Shoes That Totally Incapsulate 2021

Despite the fact that runways are no longer confined to your home, the trends that have dominated closets and runways this year reflect the fact that people have still been spending quite a bit of time at home, binging television classics new and old like "Bridgerton" and "Sex and the City." Not only that, but long gone are the days when Instagram influencers held all the power when it came to trend forecasting and, well, influencing wardrobe choices. "Fashion lovers don't need to look at some Instagram influencers anymore, they prefer to layer different styles, and mix influences from digital-born trends, Netflix, musicians or video games," Brenda Otero, fashion shopping platform Lyst's cultural insights manager, told Women's Wear Daily. It sort of works in a similar way as TikTok's algorithm: bringing all your interests together."

Even though they may not be quarantining regularly, people are still opting for shoes that are equally comfortable and fashionable, like chic hiking boots and vintage-inspired basketball sneakers. Ahead, you'll find the shoe trends that have defined this past year.

Flatform sandals

Channel Lizzie McGuire by slipping on a pair of flatform sandals. These flat sandals with a chunky platform sole add a few inches and come in a variety of styles that can suit any mood. If you're seeking the more traditional take on the '90s trend, grab a pair of leather flatform sandals or, if you're feeling especially nostalgic for the era, a pair of chic flip flop flatforms, per Stylecaster. Looking for a more comfortable take on the trend? Teva makes quite a few stylish iterations of the flatform sandal that can be worn on even the most grueling hiking trips.

Retro sneakers

It Girls like Bella Hadid and Kylie Jenner have spent the majority of the past year donning retro and vintage-inspired sneakers from brands like New Balance, Reebok, Nike, and more. Wear the white Reebok Club C 85 sneakers with a pair of mom jeans for a truly retro look, or slip on a pair of New Balance 574 sneakers to elevate your style and comfort level. According to Who What Wear, retro basketball shoes, like Nike Air Jordans, have also experienced a comeback in recent months.


If you're not a fan of the wobbly, loud wooden clog, that is totally understandable. However, decades after the clog first made a major splash in fashion editorials around the world, brands like Everlane and Givenchy have created chic leather and rubber versions of the beloved shoes, per Vogue. Even Crocs fans are technically donning clogs. Pair clogs with high-rise ankle jeans or a printed silk skirt to make a statement.

Statement hiking boots

Whether you're climbing real or metaphorical mountains, one of the biggest shoe trends of 2021 insists that you must be properly equipped to climb over any obstacles, according to Refinery29. Now that you're enjoying nature more than ever, invest in a pair of hiking boots that can carry you through any sort of terrain. Brands like Ganni, Loeffler Randall, and Blundstone have created a sturdier take on the fashion hiking boot in a variety of styles that suit every sort of hiker.

Glamorous high heels

Over a decade since the second movie premiered, "Sex and the City" is returning with a brand new HBO series, "And Just Like That..." on December 9. Perhaps due to much-anticipated return of the series that has become just as iconic for its various fashion statements, glamorous high heels have been making a major comeback. Examples of this Carrie Bradshaw-inspired comeback include strappy heels with an intricate toe loop, braided heels, and high heels adorned with tasteful glitter that comes in a myriad of colors, per Harper's Bazaar.