Ballet Flats Are Back and Better Than Ever

It's time to appreciate the polished minimalism of the humble ballet flat, because they've never actually gone out of style!

Ballet Flats Are Back and Better Than Ever
woman wearing white and black ballet flats with a scarf tied around one ankle and blue pants standing in the street
Ballet flats never go out of style. Jeremy Moeller/Getty Images

Shoe trends come and go, but I’m forever convinced that ballet flats are a wardrobe staple that never go out of style. While the polished and oh-so-flattering shoe was definitely a mainstay of early aughts style (often paired with a cut-off skirt, cigarette jeans or any form of those business casual going out ensembles that, for some reason, absolutely dominated nighttime looks for far too long), the right ballet flat transcends fashion fads. The balletcore trend, however, has resulted in a renewed appreciation for the humble ballet flat.

Sign Up For Our Daily Newsletter

By clicking submit, you agree to our <a rel="noreferrer" href="http://observermedia.com/terms">terms of service</a> and acknowledge we may use your information to send you emails, product samples, and promotions on this website and other properties. You can opt out anytime.

See all of our newsletters

Ballet flats are elegant and minimalist, but that doesn’t mean they’re boring. A classic leather ballet flat is a must-have component of any capsule wardrobe, but there are also plenty of elevated and creative takes on the shoe, whether it’s an unexpected colorway, embellished detailing or unique fabric.

Ballet flats can be dressed up or down; you can wear a traditional black leather or perhaps a cream-colored or tan pair every day, and opt for a pair with sparkling crystals or a satiny finish for a more formal occasion. Ballet flats are a lovely alternative to sandals in the summer, but they’re also a great transition season shoe, especially in the time inching towards fall, when you might want to stow away those open-toed shoes but aren’t quite ready to pull out the boots just yet, or at the start of spring, when it’s getting warmer but not within open-toe shoe time. Below, see the best ballet flats for every style preference, that you’ll find yourself turning to time and time again.

Subscribe to Observer’s Lifestyle Newsletter

All products featured are independently selected by Observer editors. When you buy something through our links, we may earn an affiliate commission that supports our work.

The Best Ballet Flats for Women

  • point toe mary jane ballet flat
    Rothy's.

    Rothy's The Point Mary Jane

    These ultra-comfy, pointy-toe Mary Jane ballet flats have a secure and chic strap across the foot. Not only are they so easy to walk in, but they’re also made of recycled plastic water bottles, and they’re machine-washable.

    $159, Shop Now
  • M.Gemi.

    M. Gemi The Danza

    If you want the look of a ballet flat but worry that the entirely flat sole won’t be the most supportive, you must consider M. Gemi’s Danza shoes, which have a hidden wedge for a more comfortable (and height-giving!) fit. These particular black-trimmed, nude square toe ballet flats are giving serious #balletcore vibes.

    $248, Shop Now
  • Jimmy Choo.

    Jimmy Choo Black Ade Ballet Flats

    These glamorous, black suede flat shoes have a pearl-embellished band and are perfect for any occasion when you want to add a little something extra to your outfit.

    $795, Shop Now
  • Margaux.

    Margaux The Demi

    Margaux’s cult-favorite, round-toe ballet flats are an immediate wardrobe staple, and while they come in an array of colorways, the metallic gold is neutral but still feels special.

    $225, Shop Now
  • Loeffler Randall Leonie Cacao Ballet Flat
    Loeffler Randall.

    Loeffler Randall Leonie Cacao Ballet Flat

    The suede material adds an unexpected yet welcome texture to these cocoa-hued Mary Jane flats, complete with a sweet bow detail—it’s no surprise the silhouette is always a best-seller for the brand.

    $250, Shop Now
  • Manolo Blahnik.

    Manolo Blahnik Hangisi Flat

    Swap out your usual uncomfortable heels for these sophisticated, embellished satin flats.

    $1,095, Shop Now
  • Vivaia.

    Vivaia Pointed-Toe Ballet Flats

    If you want a ballet flat in a color other than black or nude that’s still versatile and somewhat neutral, consider these comfy blue shoes, which have a subtly pointed toe and are up there with the most supportive ballet flats.

    $97, Shop Now
  • Sarah Flint.

    Sarah Flint Sacchetto Ballet Flat

    The mixed textures of suede and patent leather give these sophisticated brown ballet flats an elevated edge.

