Lately I’ve been noticing people wearing these trashy-looking brightly colored rubber shoes, sort of a cross between clogs and sandals. “Creek shoes” is how I would ordinarily have characterized them, if I hadn’t been seeing them in all kinds of decidedly non-creek locations. Anyway, it’s apparently a trend. Proving once again that catering to people’s need to make themselves look stupid is good business in the fashion world.
If you really want comfortable, lightweight summer footwear sandals are still the way to go. Specifically, I recommend Chacos. Your initial reaction is likely to be “$80 for a pair of sandals?!“. This is reasonable. I had the same reaction. However, let me say this for them: they are built like tanks, and they are the most comfortable sandals I’ve ever owned. I bought my pair seven years ago. Since then they’ve been my primary non-work summer shoe. I’ve worn them hiking, through streams, through deep mud, at the beach… and the only difference in them is that the tread is slightly worn.
Other nice things about them:
- The treads are replaceable, just like you can replace the treads on your boots or dress shoes.
- The straps are cleverly constructed from a single band of material, which runs under the sole and back out again in several places. This means it is impossible for the bands to pull free from the sole, as they can in other sandals.
- The single-band design enables you to adjust the straps for a perfect fit, since any strap’s length can be adjusted.
- A third benefit from the single-strap design: there are no plastic fittings to chafe. I’ve owned several pairs of Teva sandals, and no matter how many neoprane pads they bulked the fittings up with, I always found my feet getting chafed.
- There’s no velcro to wear out or collect lint.
- The model I have has a toe-loop, which makes for a greater control and a more secure fit.
I get a kick out of things which are well-engineered, and these really are the pinnacle of sandal design.
And they don’t make you look like an idiot.