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Does Clothing Include Shoes?

Last Updated on May 17, 2024 by Sarah Keene

So let us speak about clothes for a moment. What precisely do they look like? They are, without a doubt, articles of apparel. Basically, they’re things that cover a certain area of your body, sheltering it from the elements, protecting it from indecency, and concealing it from scrutiny.

Although this is an imprecise – and, as a consequence, unsatisfying – definition, it does not serve its purpose. Is it correct to ask does clothes include shoes in the definition of clothing? Are shoes considered to be a kind of clothing? What about a pair of sunglasses? This article aims to address the long-running debate over whether shoes should be classified as clothing or as an accessory.

Are Shoes Clothing?

No, shoes are not clothing. This is because shoes are regarded as fashion accessories. It’s important to remember that not all body covers are considered to be clothes. Clothing is a fabric or textile material that is worn on your body to provide warmth and protection.

What Do Different People think about if shoes are clothing? 

Some people are divided on their opinions. Some people believe that shoes are clothing because they cover and protect areas of the body, just as dresses, skirts, blouses, shirts, jeans, coats, and tights cover and protect their specific regions. So, there is still a bit of a divide on whether people believe that shoes are clothing or not.

What about accessories? 

Many people believe an accessory is not a necessary item for coverage, but they enhance the appearance of the outfit. Accessories like belts, suspenders, hats, stockings, etc. that covers the body could be considered apparel or accessories depending on their function or use necessity. Therefore, they see shoes as just enhancing the outfit.

What about style and fashion? 

Some individuals claim that no outfit will be complete without the perfect pair of shoes. Shoes are something that we all have in large numbers and have been wearing on a daily basis. There are different types of shoes that are worn with different outfits, for example: boots and sandals.

What shoes can be worn with different outfits? 

When wearing casual outfits, shoes can complete the look. They can be paired up with casual shoes like sneakers, sports shoes, flip-flops, etc. Whereas ethnic outfits can be paired up with ethnic footwear like jutis, mojaris, pathani shoes, sandals, etc. Therefore, it is clear to see that shoes are an important part of clothing.

So what is the verdict? Are shoes clothing or just an important part of the outfit? 

No, shoes are not clothing.

Even though some people do believe they are. The main reason they think this is because wearing the wrong shoes on an outfit can drastically change the whole look.  You may have also heard that your shoes are the first thing that people notice when they meet people.  Still, shoes are not clothing, they are an accessory.

Shoes for different occasions 

Another reason why shoes are accessories is that shoes need to be worn in accordance with the type of occasion. You cannot wear your cool boy sneakers to a formal family gathering. They will be best being worn for a friend’s meetup or a late-night party at your best friend’s place.

Clothing vs. Accessories

Technically speaking, clothes are more important because they keep us warm. From a style standpoint, though, it depends. Because there are statement articles of clothing, but there are also statement accessories.

Like for classical dress, accessories are your means of personalizing the look. But if you’re already wearing a quirky outfit, accessories can be overbearing and not needed.

Clothing vs. Apparel

Apparel comes from the meaning “to wear,” so it includes clothing and “outfitting” (i.e., equipment/accessories worn or carried for function or decoration).

Clothing is the “cloth” you wear as part of your apparel for body protection/modesty. Therefore, both can be considered as the same thing as they both serve the same function.

What is considered accessories in apparel?

An accessory is regarded as a decorative item that enhances a person’s outfit. Accessories that are considered apparel include the main items below. There are plenty more, but these are known as the popular ones:

  • jackets
  • boots
  • shoes
  • cravats
  • ties
  • hats
  • bonnets
  • belts
  • suspenders
  • gloves
  • muffs
  • necklaces
  • bracelets
  • watches
  • eyewear
  • sashes
  • shawls
  • scarves
  • lanyards
  • socks
  • pins
  • piercings
  • rings
  • stockings

What are shoes considered?

Shoes are considered an accessory.

However, shoes can also be considered both accessories and clothing since accessories are a type of clothing.

Some may consider shoes a part of the main outfit – and some may not. Some may even argue that shoes are an accessory when they are indoors and an item of clothing when they are outdoors.

Is footwear an accessory?

Yes, footwear is an accessory, as mentioned earlier in the article.

Carryables (Accessories that you carry around with you) and wearables are two broad categories of fashion accessories.

Handbags, hand fans, parasols and umbrellas, wallets, canes, and ceremonial swords are all examples of carryables.

Shoes, socks, clothes, cravats, and ties are examples of wearables.


1. Do shoes count as clothes?

Shoes are not a clothing item.

They are considered an accessory that enhances the look of the outfit and can be worn on different styles depending on the occasion. Ultimately, they are a footwear purchase.

Check out this video that helps you with how to style different outfits with the perfect accessories:

2. Are shoes considered apparel?

Yes, shoes are considered apparel.

Apparel can be generally categorized into two main areas: apparel that is carried and those that are worn. Traditionally carried apparel include purses and handbags, eyewear, hand fans, parasols and umbrellas, wallets, canes, and ceremonial swords. Those that are worn include ties, shoes, socks and belts.


3. Are shoes considered clothing?

Shoes are not clothing items. They are considered a footwear accessory purchase. This is because shoes are considered as fashion accessories that will enhance the look of the clothing item.

It is important to develop the understanding that not all items that cover the body are seen as clothing. Clothing is a textile or fabric material worn on the body.


4. Are shoes an accessory or clothing?

Yes, shoes are considered accessories.

Shoes are considered accessories because they help change the look of the clothing that is worn, however, some cultures do not need to wear shoes to complete their outfit. So we can say, the wearing of shoes is a cultural accessory. Generally, cultures in the western hemisphere rely on shoes to complete their outfit.

5. Do socks count as clothes?

No, socks do not count as clothes.

A sock is an item that is worn on the feet and often covers the ankles or a small part of the calf. A type of shoe or boot is commonly worn over socks. However, some outfits can be worn without socks, such as outfits where you are wearing sandals. This means that socks can be considered an accessory rather than clothes.

6. Are hats considered clothing?

No, hats are not considered clothing.

Hats can help enhance the outfit’s look, but the outfit can still be complete if the person decides not to wear a hat. Hats are therefore considered an accessory rather than clothing. Different types of hats can work for various occasions. For example, baseball hats could be worn for sports to help protect the eyes.

7. Do glasses count as clothing?

No, glasses are not considered clothing.

This is because glasses (also known as shades, sunglasses or sunnies) are a type of protective eyewear developed to primarily prevent bright sunlight and high-energy visible light from damaging or discomforting the eyes.

Or glasses can also be worn to help people read or see more clearly if an optician prescribes them.


So the answer to the question is, does clothing include shoes? Our response to this question is a clear ‘no’, however, this question can depend on the culture you find yourself living in. Some cultures are even happy not wearing shoes at all.

What is apparent is that the majority of people agree that shoes are an accessory that may enhance the look of any outfit you wear. After all, shoes do tell a lot about a person.

Next time you are dressing up, make sure you pick a nice pair of shoes to accessorize and make you feel and look much more confident.

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