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What Are The Different Types Of Loafers? Styling And Details!

types of loafers

If you are into men’s loafer fashion and looking for versatile types of loafers to add to your shoe collection then you are certainly at the right place!

Most of the men’s leather loafer shoes are perfect for catering to both your casual and dressy needs. However, It is always a good idea to look into all the suitable options, before buying the perfect pair.

Therefore, in order to help you out in this fashion quest, we have curated a list of different types of loafers for men.

So, without further wait, let’s move ahead! 

What are Loafer Shoes?

What are Loafer Shoes?

This shoe style has a distinctive lace-free, slip-on design with a similar vibe to a moccasin shoe. According to some historians, these two shoe styles have a similar origin in time. However, now loafer shoes come in different shapes, colors, and styles to match everyone’s needs.

Loafers shoes with low-heel leather or canvas built; initially designed for indoor purposes, withstood the test of time, and matured to be worn as both indoor and outdoor shoes, as per the formality of the occasion.

History Of Loafers 

What are loafers and how they originated is a question that requires deep digging in time. It is believed to begin in the ancient era of King George VI with his longing for indoor casual footwear.

He commissioned London’s top shoemakers to craft the leather shoes for him. Their shoe design became famous in no time and is now a top-tier shoe business.

No matter where and when they originated, loafers being a casual everyday shoe style caught fire and became a trending fashion in the nineteenth century. 

However, in the 1950s these business casual shoes gained recognition as dressy footwear and till now remains a trendy shoe option to take your casual dress up one step ahead.

How To Wear Men’s Loafers

Before we move ahead to the different types of loafers for men, it is important to work out how to style them correctly, according to the formality of the occasion.

You might find loafers in a number of colors and materials like suede and leather but make sure to choose a versatile design and color that works well with most dress codes.

However, deciding on the perfect pair of loafers with your outfit is daunting sometimes. So, here are a few styling tips and guidelines that make you ace your loafer styling game, effortlessly. 

1. Choosing The Right Color 

When styling loafers, the choice of color is crucial. As a simple rule of thumb go for a darker shade than the color of your pants. Although shades of blue, grey, or tan work well with casual khakis and jeans; for darker color pants or suits prefer to choose men’s brown loafers or black formal loafers.

Keep it simple by choosing suede or leather material loafers and treat them with proper care so they do not wear out with time.

2. Smart Casual Attire 

2. Smart Casual Attire 

Men’s casual loafers and smart casual dress codes are a match made in heaven. You can never go wrong with this classic yet simple style. However, you need to pay attention to the detail while dressing up smart casual, as this dress code is far smarter than it is casual. 

Of all the other types, the penny loafer is the most suitable option to pair with your smart casual attire. You can pair casual loafers with jeans, slacks, button-down shirts, office blazers, and jumpers without compromising on your style and dress code.

3. Loafers With Suit

3. Loafers With Suit

Loafers with suits as formalwear are a big no. If you do not want to be a laughing stock at your black tie event, never opt for this footwear combo. However, penny loafer suits are a good option to wear at casual events.

It can be a seasonal wear three-piece linen suit or a cotton blazer suit with fitted pants. When paired with the right accessories and men’s black loafers, each one of them would give out an aesthetic casual vibe.

4. Loafers With Shorts 

4. Loafers With Shorts 

If you want to slay your next beach party in style, try wearing your khaki shorts with loafers and a button-down shirt or t-shirt for a dapper look. You can never go wrong with this easy breezy summertime outfit combo.

Throwing over a beach hat with stylish sunglasses and a watch would be a plus to this entire look. So, go and stun everyone out there with your sense of style!

Do You Wear Socks With Loafers?

The debate over wearing socks or no socks with loafers has been here for centuries and still going strong. But, the good part is you can never go wrong with any of the options.

In simple words, wearing loafers with socks is a raging fashion these days, but that being said, opting for loafers with no socks is also not out of style. So, it all comes down to your fashion preferences.

However, if you want to wear socks with loafers, ensure the colors and patterns complement your outfit. There are a variety of options in the loafer socks genre so you can look into them to choose the best for you.

Socks or no socks. It is important to look at your loafers as a part of your whole look. If the whole outfit comes out well together, the socks do not really make a difference.

Types Of Loafers 

Loafers are versatile footwear, having a slightly formal edge. So, now that we know all about loafers and how to wear them according to the formality, let’s move ahead and do some digging into the different types of loafers and find out what loafers types are the most suitable for your footwear needs.

Penny Loafers 

These shoe styles, initially designed as men’s loafers, had enough room inside to hide a penny, which can come in handy in case of any uncalled situation. This unique characteristic translated into the name penny loafer and since stuck along.

Like other loafer styles, these loafers have a variety of different colors, designs, and materials. These shoe styles are in the game for decades but peaked in fame in the early seventies as prep school footwear.

