How to wear loafers in the winter

Classic Penny Loafers by Samuel Windsor

Classic Penny Loafers by Samuel Windsor

As the nights draw in and the winter approaches we’re stowing away our summer clothes until spring.  As a result, certain men’s shoes can seem off limits. But fear not, many of your shoes can be worn all year with the right outfit. 

The loafer is an example of a stylish shoe often ignored in the darker part of the year. But with these simple tips you can soon swap your boring winter boots for a dapper pair of loafers.

It’s probably advisable to rest up the suede, as inclement British weather will probably cause some damage. But leather loafers can easily be worn with snazzy socks and winter outfits – you just need to make sure you balance them out with streamlined and elegant outerwear. It’s best not to match them to a bulky midwinter overcoat. We’ve put together a handy guide for how to keep wearing your loafers all year round.

Loafer colours

Blue suede loafers

Blue suede loafers from Samuel Windsor

Think black and brown shoes are boring? Think again. Brown and black are both super versatile, and their neutrality means you can pair them with all sorts of outfits. Going for black or brown is also a practical choice, as they’ll hide the winter dirt your shoes will inevitably collect.

If you are wearing loafers for a Christmas party, then bend the rules slightly and team brown loafers with black trousers. It’s a great casual look because the darker shade of the trousers makes the the brown more vibrant. If you want to make a statement with a more snazzy colour try blue suede.

Make sure your loafers fit

blue black brown loafers

Loafers are made to slip on – not off.
Image source: Samuel Windsor

Whilst loafers are designed as a slip on shoe, it doesn’t mean they should slip off – getting the right fit is important. This is particularly important in the winter, chilly feet don’t need the extra pain of a poorly fitting shoe!

To avoid this, make sure the shoe fits like a glove lengthwise. If the shoe is too tight on the toes, then the leather is unlikely to loosen and you will quickly become uncomfortable.

However, when it comes to width there is a bit of room to manoeuvre. The leather will stretch sideways, but only a tad. So make sure you pick your size carefully.

Can you wear loafers with socks?

socks belt shoes

Use your socks as a style statement.
Image source: Shutterstock

Fashion aficionados will tell you that socks and loafers just don’t go. But this is hardly practical when its snowing. So can you wear socks with loafers?

In simple terms, the answer is yes. But it’s important to pick the right socks.

Because loafers are so low cut you can really show off your style. Go for a wintery pattern – maybe even Christmas socks – to make a fun filled statement that brightens up the winter.

What to wear with loafers in winter

black shoes on white background

Loafers are a snappy alternative to lace-up shoes.
Image source: Samuel Windsor

With a lot of emphasis on layering in the winter months, outfits can often get chunky, and slim footwear will look at odds to the rest of your outfit. If you’re wearing loafers, avoid big coats at all costs. A slimmer peacoat or a smart covert coat will keep you warm without the bulk, and your loafers won’t look out of place.

There are many styles of coat, and indeed many styles of loafer too. Penny loafers, tasselled loafers and buckled loafers are all perfectly at home in the winter, as long as they are made from leather.

Suede loafers don’t deal with the harsher weather as well as leather, and are harder to clean. So put some shoe trees in your suede loafers and get them out in the summer – and go sockless when you do.

Want to know more about loafers? View our illustrated guide to men’s loafers and learn all about loafer anatomy, loafer styles and loafers’ fascinating history.

Posted in How To - Shoes, Loafers, Men's shoes.


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