Sandals used to be divisive, but then again, so did Crocs and hiking sneakers. We’ve entered a brave new world of footwear where everything goes and isn’t it a nicer place to exist? Whether it was helped by international lockdowns last year or not, mules and sandals have grown to become an essential side of the footwear rotation. Now that spring’s here and summer’s lining up, a pair of high-quality sandals will cater to more than just WFH use too.
As a side-product of the explosion in popularity of sandals, we’ve of course seen labels putting more effort into their offerings. That means it’s never been a better time to cop a pair. Whether you’re looking for luxury suede slides or utilitarian iterations, the perfect pair exists and is made to exacting standards.
With the help of SSENSE, we’ve rounded up the 10 pairs of sandals on our shopping list for the coming season. Ranging from Suicoke to Bottega Veneta and Gucci, our roundup covers all sides of the open-toe spectrum.
Shop 10 of the best sandals for 2021 below.
Gucci GG Slide Sandals
Gucci’s relationship with mules and sandals is extensive, to say the least, but they don’t usually eschew leather for rubber. This pair of slides is ideal for a poolside flex thanks to crossing rubber straps complete with a cutout Gucci monogram which contrasts with a crimson footbed.
Suicoke DEPA-CAB Sandals
Suicoke is a sandals specialist, there’s no way around it. Simple engineered designs offer unrivaled comfort, durability, and styles. The DEPA-CAB Sandals are a flagship of the brand and there’s no mistaking why. It’s everything you need from a sandal.
Palm Angels Logo Pool Slides
Francesco Ragazzi’s Palm Angels return each season with a refined take on luxury streetwear and no luxury streetwear collection is complete without a pair of slides. Emblazoned with a text logo across the vamp, this pair of blue slides commands attention.
Bottega Veneta Intrecciato Starfish Sandals
Bottega Veneta’s Intrecciato weave has become a signature for the Italian house, but you’re probably more accustomed to the structure built in premium leather. This pair of rubber slides feature the weaving pattern in elasticized webbing for comfort in the heat.
Eytys Off-White Capri Sandals
Stockholm-based footwear brand Eytys hasn’t made a name for itself by toning things down. Unmissable sole units and unorthodox detailing have carved out an inimitable niche for the brand and this pair of Capri sandals slots right into place.
Officine Creative Agora 2 Sandals
If you're on the search for something less eye-catching, look no further than Officine Creative’s Agora 2 Sandals. A jagged outsole provides the durable stage for a luxuriously soft suede, two-strap upper, and matching footbed.
Dries Van Noten Yellow Strap Sandals
Inspired by the scrappy structures of Roman sandals, Dries Van Noten’s Yellow Strap Sandals replace buckles for velcro and leather for bright yellow canvas.
AMBUSH Black Geta Sandals
A traditional Japanese Geta sandal gets a luxury leather update at the hands of AMBUSH, and it doesn’t stop there. A platform sole courtesy of Vibram gives the design a sense of rugged utilitarianism that contrasts starkly with its roots.
Tanaka K. Jacques Edition Suede Sandals
Tanaka joins forces with K. Jacques for a very elevated take on the summer sandal. This all-leather number boasts a range of natural-hue leathers highlighted by silver-tone hardware.
The Row Gaia 2 Sandals
Full-grain goatskin uppers meet a molded leather footbed, resulting in a pair of sandals that will last a lifetime. What’s more, the timeless design in all-black is going nowhere style-wise so you’re covered on that front, too.
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