Wedding season is upon us! When there’s a wedding to attend many of us barefoot shoe wearers don our one pair of heels and stumble through the night, because we don’t have anything else to wear. Culturally, “dressing up” for women has long meant squeezing our bodies into uncomfortable (not to mention unhealthy!) positions, and it can feel impossible to look nice enough for these occasions without heels.
But thankfully style has fewer boundaries these days. It is 100% possible to look sleek, feminine, and statuesque while being comfortable and aligned. Everything on this list meets the standards of barefoot shoes – i.e. they are zero drop, flexible, and with a wide toe box. Not only will they not look out of place underneath your ball gown, but they’ll look stunning all on their own.
I fully believe that confidence is the sexiest thing a woman can wear. So get out there on the dance floor and flaunt those healthy feet!
P.S. Looking for fancy barefoot dress shoes for other members of the family? See my other articles here:
For the most part, the barefoot shoes that will be fancy enough to wear to a wedding are ballet flats and sandals. They are streamlined, and excellent replacements for high heels. But be ware, most flats and sandals are not completely flat or shaped like a human foot. That’s why this list should be your first stop when looking for fancy barefoot shoes!
Barefoot Wedding Sandals
Increasingly, sandals have become more appropriate for fancy occasions. As long as you select white, metallic, or a matching color these barefoot sandals will look flawless with a gown.
Grecian Sandals ($75) – Etsy -This is the most affordable option out there, and they now offer a Vibram sole on several models. Lots of pretty options! Just watch for straps that let the toes be free, and note that if you don’t get the Vibram outsole it’s not as flexible. You can read more info in my Grecian Sandals review here.
Be Lenka Grace ($130) – US/Canadians can order the Grace sandal from Anya’s Shop! The rest of the world can find these directly from Be Lenka and save 5% with code ANYASREVIEWS (returns are only accepted from within the EU and USA). For more photos and sizing help, click here!
*These will be restocked early spring 2022*
Shapen Sandals ($115) – Shapen has several styles of dressy sandals in metallic colors. You can also add decorative clips and ankle straps. Use code
ANYA5 for 10% off shoes and accessories!
Unshoes Saffron ($90) – A personal favorite! These are great sandals and look amazing. See my full review of them here and check my Insta for lots of photos! Get 10% off with code ANYA
Zaqq Handmade Sandals – Zaqq has many beautiful sandals that would look stunning with formal wear. The styles are unique and not found in other barefoot brands. See my Zaqq brand review here.
Juuri Sandals – These beauties can be mixed and matched with ties of many different colors – find one that matches your dress and have fun tying them! They are very soft and comfortable.
We will be getting them in black only at Anya’s Shop this year.
Softstar Solstice Sandal ($105) – These sandals can be customized to match the color of your dress or in a fancy metallic leather. A little bit more bulky than the above option, but still great for either a wedding guest or party member.
Savopoulos ($65) – This Etsy shop uses Vibram soles and can make their sandals heel-less by request. They have gorgeous metallic leather and lots of beautiful designs. Be prepared for a long wait time. They are a narrower option and the sole is thick, but they are some of the prettiest sandals around.
Zeazoo ($110) – Zeazoo has lots of sandal options in metallic or glittery leather perfect for special occasions! Use code ANYASREVIEWS for 5% off.
We carry several Zeazoo Sandals at Anya’s Shop in the US with worldwide shipping available!
Lonnies Sandals (€129) – These vegan sandals can be bedazzled with Swarovski crystal. They have thin, flexible soles that are secure enough to the foot you can run in them. Only ships to the EU.
There are quite a few other Etsy shops that make lovely, dress sandals. You can see my full list in my Etsy Finds post!
Barefoot Wedding Flats
Flats are having an extended style moment (thanks Tory Burch!), and are completely appropriate for black tie events. The options shown here are all barefoot friendly. Go for white, metallic or a color that matches your outfit.
For more information, check out my Guide to Barefoot Ballet Flats!
Shapen Poppy ($120) – The Poppy is a truly dressy barefoot flat. Toe box detailing helps to disguise the width and an open design elongates the legs. They are some of the most fashionable women’s barefoot shoes in existence. Read my Shapen review here! You might also like the Shapen Tulip, but I find the Poppy to be an overall better shoe.
You can find the Poppy at Anya’s Shop or directly from Shapen and use code
ANYA5 for 5% off shoes and accessories.
Softstar Ballerines ($170) – The Ballerinas are a basic flat that can be customized to match your dress. They have a regular and wide width option and are some of the best barefoot flats around. The biggest drawback (besides the cost) is that there is a canvas trim around the edge that doesn’t perfectly match the leather color. For me this makes them look more casual, but in some color options you can hardly see the trim. Read my Softstar reviews here.
Groundies Ballet Flats – Groundies makes ballet flats in several colors, including a variety of lovely neutrals! They are delightfully soft to wear, and look very sophisticated.
You can find select Groundies styles available at Anya’s Shop
Be Lenka ($130) – Save 5% with code ANYASREVIEWS (returns are only accepted from within the EU and USA). Read more about these flats in my Be Lenka 2022 Reiew
Magical Shoes Ballerina ($109) – These nude flats are very wide and the neutral color will go well under a dress if it complements your skin tone. See my review here. Use code ANYA 10% off.
