Flip-flops are one of those sandal essentials that everyone owns—you’ve probably had an inexpensive, flimsy pair in rotation since high school. But today’s flip-flops have come a long way since then and are now far more stylish. In the ’90s, you’d see flip-flops worn with low-rise jeans at the VMAs. Now you’re more likely to see them front row at Fashion Week, worn with The Row.
New York–based stylist Bertille Noiret says, “Flip-flops are the standard shoe for summer and never went out of style.” They are definitely seeing a revival, however, thanks to the larger recycling of ’90s trends. “Many more brands have been created since that time, though, offering flip-flops for everybody—leather ones for a more professional look, colourful ones, and different styles.”
Since flip-flops are a flat shoe, it is important to consider comfort. “A lot of flip-flops are either too flat or too stiff, so it is important to choose a pair that fits elegantly, but that’s also comfortable,” Noiret says. “You probably will walk long distances in these, visiting places, touring cities during the summer—all under the heat—so making sure you can walk in them is the number one priority.”
It’s also important to take into account a few design features. “Look for the insoles and make sure they aren’t too thin, and for extra length between the end of the shoe and the toe thong,” Noiret recommends. “My biggest failures have been the ones hurting me between the toes, making them unwearable.”
The material of the shoe is also a deciding factor. “Depending on the price point and your budget, I think it’s always important to make sure the materials are either leather or recycled materials, like rubber,” she says. Be aware of the design and style, too, she adds. “I am a walker and want to avoid really bad tan lines on my feet, so I always try to go for the slimmest and thinnest strings, but that’s a personal design preference.”
Below, find the 15 most comfortable and stylish flip-flops to buy now.
Related article: Everyone At Fashion Week Is Wearing Flip-Flops
The Row Ginza Platform Flip-Flops
Noiret considers the Row’s popular Ginza flip-flop “the chicest of all, truly a statement shoe for the summer. You can dress it up or down, and the Row is such a good investment. They always have the best cut and design, in my opinion.”
The one-inch sole on these fashionable flip-flops provides a little lift, while the soft velvet straps and cushioned insoles make for all-day comfort. Wear with everything from a slipdress to a button-down and trousers.
Colours: Black, off-white
Materials: Leather and velvet
Sizes: 35–42 IT
Birkenstock Gizeh Big Buckle Flip-Flop
The Gizeh, Birkenstock’s classic thong sandal, gets a refresh with a big, stylish buckle closure. The signature leather footbed mimics the wearer’s individual shape, providing excellent support for hours on your feet. Bring on your next city destination trip, where walking will be the main activity, and style with everything from floaty, cotton dresses to billowy pants.
Colours: High Shine Black, High Shine Tomato, High Shine Mud Green
Materials: Leather upper and lining, synthetic sole
Sizes: 36–41 EU
Havaianas Slim Glitter Flip-Flop
“Havaianas are always a fun piece, at a reasonable price,” Noiret says. The flip-flop features thin thong straps, a good sole thickness, and a rubber material that provides incredible bounce-back—all for optimal foot support. “The legendary shoes are available in all colours, but why not give your outfit some glam and go for these glittery ones?” Noiret suggests. Pair with a bikini for hitting the beach, or a tank and wide-leg jeans for weekend farmers’ market runs.
Ancient Greek Sandals Charys Leather Sandals
“Ancient Greek are staples for summer sandals,” Noiret says. “Always chic, made by artisans in Greece, and chemical-free, this leather will age beautifully with time.” Minimal in design, the smooth leather style doesn’t sacrifice style points for comfort, either. “They have a padded footbed that feels like walking on a cloud,” she explains. Style these with everything from a blazer at the office to a bikini on vacation.
Sizes: 35–42 IT
Loewe Ease Embellished Leather Flip-Flops
If comfort is top of mind but you’re never without your designer footwear, Loewe’s Ease flip—flop is for you. Made from the top-quality leather the brand is known for, these shoes are incredibly soft compared to the rubber of more conventional flip-flops. The chunky sole adds even more cushion and support for endless days spent on your toes. In true luxury fashion, the sandal is finished with the brand’s Anagram logo on the buckle.
Colours: Tan, white, black
Sizes: 35–41 IT
BEST FAUX LEATHER
Maison Margiela Ciabatta Faux Leather Flip-Flops
“I like the funkiness of a Tabi shoe,” Noiret says. “It is obviously a little bit more fashion-forward, but still discreet—for those in the know.” In addition to the Tabi ballet flat and popular Mary Jane, the lesser-known Margiela Ciabatta flip-flop also scratches the Tabi itch.
