Shoes are the most important part of an outfit.

They tie a look together and usually determine how smart or casual your appearance is. Shoes are also extremely important in that they’re often used to build an outfit, starting from the shoes and working your way upwards.

They are incredibly versatile, and also essential in terms of comfort. However, unfortunately, the summer season makes it difficult to wear the big heavy boots and warm, high top leather sneakers we’ve been rocking all winter, without looking as miserable as a husky in the sun. That’s why, we at Frapress have come up with a list of 4+1 essential shoes every man should own for summer:

1) The white leather sneaker:

Now although leather isn’t the best material for the summer season, the white leather sneaker is still a great choice. White is a choice that is very easy to build around, especially in the summer when we’re switching to a more colourful wardrobe and putting away the blacks, the browns and the navies we’d been wearing all winter. In addition,  the quintessential white leather sneaker, the Stan Smith, is low cut, with perforation in the side for increased breathability as well as great comfort that can be dressed up with chinos and a blazer or dressed down with a pair of joggers.

 2) The canvas sneaker:

Canvas is the king of materials in the summer, lightweight, and incredibly breathable, it’s not a surprise that canvas sneakers are a top pick. A couple of timeless, classic sneakers such as the vans old skools or the chuck taylors work great for the summer time. Suggestions : steer away from hi tops as those can get a little bit more stuffy, and opt for a dash of colour if you’re feeling adventurous

 3) Espadrilles/ Sandals

We’ve added these two options together because they achieve the same sort of purpose. Both are incredibly lightweight and breathable sneakers that should essentially only be worn in the summer.

Espadrilles are the more established option, offering maximum functionality, whereas sandals are increasingly in Vogue recently. Look at options from Toms and Birkenstock for a classic take on either of these iconic summer shoes.

4) Loafers

The first three options have been predominantly casual, so our last two picks are for the man who likes to dress a little smarter or who is looking perhaps for a more comfortable option to wear to work. Loafers are extremely comfortable when broken in, incredibly durable and easily paired with trousers and a blazer. Whilst not the most formal of footwear options, loafers are several cuts smarter than sneakers and an easy way to set yourself apart from your peers. A penny loafer is the safest bet, but for the more adventurous a tassel loafer might be worth the try, as those are trending at the moment.

5) Brogues/Derbies:

The dressiest option. Brogues are essentially Oxford shoes with perforations. The more perforation, the less formal the shoe is, but also the more breathable and better suited for summer it is. Brogues also come in funkier colour palettes, so if you’re feeling adventurous, have a look at some spectator shoes.

Brogues have generally quite a narrow fit, so if you have wider feet you’re better off getting a Derby, which are dress shoes designed with men with wider feet in mind. The key to a successful summer dress shoe is color and material.

Even an Oxford shoe can be a good bet in the summer if it is suede instead of leather, and is a more summer-y color, such as tan.

Author, Nicholas Darwin Short