Shoes, glorious shoes! They can be the finishing touch on a fashionable outfit, athletic performance enhancement or just protection for your precious toes. You don’t need to be Imelda Marcos to be a footwear fashionista. All you really need in your closet is five great pairs:

1. The perfect pair of pumps – With heels high enough to flatter your foot and make your legs look longer-but not so high that you stumble while walking, a good pair of pumps is a must. You don’t need to drop a wad on Manolos or Jimmy Choos, but make sure to invest in a well-made pair with simple yet elegant styling. You want something that’s professional enough for a job interview or business meetings, and yet will effortlessly glide into an evening out. While you can’t go wrong with basic black, a pair of red pumps will add a pop of color to any outfit. Or choose nude pumps-which not only are the current style trend, but go with anything!

2. A pair of practical flats – Sometimes teetering around on heels isn’t a good idea. Running errands, sightseeing or a lot of time spent standing begs for a smart alternative to pumps. Smart, however, doesn’t have to mean unattractive. Whether it’s a cute pair of Mary Janes or dainty ballet slippers, flats can look good as well as feel good!

3. Casual kicks – Sneakers, tennis shoes, cross-trainers: whatever you call ’em, this All-American footwear is a staple for a casual Saturday. Lace-up or slip-on, canvas or leather, lo-top or hi-top, Keds, Converse or Vans, these must-have shoes come in such a wide assortment of colors and styles that you could find a pair to match almost any outfit. Invest in a pair of white canvas and you have the added bonus of being able to toss them in the washer when they get dirty.

4. Some boss boots – Nancy Sinatra’s were made for walkin’, but the pair you choose should reflect your fashion sense and lifestyle. Keep it warm with a pair of cozy Uggs, unleash your inner cowgirl with a pair of Frye boots, go utilitarian with some Doc Martens or class it up with a pair of stiletto heeled designer boots. For the ultimate versatility, I recommend a cognac-colored pair in a mid-heeled equestrian style.

5. A pair of sassy sandals – Expose your toes and let them breathe! Come summer, nothing beats a pair of sandals, thongs or flip-flops for keeping you cool. Although white sandals are perfectly legitimate between Memorial and Labor Day, I’d suggest a simple style in a bronze metallic to offer the optimum fashionable functionality.

There you have it-the five essential pairs of shoes every girl’s closet should contain. You can find all these styles and more at and with some coupons, you won’t break your budget as you give your feet a fashion makeover!

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