Family Encyclopedia >> Beauty & Style

Women buy more sneakers than high heels

High heels have dominated the shoe closet for years, but it seems that the high heel is now on the decline. New research shows that 37% of British women who bought shoes in the last year chose sneakers, compared to 33% who chose heels. Nearly half (48%) of women aged 35 to 44 bought sneakers in the past year, compared to 30% of the same group who bought heels. Overall, flats are still the most popular form of footwear at 51%, with flat boots (30%) and flat sandals (25%), following in fourth and fifth place after sneakers and heels. And it seems that the popularity of heels in general is declining, as 59% of women prefer to wear flats, compared to just 12% who prefer high-heeled shoes.

For shoe buyers, comfort level is king, with three quarters (74%) who bought shoes in the past year agree that comfort is more important to them than fashion. In contrast, only 28% prefer shoes that follow the latest fashion trends. In addition, two in five (39%) of this group prefer sporty or casual styles of shoes, compared to only one in five (21%) who prefer formal styles of shoes.

Finally, it seems that "if the shoe fits" does not apply to many female shoe buyers, more than two-fifths (43%) want to find shoes that fit well. To address this issue, nearly half (54%) of women would like a better choice of size options, such as half sizes or wide and narrow fit options, and 43% would like to see better size standardization across retailers and brands.