Welcome to the Great Flats Renaissance: 29 Cool Pairs I’m Surprisingly Into

The year is 2021 and although we’re breaking out our “revenge” heels and putting our housebound slippers away for the time being, we’re not completely terminating our relationship with flats, either. For years now, flats have quietly served as the backbone of our shoe collections, always there when we needed them but never shining in the spotlight of the moment—true shoe staples, if you will. But the time has come for them to once again be the cool option you reach for to make any outfit shine. They may be comfortable and practical, but as we move from summer into fall, they’re becoming trendy, too. Welcome to the great flats renaissance, everyone.

It really struck me that flats were having their proverbial glow-up when I was noticed a few fresh styles in the new arrivals sections of my favorite shopping sites. Mansur Gavriel offers their square-toed ballet slippers in an array of cheery candy hues while Sleeper’s baby pink bow-adorned satin flats are fit for a modern-day Disney princess. Square toes, trend-forward hues, lace-up ties, lug soles, and so many more details are what set this new crop of flats apart from the pack. Beyond ballet flats, though, clogs, loafers, and flat mules are all looking cooler than they ever have and it begs the question, are flats bound for a comeback? According to this editor and the 29 pairs ahead, that’s a resounding hell yes. Continue on to see what I mean and shop the stylish flats of the moment.

I die for a square toe.

A dream.

It’s not a want. It’s a need.

I had the hardest time choosing between the seven colors these come in.

It’s the ankle tie detail for me.

Like your favorite ballet flats, only better.

Ballet flats, but make it 2021.

Flat mules are coming back this fall in cool shapes like this.

Suede feel so right for the fall.

Now that’s a good loafer.

So charming.

Sleek and sophisticated.

Fresh Prada coming right up.

Not for the faint of heart.

Channel your inner Olivia Rodrigo.

Fall-ready flats.

Modern loafers.

Okay, H&M, I see you.

This color though…

Wear these with everything from airy dresses to belted trousers.

Zara does it again.

Clogs, anyone?

Take note: flat mules are having a moment again.

I can confirm that Vagabond’s shoes are so comfy.

Does Khaite ever miss?

This velvet pair looks so luxe.

Street style-approved.

House shoes at their chicest. 

In case you have yet to see this fashion-person approach to Croc’s.

Next up, shop the best fall trends at Nordstrom.