How to Match Comfort and Style in Formalwear

There’s nothing that feels quite as good as seeing yourself in the mirror, dressed to impress in formal wear that is sure to turn heads. Well, except for wearing comfy clothes. The problem with formalwear is that it is always just a little less comfy than we like. Those tight dresses that you can barely sit down in, the high heels that smash your toes as you walk, or suits that are stuffy and breathe worse than a wetsuit. For your next event, it’s time to ditch the uncomfortable and stuffy formalwear in favor of options that allow you to flex, groove, and breathe. Check out our guide.

Step one: Find the perfect shoes

There’s nothing worse than buying an expensive pair of heels only to end up spending most of the night barefoot as you walk around with your $250 purchase in your hands. Sure, those nice heels might look good on the shelf, but they’re absolutely murder on your feet, and can even cause serious long-term damage if worn too often. Subjecting your feet to the pain of heels, consider instead investing in a pair of dressy flats.

Contrary to popular belief, flats can be every bit as dressy as heels if you know how to dress them up right. If they are new and made from a striking material with a colorway that’s destined to turn heads, your dressy flats will be a sure hit. Plus, your feet will thank you, as they will feel comfy natural in the flat-soled shoes.

For the guys out there, don’t worry. There are great options for men’s shoes that are comfy too. While the stiff and hard leather of most dress shoes can be a serious pain, there are great options that incorporate the materials of running shoes with the stylings of dress shoes for a fit that is comfy as heck but doesn’t sacrifice any of the dress to impress.

Step two: Opt for better materials

The traditional materials that dress clothes are made from can be stiff, stuffy, and structured. Luckily, fashion designers are constantly innovating, and have come up with novel and ingenious new materials to make suits and dresses from. By incorporating some of the form-fitting flex of athletic clothes into traditional dress clothing designs, clothes made from these new materials bring all the comfort of your favorite sweats while still cutting a striking figure.

The next time you’ve got a wedding to attend, and you plan on being in a suit all day, opt for a stretchy suit that moves with you, so you never have to stress about being comfy in your finest. And ladies, don’t worry, the same is true for comfy dresses now too! Love your yoga pants or leggings? Formal dresses made from these materials are now on the market, ready for you to enjoy. Don’t regret shelling out hundreds of dollars on a fancy dress you’ll never wear again because it’s so uncomfortable. Choose something that you know you can sit, stand, or even lay down in with ease.

Step three: Make sure it fits

One of the biggest problems people often have with formal wear is that they choose sizes that fit too snugly on their bodies, which leads to serious discomfort. While picking out that suit or dress that highlights your figure tightly may look sharp in the store mirror, after an hour or two, you’ll be sweating and wishing you’d given yourself a bit more room to move.

Of course, you don’t want to look frumpy in baggy clothes. But there’s a careful line to be drawn between looking well-fitted and being constrained by overly tight clothes. Be sure that when you choose your wardrobe, you pick clothes that you can move and breathe in. Head into the store and try on at least three different sizes:

  • The size you usually wear
  • The size just above that
  • The size just below your go-to

This will give you plenty of information to base your sizing pick on. If you’re ordering online, it’s a good idea to buy a couple of differently sized options and try them on, then send back the ones that you decide won’t fit.

At your next formal gathering, don’t sacrifice comfort in the name of style. Get the best of both worlds by picking the right shoes, materials, and fit to ensure all-day comfort.