How to Wear Barefoot Shoes to a Wedding

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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 men’s barefoot dress shoes? See my full list of options here.

See all the barefoot shoe brands shown here at the end of this post!

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 you need to request no heel (and it’s not as flexible as the Vibram). See an older review of this shop here.


Unshoes Saffron metallic leather dressy sandals

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


a top down image of a pair of feet wearing be lenka barefoot grace sandals in gold to show women's dress shoe options

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*


High Feels ($149) – These beautiful, delicate dressy sandals are vegan and come in an array of metallic colors. See photos of my pair here!


Shapen Lily floral barefoot dress sandals

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!


Zaqq Barefoot Sandals

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.


softstar shoes solstice sandal aged walnut close up

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.


A top down view of a pair of feet standing on concrete wearing silver metallic Lonnies - stylish barefoot sandals for women

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.


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.


Stock image of Zeazoo Freya gold barefoot comfortable dress sandals

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!


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!


A pair of woman's legs wearing cut off jeans and beige dress flats in beige, Shapen Poppy barefoot 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 can find the Poppy at Anya’s Shop or directly from Shapen and use code ANYA5 for 5% off shoes and accessories.


Shapen Tulip with dress ankle straps

Shapen Tulip ($115) – The Tulip comes in several metallics and solids and has optional accessories like decorative clips and ankle straps. Use code ANYA5 for 5% off shoes and accessories!


Top Down view of Be Lenka Sophie gold Ballet flats with zero drop sole and anatomical foot shape.

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


Ahinsa Vegan Gold Barefoot Ballets flats with delicate strap to wear to a wedding

Ahinsa (€119) – Vegan available in silver and gold metallic as well as other solid colors and a few prints. 10% off with code ANYASREVIEWS


barefoot minimalist ballet flats

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.


softstar barefoot ballerines pewter barefoot ballet flats close up

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.


Lisbeth Joe Harare – The Harare has the cutest details. The scalloped toe and metallic accents give this ballet flat an elevated look. Use code ANYASREVIEWS for 5% off. *Almost completely out of stock now, we’re hoping they’ll be back soon!*


ZlaTush purple metallic t bar flat

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.


Groundies Bella ($130) – The Bella flat from Groundies is available in several solids including black and white, and this Rose color with metallic is particularly stunning.

You can find select Groundies styles available at Anya’s Shop


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!

Shop Xero Shoes EU here


zaqq barefoot shoes black stud minimalist ballet flats close up

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 minimalist flats wine suede close up

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 or find select colors available from Anya’s Shop!


Gea Soles Tarian sandals

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!


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.


barefoot minimalist vegan ballet flats

Dextra Perspective ( $75) – These fabric flats can be custom made in a color of your choosing. There’s a lot of potential here in getting a wide, comfy fit, but the ones I tried didn’t work out for me. See my experience here.


Botky Mechovky barefoot ballet flats close up

ElaFaustus Shoes – ($100) This shoemaker does custom shoes based on your measurements. Check out my pair here!


barefoot minimalist ballet flats

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).



barefoot minimalist ballet flats

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.

From top of the circle going clockwise: Softstar Ballerine, Zeazoo Kids Siren, Shapen Poppy, Shapen Lily, Unshoes Saffron, Savopoulos, Be Lenka Grace, High Feels, and Grecian Sandals.

Community Style Gallery

Softstar Shoes Solstice Sandal. Photo Credit: Diff Photography
Left to Right: Groundies Bella, Lisbeth Joe Harare, Softstar Ballerine
Unshoes Saffron

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Comments

9 thoughts on “How to Wear Barefoot Shoes to a Wedding”

    1. 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.

  1. Pingback: Minimal Shoes: The List

  2. 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.
    Thanks!

    1. 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.

  3. Michelle Baumgartner

    Hi Anya,
    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.
    Thanks,
    Michelle

    1. 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.

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Hi. I'm Anya.

Hi. I'm Anya.

I first discovered barefoot shoes after a long history of foot issues. By changing my footwear and strengthening my body I was able to completely transform my life. Anya’s Reviews is my way of sharing with the world that healthy feet are happy feet!

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