Ahinsa (€119) – Vegan available in silver and gold metallic as well as other solid colors and a few prints. 10% off with code ANYASREVIEWS
The Drifter Leather flats ($100+) – These beautiful shoes are custom made and will take a long while to get to you, but the styles they have are completely unmatched. Learn more about ordering from the Drifter here and here.
Zlatush Shoes ($150) – Zlatica handmakes all her shoes and has a variety of metallic and colorful leather options. These are some of the most foot friendly dressy shoes around (unless you go custom) and I highly recommend her shop. You can see my initial thoughts on Zlatush Shoes here.
Xero Shoes Phoenix ($70) – The Phoenix knit comes in a 6 colors. The gray, red, and green tend to look more casual because of the color variations in the knit, but the black, rose, and cream could pair well with wedding attire. The Phoenix also comes in black, brown, raspberry, and teal leather ($100) here. Read my Xero Shoes Phoenix review!
Zaqq Handmade Ballerina Flats – ($130) Zaqq has a good number of flats options, more variety than you’re going to find anywhere else. And, bonus, they are ready to ship right away, so you should receive them shortly after ordering. I reviewed Zaqq boots and sneakers here, and then later tested out a pair of flats. The flats are quite a bit narrower and might not work for some people. You can see my mini review of the flats here.
The Storehouse Flats ($75)- The Storehouse Flats come in a lot of metallics and colors and conform to your foot shape after several wears (see my review here). This small shop will require planning ahead as they take preorders once a month and then fulfill those orders over a 6 week period. But for the price point and minimalist qualities are a great option. I recommend following them on Facebook and Insta to stay up to date. Use code ANYA for $5 off & a free bag
Gea Soles Tarian II Flat or Yrsa Flat ($80) – This won’t work for everyone’s formal wear, but these flats are nice and wide and you can customize the color to match the wedding party. See my Gea Soles review here, and check out my Tarian flats here!
ElaFaustus Shoes – ($100) This shoemaker does custom shoes based on your measurements. Check out my pair here!
Yosi Samra Samara 2.0 flats ($89) – These are your best bet if you are in a time crunch since they are available on Amazon (some colors are $50!), but they have the narrowest toe box of all the shoes listed here (excepting the Cinderollies below, which are comparable). I wore them for a few years, but eventually ditched them for wider toe boxes. You can buy them directly from Yosi Samra or on Zappos as well, Just keep in mind that not all Yosi Samra shoes are minimalist friendly (the ones I link to are the best option).
Cinderollies ($14) By far the cheapest formal flat out there, Cinderollies are also very minimal. The toe box is pretty small, but for the price they may be just right for a one-time fancy occasion. My review here.
So there’s really no need to torture your body with high heels for weddings or other fancy occasions! For more ways to swap out unhealthy, foot-deforming shoes for barefoot shoes, check out my Wear This, Not That series.
12 thoughts on “How to Wear Barefoot Shoes to a Wedding in 2023”
I like the look of The Storehouse Flats. Do you have enough space for your toes?
The toe box is unlined and the leather is soft and stretchy. So my toes touch the leather inside, but it doesn’t feel too tight or painful.
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Are their any high heels that are dressy that have a wide toe box ?
There might be, but I don’t cover anything that’s not zero drop so I don’t really know. This Facebook Group I created for Anya’s Reviews readers might be a good place to ask!
Which of these shoes would be best for dancing?
I am looking for a dressy pair of shoes for partner dancing (salsa, swing, etc). Sometimes it’s hard to tell how grippy the soles are. If the soles have too much grip, it’s difficult to spin and can put torque on the knees. If there’s no grip, you might slip and fall.
Another consideration is that for this type of dancing, a lot of time is spent on the ball of the foot, so the heel needs to stay on securely during that.
Finally, the toe box can’t be too wide that the foot is sliding inside of it during turns. This often happens when the sole is too grippy as well.
My first thought would be Gea Soles with a leather sole. You would also want to tell her that they are for dancing you want a close fit. There is also Dextra Perspective, she can put leather soles on her shoes and can customize them with an ankle strap and whatever you need. But she is currently on leave after the death of her father. I believe she is reopening her shop soon if you can wait a little.
How long did your High Feels take to arrive? I live in Boise, Idaho, and have a wedding to attend in September and would think I might receive them in time.
Mine got stuck in customs for a few weeks (I think 2, possibly 3). That seemed like a long time to me! I think you should be good for a September wedding.
Hi Anya! I’m headed to a wedding that will likely involve Latin dancing. Just wondering which of these you would recommend as secure enough on the foot to salsa in! Thank you for your assistance.
Hi! The Softstar Ballerine with a leather sole and a sport strap would be secure enough and good for spinning on the dance floor! Also Gea Soles, but you would want to clarify with the owner that you want a close, secure fit for dancing (she usually makes her shoes quite roomy).
Highfeels are on their last production run ever and no longer taking new orders according to their website.