Blog & Season Trends

Shoes Demystified: A simple guide for formal shoes for men

20 July 2016

If you ask a man about formal shoes, he’ll probably tell you that they are boring and all look the same. Some people might even say that formal shoes are difficult to understand. This guide will help you understand formal shoes and what to look for when buying them. While this guide is for men, we welcome women to read it as well. And worry not ladies; we will help you as well soon.


We always say that there is a perfect pair of shoes for everybody; you just have to find your style. And don’t forget: the right pair of shoes can last many years, so think of it as a good investment.

There are several types of men formal footwear:


Brogue – It is a style of low-heeled shoe or boot traditionally characterised by multiple-piece, sturdy leather uppers with decorative perforations and serration along the pieces' visible edges.


Oxford – This is one of the most versatile styles. It is characterized by shoelace eyelets tabs that are attached under the vamp, a feature termed "closed lacing"


Derby – This style is characterized by quarters with shoelace eyelets that are sewn on top of the vamp. This construction method, also known as "open lacing", contrasts with the Oxfords.


Monk – Considered to be a half-way for both the Oxford and Derby styles, this type of shoe doesn’t have lace, featuring instead a strap with single or double buckle closure.


Loafer – These shoes are typically low, lace less shoes. The style most commonly seen is based on moccasins.


Dress Boot – Similar to the Oxford style, rising over the ankle. This style features laces.


Chelsea boot – Very versatile, can be used both in formal and casual events. It is lace less.


Moccasins - A moccasin is made of soft leather, consisting of a sole and sides made of one piece of leather, stitched together at the top.


So, what should you look for when buying them?


With so many brands and styles it is very easy to get overwhelmed. When buying shoes, make sure you follow these tips:


- Buy leather shoes. It is better for the health of your feet as it lets them breathe;

- Make sure the sole of the shoes is stitched, not glued, to the shoe;

- Try several sizes options

- Use the same type of socks you’ll be using when wearing the shoes;

- Make sure the shoes fit nicely – don’t accept if the seller says “They’ll break in later on”;

- Buy shoes at the end of the day, when your feet are swollen, so you don’t buy shoes that are too tight for you;

- Try to buy good quality leather or high-end calf – although more expensive immediately, it will be less expensive taking care of them than buying new shoes every couple of years.


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Note: All shoes belong to the Campobello brand.


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