    $450, Shop Now
  • The Row.

    The Row Ava Mary Jane Ballet Flats

    The Row’s elegant, cream-colored Mary Jane flats have a soft square toe, for a modern take on the shoe.

    $790, Shop Now
  • Malone Souliers Maureen Mock-Croc Ballerina Mules
    Malone Souliers.

    Malone Souliers Maureen Mock-Croc Ballerina Mules

    The leg-lengthening nude shade of these leather mule slide-in ballet flats is so flattering.

    $625, Shop Now
  • Mansur Gavriel Dream Ballerina Flats in red
    Mansur Gavriel.

    Mansur Gavriel Dream Ballerina Flats

    Add a pop of color to your outfit with these cherry red leather, knotted bow ballet flats.

    $395, Shop Now
  • Chanel.

    Chanel Lambskin & Patent Calfskin Black Ballerina Flat

    No one does ballet flats quite like Chanel, and you simply cannot go wrong with any of the fashion house’s iconic ballerina women’s shoes. Yes, they’re an investment, but you’ll wear these luxe shoes forever.

    $925, Shop Now
  • Khaite Marcy Leather Ballet Flats
    Khaite.

    Khaite Marcy Leather Ballet Flats

    Khaite’s classic black leather ballet flats are sure to be a staple in your wardrobe for years to come; they go with everything from a casual jeans and t-shirt look to a flouncy sundress or breezy maxi.

    $680, Shop Now
  • Birdies.

    Birdies The Goldfinch

    The Meghan Markle-approved brand is perhaps best known for their ultra-comfy loafers, but their ballet flats are just as good, like these chic gold slip-on shoes that have special cushioning, for true comfort.

    $130, Shop Now
  • cream colored loafer style ballet flat by tory burch
    Tory Burch.

    Tory Burch Ballet Loafer

    If you want the polished preppiness of a loafer, combined with the softness of a ballet flat, look no further than these loafer-flat combo shoes, which have a low heel for a little extra height.

    $298, Shop Now
  • Naturalizer Samantha Half d'Orsay Flat
    Naturalizer.

    Naturalizer Samantha Half d'Orsay Flat

    These pointed-toe d’Orsay flats, which are available at Nordstrom, have an elevated business-casual feel.

    $79.99, Shop Now
  • white Prada ballet flats with ankle strap
    Prada.

    Prada Ankle Strap Ballet Flats

    While you’re definitely not lacking in choice when it comes to Prada’s array of ballet flats, consider opting for a pair with a unique twist, like these square-toe shoes with a sassy ankle strap.

    $1,090, Shop Now
  • Lauren Ralph Lauren Cecilia Nappa Leather Lace-Up Espadrille
    Ralph Lauren.

    Lauren Ralph Lauren Cecilia Nappa Leather Lace-Up Espadrille

    Can’t decide between an espadrille and a classic ballet flat? Now you don’t have to, thanks to these lace-up shoes from Ralph Lauren, with a summery jute heel and flirty lace-up ankle strap.

    $155, Shop Now
  • Ferragamo Varina Leather Flat
    Ferragamo.

    Ferragamo Varina Leather Flat

    There’s a reason Ferragamo flats have stood the test of time; these preppy, bow-accented shoes are classics, like this pretty pair of nude patent leather ballet flats.

    $750, Shop Now
  • light blue miu miu logo ballet flat with strap
    Miu Miu.

    Miu Miu Satin Ballet Flats

    Miu Miu’s logo-emblazoned ballet flats are classic for a reason; they’re fashionable and wearable, and while they come in traditional black leather, we’re into the whimsical nature of these pale blue satin shoes.

    $950, Shop Now
  • navy slingback ballet flats
    Kate Spade New York.

    Kate Spade New York Veronica Perforated Slingback Ballerina Flats

    A slingback pump is always chic, but sometimes a heel is just too much, which is where these navy leather slingback flats come into play.

    $198, Shop Now
  • pale pink ballet flat
    Everlane.

    Everlane The Italian Leather Day Ballet Flat

    Keep it simple with these pretty pink ballet flats, which are made with a thinner leather and won’t feel too tight on your feet. They’re a true #balletcore moment, but they’re also super comfy, thanks to a cushioned insole.

    $140, Shop Now
Ballet Flats Are Back and Better Than Ever