We kinda have a love/hate relationship with skinny jeans going. They’ve become a closet staple because they look amazing, but they’ve also become the bane of our existence because a lot of the time it’s hard to know exactly what to wear with them—especially when it comes to shoes. When we wear skinnies, our shoes are going to be on full display so the pressure is on to pick a pair that is perfect. But the awesome thing about this situation? From sneakers to skinny jeans with heels, the sleek style of tapered denim leaves us tons of options.
But let’s also not forget that shoes can completely change the entire ambiance of an outfit. A pair of slinky, strappy sandals or a set of chunky moto boots change the entire look and feel of an ensemble.
Click through the gallery for 20 completely different (but equally stylish) ideas on what shoes to wear with skinny jeans.
All Photos, unless otherwise noted: Imaxtree and Jenny Norris
Originally posted January 2014. Updated August 2017.
During the warmer months, there's nothing sexier than a pair of super-skinny jeans with a set of naked sandals. Naked sandals typically consist of a shoe with little more than an ankle strap and a strap across the toes; they only classify as shoes because they stay on your foot. Otherwise, they might be considered little more that foot decoration.
Photo via Song of Style
The timid need not apply: wearing thigh-high boots over skinny jeans is a bold choice indeed. The key here is to make sure you're wearing textbook skinny jeans, so the fabric doesn't bulk up under the surface of your boots. Also important: make sure your boot color contrasts sharply with the color of your jeans, lest you end up looking like you're rocking mono-leg. (Unless that's what you're going for, of course.)
Has a cape every looked this sexy? Probably not. And it's largely thanks to this gal's deep-V stilettos, which show just the right amount of toe cleavage.
Photo: Getty Images
For a decidedly hip look, top off your skinny black jeans with a set of thick socks, rolled at the ankle, and a pair of cognac lace-up Oxfords.
We're not implying that this was intentional, but we love how this gal's tasseled loafers match the color of her hair. And she's showing just the right amount of skin at her ankle.
You can't go wrong with a pair of pointy-toed loafers.
Winter white is very big right now; and there's no way to rock it better than to go all out.
To make a statement, pair a geometric printed bootie with a pair of slim trousers and a colored coat.
A muted patent leather makes for a subtle statement that adds just a hint of sheen.
This gal's cool pair of bi-tonal boots picks up the colors of both her skinnies and her leather bomber.
We love the rough-and-tumble vibe of her scuffed-up motos.
Photo via Late Afternoon
The classic black pump, done right.
A rounded toe black boot with a low heel is adds just the right amount of height to a very casual, but very stylish, look.
An excellent example of the naked sandal done right: an olive suede seems, somehow, even more neutral than a nude tone would.
Going for a more sporty appeal than dressy one is a perfectly legitimate option, of course. Slip-on sneakers are going to be all the rage this spring, but there's alway the more traditional lace-up option, too. And if the Chanel Couture show is to be believed, sneakers might just be the new heels.
No one ever said you have to go sky-high when you wear heels. This pair, which are almost (but not quite) kitten height are just as stylish as a set of gargantuan stilettos.
Photo via What I Wore
An example of socks-and-shoes done well: a pair of classic white knits under a set of low-heel black loafers.
If stiletto pumps are a bit girly for your taste, or just a bit uncomfortable for your taste, a pair of moto boots will do the trick. Black on black will ramp up your badass factor, but they will work with classic blue jeans too. And the more buckles, the better.