There is a mindboggling amount of different types of shoes in endless variations of shape, color and style. Which ones should you wear?

Well, that depends on the occasion. Not only are not all shoes created equal, but they also have to fulfill a purpose.

Beach Holidays

When going to the beach, it is crucial to pick the right footwear. Go with the simple flip-flop. It is a cheap and versatile choice that is supremely comfortable and should be a no-brainer.

You can take them on and off in a second, your feet will not get hot, and you can quickly rinse the sand away. Keep in mind that other shoes might be comfortable, say light sneakers, but the beach is an aggressive environment for almost all materials.

The sand will get everywhere and not only chafe your feet, but also damage the shoes. Salt water will also ruin materials and good luck not getting your fancy shoes wet on the beach!

So save your good shoes for…

Black Tie Occasions

This is one of the most formal dress codes that you can be obliged to wear and it goes without saying that there is a perfect type of shoe to go with it.

If you get invited to a black tie event, you have to wear polished black oxfords. The classic leather shoe does not only sharp, but the polished finished is guaranteed to make you feel affluent and a part of high society.

Other classic designs go well with a tux, say a double monk, but this is a matter of tradition. If it says black-tie, you go black tie.

However, if you know that the people at the event are not going to take the dress code by the letter, feel free to experiment with other classic leather shoes. Just don’t be that one guy in sneakers unless it’s a…

Casual Dinner

If you are going to dinner with your friends or significant other to a nice restaurant, consider putting on some designer sneakers. They combine a degree of comfort with a stylish look.

You will look hip in any place, but if you decide to go for a walk or have to spend a lot of time on your feet, you will not be punished for it. Designer sneakers are all the rage and almost every fashion house has a wide selection for any wallet and taste.

When buying them, don’t just consider the style. Models made out of leather generally look fancier and will last you longer.

Although, you might want to consider lighter shoes made out of canvas and more breathable synthetic materials if you live in a place with a hot climate.

This also applies for doing…

Sports

Yes. This might seem basic. However, if I had a dollar for every time I saw someone jog in totally inappropriate shoes, I would have had a gold statue of the Nike swoosh in my back yard by now.

Every sport has a specific type of shoe designed for it. It is not just a money grab by the sports clothing manufacturers. The right sneaker can make a difference in performance and help you avoid injury.

Also, just because a shoe looks remotely like a sneaker, does not mean it is made for sports. A lot of footwear sold in sports stores is just lifestyles oriented.

They are comfortable for walking around, but you will quickly find out the pain of blisters and sore feet if you attempt to do any serious sports in them. This also applies to…

Tourist Trips

If you are going to spend the day walking around a beautiful city and sightseeing, you need comfortable shoes. Forget style and fashion.

When you spent four hours hitting the cobblestones on the streets of Florence, trust me, you don’t care what brand or color your shoes are.

They just have to be comfortable. Many people opt for hiking shoes, but that is not an ideal choice unless it is chilly outside. Go for your jogging sneakers.

They are designed specifically to give you comfort and support over long periods of time. If you already have a pair that you use, good, but if you go to buy a new one, ask the sales assistant to recommend you a model with maximum support and suspension.

With the right shoes, you will be walking on clouds, even if you’re not…

Flying

For travelling, especially if you are going long-distance flights, you are guaranteed to spend a long time walking around the terminal.

Also, when in the air for a while, your feet will tend to swell up a bit. You need comfortable shoes to make the already uncomfortable experience of flying more tolerable. As with a tourist trip, go for jogging shoes. However, as you will be spending all your time indoors or on a plane, pick the lightest summer models.

Remember not to tie the shoes too snuggly to promote circulation. Many people choose to fly in flip-flops or sandals. This might seem like a good idea, but consider that airports and planes are not the most hygienic of places.

Also, it can get cold and drafty in an airplane. Remember this, because the same shoes you wore driving there may not be comfy on the flight!

And speaking of driving, there’s a shoe style for that, too.

Driving

For everyday driving you probably don’t need anything special. If you expect to spend a long time behind the wheel, sneakers are the way to go.

However, if you want so be comfortable on a long drive and come out of the car looking dapper, considering getting a pair of driving shoes.

This has nothing to do with sport, but more with cabriolets and the south of France. A driving shoe is a classic European design that is quite timeless.

Basically, it is a slightly altered moccasin that has an accented grip on the heel of the shoe.

Look up Tods. They make a gorgeous selection of driving shoes. This style of shoe is a perfect blend of comfort and style.