The difference between cap toe shoes & wingtip shoes

Lace-up shoes are an affirmative element in your wardrobe for all the reasons. No matter, if you choose oxfords, brogues or derby shoes, all of these have their own importance at their respective places. But do you know about the two most common types of lace-up shoes; Wingtip and Cap Toe, which are both great for wearing in the office and casual settings and the differences between these?


The Wingtips are characterized by a pointed toe-cap with extensions (W) that run along both sides of the toe. From a bird’s-eye view the toe is shaped like a “W” (or an “M”, depending on how you’re admiring your shoes). Back in the day you wouldn’t see these babies in an office boardroom as they were once considered “outdoor country” where the perforations were designed to allow water to drain (when walking through wet terrains).

Wing tips were historically leisure shoes, and the visually “busy” style means that in today’s fashion language they’re still more casual. That said, they’re not sneakers, either. Wingtips are smack in the middle of casual dress shoes (or dress-casual shoes, if you prefer).

You shouldn’t wear them in serious and high-formality business settings, or too somber affairs like funerals, but other than that they’re fair game for wearing with suits, slacks, and sports coats, or even just jeans and a casual collared shirt.

Captoe shoes, on the other hand, feature a cap (with a straight edge) on the toe. It is, generally speaking, a formal design made for formal attire. Today, the cap toe shoe is an acceptable element to sophisticated outfits and can be worn with dress slacks, jeans, chinos, and blazers.

Cap toes find their way onto shoes that are more formal than they are casual. For example, a plain black cap toe oxford (sometimes referred to as a “Balmoral”) is widely considered to be the most formal of daytime business shoes. In fact, when polished to a high shine, they are considered appropriate for black-tie ensembles.