How Do I Choose the Best Flip Flops?

B. Miller

Flip flops are a staple in many summer wardrobes for people of all ages, and with good reason. They are comfortable and casual, and can transition well from the beach to many different casual events or simply everyday errands. There are some things you should keep in mind when choosing flip flops, however; many people focus on style, and this is important, but the way the shoes fit your feet is even more important. These sandals should ideally have a molded sole that fits under the heel and supports the arch of the foot. Otherwise, they can stretch out the tendons of the feet, and cause pain or potential damage to the arches.

Flip flops are one of the most comfortable types of footwear.
Flip flops are one of the most comfortable types of footwear.

Before purchasing flip flops, consider how you will wear them, because they are designed in a number of different ways to suit different styles or activities. If you will only be wearing the shoes at the beach or pool, you might simply want a basic pair of rubber or plastic flip flops. These will not offer much support to the feet, but they are easy to clean after a day at the beach. If you will use them on an everyday basis, or for longer than short periods of time, you might want to choose thong sandals designed with a bit more style and support.

Flip-flops lacking arch support can be uncomfortable and possibly harmful to your feet.
Flip-flops lacking arch support can be uncomfortable and possibly harmful to your feet.

When selecting flip flops for everyday use, you will want to look at the sole and the straps. In general, wider straps are more comfortable and stay on the feet better than thin straps, so you will not need to grip with the toes as much. A thicker, supportive sole will also help to keep the feet in a better position while walking, and prevent the ankles from rolling inward, or the arches from straining. Rather than a shoe with a completely flat sole, choose one that is curved like a sturdier sandal or sneaker.

Even if you do choose supportive flip flops, they are not shoes that are designed for active wear, and should not be worn on long walks and certainly not for exercising. Otherwise they are appropriate for most casual events in the summer, especially the shoes that are designed with a slightly nicer style or made of higher quality materials like leather. Flip flops are not appropriate footwear for work, however, or formal events such as eating at a formal restaurant or wearing to things like funerals or weddings unless the wedding is taking place on an actual beach.

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Discussion Comments


When it comes to choosing flip flops to wear, you have to think on how often you will wear them. If it is just to the mailbox and back, I personally would buy a cheap pair that usually they don't last you very long. If you plan on wearing them to the mall, to a field trip with your kids, or to the beach, I would choose something sturdy and comfortable because you want them to last a long time.

Also, depending on the style of shoe, sometimes if you get one with a little bit of a heel it may help support your back instead of your feet always being flat. There are brands online that would be great to try out for those who need something more firm or with a little heel. I like to find the best flip flops that I can wear for long periods of time and be comfortable at the same time.

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