Paris sneaker trends for spring - une femme d'un certain âge

The sneaker trends Parisians are wearing this spring

Paris sneaker trends, spring 2022

A few of you have asked me about whether to pack sneakers for Paris, and if so, which styles will work. When we first began traveling to Paris, we were told to leave the sneakers at home if we didn’t want to stand out as tourists. But even back then, you would see Parisians wearing sleek styles such as Puma, Converse, and Stan Smiths with casual outfits.

mesh fabric | color accent | classic | wedge

But in the last decade, sneakers have become ubiquitous here. And not just sleek, classic styles worn casually. You’ll see women of all ages wearing trendier sneakers with trousers, skirts, and dresses. Here are a few of the styles I’ve noticed most often since we arrived a few days ago:

  1. While simple leather lace-up styles are a safe bet, I’m also seeing a lot of more athletic or running styles, often with fabric mesh or knit exteriors.
  2. Color accent or color-block. While I’ve mostly seen bright multicolored styles on younger women, I have noticed some women our age, “elegant casual,” wearing neutral sneakers with color accents.
  3. Hi-tops. Usually black.
  4. Wedge styles and sneaker-boot hybrids

While classic white sneakers still seem to be a favorite, I’ve also seen a smattering of hiking style sneakers (probably the cold weather a factor), red sneakers (usually coordinating with something else red in the outfit), and metallic sneakers. And yes, you still see Chuck Taylors, both low and hi-top. I’ve seen a few well-turned-out women in the Gucci bee sneakers.

Of course when deciding which sneakers to pack for Paris (or any other destination), comfort should be the most important factor. In many major cities, you’ll probably do a lot of walking, so supportive and well-fitting shoes are crucial.

Here are a few more sneaker styles that could work in Paris…

Stay in touch.

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  1. No Fear of Fashion
    April 4, 2022 / 4:29 am

    My new Zadig & Voltaire sneakers would be great but I am too old not to have gained some wisdom. Wearing brand-new shoes (even sneakers) to walk on all day…not wise. I have worn them a couple of days and they are fine. They just need a little stretch on the right pinky toe. That is no problem but a deal breaker for Paris. I will bring a pair of well broken-in combat boots and a really old pair of Ecco sneakers. Both white.

  2. Florida Lyn
    April 4, 2022 / 7:29 am

    The salespeople in the Ecco store call mine “teacher shoes.” Great for being on your feet all day, but not exactly cutting edge style. I have tried updating the laces to give them some flair and a more “sneaker” look. When you travel, it’s all about your feet. I’m glad to see the Europeans are finally embracing comfort footwear. Now how about athleisure pants? Are you seeing any? And what about pants legs? Are skinny legs jeans over?

    • Carol
      April 4, 2022 / 11:17 am

      I lived in Europe for many years and what I recall is that Europeans have always embraced comfort footwear, just not sneakers, especially big clunky sneakers.

      • Susan Blakey
        April 4, 2022 / 1:54 pm

        Hi Carol, that’s true, and now they’re even going for the big clunky sneakers too!

  3. Liz Flynn
    April 4, 2022 / 8:15 am

    Susan, a question about Le Monsieur, are you seeing sneakers, and if so, what colors? Merci!

    • Susan Blakey
      April 4, 2022 / 1:55 pm

      For the men, I’ve noticed lots of black and white sneakers, and the occasional chunky “fashion” sneaker.

  4. Brenda N
    April 4, 2022 / 11:39 am

    This is such fun info and just perfect, Susan! I’ve recently discovered knit sneaker boots and find I reach for my one pair all the time- a black wedge knit sneaker boot by Michael Kors, so comfortable all day and they go with everything. I even saw them styled with tights and a dress. I like that they add a lighter and sportier feel than the traditional ankle bootie I usually wear, but with more polish than athletic shoes. After a weekend searching for a tan /neutral pair online, I found a pair at Bloomingdales- I hope they’ll work out when they arrive!

  5. Holly Beaver
    April 4, 2022 / 3:47 pm

    I am enjoying your Paris travel capsule and other comments. We are visiting Paris in September and my 3 girlfriends asked me to locate some shops. However, we are searching shops or areas we can actually afford. $600 items not in our budgets. As you are there, would you be able to reccomend some affordable clothing and gift shops for us”? Thank you. BTW….your blog is the 1st email I open every day!

  6. Elizabeth
    April 4, 2022 / 5:49 pm

    Thanks for this update – hope you’re enjoying Paris! I’m in the market for some new sneakers so it’s perfect timing. Looks like there are lots of great choices in the “classic leather” category especially.

    I got a smile out of the return of wedge sneakers. They were super-fashionable in Paris when we moved there in 1997, but we’d never seen them in the US and were baffled at their popularity since we thought they were both silly-looking and impractical. I’m afraid my opinion has not changed now that they’ve come around again, but that’s the joy of fashion – there’s something for every taste.

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