Ah, the flip-flop. A fashion joke so twisted that even its name is ridiculous. Seriously, is there any clothing item that’s more fundamentally upsetting than the flip-flop? They’re even worse than shorts. OK, so maybe shorts are fine when done correctly, but when it comes to this pathetic excuse for footwear, I’m drawing a line in the sand (you can find that line on a beach, the only locale at which flip-flops are even remotely acceptable).
But before you start gearing up to go HAM in the comments section, let me clarify that this applies to everyone: men, women, gender nonconformists and children (hey, it’s never too early to learn the basics). Flip-flops are a hard "no" across the board.
But what about other sandals? I’m so glad you asked, because unless you're traveling to or from a body of water (yes, pools count), sandals in general are an absolute no-go. Foot fetishists aside, no one wants to see your feet. “But that’s so unfair,” you say. “Women have countless acceptable sandal options.” Start getting bi-weekly pedicures and maybe we can talk. But really, would you want to trade footwear options with women? Naw, dude, I didn’t think so.
But what about slides? Nope, sorry. Regardless of how luxurious, rare or cool-looking your Givenchy/Supreme/Gucci slides are, they still expose your toes. So unless you’re the sort of wanton rule-breaker that can pull off socks with sandals, please, for the love of God, save it for the beach.
Anyway, wearing sandals in the city is disgusting. Every time I see someone flip-flopping around the sidewalks of New York (or worse, the subway) I think about all of the dog excrement, human piss and garbage particles their feet are picking up. What if they later get into their beds without first taking a shower? Gross.
While I concede that certain climates absolutely require that men wear shorts, I don’t believe there is a heat so intense that it demands for feet to be liberated. There are plenty of lightweight shoes to get you through the summer. Canvas sneakers are the most obvious choice (Converse, Vans, etc.), but they aren’t the only choice.
For one, perforation is your friend. Take, for example, this slip-on from Our Legacy:
Don’t feel like wearing socks? That’s chill. How about a dope low-top loafer? Added bonus is that these can be worn formally (I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that sandals are never ever appropriate formalwear). Naturally Gucci is going to make the dopest options, but here’s a pair from Bitton that won’t break the bank.
Speaking of Gucci, their backless loafers are about as close as you’ll get to sandals without looking like an unsanitary dweeb. In fact, the so-called “leather slipper” might be the ultimate summer shoe hack.
So keep those piggies covered my friends! But also stay cool. You know you love me. XOXO.
Now find out why this year's Pitti Uomo proves that men's fashion is more confused than ever.