They appear minimal, but if you look closely, you’ll see the signature Maison Margiela split toe. Most importantly, these flip-flops are comfortable. “The soft, faux leather helps to avoid blisters, and the wider straps make for a nice grip on the foot,” Noiret says.
Colours: Black, white
Sizes: 36–41 EU
Toteme Leather Thong Sandals
“Toteme is one of my absolute favorite brands ever, that I recommend all the time,” Noiret says. “It is a Swedish brand based out of Stockholm. The materials are very qualitative, sourced responsibly, the design is very minimal and chic—plus, the price point always feels right for such products.”
The soft, calf leather and padded insole, balanced by the walkable kitten heel, make its leather thong style extremely wearable. “The kitten heel makes them comfortable to wear all day… and night!” Noiret adds.
Sizes: 35–42 EU
Skims Molded Sandal
Poolside hangs and seaside swims just got cooler with the Skims waterproof pool slide. Made with cushiony foam for a molded feel, it hugs the foot so you feel stable and grounded. The thick thong strap is also made from the same material, completely wrapping the foot in comfort.
Colours: Cocoa, ochre, almond, gunmetal, onyx
Sizes: 35–42 EU
OluKai Huawai Flip-Flops
If you’re looking for something less conventional, consider leaning into metallic flip-flops to punch up a daytime look. This silver thong from OluKai is made from premium, full-grain leather, and features contoured footbeds designed to feel like bare feet in wet sand. The wet-grip rubber sole also provides enhanced traction for encounters with slippery surfaces.
Colours: Silver, bubbly, black
Teva Olowahu Sandal
This thong style from Teva is a slip-on, with strap detailing made from the brand’s signature quick-dry webbing. The fabric is specifically made so the straps won’t rub around the toes and create blisters. Whether you’re glamping in the woods or gearing up for an outdoor music festival, these will offer support and comfort from sunrise to sunset.
Colours: 22, including Flower Loom Navy, Black on Black, Palms Indigo, and Retro Geometric Neutral
Materials: Recycled plastic webbing, EVA-foam midsole and outsole
Reef Cushion Cloud Platform Flip-Flop
Reef’s Cushion Cloud flip-flop actually feels like a cloud. Made with five millimeters of foam padding for extra comfort and lined with padded jersey, these will give you that walking-on-air feeling. You’ll also get ample arch support, from the super soft compression-molded EVA with anatomical arch technology. Whether worn for a day in the sun or while perusing that new exhibit at your local museum, these are sure to keep you moving with ease.
Colours: Natural, white/tan
Materials: Synthetic and recycled-polyester textile upper and lining, rubber sole
St. Agni Minimal Leather Flip-Flops
These ultramodern flip-flops are a minimalist fashion lover’s dream. Designed with thick, wide thong straps, the look feels very current, and not like your everyday slide. A chunky sole with a molded footbed looks utilitarian, but offers a comfortable approach to flat sandals that you will love. Style these with linen dresses during the hotter months, and a blazer and trouser as fall approaches.
Colours: Black, white
Sizes: 35–42 IT
Hoka Ora Recovery Flip
You know and love Hoka sneakers for their bouncing soles. These flip-flops provide the same feeling, but in sandal form. Awarded the American Podiatric Medical Association’s Seal of Acceptance, this shoe has been certified by podiatrists as beneficial to foot health.
Colours: Black, Diva Blue, Earthenware, Violet Bloom, Impala, Fiesta
Materials: Synthetic upper, lining and sole
FitFlop F-Mode Platform Sandal
FitFlop’s F-Mode Platform sandal is a thong design with style and substance. The triple-density Microwobbleboard sole absorbs shock and diffuses pressure. The pairing of that platform sole with the cutaway strap feels very ’90s while still feeling relevant for now. The stone beige colourway is best to mix and match with both the earth tones and vibrant prints of your wardrobe.
Colours: Stone beige/black, latte tan
Materials: Leather upper and lining, rubber sole
Oofos OOriginal Sandal
The Oofos flip-flop is made with biomechanically engineered OOfoam, which absorbs shocks, cradles your arches, and reduces stress on your feet, knees, and back—making it the best for aching joints and bones. The closed-cell foam minimises odors and is machine-washable. Style with cargo pants and a baby tee to really lean into the nostalgic look and retro waterdrop colour.
Colours: Waterdrop, black
Materials: Synthetic upper, lining, and sole
This article originally appeared in Harper’s BAZAAR US.