The festival footwear guide: What shoes to wear to a festival

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Read our top tips for what to wear to a festival and find out the most popular shoe styles for your festival season adventures!

Festival season is (finally) around the corner, presenting the perfect opportunity to start planning your checklist of essentials to help you survive your wild weekend.

Aside from organising your sleeping arrangements, food for the journey and those all-important toiletries to keep you feeling human, it’s important to know what to wear to a festival – especially when it comes to footwear.

If you’re a newbie, you might find yourself weighing up the endless shoe options available. From festival wellies for the unpredictable British climate, to trainers and boots for busting some dance moves unhindered, keep reading to find out our top picks to carry you through your festival endeavours.

Festival shoes: the basics

People across the UK look forward to festival season each year, and we don’t blame them; they can make your summer an experience to remember for all the right reasons.

However like most things in life, they do come with their drawbacks. You can often spend many hours standing, dancing and walking on your feet in tough conditions – whether that be hard concrete, uneven terrain or even swamp-like mud.

Factors such as the location of your chosen festival (you might be lucky enough to travel abroad), the time of year and your personal style, could determine which pair of shoes are your perfect match. Here are a few of our favourites.

Practicality comes first over fashion

Try to go for more practical, durable styles such as wellies, hiking boots or trainers.

You may struggle to resist the temptation to buy festival shoes that favour appearance over practicality and comfort – they may complete your outfit (and look good in pictures too), but we can guarantee you won’t have the time of your life if your feet are torn to shreds.

The first thing that you should bear in mind is to ensure your footwear is practical. Stick to sturdy, durable and waterproof types where possible and stay far away from the exotic end of the shoe spectrum.

That includes your new designer trainers that you’ve just splashed the cash on too. Although you may want to rock them at such a special occasion, we’d say it’s probably best not to risk ruining them and exposing them to the elements (especially if you’re attending a festival in the UK!). You may assume it’s common sense to avoid heel territory altogether, but we can guarantee that there are a few brave people around the globe that have tried – and probably failed!

Be prepared come rain or shine

When thinking about what to wear to a festival in the rain, the trusty wellie often springs to mind – and for good reason. This classic, waterproof style is a titan in the protective shoe world and has undergone a complete renaissance from ‘back of the cupboard’ utility footwear to a flamboyant fashion favourite.

The unique patterns, funky colourways and bold colours of festival wellies make them a must-have, no matter what your personal style. They’ll keep your feet (and lower legs if you’re wearing the classic design) completely dry in wet and muddy conditions.

Make sure to wear long or knee-high socks to stop your legs rubbing against the wellies – this is especially important if you’re blessed with some summer sunshine and things start to heat up!

If you’re after a few more tips and tricks, check out our full guide to buying wellies.

These boots are made for walking

Walking boots are a great choice for a UK festival – their waterproof qualities will protect you against the British elements.

Walking or hiking boots are also a popular option among both male and female festival-goers, as their waterproof and sturdy – yet still breathable – design makes them a strong contender against the most extreme conditions your average British summer festival could throw at you.

When you’re on the hunt for some festival boots, take into consideration what socks you’re going to wear with them too. If your boots are ankle-height, make sure your socks are high enough to cover your ankles – you don’t want to have to deal with pesky blisters when you’re dancing! Other durable ankle boot styles also make for a great festival footwear option. Have the heavens opened on you? No worries. Sick of getting your toes stepped on in the dance tent? We’ve got you sorted.

Trainers are a sporty alternative

If you’re heading to a festival overseas or the British weather is looking promising, a pair of trainers should suffice as a comfortable and cool choice. As we’ve previously mentioned, it’s best to swap an expensive or designer pair (you’ll thank us later) for some affordable – but still stylish – trainers.

There are so many options when it comes to kicks too; experiment with bold colours, new silhouettes and iconic brands to make your outfit pop – without having to worry about having to abandon them in the mud either. If you have your heart set on wearing your favourite pair, you could invest in some water-repellent, protective spray to help keep your shoes in good condition. 

If you’re after some fashionable styles, our men’s and women’s trainers will definitely impress – top brands such as adidas, Nike, Puma and Converse are a bonus too.

A good fit is essential for comfort

Keep in mind that prevention is the key to avoid discomfort and sore blisters. Buy yourself a pair of well-fitting shoes and wear them around the house to break them in and make them super-snug.

If you’ve got a pair of shoes that don’t have significant arch support or that are a little loose-fitting, buy some insoles to ensure your festival footwear fits your feet to a ‘T’. If you’re after a few more tips and tricks about making your shoes smaller, check out our handy guide.

Are you feeling inspired about your festival shoes after reading this post? If you’re looking for footwear that’ll make your experience one to remember, check out our affordable range of shoes for men and women, right here at Wynsors.

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