What Is the Difference Between Ballet Shoes and Slippers?

Ballet|Ballet Shoes

Ballet shoes and slippers are both types of footwear used in dancing. While they may look similar, there are distinct differences between the two.

Ballet Shoes

Ballet shoes, also known as pointe shoes, are specifically designed for ballet dancing. They are made from a combination of soft and hard materials to provide support and flexibility.

The toe box is made from cardboard or leather and it is reinforced with a block of material called the shank, which helps the dancer stand on their toes. The sole is usually made of suede or leather so that it can grip the surface when turning or leaping. Ballet shoes have drawstrings on the front to help them fit securely while dancing.


Slippers are a type of dance shoe that is typically used for jazz, tap, and other forms of dance. They feature a soft sole that allows dancers to move with ease across the floor.

Slipper soles are usually made from suede or rubber and they provide good traction while allowing dancers to feel the floor beneath their feet. Slipper uppers are often made from canvas or leather and they come in different styles such as lace-up or slip-on. Unlike ballet shoes, slippers do not have drawstrings for extra security when dancing because they do not need as much support as pointe shoes do.


Ballet shoes and slippers both serve different purposes in dance but have some similarities in design. Ballet shoes feature a hard toe box reinforced with a shank and drawstrings for extra security when performing pointe work, while slippers have softer soles with better traction and uppers that come in various styles such as lace-up or slip-on. It is important to choose the right type of shoe for each dance style to ensure comfort, safety, and optimal performance during practice or performance.