Ted Baker Parals Review

8.0
8.0 score
[Editors rating (8.0)] = (WalkJogRun) score (8.0)/10


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Editor rating: 8.0 / 10
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Ted Baker may not be a household name globally, but in its hometown of Glasgow in the United Kingdom, it is a different story. They have already gained quite a reputation for their whimsical sense of humor. Ted Baker has expanded to become more than they ever bargained for, originally being only in the shirt business. The brand chooses not to advertise and due to their quality, there is no need to. This Parals oxford breathes new life into the classic derby style shoe.

Editor's Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Leather Upper
  • Soft Lining
  • Padded Collar
  • Reinforced Outsole
  • Additional Traction
Cons
  • Slightly Expensive
  • Minimal Support
Brand

Brand

Though you may not have heard of them, Ted Baker is actually one of the fastest growing lifestyle brands in the whole United Kingdom. As mentioned, they started as a shirt-maker. Ted Baker was noticed for being different due to offering laundering services in their first stores. From their start in 1987, Ted Baker has begun to sweep the world with their offerings for all genders, activities, and styles. For those looking to get a little bit more whimsical and a lot more stylish, Ted Baker is an up and comer that is guaranteed to deliver both of those qualities with ease.
Breathability

Breathability

When it comes to dressier options, leather is the only way to go. While casual attire can pull off using synthetic materials without a hitch, dress options usually need leather, the more composed fabric, to really wow in terms of style. Luckily for the wearer, leather is also incredibly breathable, allowing for lots of air to flow through the fabric, keeping your feet cool and dry. Leather shoes paired with textile lining are ideal for temperature regulation as opposed to a completely synthetic or plastic option. The Parals Oxford by Ted Baker will definitely outperform lesser shoes made purely for the look and not wearability. This is the type of style that needs very little to wow in terms of quality in multiple areas because it is so on point in look and sophistication, so the fact this could easily be worn with lighter suit in the summer or a heavier one in cooler months is just icing on the cake, so to speak. Breathable leather and gorgeous aesthetics are a match made in Glasgow!
Comfort

Comfort

While you can often expect shoes that are dress options for men to be extremely bare in terms of comfort, it is still a factor that is demanded by consumers. People don’t need to settle for an uncomfortable dress option just because they need to look presentable, and Ted Baker realizes this. The collar is actually padded on this Parals oxford, something that is increasingly rare on a pair of dress shoes, especially leather dress shoes. The upper is soft and supple, but even more, there are features embedded to ensure the experience of wearing them is just as smooth as the materials used to make them. The insole is well padded, an unusual addition to more upscale footwear, but absolutely necessary to feel great when you’re out showing your style off. The incredibly soft lining helps to make the environment in this pair of Ted Bakers totally manageable regardless of if you are wearing a thick and soft dress sock or a light summer option for those warm-weather ensembles.
Color

Color

A common complaint when looking for dressier footwear for a suit is the color options or lack thereof. Black is obviously totally great, it goes with most things and won’t steal the show away from the rest of your outfit. While this is all great to hear, black simply isn’t the best color choice for every single outfit. Many retailers forget to include lighter, more neutral options when creating new products in their shoe lines. Luckily, Ted Baker isn’t like many other retailers. For this Parals Oxford, he made two brown hues that would be stunning with a variety of suit tones. I can see the darker brown being rocked with a rich navy suit. For a lighter option or even something with green tones, the tan would turn heads as well. The three color options on this dapper pick could work with so many different styles even with only the subtle, basic distinctions. It is common to forget a lighter brown or tan option when designing footwear for dress, so it is totally refreshing to see Ted Baker not only being mindful of the hues he is producing but choosing rich and buttery leather to make his choices shine.
Durability

Durability

Who has time to worry about if their favorite pair of dress oxfords will be talking by the time they try to wear them next? It should be known by now that many men buy dress shoes sparingly, which is understandably so, however, for those that need a daily choice there are specific details that need to be looked out for. On the Ted Baker Parals oxford, the sole utilizes multiple materials to ensure it has a long life of getting you to where you need to go while ensuring you look smashing while getting there. Not only is the leather high-quality, and by proxy inherently durable, but the forepart of the outsole has a special feature. Rubber is placed on the bottom of this Ted Baker in a geometric pattern. This better holds up to a lot of walking or being on your feet. If you find yourself in the city often or just need a nice shoe for work that won’t fall apart in a matter of months, then you are going to want to look for a shoe like this Ted Baker. Matched with its masterfully-made body, the base really helps to cement the exquisite final product. Anyone who is looking for footwear that is built to last, and is willing to maintain materials such as leather, should definitely take a look at this Parals oxford.
Key Features

