If you’re paying attention to trends you may have noticed that classic white sneakers are popping up all over the place. Today, you can wear them with just about anything and I am here for it.
Remember Melanie Griffith in Working Girl, taking the ferry into the city, with her white sneakers, socks, and pantyhose? That’s not what we’re talking about, but, gosh I love that movie. I wanted to be the nice version of Sigourney Weaver, and marry Harrison Ford, or someone like him.
Anyway, this new way of incorporating sneakers into everyday looks is less a trend and more a movement. It wasn’t so long ago that corporate dress codes demanded women wear stocking and heels. Sneakers becoming prevalent on the weekends at work, and beyond is not only a byproduct of a more casual environment but also a reflection of more women in leadership both at the helm of retail and at large.
Don’t get me wrong, I happily wear a good heel. It’s just nice to see that it can be a choice and not a requirement. And that we don’t have to literally walk around in pain to do our jobs. Personally, I love the look of taking a sporty sneaker, and wearing it with a more formal piece. It feels fun and approachable.
The Best Classic White Sneakers for Women
One of the lesser talked about sides of the fashion industry that I enjoy is trend tracking. Part of my job is to notice the emergence of a trend and be able to predict what will have longevity and what will come and go.
With icons like Serena Williams wearing sneakers under her gown to both the most recent royal wedding and the Met Ball early this month, and sneakers showing up in high fashion street style, you can tell blending comfort and style is going to continue to trickle down to the mainstream.
Tips for Wearing White Sneakers
Recently a popular LA-based blog I follow did a round up of classic white sneakers for women, and their recommendations were ridiculous. Do you have $495 for a pair of kicks? I sure don’t. And if I did, I still wouldn’t spend $500 on sneakers.
Prices that are outrageous for the sake of being outrageous bothers me. There are some shoes that if you do spend $500 on, are gorgeous, high-quality and will last you years so your price per wear will be reasonable. But after a certain price point, expensive sneakers are expensive purely for vanity purposes. Frankly it’s just a dumb way to spend your money.
The post did, however, inspire me to create my own version for people who live in the real world. Before we start, a few things to remember:
- Consider these “dress” sneakers. Do not take them to the gym and do not try to wear your gym sneakers in their place.
- You want them to be all white. Avoid bright logos and accents. The whiter the more fresh and crisp they will look.
- Pair them with any bottom except bootcut jeans or pants. For bootcuts to look their best, they need some kind of heel to help elongate your leg. If you wear a bootcut jean with a sneaker of any kind you’ll look frumpy and dated.
- They look especially polished with skirts and dresses, you can wear them with jeans, a tee and a blazer, and depending on your personal style and industry, I’ve seen them worn with a colorful suit and look incredibly chic.
- Keep them as simple as possible. You want a slim and low profile. They should feel light when you wear them and they should also feel lightweight within your outfit. Anything too clunky won’t work.
Classic White Sneakers for Women All Under $150
I set our budget at $150, most of these are well under. Within that price range there are lots of options. Below are my top picks:
If you are sporty:
For a classic, sporty style for under $60 Nike makes a canvas sneaker that will work with leggings, ankle length jeans or casual dresses. They are ideal for weekends, or busy casual days.
If you like being on trend:
Veja makes a leather low top for $150. They are super polished and will go with anything. These are especially nice with jeans and a blazer. The contrast between the formal feeling blazer and the athletic inspired sneakers looks so cool. I like these for traveling, especially if you have an overseas trip with a lot of walking on the agenda, and you want to be comfortable but still chic.
If you are classic:
Superga became famous when Kate Middleton starting wearing them. They are cute, comfortable, and under $70. (Royals – there just like us!) Much like the Duchess, I like them with dark skinny jeans and a striped boatneck top. They’re just a great everyday sneaker.
If you are modern but traditional:
For a classic spring and summer shoe, these Keds are on sale at Nordstrom Rack. They have a navy detail to them, so not exactly all white, they are sweet if you are a jeans and tee shirt kind of girl. I like this all white verson in a more current style than a traditional Ked. They are $55 and the best value of the bunch.
If you just want to give them a try:
Finally, ASOS has a simple, clean, pretty much perfect pair for $30. They also go with anything. For the price, you’re not going to get super comfort and longtime wear (go for the Keds instead) but they’ll serve their purpose for the season if you are on the fence about the look.