You’ve had enough of ‘dance socks’ and you too want lethal stiletto heels. Of course, like all un-necessary things, tango shoes are in fact so useful. A beautiful pair of tango shoes will boost your confidence, help your posture and your balance. They’ll also reflect your personality and say even more about you as a tango dancer.
The only thing to watch out: when you go out and try them out, you might forget all the advice below and simply buy the pair you fall in love with. And we’d say, falling in love with a pair of tango shoes is the best thing that can happen, so go ahead and buy them!
What makes good tango shoes
Here are a few tips:
- Shoes come in different heel size, we would recommend to stay away from 9 cm. 7 cm is preferred; if not, 8cm is also good. Heels will help your posture but if they are too high, you’ll find it hard to keep your balance and it might put too much pressure on your calves.
- In terms of material, you need something that looks nice while being sturdy:
We don’t recommend suede; we found that it doesn’t stay nice for very long and it expands, which means that the shoes become loose, your feet are not held properly and it becomes hard to dance.
Leather is good and usually long lasting.
Silk and other materials can last quite long so don’t rule them out except if they look very fragile. Nathalie has a pair of polka dot silk shoes which she’s been wearing over and over and they still look pretty good.
Patent leather is Nathalie’s favourite because shoes look beautiful forever – although shoes tend to stick to each other so you need to regularly apply vaseline or hand cream to make sure they don’t.
- Make sure the back of the shoes (whether opened or closed, doesn’t make much of a difference) holds your feet well.
- Avoid shoes with pompons, bows or stuff on the top or at the back because you will get your heel stuck, and it will get messy 🙂
Buying tango shoes: which brand?
In terms of brands, the best brand is Comme il Faut (from Buenos Aires), they are very comfortable and very solid. They are high end shoes selling at about £150. You’ll have to buy them from the Internet however. Comme il Faut shoes are one size bigger than what you would usually buy, so if you usually wear 38, you’ll need to buy 37 in Comme Il Faut.
We also recommend Mme Pivot from Italy (UK Facebook page and italian website), which are sold in London by Barbara. She can arrange a viewing if you contact her – tell her you are coming from us. Her contact is: Barbarina@gmail.com. The price is somewhat similar to Comme Il Faut, if not slightly less.
Amy’s shop also stocks various brands at different price points – Turquoise, M. Tango. Have a look at the website for more information.
Alternatively, we’ve been recommended Supadance, which we’ve never tried but which are much cheaper. Their latin sandals look fine as long as you go for ultra slim heels. Other brands include Nueva Epoqua and Freed.