Although penny loafers are men’s shoes, women also wear them with leather or lug soles for a dressy look. However, men can wear them with dress pants, slacks, a polo and a pair of white socks, and a cardigan for a premium Ivy league look.

Horsebit Loafers 

Horsebit loafer style, having typical metal details across the front of the shoes is indeed a style statement for both men and women. However, with the advent of time, these signature horsebit details are replaced by different other metallic details, such as metallic charms and chains.

If you are looking for one loafer style that can be dressed up and down according to the occasion, horsebit loafers are a versatile option to add to your shoe collection.

While styling a look with a horsebit loafer try to keep your outfit as simple as possible to make a unique fashion statement. For Instance, you can pair them with sleek pants and casual shirts with a matching belt and blazer for a casual yet aesthetic vibe.

Slipper Loafers 

If there is one loafer style that best resembles its original design it is slippers. These shoes, having their roots in the royal family, are undoubtedly among the most formal type of loafers.

These shoes have no toe stitches and are mostly manufactured from fancy materials i.e. velvet and brocade with embroidered embellishments, sequin, and stonework. Many slippers for women also have fancy tassels and bow accessories attached to the front of the shoes.

Depending on the material of the shoes, you can pair them with suits, shorts, and other casual outfits. When wearing them with everyday casual outfits try to avoid leather and opt for lighter suede material. However, for semi-formal occasions go for black leather or patent slippers only.

Tassel Loafers

The tassel loafers; a relatively new loafer style has their origin in America. It all began in the mid-nineteenth century when a celebrity wanted a casual variant of tassel detailed oxford shoes for a special event. 

The shoe designer combined the features of penny loafers with tassel details to come up with the perfect loafer style and in this way, the tassel loafers were born.

Tassel loafers have a very casual vibe and are considered the least formal variant of loafers. You can dress them up with most casual outfits such as jeans, khakis, chinos, and linen pants.

Kiltie Loafers 

Kiltie loafers, also called fringe loafers are distinguished by their kiltie fringe. This is a decorative element placed across the front of the shoe made by jagged-edged fringed leather that hangs on the shoe vamp.

The kiltie decorations can be found in any type of shoes from leather sneakers, and leather boots to formal oxford shoes but may be different in the placement.

If you are looking for decent fall footwear, try styling a pair of kiltie loafers with fitted trousers or sleek pants and a blazer jacket, for a sophisticated and cool vibe.

Driving Loafers 

Driving loafers were initially designed as a practical style for driving comfortably. The typical shoe design has a sleek and flexible sole with the upper part made out of supple material to encourage better movement and manage the foot over the vehicle’s pedals.

These designs do not have a heel but a rubber outsole that comes up at the shoe back for better grip and protection against wear and tear while driving.

Having said that, these loafers aren’t just good for driving purposes but great fashion footwear to wear with your everyday casual outfits such as jeans, casual suits, and shorts for a chic preppy vibe.

Loafer Mules 

Loafers with a backless design are loafer mules. They usually come with a slight heel or a typical no heel design. 

Mule loafers became a raging urban fashion in recent years when big fashion giants introduced these shoes under their names with some metallic horsebit details. You will see men and women on the street wearing these mules for a casual laid back vibe.

The most popular mule design consists of classic black and optic white color options that can be effortlessly styled with casual jeans and linen suits for a summery casual vibe. There is not a single smart casual outfit that won’t complement these shoe styles.

Belgian Loafers 

Belgian loafers are a perfect blend of style and class. They have an identical vibe to slipper loafers with a structured silhouette and a tapered rounded toe to provide an enormous convergence at the top of your foot. 

This versatile loafer style usually comes in breathable leather or suede material with a minimalist design or sometimes has tussle embellishments attached to the front of the shoe.

The ease of styling makes them the best loafer styles for newbies in men’s loafer fashion. They go along well with most outfits including chinos, slacks, jeans, suits, and shorts.

Boat Loafers

Boat loafers also known as boat shoes are inspired by nautical uniform shoes with practical features. As the name implies, they were initially made for sailors to move around the slippery boat decks, which later on became a vogue fashion trend.

They incorporate all-around lacing embellishments with strong soles made from a light rubber material to have a firm grip on slippery surfaces. These shoes often have a moccasin like design with some extra practical features and a casual vibe. 

Although it is a fashion-forward footwear for men of all ages but is more popular among youngsters. You can pair them with all your casual outfits and suits for a chic look without compromising on your style.


There are many different types of loafers to suit your needs and style. However, before picking the right one, it is important to thoroughly understand what men’s loafer fashion is and how to style loafers the right way.

If you are looking for some casual men’s loafers, driving loafers, penny loafers, kiltie loafers and mules are some of your options. However, preppy dressing needs slippers and Belgium loafers will work well.

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