Jun 06, 2023

Strutting Into Success: The Best Office

What's worse than trying on jeans while your mom stands outside the fitting room handing you more jeans in a size too small? Nothing. But a pretty close experience is trying to navigate what "business casual" means and finding clothes for an internship. I’m a serial outfit repeater and wear the same sneakers every day, so I’ve had to do some extensive research to find some work shoes. Here's what I’ve found:

There are too many reasons to love kitten heels: they cover the toes (I’m not anti-feet, but toes are never the most beautiful part of anyone), elevate any outfit and are so much more comfortable than other heels. Whether the dress code is on the more formal or casual side, having a pair of kitten heels is great for daily wear as well as for company events.

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For the classic look: Sam Edelman's Bianka Slingback Pumps are well-loved and for good reason. These retail for $140, come in 11 colors and the heel height is 2.4 inches.

For some fun: Tony Bianco has great reasonably-priced heels and the Shirley Heels are no exception. They’re priced at $160 and come in four beautiful color combinations, one being a metallic silver/black combo that would have me staring at my feet all day. The bow on the side adds some flair to the classic two-tone contrast.

The cushioned soles, arch support and the ability to run freely make sneakers my favorite type of shoes. Regardless of how much I love my suede New Balances, I will not be wearing the same pair in the office because they’re so stained. For office-appropriate sneakers, I prefer sneakers made of leather so they’re easy to clean.

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For an all-white look: Nike's Court Vision Low ($75) and Sam Edelman's Ethyl Low Top Sneakers ($70) are perfect for those who like more simple designs. The Nike sneakers were my designated frat shoes freshman year so I can attest to how low-maintenance they are. No matter how dirty they got, I could get everything off with some baby wipes.

For campus and corporate: Reebok Club C 85 Vintage sneakers ($90) are perfect for any scenario, whether it's walking to a psychology lecture or zoning off in a meeting waiting for lunchtime. I love that these sneakers are something I’ll continue to wear even after the internship.

Some think they’re horrendous, some think they’re the next big thing. I was a ballet flats-only girl in elementary school (yes, I ran the mile in flats), so my mind will forever associate ballet flats with a trip to a Payless store. I will not be wearing ballet flats because of one single reason: I constantly worry, an internship is something to worry about, worry means stress, stress means sweat and sweaty feet with no socks means smelly feet. I’ll spare my coworkers this time.

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For the procrastinator: Amazon has ballet flats that are less than $20 that you can have at your doorstep in just a few days. Reviewers are shocked at how "wonderfully comfy" and cushioned these flats are.

For the Chanel flats lover: If you love the way Chanel's Cap-Toe flats look, check out Steve Madden's Ellison Natural ballet flats. Similar vibes, very different price tags.

For a pop of color: Summer screams colorful outfits. Personally, I love "ugly" greens so Everlane's Italian Leather Day flats ($145) in the color "Moss" is calling my name. My sweaty feet are the only things holding me back.

Prepping for a summer internship can be nerve-wracking and so unfamiliar. Everyone always talks about where to get blazers, blouses and trousers but not shoes when selecting the right pair is so important for comfort and style. A dress code can seem intimidating, but I promise there are many ways to let your personal style shine through. Whatever shoe you choose, I hope you step into your summer internship feeling confident. As they say, if you look good, you feel good.

For the classic look: For some fun: For an all-white look: For campus and corporate: For the procrastinator: For the Chanel flats lover: For a pop of color: