Flip flops are basically synonymous with summer. If you don’t have a half-decent pair of flip flops or slides in your closet, there are so many reasons to reconsider. The first and one of the best reasons is the value. For around $30, a decent pair of flip flops will last you years. Unless you’re buying a luxury brand, flip flops typically don’t cost much because their designs are simple and use relatively inexpensive materials such as foams, plastics and synthetic materials. Not only do those materials keep flip flop prices down, but they also make many flip flops water resistant and unbelievably comfortable and durable for their price.
Whether you’re kicking it at the pool with friends, hitting the beach for some sun or packing the duffel for a weekend trip, a pair of flip flops will carry you through any casual adventure. If you don’t want to go without this summer staple, SPY rounded up seven of the best flip flops options to help prep your closet for those sunny summer days.
Before we run through the best flip flops, we just need to clear up a technicality: All flip flops and slides are sandals but not all sandals are flip flops. In the spirit of not getting too bogged down in definitions and in the interest of identifying and including the best open-toed footwear for summer fun, we evaluated all options, but trended toward stereotypical, lighter, flip flop sandals as described above. They’re the best footwear for casual summer fun like taking a walk in a park or partying in the backyard. After all, if you’re looking to go for a hike, we’ve got sturdier sandals for you covered.
1. Reef Men’s Fanning Flip Flop
If you’re looking for a great overall summer flip flop, you can’t do much better than the Reef Men’s Fanning Flip Flop. Popular among surfers and more active beachgoers, Reef’s Fanning flip flops use a rubber outsole and a foam footbed with synthetic uppers. That means they’re comfortable enough for lounging around but also durable enough to handle a bit more wear and tear as well as water resistant. That might be standard fare for most flip flops, but this pair adds one more detail to stand out from the crowd: a bottle opener on its sole! So no matter what you’re up to, at least you know you’ll be able to open a beer.
2. Crocs Crocband Flip Flop
True to the Crocs brand, the Crocs Crocband Flip Flops are extremely comfortable, durable and will keep your feet feeling fresh for hours. The only downside? If they get wet, they won’t dry as you wear them because the water will stay stuck between your foot and the foam material. But give them a quick wipe down or a few minutes to dry in the sun, and you’ll be ready to hit the streets again in no time.
3. Nike Men’s Kawa Slide Sandal
You can’t walk outside during the summer with seeing at least one pair of Nike slides. The Nike Men’s Kawa Slide Sandal isn’t great for wetter conditions because the foam footbed can soak a bit, but because this sandal uses multiple layers of foam in its design, it’s as comfortable for sitting on the couch as it is for walking on the boardwalk. Just make sure if the flip flops get really wet you leave them to fully dry out in the sun.
4. UGG Brookside Flip
If you ever wondered why women for the past 15 or so years have been fawning over calf-high spacey UGG boots, you’ve never tried a pair of the male equivalent yourself. Now deemed the most comfortable winter staple for both women and men alike, UGG unbeknownst to us have been dipping their toes in summer-wear for a bit now. The brand’s Brookside Flips for men prove comfort doesn’t have to stop at fluffy slippers, but can continue into your summer seaside days. Made of suede with a contoured EVA footbed, you’ll finally understand why the hype over UGG is so real.
5. NORTIV 8 Men’s Flip Flops
Sometimes, you just don’t need bells and whistles when shopping for flip flops. Sometimes you just want the best, cheapest pair there is. If that’s your goal, then you can’t do better than the NORTIV 8 Men’s Flip Flops. A sponge footbed with arch support built means you can go from the beach to the street to the boardwalk time after time again while never worrying about foot discomfort. The durable, long-lasting PU strap holding the shoe together has customers raving, too, so worrying about your sandals breaking mid-step will stay a problem of the past. At such an affordable price, these will be your go-to flips all summer long.
6. OluKai Ohana Flip Flops
BEST FOR WALKING
With over 800 reviews on Zappos, these 5-star OluKai Ohana Flip Flops are really something to rave about. On those super hot days where sneakers just won’t cut it, walk miles and miles instead in these flip flops. We know what you’re thinking, walking long distances in flip flops? Yeah, feel free. Designed to be waterproof makes them easy to wash, so they’ll never stink. Additionally, the arch support allows for maximum comfort and foot huggage as you step. One reviewer even said he wore these day in and day out during a two month backpacking trip in the Middle East and then for another six weeks in Africa. Call him crazy, or simply snag a pair and try them out yourself.
7. Cole Haan Feathercraft Slide Sandal
An affordable slide with leather and suede straps? Sign us up! Cole Haan’s Feathercraft Slide Sandals are designed for sun-drenched summer days and sandy beachside sunsets alike. The GRANDFØAM footbed ensures lightweight cushioning so no achey bottoms, while a lightweight design means you don’t feel like you’re lugging weights along all day. And, for only $69.95, this is a deal we can’t pass.
8. Sanuk Beer Cozy Stacker Flip Flops
Looking to conquer the retro style dad pulled off so well back in his day? These low-key, squishy flips will give pops a run for his money. This decker style look is seriously warping time and space by bringing us a vibe we thought was long over. Foamy soles play with the old-school aesthetic as well by simplifying and restyling where most modern flips are at now. If you’re ready to rock that vintage look in 2020, these are the way to go.
9. Teva Men’s Original Mush Flip-Flop
BEST FOR STYLE VARIETY
The more complicated the sandal, the more difficult it can be to offer a variety of styles. That’s the problem Teva tackled with its Men’s Original Mush Flip-Flop. This basic design only consists of two components: a two-layer foam midsole and cotton canvas straps. The only difference between models comes on the straps for which Teva offers a slew of different patterns and styles, so you can find the scheme that’s right for you.
10. Reef Cushion Bounce Phantom Sandals
BEST FOR WATER
Given that Reef claimed the mantle of best overall flip flop, it should come as no surprise to see the brand make the list again for its especially water resistant sandals. Like almost all our other picks, this flip flop is made entirely with synthetic materials, so it basically doesn’t soak or stay wet. In contrast to the top pick though, these Reef flip flops have a higher density rubber outsole for additional traction, so you can step into the waves without fear of slipping. Made with a soft, cushy footbed, you’ll feel as if you’re walking on clouds. And, unfortunately, there’s no bottle opener on these flip flops, but that’s hardly a deal breaker if you’re seeking more water-friendly flip flops.
11. Urban Outfitters Camper Match Sandal
These flip flop slide sandals from Urban Outfitters will have your feet shining brighter than the sun this summer. Coated in the most fluorescent of highlighter yellows to ever exist, you’ll easily stand out by just standing around. Whether you’re hitting the beach or the streets, do it in the most contemporary-styled slides of them all.
12. Indosole Men’s ESSNTLS Vegan Flip Flop Sandals
BEST ENVIRONMENTALLY CONSCIOUS
Not all flip flops are created equal. In the case of Indosole Men’s ESSNTLS Vegan Flip Flop Sandals, you can take that literally. These sandals are made from all-natural and recycled materials in Indonesia, and are produced without fuel-powered machines or animal byproducts. And in case their provenance doesn’t sell you, they’re also comfortable and water resistant, perfect for almost any summer occasion.
13. Gucci Striped Rubber Slides
You thought we were going to forget the oh-so-classic Gucci Flip Flops? Jokes on you, I’ve had that Bhad Bhabie song stuck in my head for like three years now. Designed solely for flexing on your friends and family, we’re not going to lie, they aren’t the most comfortable. These are the “you get for what you pay for” type, but solely in regards to the name, not the comfort. But, I hate to say it, they are pretty cool—and you know what they say, beauty is pain!