The 10 rules of sneakers

From sports shoe to fashion statement: the sneaker has rapidly made its way from the street to the boardroom, seen on the feet of everyone from pop stars to presidents. But there are still a few dos and don’ts to these ubiquitous shoes. Our 10 rules will show you how to wear sneakers with style in (almost) every situation.

Navy look with white sneakers by BOSS Navy look with white sneakers by BOSS

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1. Choose the right pair

Sneakers in different colors by BOSS Sneakers in different colors by BOSS

Sneakers come in every variation imaginable: from wild, patterned neon to sleek monochrome. The first question to ask yourself, though, is: do they suit my wardrobe? Remember, the more timeless the design, the easier it is for your shoes to cross over from a casual to a business outfit.

2. Invest in quality

Close up leader sneaker by BOSS Close up leader sneaker by BOSS

High-quality leather and premium workmanship are essential if you want your sporty shoes to transition seamlessly to a more formal setting.

3. Opposites attract

Blue shades look with white sneakers by BOSS Blue shades look with white sneakers by BOSS

Like no other shoes, sneakers embody easygoing cool. That’s why they need an elegant opposite: a modern trench coat, or a sharply cut blazer paired with fine cotton chinos, will work perfectly with low-key sneakers.

4. Wear them to work

Business look with black sneakers by BOSS Business look with black sneakers by BOSS

Sneakers used to be allowed in the office only on Casual Fridays – but today they are often worn to business meetings. According to a study by Harvard Business School, casually dressed people tend to appear more confident – contradicting certain dress codes signals that you are not dependent on the recognition of others.
If you wear sneakers with tailoring, your suit should have a slim silhouette. The ideal trouser length ends just above the ankle.

5. Complete your look

Bag and matching sneakers by BOSS Bag and matching sneakers by BOSS

Wear your sneakers with carefully chosen leather accessories, for a coordinated style statement. The new BOSS Signature collection offers textured leather bags in modern colours, all handcrafted in Italy.

6. Keep it simple

Different color of sneakers by BOSS Different color of sneakers by BOSS

Clean, minimalistic sneakers exude understated cool. For a pared-back look, restrict your colour palette to neutral shades like white, black, brown or navy.

7. Show some ankle

Trousers and sneakers by BOSS Trousers and sneakers by BOSS

A small but important detail: in spring and summer, leave your socks in the drawer.

8. Add white to your collection

Beige and white look with white sneakers by BOSS Beige and white look with white sneakers by BOSS

White is associated with lightness and freshness, so it’s no wonder that white sneakers are perennially popular. Cream or grey linings add a particularly elegant touch. Accentuated with chinos in bright colours, white sneakers offer a calming counterpoint.

9. Take good care

White sneakers on a wall by BOSS White sneakers on a wall by BOSS

Invest in the right care products to keep your sneakers in optimum condition, and protect them from the elements. Storing them on shoe trees will help prevent creases.

10. Know when to leave your sneakers at home

Sneakers and business shoes by BOSS Sneakers and business shoes by BOSS

Last but not least: in situations with a strict dress code, such as black or white tie events, sneakers are still a no-go and should be given a break.

Watch: The 10 rules of sneakers

Take a look at our video overview of this guide, covering all you need to know to get it right every time.