3 Pairs of “Ugly” Shoes I’m Embracing This Summer

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While a lot of these styles I feature might fall within the ‘ugly’ / anti-pretty category for a big chunk of the population, I don’t wear these ironically (who’s got the energy to do that?!) To me, they strike the perfect balance between comfort, chic and cool and as I get older, I’m especially prioritising the comfort part, considering I spent a significant chunk of my 20s prioritising shoes that were pretty bad for my feet. 

Let’s get stuck right in, shall we? (…and be prepared for a lot of these styles to become wardrobe favourites)

#1 – Fisherman’s Sandals

L: Wittner sandals (also here), Arket short trench coat (sz XS – there’s a similar style from COS available in beige and navy), Arket tee (sz XS), Celine bag (watch my review here), Anine Bing skirt (sz S) (also available here), Ray Ban sunglasses; R: Wittner sandals (also here), The Curated blazer* (sz XS), Arket tee (sz S), Nobody Denim jeans (similar style here), Celine bag (watch my review here), Ray Ban sunglasses

Let’s kick off with a style that has been around for decades, but recently experienced a surge in popularity. Personally, I think fisherman’s sandals are the ultimate trans-seasonal shoe and these stylish caged sandals can be worn year round. Not only are they comfortable, but they’re an incredibly chic way to finish off your outfit. They’ve been reinvented many times over the years in leather (and also in PVC – aka jellies) and today’s styles are featured with everything from chunky lug soles to bold colours. 

I nabbed my fisherman’s sandals on sale recently from Wittner in a classic chocolate brown leather. They also come in black and I’m seriously contemplating adding those to my collection considering how comfortable they are (I’m talking Saltwater sandals comfy, and that’s saying something!). They go with everything from dresses, shorts to the good ol’ blazer + jeans combo. You’re going to see these a lot over the coming months.

I’ve linked some options below, including this boujee pair from Gucci but if you’re based in Australia like me, I’m more than happy with my pair from Wittner, also made from leather so you’re not compromising on quality.


#2 – Birkenstock Boston

blog post sharing best ugly shoe styles for summer

L: Birkenstock mules (also here and here!), Everlane blazer* (sz 0), Camilla & Marc One Shoulder Top (sz 8), Dr Denim jeans* (sz 27), Boldrini Selleria bag* via Mirta, Ray Ban sunglasses; , R: Birkenstock mules (also here and here!), Everlane shirt* (sz XS – watch my try-on of other smart casual Everlane items here), Sezane striped top (sz XS), Everlane pants* (sz US 2, Short), Boldrini Selleria bag* via Mirta, Ray Ban sunglasses

You might recall this blog post where I share how much I hated these shoes for the longest time. I thought these chunky clogs were the fugliest shoes known to mankind (equal first with Vibram FiveFingers, though my views haven’t changed on those!). I totally eat my words now and while I can’t quite pinpoint when I started to love these, the slow burn of adding these to my collection really paid off when it came to overall satisfaction. They are constantly sold out! Is it an Australian thing?! Or is it a worldwide problem?! So much so that I’ve now got two pairs in my collection, a clay pair and a taupe-ish shearling version – ensuring I can wear the Bostons year round. 


#3 – Birkenstock Arizona

collage of petite woman wearing birkenstock arizona sandals in blog post sharing best ugly shoes for summer

L: Birkenstock Arizona sandals (different colour linked), Cami NYC top (sz XS), H&M shorts (sold out), Ray Ban sunglasses, R: Birkenstock Arizona sandals, Sezane jumper (sz XS), Everlane shorts* (sz S), Senreve bag* (in-depth review here)

And finally, I couldn’t have a list like this and not include the OG of ‘ugly sandals’ – the Birkenstock Arizona. I’m now onto my third pair, this taupe suede pair – after wearing these solidly for the past 9 summers. These are as comfy as they look thanks to the spongy cork sole and the arch support. They were a polarising shoe style a few years ago but I think most people have come round to them now. I mean, it’s a real ugly duckling transformation when Manolo Blahnik has created a collection of these! I’m proud they’ve now become the beautiful swan sandals they are!


As always, thanks for stopping by!

P.S. Wardrobe favourites of mine currently on sale and my Black Friday wish list!


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