Key Features

On this little number by Ted Baker, there are so many features for practicality it is hard to count. There is additional material to reinforce the sole, a must for a shoe that will get lots of wear. The collar is padded to protect the heel from unsightly blisters, a total bust when it comes to love a pair of new oxfords. There is even an insole that is padded and a supple leather lining. Practicality aside, small design features make this Ted Baker really pop in comparison to other similar brands and their styles. On the heel, there is an adorable “T”. It is a way to incorporate branding without being obnoxious or overly arrogant. The brand rejects advertising as mentioned before, and this subtle addition is a way to start a conversation about who makes them without being overly showy. In addition to this little ode to their maker, there is stitching around the shoe in key areas that give it a more handcrafted feel. There truly look like they are from your favorite shoemaker. They very well may be, but the appearance implies you’re getting your footwear from a cobbler up the street, not a brand name company. That kind of attention to detail is rarely seen in consumer goods these days, where cutting costs reigns. Making unique footwear is a thing of the past, but it doesn’t have to be when you buy from Ted Baker.
Price

Price

While it is common to expect to spend a certain amount of money on dress shoes, it is usually not shoes that are quite this expensive. These aren’t totally outlandish in price, but some may feel they are out of their range. In the triple digits, this Ted Baker Parals oxford is a higher-end option and the cost does reflect that. It is important to mention that you are not buying the brand here, you are buying an insanely nice shoe to wear for either work or dress occasions, depending on your needs. The leather is of the highest caliber and the construction is thoughtfully done. This is a stunning pair of oxfords to add to your collection if you have a love for men’s shoes. It is understandable that buying a brand that isn’t well known at a higher price tag might cause pause, I can’t say I wouldn’t hesitate, but this is a situation where it is worth taking that leap of faith. If you hate them, you can always return them for a full refund, however, it is unlikely that will be the case.
Style

Style

There is actually a bit of a confusing element when it comes to the style of this Ted Baker. It calls itself an oxford, but if you are familiar with what an oxford is, this shoe doesn’t really fit that description. The Parals oxford is ironically more of a derby style shoe. That means that the fabric that includes the eyelets is raised, the eyelets are on a separate panel that is unattached from the shoe and then sewn or fused on, causing that overlap you see where the shoe is laced. Oxfords are flat and connected at the eyelets. This confusion in the name aside, this Parals is an iconic fashion pick to top off an outfit. If you are more conservative in your suits and are looking for business attire, this Ted Baker will look like a dream, but the design is also cool enough to work with more daring options. The seams on the back curve and compliment the shape of the foot. The heel is analogous with the color of the upper. It is a sleek and sophisticated footwear option overall that will totally floor those who love shoes as much as you do.
Support

Support

Support is tricky in a dress shoe. There are very few factors available in this kind of style that can provide support, so it really does depend on how the shoe is made and put together. Unfortunately, as with many dress styles, this isn’t going to feel as comfortable as say, a boat shoe, or an orthotic. However, not all is lost. The slight heel offers some arch support, a great addition to any shoe that you will be wearing for a longer period of time. The padded collar helps to support and pad your ankle to keep from feeling rubbed the wrong way or strained when walking in these. The sock liner is padded to give your foot some relief from the harsh ground, a necessity. The bottom of this oxford by Ted Baker works to keep your foot firmly planted, helping you to walk correctly and preventing your gait from hurting your feet, or more importantly, your back and posture. These are by no means a perfect pick for a marathon but they really aren’t too bad when it comes to everyday wear. Most will be pleasantly surprised by their comfort and how little they bother their feet once these come off at the end of the day.
Traction

Traction

Footwear for special occasions usually has something in common: a total lack of traction. While it seems that when you’re trying to make an impression sturdy footing should be a top priority, it really never is. Options like this Ted Baker usually have absolutely no grip on the forefoot at all, then have some lined grip on the heel. How disappointing! The Parals is different and is totally equipped to handle the dancefloor and a city street with equal grace. The whole forefoot, all the way to the arch, has rubber with a geometric pattern engraved into it to grip the floor. The arch has the pattern extended to the leather portion of the outsole. Surprisingly, the heel also has traction in the same geometric shape coming around onto the edge of the heel to aid in pivoting and heel strikes. You really couldn’t ask for more in terms of traction that will still glide and not add bulk to the profile of the shoe. This Ted Baker thought of everything!
Bottom Line

Bottom Line

For anyone in the market for a new higher-end option for work or play, the Ted Baker Parals is an unexpected top pick. You may have not heard of the brand until now, but you’ll certainly be letting everyone you meet know of their fabulous shoes after trying this one. A sexy and sophisticated look perfectly brings together a ton of features that prove Ted Baker to be an ingenious designer.