Quite honestly, the prince is an idiot.
I said idiot!
Consider this . . . Cinderella dances with the prince and only the prince for the entire evening at the ball. Shouldn't that amount of physical and emotional contact lend itself to allowing him to remember what she looks like? Instead of searching the kingdom for the beautiful blonde girl that stole his heart while he danced with her, the prince uses a shoe to determine if he has the right girl.
Even my eight year old daughter knows that a beautiful pair of shoes is not just owned by one woman. If that were the case, Manolo's would never have achieved their cult status. Women love beautiful shoes. And, women buy beautiful shoes at any price! After all, a savvy shoe will never be too small because you ate your weight in french fries. So, chances are good that another lovely lady may have had a pair of glass slippers somewhere in her closet or under her bed, saving them for just the right occasion.
By using a shoe as his meter stick, the prince was taking a serious chance with fate.
Furthermore, didn't the prince and Cindy talk at all during the evening? Didn't they stop to get punch and chat about their hobbies ( him-playing polo, perhaps, at the castle and her-sweeping up ashes)? If he was really interested in her, wouldn't he have tried to find out about her hopes, her dreams, her loves?
Isn't it possible (even probable) that the prince was completely superficial. That he was a pretty boy that wanted a pretty girl on his arm. He only judged Cinderella on her outer beauty. Clearly, if he would have met her in her ashy, non-fairy godmother attire, he would have walked right by her. By only dancing with her and not finding out about the real Cinderella, the prince just proves that he was only out for a nice piece of ass.
But before you say, poor Cinderella . . . consider that she wasn't innocent in this either.
Cinderella was a hard working, self supporting girl. She could cook, she could clean, and she was a seamstress. This girl needed a spot on Project Runway, not a night dancing with the royal idiot. Yes, Cindy sold herself short. She fell for the pretty boy. And, she lived happily ever after.
I guess that is why it's called a fairy tale.
Personally . . . I'll take my not-so-pretty boy that gets me coffee, plays cards with me, and makes me laugh any day.
He may not be royalty, but at least he is not an idiot.