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I remember going to ballet lessons with my sister when we were oh so tiny. Though practicing grand jetés, pliés and sautés personally did not appeal to me, the one thing I always loved about heading to dance class was getting dolled up. The leotards, skirts, tutus, tights and ballet flats; the flowers, bows, ribbons, ruffles and tulle. What more could a five-year-old gal want when Barbie in the Nutcracker and Angelina Ballerina were her main fashion inspos at the time?
Balletcore is the latest aesthetic to join the ranks of Barbiecore, tenniscore, regencycore and cottagecore, to name a few. But, unlike the balletcore from your childhood, this reboot involves much more than pink, pink and more pink. So many have put their own twist on balletcore. There’s the traditional, super feminine, poofy, flowy take on the trend, but there’s now also an edgier slant that incorporates striking whites and blacks, as well as pop-punk and gothic elements. You could also go for more of an athleisure balletcore approach that might look like a cozy wrap sweater, leggings and leg warmers.
You can inject your sartorial flair into any “core” aesthetic, which is why we’ve set out to find the most stylish ballet flats on the market. From Zara to Miu Miu, leather to suede, neutrals to metallics and embellishments to buckles, you’re sure to find a pair of ballet shoes to twirl in this fall and beyond. And in case you thought this trending aesthetic was going to cost you an arm and a leg, we’ve included plenty of more affordable options, too.
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Zara Bow Trim Leather Ballet Flats
When you want a bit more twinkle on your toes, go with a metallic pair that will grab everyone’s attention. These shiny ballet flats from Zara have super comfortable soles so you can wear them all day, sans blisters and aches.
Miu Miu Patent-Finish Ballerina Shoes
Miu Miu has been paving the way for the return of ballet flats. This pair features mismatching tie-up ribbons and double buckle straps that make these shoes perfect for an edgier take on balletcore. You can also shop them in black.
J.Crew Zoe Ballet Flats
Check out J.Crew’s Zoe Ballet Flats for a simple, timeless silhouette. They come in seven colors with both leather and suede options. This pair also happens to be on sale, with the metallic gold colorway costing just $75 right now.
J.Crew Zoe Ballet Mules
J.Crew also carries the Zoe Ballet Mules, in case you’re the type of person who doesn’t like wasting time slipping their shoes on and rushing out the door. They also give your feet more breathing room, which is ideal when it’s hot out.
Guilhermina Ballet Mules
These ballet mules take glam to another level. The big, bejeweled bows and square toes elevate them so much that you’d think they’re designer and cost hundreds of dollars. Luckily, they’ll ring you up for under $100 at Anthropologie.
Gucci Quilted Leather Ballet Flats
It’s hard to resist anything from Gucci, and these flats are no exception. The designer logo stitched into their leather material makes them look extra chic.
Jimmy Choo Ade Suede Embellished Ballerina Flats
If you mix pearlcore and balletcore, these Jimmy Choo ballet flats would be the final product. From the square toe to the strap with the faux pearls, everything about these shoes is on pointe.
Everlane The Italian Leather Day Ballet Flat
Everlane has mastered easy, minimal, everyday essentials, including The Italian Leather Day Ballet Flat. Made from quality Napa leather that molds to your feet, the shoes feature a higher throat line than most of its counterparts.
Tory Burch Runway Ballet
Not about the bows and frills? Tory Burch’s Runway Ballet flat is super simple in design; it’s just a single elastic strap and square toe. Shop this pair if you’re unsure of the balletcore aesthetic and want to start with something more subtle.
Lucky Brand Eikia Ballet Flat
Want to go completely bow-free? The Eikia Ballet Flat doesn’t include any bells or whistles besides the zipper at the back, which will make slipping them on and off a breeze.
Vaneli Serene Flat
For those who can’t find (or splurge on) the iconic, cap-toe ballet flats from Chanel, the Serene Flat is a similar option. Anything that’s quilted immediately looks so much more elegant. Plus, these shoes are just $145 at Nordstrom.
Schutz Dal Flats
If you’re not a fan of round-toe ballet flats, these ones are as pointy as they get. They come in a leather croc design that’s perfect for the office.
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