As no-fuss fashion becomes a shorthand of sorts for authenticity–prized especially in the age of filters and professional-photog level phone cameras–loafers, or slip-ons, are sneaking into everyone’s feeds and timelines.
It’s also fitting that the humble shoe has humble beginnings. Loafers first broke into the mainstream with the Bass Weejun, which was initially made for men. Women’s clamor for their own pairs, even buying from the menswear section, led to Bass producing feminine iterations of the rising shoe. (Nevertheless, she persisted, fashion edition.) Further digging, however, will take us all the way to Norway, where F. Scott Fitzgerald’s peers would first see the eventual model for loafers–the Norwegian fisherman’s shoe. (The “Weejun” in Bass Weejun, not coincidentally, is a corruption of “Norwegian.”)
Today, loafers continue to expand its coverage of the fashion and style spectrum, and are very of the moment given the comeback of menswear and the rise of laidback this and casual that. Whether it’s to complete a preppy look or to channel Old Céline, loafers are definitely made for walking with any outfit. Here’s proof:
Nostalgia for Clueless and Heathers (and homework) is forever a mood. Vina Guerrero, who Cheryl Blossom-ed her otherwise monochromatic look, shows you how to graduate in an ensemble that wouldn’t look out of place in a pre-2000s high school film.
2. Borrowed from the Boys
Menswear is back on the streets and the runways, and while the shoe options are varied, you can never go wrong with a slip-on. Tricia Gosingtian completes this tailored look with loafers that tilt a bit more toward “formal.”
3. Dress It Up
Loafers help to mix things up a bit, as Kelly Misa-Fernandez demonstrates with her dress-and-loafer pairing. The look is equal parts dainty and laidback, and the combination of moss green and blush is both “ladies who lunch” and “Sunday mornings made more fun.”
4. Suited for Fun
Three-piece suits have the potential to look stiff, and loafers can loosen things up nicely. Take a style cue from The Blogger Jowas–Miguel Cruz, Joni Koro, and Slater Young–who looked dapper and still had fun by way of footwear.
5. Blend In
As subtle and understated as they usually are, loafers can also help you tell a color story. David Guison picks the perfect texture and the perfect brown to complete an earth tone-on-earth tone visual that would fit in well with a very stylish yearbook.
6. Check On It
Checkers and loafers had become interchangeable, almost synonymous, and LA Aguinaldo plays with this almost-classic loafer pattern by adding another layer of classic: the orange-and-black color block.
7. More is More
Loafers aren’t usually the star, but that doesn’t mean they can’t occasionally co-star. (Loafers can be extra, too!) Tim Yap slips into a gold sequined H&M x Moschino puffer jacket, whose maximalism is amplified by a pair of snake effect loafers. Rainy days and Mondays won’t get you down with this look.
8. Hey There, Summer Boy
Opt for a summer in the concrete jungles of the metro and go all-out while you’re at it. So goes Vince Uy’s style mantra with this outfit, it seems, which he topped off with an inspired pair of brown loafers that wouldn’t get lost in the shuffle of colors, patterns, and textures.
9. Pop! Goes the Loafer
All-pristine-white-everything is the way to go in the summer, for practical purposes. It would look perfect in any feed, too. Danika Nemis gives further Insta-inspo with an unusual choice and extra stylish pair of bottle-green slip-ons to go with her white and chic pinup-girl one piece.
10. Surf’s Up
While going against the tide with shoes on is definitely not advisable, you can always complete your summer-ready look with the casual-comfy charm of loafers. Danika Nemis is cool for the summer, surfboard in tow, with a winning romper-bikini top combo. Instead of going the usual barefoot route, though, she rides the heatwave in a pair of beige loafers with a tropic twist.
They may not instigate a shoe craze any time soon, akin to the Sneaker Renaissance that we are currently seeing on pages, on runways, and in the streets, but loafers will always be there to make you and your outfit shine. Joshua Garcia, whose slip-ons are chameleonic and almost one with the ground, shines further with his magnetic boy-next-door smile and outfit.
12. We Got the Funk
Loafers can walk you through a smooth transition if you want to deviate from your day-to-day personal style. As you venture into uncharted fashion territory, you can take comfort in the fact that your new attempts to mix and match will always see a safe landing if finished with a versatile pair. Jericho Rosales looks every bit the cool cat, for instance, in a wide-brimmed hat and denim number, punctuated by ever-reliable loafers.