or lace up their espadrilles? Throw-em-on-and-go slingback are huge this season, and the Who What Wear Perla Sandal is what white summer sandal dreams are made of.
Jonathan Simkhai and Kate Middleton both showed a ton of crochet details in their Spring/Summer 2020 collections, so the trend will definitely be alive and well this season. Try the Fergalicious Samba Flat Sandal in Yellow for an unexpected pop of color and texture.
10. Flared Heel
A flared heel starts skinny and gets wider at the bottom—think of it as yet another fashion-forward happy medium between uncomfortable stilettos and chunky block heels. The Jeffrey Campbell Mr-Big Mules in Blue have the perfect flare heel, but I’m also awarding bonus points for the stunning shade of cornflower blue, another big trend this summer.
If Mary-Jane shoes seem too sweet and boring, it’s time you feast your eyes on the new Mary-Janes. Styles like these employ the OG’s classic strap, but utilize stiletto heels, bold colors, and fun patterns to make the look 2020-friendly. The ASOS DESIGN Strallen Mary-Janes in Pink Gingham are a personal fave.
12. Cowboy Boots
I don’t care if you’ve never been to the South—it’s time to invest in some cowboy boots. Wear them with flow boho dresses, pastel two-piece sets, or denim cutoffs and crop tops for an unexpected twist with an edgy, Western vibe. I’ve been drooling over the Jeffrey Campbell Dagger Boots ever since I first laid eyes on them. The only thing cooler than a cowboy boot, you ask? A crisp, all-white cowboy boot. Swoon.
13. Thong Sandals
Somehow, the flip flop is getting a very fancy upgrade. Toe thongs and separators are in fashion this summer, and styles like the Vince Camuto Marlinda Kitten Heel Flip Flop are making them look elegant AF. Ditch your $1 flip flops and splurge on a more elevated take this season—you deserve it!
Our mission at STYLECASTER is to bring style to the people, and we only feature products we think you’ll love as much as we do. Please note that if you purchase something by clicking on a link within this story, we may receive a small commission of the sale and the retailer may receive certain auditable data for accounting purposes.