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Which color shoes go with black?

Black is a versatile color that can be paired with almost any other color. However, some shoe colors work better than others when trying to match black outfits. In this article, we will discuss the best and worst shoe colors to wear with black clothes.

Quick Answers

– Best colors: nude, white, gray, red, blue
– Worst colors: brown, green, yellow, pink
– Metallic shoes like gold and silver can work well
– Avoid matching black shoes with black outfits

When building a wardrobe around black clothes, it’s important to choose shoe colors carefully. The wrong color shoe can make an outfit look dull or messy. On the other hand, the right shoe color can pull together an elegant, stylish black ensemble.

The Best Shoe Colors to Wear with Black

Here are the top shoe colors that complement black clothing:


Nude or flesh-toned shoes are a perfect match for black outfits. Since nude shoes blend into the skin on your legs, they create the illusion of longer, leaner legs when worn with black bottoms. Nude also provides a neutral base that doesn’t compete with bold black pieces.

Try pairing black dresses, trousers, skirts and shorts with nude pumps, wedges, flats or sandals. Nude shoes work for day or evening looks.


White shoes are another excellent choice with black clothing. White creates a clean, timeless, elegant aesthetic. Like nude shoes, white footwear also elongates the legs next to black bottoms.

White sneakers are trendy with casual black outfits like t-shirts, jeans and rompers. For dressier occasions, try white oxfords, loafers or stilettos. White shoes match both solid black pieces and black prints.


Gray perfectly bridges black and white. It provides more contrast than nude while maintaining a classic, sophisticated style. Light gray to charcoal shoes seamlessly blend with black garb.

Gray slip-on sneakers or oxfords lend a laidback vibe to everyday black ensembles. Dark gray heels, wedges and boots complement dressy black cocktail dresses or pantsuits. Subtle gray shoe patterns like tweed or herringbone also mesh well.


Red footwear adds an eye-catching pop of color to basic black outfits. Because red grabs attention, limit red shoes to a single statement piece so your look doesn’t become chaotic. A red heel or pump pairs nicely with little black dresses and formal black suits or tuxedos. Casual bright red sneakers can liven up everyday black shirts, skirts and shorts.


Like red, vivid blue shoes make a bold fashion statement against black clothing. Any shade of blue from navy to cobalt works beautifully with black. Blue heels, wedges and flats are chic complements to black dresses, trousers and pencil skirts. Distressed blue jeans match relaxed black t-shirts or tanks. For menswear, blue oxfords or loafers lend polish.

The Worst Shoe Colors with Black

On the other end of the spectrum, here are the shoe colors that tend to clash with black:


Brown shoes often look drab and muddy paired with black instead of lending an earthy vibe. Avoid brown footwear in all shades from tan to chocolate unless you’re wearing black and brown patterns. Stick to black with most solid brown pieces.


Even versatile green usually misses the mark with black. Green can sometimes appear dated or overpower black. The one exception is deep emerald, which can work for special occasions when done right. Overall, though, it’s best to avoid green footwear.


Like green, yellow tends to look dated and distracting with solid black pieces. Unless you’re going for a funky, eclectic aesthetic, limit yellow shoes to wear with other bright colors. Yellow does pair well with black and white graphic prints, however.


Pretty pink shoes often look juvenile and out of place with mature black clothing. The sweet, feminine vibe of pink contrasts too harshly with sophisticated black. A black and pink pattern could potentially work, but avoid pink shoes with solid black pieces.

Metallic Shoes

Metallic shoes straddle the line between neutral and bold accent. Hints of glamour from metallic footwear can dress up casual and formal black outfits. For daytime, try silver or gold sneakers with black jeans and tees. At night, shine in gold, silver or copper heels, wedges or strappy sandals.

When mixing metals, make sure your accessories complement each other. Don’t wear silver earrings with gold shoes, for example. Stick to one metal shade.

Avoid Matching Black Shoes and Clothes

It may seem counterintuitive, but wearing head-to-toe black usually doesn’t work. The lack of contrast can look flat and shapeless. Black shoes disappear against black bottoms instead of elongating your silhouette.

However, you have a few options to break up all-black outfits:

– Choose black shoes with a contrasting sole, like white or red
– Wear black and gray patterns like herringbone or houndstooth
– Add a colorful accessory like a bright scarf or jewelry


When building outfits around basic black wardrobe staples, shoe choice determines whether your look appears elegant or sloppy. Nude, white, gray, blue and red shoes consistently complement black clothing. Avoid brown, green, yellow and pink footwear.

Metallic shoes can dress up black outfits for day or night. Just don’t overdo the sparkle. And opt for black shoes with a contrasting sole rather than matching exact shades. With the right footwear, your little black dress or suit will get the attention it deserves.

Shoe Color Pairings

Here is a quick reference table summarizing the best and worst shoe colors to pair with black clothing:

Best Colors Worst Colors
Nude Brown
White Green
Gray Yellow
Red Pink

Tips for Wearing Black

Follow these simple tips for effortlessly stylish black outfits:

  • Choose black bottoms in a color-complementary silhouette like skinny jeans, pencil skirts or wide-leg trousers.
  • Select black tops with flattering details like off-the-shoulder, sweetheart or square necklines.
  • Layer black and white patterns like stripes, dots or lace for visual interest.
  • Accessorize with pops of color through your bag, shoes, jewelry or makeup.
  • Play with proportions by pairing loose black tops with fitted bottoms or vice versa.
  • Incorporate texture with leather, suede, velvet or metallic black fabrics.
  • Keep silhouettes streamlined and sleek for daytime elegance.
  • Have fun with volume, ruffles, embellishments and avant garde shapes for evening.

Confidence is the best accessory. Wear black proudly, mix and match pieces, and express your personal flair. With the right attitude and shoe choice, you’ll always look runway-ready.