Monday, May 20, 2024

How to Choose the Right Leather Shoes to Buy

Your footwear says a lot about you. It’s an important part of your outfit and overall style. 

One way to upgrade your footwear is to invest in leather shoes. Leather shoes are a timeless piece of footwear that can add a lot to your style.

But how do you choose the right leather shoes? This is an important question since leather shoes come in a large variety and they tend to be more expensive than other types of shoes. 

Though choosing the right pair of leather shoes can be difficult, it doesn’t have to be if you know what to look for. In this guide, we’ll go over everything you need to consider when buying a new pair of leather shoes.

Let’s get started!

  1. Determine the purpose of the leather shoes

The first step is to establish how you will use your new leather shoes. Will they be used as casual street shoes, only for work, or for formal events like weddings and graduations?

However you want to use your new leather shoes is fine. Just be clear with yourself on what it will be so you know what to look for.

  1. Set a budget

Set a budget early on for what you’re willing to spend on a new pair of leather shoes. This helps in two primary ways:

First, it allows you to immediately narrow down your options to only those leather shoes in your price range, eliminating a lot of unnecessary shopping in the process.

Second, it helps you stick to your financial goals. You don’t want to overspend on your leather shoes only to leave yourself unable to pay for your rent, groceries, or other important expenses.

  1. Prioritize quality

Shoe quality should be a top priority when buying leather footwear. You may not be able to afford top-of-the-line shoe models, but you can still buy from reputable brands.

Check online reviews and ratings to compare different brands and shoe models. See what other customers have to say about them.

Another way to ensure you buy quality is to check where the shoe brand sources its materials. They should use quality tanneries that have been certified as environmentally friendly. That means they follow strict standards when it comes to water usage, supply chain transparency, fair labor, and other Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) factors.

  1. Consider the type of leather

Next, consider the types of leather you have to choose from. Though by no means an exhaustive list, here are some common leather types you might consider:

  • Full-grain leather. This is considered the highest-quality leather. It uses the outside of the animal’s hide just below the hair and isn’t buffed or sanded. 
  • Pebbled leather. This is named for its raised, pebble-shaped texture. The pebbled texture adds additional depth and character to the leather.
  • Nubuck leather. This has a velvety surface that feels soft. It’s a nice leather for semi-formal shoes that aren’t formal but aren’t quite casual either.
  • Suede leather. This has a classic appeal made famous, in part, by the rock and roll song “Blue Suede Shoes” covered by Elvis Presley. It has a buttery-soft surface and requires little to no time to break in because it comes from thinner leather hides.
  • Italian leather. This is considered the softest, most skillfully crafted leather, and can be quite expensive as a result. Its leather is extremely pliable. 
  1. Settle on a leather color and texture

Once you’ve narrowed down the type of leather you want, consider what leather color and texture you prefer. 

Leather comes in all sorts of (mostly neutral) colors: black, white, brown, grey, nude, and more. Choose one that best suits your style.

The same goes for texture. You could go for a rough texture or a smooth one. Whatever floats your boat.

  1. Get the right fit

Of course, you wouldn’t want to buy a pair of leather shoes that don’t fit. So make sure you know your foot’s size. If you don’t, have your feet measured at a shoe store or learn how to do it on your own.

  1. Choose a style that matches your personality

Lastly, it’s important to choose a leather shoe that fits your taste. Go with one that matches your personality. If you’re worried about versatility, choose a more neutral pair of leather shoes so you can wear them with many different outfits (this can be especially important when it comes to women’s leather shoes).

The bottom line

At the end of the day, the choice of what pair of leather shoes to buy is up to you. But by following the tips listed above, you’re more likely to get a pair that you’ll be happy with for the long term. So choose carefully.

Above all, make sure you love the pair of leather shoes you pick out. There’s no point in buying something you don’t like. 

Lindsey Ertz
Lindsey Ertz
Lindsey, a curious soul from NY, is a technical, business writer, and journalist. Her passion lies in crafting well-researched, data-driven content that delivers authentic information to global audiences, fostering curiosity and inspiration.

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