8 Shoes Every Woman Should Own

Must-Have Women's Shoe Styles

While women's footwear comes in all styles, shapes, sizes, and colors, it never fails: something comes up, and the perfect shoes are nowhere to be found.

But with a bit of preparation, savvy shoppers can ensure that they're ready for whatever situation life throws at them — at least when it comes to their shoes.

Below are the basics, the must-haves, the staples. Whatever you want to call them, they're the top shoe styles that most women should own.

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Black High-Heeled Dress Shoes

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Nothing too strappy, nothing too trendy. Remember these are the basics — but a pair of black, dressy high heels are definitely essential.

This will be your pair of go-to evening shoes, so you'll want something that will work with dress pants, a cocktail dress, basically any evening outfit.

For evening shoes (even the most basic ones), I like uppers made from fabrics like satin, velvet or suede, as they're generally dressier than smooth leathers.

As far as heel height, choose something at the medium to the higher end of your comfort range, to ensure they feel dressy enough, but are still comfortable. For most women, this will be somewhere between 2.5 to 4.5 inches tall.

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Neutral or Nude Pumps

Reese Witherspoon
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Even with as versatile as black pumps are, they simply will not go with everything.

Add a neutral colored (not white) pump to your collection, and you'll have the "basic pump" category of women's shoes covered.

Your best bet is to go for a classic design that will work season after season, and year after year. Christian Louboutin's nude collection, though pricey, comes in a variety of hues to complement many skin types.

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Semi-Casual Flats

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You'll want a pair of shoes that will look cute with jeans but aren't so casual that you couldn't wear nicer slacks with them too.

To keep things from getting too boring, you can look for unique colors, patterns or textures. But really, any simple, somewhat dressy flat will do.

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Low-Heeled Black Pumps

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A pair of low-heeled, comfortable black pumps is essential to every woman's shoe collection.

They're perfect for all those times when a strappy sandal or an overly-glamorous shoe is inappropriate or too dressy, like an early dinner, an impromptu business meeting, or even a funeral.

Basic pumps are versatile enough to pair with anything, and they feature extremely low and wearable heels.

Feel free to go higher if you prefer but, for this particular must-have, don't go much taller than 3-inches. Anything more might come off as too sexy for this essential.

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Comfortable Everyday Sneakers

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The choice is yours, but whether it's a little white Ked, or an edgy, retro high top, every wardrobe needs a pair of comfortable sneakers.

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Metallic High Heels

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There are some special occasion outfits that won't work well with black shoes. For those situations, you'll want a pair of dazzling metallic evening shoes.

They can be open-toed pumps or strappy sandals, it doesn't matter, as long as they're dressy enough for evenings since that's really the only time you'll be wearing them.​

Metallic heels are ideal for pastels, light neutrals, and whites, but they will still work well with black dresses, too.

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Heeled Casual Shoes and Booties

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Nothing can dress up a casual outfit and make you feel better about yourself, like adding a bit of height. It doesn't matter how high or low the heel is, it's just about getting out of flats for a bit.

Look for casual booties, sandals, or shoes with a bit of a heel for times when you want to be chic, even in jeans. But remember, comfort still counts, so don't go too crazy.

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Tall Boots

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Whether it's a high-heeled fashion boot or a warm and comfy casual style, colder weather screams for boots. Plus, depending on the boots you choose, everything from skirts to jeans can look fantastic with them.

Every woman's wardrobe should have at least one pair of basic boots in brown or black. I like tall boots with a low heel that can go casual or dressy.