Today’s blog post is about picking the right heels to wear to work. In this guide, I’ll cover everything from the most fashionable designer work heels released this season to deciding which heel height best suits your needs. Read on for my all-rounder guide on styling yourself for work in 2023!
What colour heels are appropriate for the office?
Most brightly coloured heels are too bold for the typical office job. Keeping it simple with neutral colours like black, grey, brown and nude is a safer option. Occasionally, muted darker shades of red, green or blue are appropriate styles for work. However, black designer heels are my favourite option since they can be adapted to so many occasions outside of work – the universal glam is worth the price!
What heel height is appropriate for the office?
There are several factors to take into account when choosing which heel height is best for the office:
- Is your job sedentary? If you spend the majority of the day seated, you can probably afford to rock higher heels. On the other hand, if you tend to have busier days, it’s better to walk with confidence than to feel uncomfortable in a very high heel.
- Do you commute a long way to work? You won’t want to rush to catch a train or scale a lot of stairs in very high heels!
- What is your office culture like? If you work in a more conservative environment, it might be best to reflect that aesthetic in your work uniform. However, you should always prioritise wearing what makes you feel the most comfortable.
That said, if you decide to wear your heels to work, I would suggest to go up to 70-100mm (2.7-3.9 inches) heel height. Since I’m used to wearing high heels, I tend to wear 100mm heels most days, but if you are a beginner at wearing heels, you can start with kitten and block heels before graduating to high heels! Many designers produce lower versions of the same heels, so there’s something for everyone. If you’re unsure which height range your heels fall into, be sure to check out my blog post on measuring heel heights for a quick and easy guide.
How to get used to wearing heels to the office
Before we jump into my office heel recommendations, let’s cover some basic advice on office wear and wearing heels to work. :
- My main reminder for those wearing higher heels to work for the first time is to know your boundaries well. Wearing heels every day for a long workday can seriously damage the muscles in your legs and feet.
- When you’re getting used to the first few weeks of wearing heels, consider bringing an alternative pair of flat pumps or kitten heels as a backup.
- High heels don’t match every office outfit, so it’s perfectly fine to experiment with other types of shoes.
- I would also recommend practising wearing your work heels around your home or on a short outing – this way you’ll be prepared to strut with confidence during the work week!
Most iconic designer office shoes
Here are my personal favourites and top picks for the best designer office shoes:
- Hot Chick Pumps by Louboutin – these 100mm patent leather heels have a distinctly pronounced arch and a beautiful deep décolleté. They are available in black, white and nude as well as in an alternative slingback style for the summer.
- Kate Pumps by Louboutin – the patent leather 100mm Kate Pumps feature an elegant pointed toe and can easily be styled with any work outfit.
- Rockstud Patent Pumps by Valentino – these glossy patent leather 100mm stilettos feature three ankle straps embossed with Valentino’s signature pyramid stud, creating a contemporary and bold office heel look.
- Satin Hangisi Pump by Manolo Blahnik – Manolo Blahnik pumps are known for being extravagant, so these shoes might not be an everyday option. But I think these gorgeous silk satin stilettos embellished with a Hangisi buckle can be brought out every once in a while!
Comfortable heels for work
In this section, I’ll recommend some more comfortable heels for those who are more active during the average workday!
- Love Pump by Jimmy Choo – Jimmy Choo modernises the typical pointed-toe patent shoe with a glamorous gold JC logo embellishment at the top of the heel. These heels are a little wider at the toe, making for a much more comfortable fit.
- Suede Gianvito Pumps by Gianvito Rossi – these simple suede 85mm pumps offer a flattering low-cut top line and elegant pointed toe. They’re also a comfier alternative to my 100mm heel picks.
- Kate Pointed Toe Pumps by Louboutin – the gorgeous Kate Pumps are also available with a smaller 85mm heel in a burnished leather finish.
Black work heels
Here are a few of my top recommendations for stylish black work heels!
- Romy Pumps by Jimmy Choo – a pair of simple suede pumps with a classic pointed toe (made in Italy with sustainable leather!)
- Anja Pumps by YSL – these smooth leather stiletto heels with a low-cut vamp are available in two heel sizes.
- Anny Heels by Stuart Weitzman – classy stiletto court heels with pointed toes and a sleek V-cut vamp.
Boot heels for work
These gorgeous work boots are perfect for staying warm during Autumn and Winter while still looking fabulous.
- Clara Ankle Boots by Malone Souliers – leather ankle boots with signature curved toplines and eye-catching straps across the toes.
- Enriette Boots by Giuseppe Zanotti – chunky-heeled ankle boots embellished with a golden metal ‘Logozalì’ detail.
- Yoz The Lips Boots by Christian Louboutin – veau velours ankle boots featuring a bold gold chain detail on the zipper.
Block heels for work
Work shoes with a thicker heel so that you can stay stylish without sacrificing comfort!
- Mid-heel Pumps by Gucci – preppy sculpted block heels with a square toe, beautifully embellished with Gucci’s iconic gold horsebit.
- Piper Pumps by Gianvito Rossi – simple black suede shoes with a pointed toe.
Kitten heels for work
Kitten heels are shorter heels that are perfect for those who are new to wearing heels to work:
- V-Logo Pumps by Valentino – smooth leather pumps adorned with a sleek Valentino logo on the pointed toe.
Summer work heels
You may be wondering what type of heels are appropriate to wear during the warmer months. In my experience, many offices find sandals and other open-toed shoes to be too unprofessional to wear to the office. I opt for a slingback heel style to balance a polished look with a more breathable design. Here are some of my favourite slingback heels for work.
- Buckled Slingback Heels by Gucci – these sculpted block heels in patent black feature Gucci’s quintessential gold horsebit.
- V-Logo Slingback Pumps by Valentino – Valentino’s strappy kitten heels are adorned with a stand-out gold Valentino logo on the toe.
- Logo Plaque Pumps by Prada – minimalist brushed leather pumps with a pointed toe and Prada’s sleek triangle logo on the toe.
How to wear neutral heels to the office
I would suggest avoiding brightly coloured shoes or excessively embellished heels. Of course, some office environments allow for bolder styles, but you can still create a stunning look without drawing too much attention. As I said before: neutral colours and heels under 100mm are your best friend!
How to silence heels in the office
There’s nothing more awkward than walking into a silent office and disturbing the quiet with loudly clacking stilettos! Luckily, I have a great tip for making your favourite heels quieter: simply have your heels altered by a cobbler. Most heels can be taken to a cobbler to have rubber caps applied to the heels or non-slip gel cushions added to the soles, making the shoes much quieter.
That concludes my guide on designer work shoes. I hope you found my advice helpful or even found your dream office shoes in my recommendations. If you’d like to get a closer look at my favourite designer office pumps, check out my Youtube video where I show off some of the heels from this blog post. As usual, let me know in the comments below if there are any specific topics you’d like me to cover in future blog posts. See you in the next blog post!