Choosing the right waitress shoes is an important decision. Most restaurants have a dress code policy requiring that waiters and waitresses wear black non-slip or slip resistant shoes.
The following black non-slip shoes are usually required for all FOH positions, including The Host or Hostess, Servers (waiter or waitress), bartender and chef. Whether you’re looking for cute waitress shoes, the most comfortable shoe for servers, or the overall best shoe for slippery restaurants, we’ve got you covered.
Note: I have worn and tested the following 5 pairs of non-slip waitress shoes at my restaurant while serving tables.
1. Dansko Women’s Pro XP slip resistant Clog
There’s a reason nurses, teachers, waiters and waitress all seem to be wearing Dansko shoes: Comfort. Dansko’s promote good foot health as they have the Seal of Acceptance from the American Podiatric Medical Association. This is good for you because it means that they will offer great support while still being comfortable.
Dansko shoes can take longer to break in. Don’t worry though, after a few server shifts you’ll be happy you have them. Compared to it’s sister shoe, the Professional Clog, the XP is much lighter weight. This is the perfect clog for waitresses.
2. Townforst® Women’s Slip Resistant Jess Work Shoes
These shoes were created just for those working in the culinary profession. They are extremely functional and comfortable. They offer a variety of styles for both men and women. My favorite happens to be the Jess, which is a slip-resistant flat with genuine leather upper. They are lightweight and have just the right amount of cushioning.
The slip-resistant outsole was tested by Intertek, and reached their highest level of Slip Test. The best thing about these shoes is that they don’t look like your typical pair of “work shoes.” When you have finished your shift and want to go out afterwards, you don’t have to worry about changing your shoes. I even have a bright colored pair that aren’t for work!
3. Skechers Gibson Sneaker
If you are looking for a more athletic type of non-slip shoe, Skechers for Work Gibson-Hardwood series would be a great option. These shoes are comfortable and durable but still let you show your edgy style. (And if this particular pair isn’t your style, don’t worry they have a lot of different options.)
Skechers for Work has an OSHA compliant slip-resistant out-sole and even meets the ASTM requirement for electrical hazard safety. Another plus is that these shoes don’t break the bank. They are affordable, casual and comfortable. Perfect for the stylish server!
4. Crocs Bistro Non-Slip Clog
Crocs are known for being extremely lightweight and comfortable, which is exactly what you need for long server shifts. But, the original Crocs weren’t acceptable at most restaurants. Traditional Crocs were designed with holes and vents to allow for water to drain and didn’t have a solid mold, which most restaurants require. Since then, Crocs has expanded their brand and developed different styles and options that are appropriate for those working in the restaurant industry.
They now offer shoes specific for waiters and waitresses with Crocs Lock technology, a slip resistant tread. In addition to the traditional style and comfort of the original Crocs, these have an adjustable strap, and a toe and heel bumper. Even Chef Mario Batali has his own edition of these shoes! I would suggest checking with your restaurant owner or manager before you purchase these though, as some may require your footwear to have an enclosed back.
5. New Balance 626
If you are strictly concerned with comfort, these are for you. New Balance is known for having quality, comfortable shoes. The New Balance 626 is no exception.
These black shoes offer cushioning and support as they were designed for people who have to be on their feet in the restaurant all day. They have a non-marking and slip resistant out-sole, with leather on the upper part of the shoe. They even have some styles that offer a steel toe, if you need that. This is more of an athletic style of footwear, so remember to check with your waitstaff manager to make sure they are acceptable before you purchase.
New Balance 626 $75
As you can tell, there are several types of non-slip waitress shoes available in black. The best waitress shoes are the ones that will prevent you from slipping and be comfortable to wear all day.
Make sure to to break-in your non-slip shoes after you purchase them. Wear them around your house for a few hours or while you run errands. The first time you wear them at the restaurant don’t commit to them for the entire shift. Bring another pair of shoes and switch mid-shift to avoid blisters. A comfortable pair of waitress shoes can make a big difference.
The best pair of server shoes will allow for you to spend more time concentrating on the things that really matter, like increasing your tips!
Tip: Always wear black socks with your black waitress pants and black waitress shoes. If you don’t already have a job as a waitress, learn more about how to write your waitress resume here.