Style + Look for Less

Look for Less: Snakeskin Pumps

Snakeskin pumps are my go-to summer shoe.  They go with any color palette, are more professional than a flesh-toned pump, and they’re chic.  And luckily, they’re popular enough this season that they’re available in every price point.

Corner Office

J.Crew Snakeskin Pump ($228 + 20% off)

Cubicle Farm

Steve Madden Daisie Pump ($99)

Front Desk

Nasty Gal On My List Pump ($19)

{this post contains affiliate links that may generate commission for the author}

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    23 comments

  1. R says:

    I love snakeskin pumps, but can you explain your thinking on how they are more professional than a flesh-tone pump? I don’t think that snakeskin pumps are unprofessional…I’m just curious about the implication that flesh-tone pumps might be unprofessional. Thanks!

    April 6, 2018/Reply
    • Lesliejeannene says:

      I had the same question! I love my snakeskin pumps but wouldn’t say they are more or less professional than my nude pumps…

      April 6, 2018/Reply
      • Belle says:

        I find them easier in some settings, but that might be because mine are really dark.

        April 6, 2018/Reply
    • Belle says:

      I think flesh tone pumps can be hard with a business suit. A little bit less professional than black or gray or navy. For that, I find a dark snakeskin like the J.Crew a bit less of a contrast. I don’t think flesh-toned heels are unprofessional.

      April 6, 2018/Reply
    • Melissa says:

      I’ve noticed at my office that a lot of flesh tone/nude-to-you heels and flats (particularly on the co-op students/on their budgets) can look really cheap, especially if they’re patent or shiny leather or synthetic. I think it can be tough to get a good tonal match, and they need to be really well maintained to not look scuffed up. I can see that a snake print would have a similar versatility, but be more forgiving, both in terms of maintenance, and the look of the shoes at lower price points.

      April 6, 2018/Reply
  2. SLG says:

    What do you think about matching the tone of a snakeskin pump to the tones of your outfit? I bought a gorgeous pair of Coach snakeskin pumps a couple of years ago, but there’s more white in them then dark — aka they’re closer to the third pair you pictured, and less like the JCrew pair at the top of this post with a lot of dark / gray tones. I wear a lot of dark skirts & pants, and I find that I never wear these gorgeous pumps because they always seem too light for the outfit I’m wearing.

    For instance, imagine those Nasty Gal pumps with the dark skirt + khaki trench the JCrew model is wearing at the link you included. Or imagine them with a black or navy sheath dress. Would that work? Am I overthinking this?

    April 6, 2018/Reply
    • Belle says:

      I can see that. It just depends on your preference. The white makes it tougher, tough white shoes are also on trend right now. I think it works, it’s just more of a contrast. If you’re not comfortable with them, sell the white ones and swap in a darker pair.

      April 6, 2018/Reply
    • Anon says:

      I have a pair of very white snakeskin pumps and love them. I use them to add a more graphic element to otherwise very neutral outfits: a black suit with white shell, or a sheath in a solid color like black or cobalt.

      April 6, 2018/Reply
  3. M says:

    Any chance you have recommendations for snakeskin (or other summer neutral but not nude) flats too?

    April 6, 2018/Reply
    • JL says:

      I second the request for snakeskin flats….

      April 6, 2018/Reply
      • Another Jl says:

        Cole Haan Tali snakeskin flats are the best! I prefer the older version (with the nude bow, instead of snakeskin). You can usually find that version at zappos or department stores.

        April 6, 2018/Reply
    • LS says:

      I third the request for flats. The style of the Cole Haan pair that Another JL mentioned are really hard on my feet for some reason. Something with the elastic feels like my arches are getting squeezed.

      Pointy-toe D’Orsay are my absolute favorite style of flats – extra points if they have an ankle-strap and show a tiny bit of toe cleavage. I’ve been looking for grey-toned snakeskin flats in this style forever to no avail.

      April 6, 2018/Reply
  4. Angela says:

    I can only assume that because it is a sponsored post that you state they are more professional

    I like both, but flesh tone is a neutral. In lots of formal offices, the snakeskin would look ‘racy’

    April 6, 2018/Reply
    • Mary says:

      Pretty sure it’s not a sponsored post. Belle receives commissions on purchases made from links in the post. No one is paying her for her opinion. It’s fine to disagree with her assessment that snakeskin is more professional than flesh tone, but it’s not cool to accuse of her of saying it only because it’s sponsored.

      April 6, 2018/Reply
    • Belle says:

      Stating my opinion that something is good, or better than something else, doesn’t mean that this is a sponsored post. That’s what happens on other blogs, it doesn’t happen here.

      April 6, 2018/Reply
    • LS says:

      It’s a violation of FTC disclosure rules to have a sponsored post without saying so. Other bloggers will do so the most minimal way possible, but Abra doesn’t do that and very rarely has sponsored posts.

      As a reader for 10+ years, I can confirm her love affair with snakeskin pumps goes back a long time.

      April 6, 2018/Reply
      • sarah says:

        I agree. I own a pair of snakeskin pumps I’m almost certain we’re featured on this blog a few years ago. They are Michael Kors. Starting to show their age now, which I’m a bit in denial about. Since they were a pattern they weren’t my daily pair. They do look better than my nude pumps, but I still think the nude pair is professional. Both pairs I found on sale!

        April 9, 2018/Reply
  5. Ana says:

    Banana Republic has a lot of snakeskin options, from a block heel, slides, and point-toe flats. I’m personally a fan of a darker snakeskin which works as more of a gray neutral in my wardrobe.

    April 6, 2018/Reply
  6. Anon says:

    I love snakeskin pumps too and agree they can function as a neutral, but I would caution against thinking they were more professional than nude pumps in the most conservative settings. I once chatted with one of my juries following a trial and they kept referring to plaintiff’s counsel as “snake shoes girl.” Is it fair? No. Should you have it in the back of your mind? Probably.

    April 6, 2018/Reply
    • EM B says:

      Juries are a whole different ballgame from a “typical” business setting. I think snakeskin works in my conservative law firm on a day-to-day basis, but I would never wear them to a jury trial.

      April 9, 2018/Reply
      • Belle says:

        That makes sense. I once had a juror (in just a dummy law school trial) tell me that the length of my hair bothered her. It’s not short, it’s not long, and she found it distracting. I almost threw my binder.

        April 9, 2018/Reply
  7. Jules says:

    I love snakeskin, but I had a hard time with them since I wear a lot of bright colors/prints. I want a pair in my rotation, but for right now I’m sticking with a cream colored suede-looking pump which has been surprisingly versatile.

    April 6, 2018/Reply
  8. Wanda says:

    I don’t have any tattoos. When I was in college I was thisclose to getting one but I knew my parents wouldn’t approve. Also, and most importantly, I didn’t feel I had anything important enough to merit a permanent tattoo. Eventually, the desire went away. I no longer want one. I know myself now. I’m too fickle and I’m certain if I got one I’d almost want it removed. However, now I have a few things that have meaning to me. Things I know will never change. So if I ever decided to get one it would either be my daughter’s name (my love for my daughter is eternal), something representing my island of Puerto Rico (the flag, a map of the island or the Taino Indian petroglyph for the sun…my love for my country is permanent) or my favorite word: Dream. I still consider getting one of those three things from time to time but overall, I doubt I’ll ever get one.

    April 7, 2018/Reply