As the Australian summer starts to lengthen the days and loosen the collar, it’s important not to sacrifice style for comfort, particularly when it comes to your footwear. If the heat is getting to you, maybe it’s time you grew bold and embraced sockless style. Here’s how to do it right:
The Vital Preparation
Before you step out in sockless style, there is some serious preparation to be done to keep your favourite loafers looking fresh and your paws smelling like roses. Feet shed dead skin and sweat, especially in the heat, so you’ll need to pay them some special care.
Scrub your feet with a pumice stone, paying attention to the harder, rougher parts of your ball and heel to get rid of any dead skin. Soak your feet in a footbath with a cup of white vinegar, two of Listerine and two of warm water to loosen up the dead skin before you scrub it off. Once dry, powder your feet and shoes to absorb moisture and keep sweat to a minimum.
If this fails and after a day of breaking in a new pair of shoes in unrelenting heat your shoes resemble a wading pool, soak your feet in a warm tea bath and add a dash of peppermint soap.
The Sockless Sock
If you’re a sweater, these steps might not be enough to protect your feet and your shoes. Time for a pair of sockless socks, which will give you a thin layer of fabric to protect your foot, absorb moisture and prevent rubbing without giving away their position and destroying your look. Check out NOTSOCKS for the latest styles.
Choosing the Shoe
Some shoes look much better than others sockless, and your choice will portray your inner style. Keep it safe and stick to tried methods:
Boat shoes love going sockless, and pair perfectly with cinos and a polo. Keep a jacket handy, and swap them for loafers and you’re ready for the evening too.
The moccasin, once famed for its status as a driving shoe, has certainly left the pedals and hit the streets. A great addition to any casual or semi-formal outfit, always wear it sockless and the moccasin will speak of your class.
Espadrilles are your most casual option for an afternoon by the surf. Lightweight and breathable, they’re perfect with shorts and an open shirt. Don’t be afraid to swap the shorts for linen slacks and a jacket for the evening, especially if you’re dining on the beach.
Keeping it more socklessly formal are the wingtips, Oxfords, penny loafers and monkstraps. Some will raise an eyebrow at a sockless business suit, but all you need to do is watch the catwalks and you’ll see their success. A little hint of naked ankle at the end of a trouser will bring style to your gait, so don’t be afraid to have that hem cut a little higher.
And then there is the smoking slipper, or the dress slipper, once the footwear of aristocrats and playboys but now yours to sport almost anywhere. Slippers will transform the most simple of outfits into utter, unspoken style. Roll up the hems of your white jeans with a vintage v neck and a blazer for an afternoon on the coffee strip, or lose the Oxfords at your next cocktail ball and stride sockless across the ballroom. You’ll turn effortlessly turn heads with your boldly confident style.
Once the shoes are off, take a moment to care for them before yourself. Slip in a pair of cedar shoe trees to absorb any moisture and odour, and to reshape weakened or deformed outers. Look for shoe trees with central splits that are varnish free, and they’ll keep your shoes walking longer than you.