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- Flip flops are the perfect summer shoe, but they have a reputation for being flimsy and plasticky.
- The following options are comfortable and stylish enough to wear with casual outfits.
- Whether you’re shopping for men’s or women’s sizing, these are the best flip flop styles out there.
As far as shoes go, flip flops tend to get a bad wrap. While other shoes can be dressed up and down, flip flops tend to be relegated to casual wear – or to the beach. But that doesn’t mean you should discount these summertime favorites. The right flip flops can elevate your day-to-day wear and keep your feet comfortable in cool in warmer temps.
On the Insider Reviews team, we’ve tested dozens of flip flops, from the most casual options to ones that are slightly more elevated. And these are the best flip flops brands for men and women that we’ve worn. Whether you’re looking for your new beach shoes or in need of some more polished shoes to slip into after dancing all night, there’s a pair for you here.
Here are the best flip flops in 2021:
The cushioned sole of Sanuk‘s flip flops makes you feel like you’re walking on a yoga mat.
When you do yoga, there’s a moment when you press your hands into the mat during downward dog or sink into child’s pose, and the world melts away. That sense of relief and comfort is in large part due to the mat itself. Yoga mats, though relatively thin, make you feel cushioned and supported even on top of a hardwood floor. Sanuk makes flip flops that mimic that experience.
The footbeds are made of actual yoga mat material. It’s a cool, unique concept that translates well to real-life comfort. The brand’s most popular style for women is the Yoga Sling 2, which has a stylish wrap-around silhouette that is clearly yoga-inspired and makes these art-gallery-owner-chic. While not a true flip flop due to a piece of fabric that secures around the ankle, it still gives you that thong sandal look.
In men’s sizing, there is the cleverly named Beer Cozy Flip Flop. This is more of a traditional flip flop with thick straps, Sanuk’s signature yoga mat footbed, and a curve for additional arch support.
Rainbows have been a favorite flip flop for decades, thanks to their leather exterior and nonslip rubber sole.
If you’re looking for a flip flop that’s comfortable enough to walk around in for hours, you need to get a pair of Rainbows. Rainbow has been making leather sandals for the whole family for over 40 years with the intention of creating the world’s best sandal.
While different styles have evolved over the years, all pairs are made to look and feel great on your feet and not wear out over time. Rainbows are my favorite sandals by far — they’re extremely comfortable and supportive for a pair of flip flops. There’s a nonslip rubber sole, sturdy leather top, and a sponge rubber midsole. Essentially, what this does is create a fit that molds to your feet over time.
Rainbows come in single-layer and double-layer options. This refers to the layers in the midsole, so the double-layer offers more arch support. Even so, the single-layer sandals are much more supportive than your typical rubber flip flops.
The leather makes these sandals feel more appropriate for wearing out and about. But be careful with these around water. If you do get them wet, they take a long time to dry, and it could eventually ruin the sandals.
Colorful and comfortable, Havaianas are a perfect beach flip flop.
Havaianas are the ideal beach sandal — durable, colorful, and able to withstand rough conditions. Even if they get a little scraped-up and windswept, they’ll still look cool after the fact.
The sandals come in a wide variety of color and style combinations. The most iconic styles — the ones you think of first when you hear the brand name — are probably the Havaianas Women’s Slim Flip Flop and the Men’s Top Flip Flop.
There are a few different iterations of the sandals for men and women. They both have a slightly curved footbed, though some have slim rubber straps while others have thicker straps, and some are stamped with the Havaianas logo.
Havaianas have been my go-to flip flops for years. They’re simple, but comfortable enough to walk in for hours and look good with pretty much everything.
Tkees flip flops are sleek enough to go from the beach to dinner.
Flip flops are usually reserved for walking along the beach or even wearing in the shower at the gym, but Tkees takes the shoe style to the next level. Tkees makes simple, elegant sandals and flip flops for both adults and kids.
Tkees are made with leather (some with vegan leather) which gives them a more sophisticated feel than plastic options. The sandals are thin, but have a rubber sole for extra support. Each pair has a soft, cushioned footbed for added comfort. They’re the perfect shoe for when you need something to throw on, but want something that looks better than a rubber flip flop. One of the best parts about Tkees is the inclusive range of nude shades. The Foundation flip flops come in a range of neutrals to match a variety of skin types.
Generally, they’re very comfortable, but because they’re so thin, they’re best for the beach, pool, or anywhere else where you don’t mind if your feet get a little dirty. Additionally, the thin leather straps can get a little uncomfortable if you’re walking for a long period of time. But, by the same token, they’re very durable because of this construction.
The style and durability of these shoes make them feel worth the price. If you’re looking for an elevated pair, they’re a great option.
Hari Mari makes “boat safe” flip flops that keep you steady-footed when you walk.
You don’t need to own a boat to enjoy Hari Mari flip flops. “Boat safe” in this case essentially means nonslip, so they’re suitable for just about any slick terrain. These are flip flops for everyone, even people who don’t normally wear flip flops. They’re cute and sporty, but more attractive than your average pair.
What really makes Hari Mari flip flops unique is the memory foam toe, designed to minimize the awful chafing you get from other thong sandals. It’s described by the brand as “a formidable cylinder of memory foam encased in soft nylon to help grip toes, reduce abrasion and do away with painful break-in periods.”
Old Navy flip flops are great for people who don’t want to pay a ton for their beach shoes.
The signature thing about Old Navy flip flops is that they are cheap — not affordable or inexpensive, but cheap. Most pairs are normally $3.99 when not on sale, but they are seemingly always discounted. If you like the look of Havaianas but don’t want to spend a lot of money (especially if they may become sand-logged), check out the Old Navy Classic Flip Flops.
They come in men’s and women’s sizes that look the same aside from minor adjustments to accommodate different foot shapes. Old Navy offers the Classic style in tons of colors, including some fun pastels.
Of course, being so cheap, you sacrifice some quality and comfort. Don’t be surprised if you have to replace one each year. But, Insider Reviews Guides Editor Les Shu wears the Old Navy Classic Flips Flops to the gym showers regularly, and finds that they hold up nicely. He does recommend replacing them often if you use them for the gym, to prevent bacteria buildup.
Oofos reinvented the flip flop to make the most comfortable sandals we’ve tried.
Oofos specifically markets these sandals as recovery shoes for people who need more arch support and impact absorption than others. Many athletes and people with feet problems swear by them.
The special foam is built to absorb even more shock than your average sports shoe. They are formed to fit the curve of your arch, so Oofos’ sandals offer much more support than your average pair of flip flops. They absorb impact and they don’t move up and down as you walk, either.
Even though the sandals are a bit pricey, they are worth it because they will last and last. You can even machine wash or hose them down after a day on the beach to get rid of all the sand they pick up. They may not be the most beautiful sandals you’ll own, but they sure will be the most comfortable.
Check out our other great footwear guides