What Shoes To Wear To A Wedding: Best Pairs

To know what shoes to wear to a wedding, you must know the appropriate pair for every type of wedding. By distinguishing the proper wedding shoes for every familiar wedding venue and formality, you can easily decide what to wear when invited as a guest. 

This style guide will recommend different wedding shoes for indoor, outdoor, and destination weddings. But for female guests who don’t like heels, we also wrote a separate recommendation on how to wear flat shoes to a wedding

what shoes to wear to a wedding


What Shoes To Wear To A Wedding: Wedding Shoes To Wear For Every Kind Of Wedding


Shoes for an indoor wedding

Indoor weddings are probably the most popular type of wedding. The venue is held at a hall, hotel, church, or a rentable location for events. 

Typically, indoor weddings are black tie and formal, but it’s also possible for some couples to have a semi-formal dress code. But regardless, the indoor location presents no challenge with the terrain, so any formal or dress shoe would be appropriate. 

Female guests can wear the following shoes to an indoor wedding, depending on the wedding theme, dress code, and their chosen wedding outfit:

  • Clogs
  • Mules
  • Loafers
  • Moccasins
  • Pumps
  • T-straps
  • Wedge
  • Kitten heels
  • Slingbacks
  • Ankle-straps
  • Peep-toes
  • Platforms

Male guests to an indoor formal or black-tie wedding can wear the following shoes, depending on the theme, dress code, and their wedding attire:

  • Oxfords
  • Wingtips
  • Monkstrap
  • Loafers
  • Derby


Appropriate shoe type for outdoor weddings 

If the wedding is held outdoors, guests should wear something comfortable but appropriate for the formality and dress code. For example, consider if the wedding will be in a garden where you need something grass-friendly, in the desert where you’ll encounter sand and rocks, camp with soil and uneven terrain, and so on. 

Usually, outdoor weddings are dressy casual, or semi-formal. Women can wear heels, but it’s better to choose lower heel heights or wedge types, while male guests might get away with a pair of dressy sneakers or boots. 

To know what shoes to wear besides the ones mentioned, try these pairs and adjust according to the wedding formality:

  • Dressy sneakers
  • Chelsea boots
  • Brogues
  • Chukka 
  • Loafers
  • Boats
  • Desert boots
  • Dressy sandals (e.g., closed-toe or open-toed)
  • Dressy flats
  • Loafers
  • Moccasins
  • Kitten heel
  • Wedge
  • Oxfords
  • Monks
  • Ankle boots


Wedding shoes for a beach wedding

Another type of wedding where the wedding guest shoe requires planning is the beach wedding. For example, high-heeled shoes for women can be potentially dangerous in the sand, while some men’s shoes may have sand quickly enter them and make them uncomfortable. 

But before you go for flip-flops or trainers, note that you’re still attending a wedding. Check the wedding invitation as it might even allow barefoot, especially if it’s a boho wedding, but it’s also possible for the couple to require a formal dress code. 

Try these pairs for a beach wedding, then consult anyone close to the couple if you’re unsure:

  • Sandals
  • Espadrilles
  • Slip-ons
  • Loafers
  • Boat
  • Closed laces
  • Wedge
  • Sneakers

You can also read what shoes to wear for a beach wedding for a more in-depth guide. 


Can I Wear Sneakers As A Wedding Guest?

Depending on the venue and dress code, guests can wear sneakers at some weddings. But, of course, sneakers would be inappropriate for formal and black-tie events, and some wedding venues require the guests to wear dressy shoes instead of sneakers and trainers. 

Another thing to remember is the color, type, and style of sneakers. Avoid too eye-catching sneakers or are more appropriate to wear to the mall or gym. 

Consider plain-colored and essential sneakers so they’ll still be easy to style up and match the wedding formality. If you’re a member of the groomsmen, talk with the others to have a cohesive look. 


Is It Okay To Wear Sandals To A Wedding?

It’s okay to wear sandals to a wedding because there are dressy sandals. However, you don’t want to wear casual sandals as if you’ll be strolling at the park.

Boho, beach, rustic, and outdoor weddings are examples of weddings where guests can wear sandals. But of course, remember to choose a wedding outfit that follows the wedding dress code. 


Is It Okay To Wear White Shoes To A Wedding?

The color white is traditionally meant for brides only, so wearing this color at someone’s wedding is deemed disrespectful. But for accessories such as shoes or bags, white is acceptable. 

Just keep in mind the style of the white shoes, so they don’t look like bridal wedding shoes. If you’re part of the bridal party, you don’t want to stand out as the only one wearing white shoes. 


Do I Have To Wear Heels On My Wedding Day?

Bridal wedding shoes are not limited to heels. Brides can also wear flats, boots, or even sneakers, whichever they feel confident and comfortable in. 

Furthermore, the shoes usually don’t show anyway because the wedding gown is long. So if you don’t feel like wearing heels, go for it. 



And that’s it! To recap what shoes to wear to a wedding, consider the wedding venue and formality. 

Women are not limited to heels, and men can sometimes wear sneakers or boots at some weddings. Let us know below your favorite shoe to wear when attending a wedding.

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