As men, we often look for the most convenient way of doing everything. But, for some reason, it’s not the same for footwear. The convenient option is wearing the same thing, regardless of the weather, the situation, or the environment.
The trouble is, as with any shoe, some are much greater than others. In this article, we’ve taken our time to accumulate what we feel are the best flip flops for men. Not only that, but we’ll also be going through what you want in a flip flop, how to clean them, and even explaining what makes them different from sandals.
As one of the more understated forms of footwear, the old-fashioned flip flop has found itself consistently in-fashion since its conception in the 60s. As shown by the Reef Fanning Men’s Flop Flops , they can match almost any shoe in relation to its comfort, convenience, and durability.
Many men will wear the same old sneakers around the house, in the garden, or at the beach. Is this you?
If it is, then you could do with something a little more convenient. If it’s not, then you may be able to upgrade your convenient footwear. Do you want something that is as stylish as it is durable and as affordable as it is comfortable? If that is the case, then flip flops are for you.
Table of Contents
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|Reef Fanning Men’s Flip Flop||Check on Amazon →|
|Kaibeck Men’s Drifter Sport Flip Flop||Check on Amazon →|
|Havaianas Men’s Flip Flop||Check on Amazon →|
|Quicksilver Men’s Suede Flip Flop||Check on Amazon →|
|New Balance Men’s Pinnacle Flip Flop||Check on Amazon →|
|Nike Ultra Celso Thong||Check on Amazon →|
|Alpine Swiss Men’s Flip Flops||Check on Amazon →|
Before you buy: 8 things to consider when purchasing flip flops
When looking for convenience, there really is no reason to look anywhere other than flip flops. However, choosing the right pair can be a challenging encounter. After all, you’d be forgiven for not knowing the most important aspects of a good pair of flip flops.
That’s where we want to help you. We’ve broken down 8 factors that really do matter when choosing flip flops.
As with any shoe, if it’s not comfortable, it’s probably not worth it. Having blisters and a cramped metatarsal is never ideal, and, since your feet are always on show, we don’t recommend getting them from your flip flops either.
One classic tripe with flip flops is the comfort issues created by the ‘thong’. Yeah, we get it, the term ‘thong’ isn’t what you want to hear when thinking about the best flip flops for men, but, it simply refers to the Y-shaped strap that goes over your foot and then between your big and second toe. Over long distances, it’s likely to ride up between your toes and cause some discomfort. Better flip flops combat this issue and try to create a strap that eliminates it altogether, and this is what we’ve looked for in our careful selection of flip flops.
Further, we’re aware that people suffer from a variety of orthotic issues that can impact what types of shoes they’re able to wear. Those with an imbalance or heel pain may require looking for the best flip flops with arch support, and then it is the same for those with plantar fasciitis. We recognize that the notion of comfort is different for each person, so we have made sure to cater for all.
As is the case with all forms of clothing, and particularly footwear, the material separates the good from the bad. Cheaper material may save you some money in the short term, but you’re trading that for discomfort and the risk of having to replace them regularly.
The strap: the strap is another place to be wary of material. Some of the more comfortable straps are synthetic and thicker. These are certainly more suitable for long-distance walking or for those with foot issues. If you want to take your strap comfort to the next level, then maybe you should look for a pair that have a suede/leather upper. On the other hand, thinner, stylish straps are generally made with rubber. Unavoidably, these probably aren’t going to be the most comfortable, but, if you make sure to get a good pair, like those we list below, you will be safe.
The sole: the most important part of any shoe is the sole – especially with flip flops. The soles tend to be thinner, meaning that your foot has closer contact with the ground and is likely to take more impact with each step. Therefore, it is important to find a shoe with a supported or shock-absorbing sole, molding them to the shape of your foot, preventing blisters and fallen arches.
Unlike slippers, the color is important. Since flip flops are worn both in and outside, you probably don’t want to be walking around the supermarket in pink, fluffy ones (although, we’d respect it if you did).
The safest bet would be to stick to standard shoe colors – like black, white, navy, and khaki. You’ll likely be repping the flip flops out and about, so you want to make sure you look the part as much as you want to feel comfortable.
If you’re looking for other options, then we’ve seen certain brands of flip flops with some excellent color coordination, and these are perfect for specific situations.
If you’re at the beach, on vacation, or just having a BBQ with the family, you could easily get away with something a bit more ‘out there’. We think this is a great idea and can definitely spice up your footwear infantry. We’ll get back to this more in depth later.
It’s likely not to be a surprise, but it’s possible to find your favorite brands producing flip flops, making your choice easier. That’s because brands also recognize how convenient and useful flip flops are.
Want examples? Here we go:
…the list goes on. Whilst we’re firm believers in focusing on the actual practical benefits over the brand name, we understand that many people love to stick to a particular brand or feel comfortable wearing one brand, due to their sizing or some other reason.
So, you’ll be glad to know that you can stick to wearing your favorite brand name with your flip flops, making your buying process a whole lot easier.
A lot of the time, the issues faced with flip flops come down to their robustness. Commonly, you’ll find with cheaper flip flops that the strap breaks or comes away from the sole. Also, going back to my point on comfort, because of the cheap material, the flip flop itself is not built to mimic the ideal shoe.
If a flip flop breaks, you can’t repair it on the spot. This means that, if you’re out and about and your flip flop breaks, you may have to find a local shoe store to purchase a replacement shoe, which can not only put you out of pocket but lead you into buying something that you don’t actually want – just because you had no other choice.
Considering this, we recommend that you get a pair that is durable, made with better material, and less likely to break on you.
Most durable flip flops tend to be more expensive, because of the higher quality, and because they’re designed with your foot health in mind. But, in the long-term, you’ll likely be saving money, because you won’t have to replace them every other time you leave the house.
Flip flops are somewhat of a jack-of-all-trades. You can wear them across almost any situation and at almost any time (well, perhaps keep this in mind for situations where you shouldn’t wear flip flops). But, that’s not to say that you can’t buy your flip flops with a particular location in mind – or at least cover yourself for a variety of them.
For example, if you’re expecting to be walking long distances, then we’d suggest you get a pair of flip flops that have comfortable soles and support. However, if you’re simply expecting to be kicking about by the pool or at the beach, then you’ll want a pair that are water-resistant, stylish, and easy to clean.
In that respect, your choice of flip flop is very similar to other forms of footwear. Whilst they are useful across the board, one pair does not always suit all. You wouldn’t wear a pair of soccer cleats to the beach, and by that same token you shouldn’t be expecting to wear a light, beach-style flip flop on your 20km walk over the coast on a cold winter’s day. Long story short, we’re just looking for you to keep in mind when and where you expect to be wearing your flip flops before buying yourself a pair.
Yes, you’ve read that right. It is possible to find yourself a pair of flip flops with novel accessories that make life that little bit better. One of the more famous examples? The Reef Bottle Opener trademark.
Picture this: it’s a summer’s evening, and you’re walking down the beach with your buddies. You’re equipped with a crate of beer and a disposable BBQ. However, when you reach your resting spot, you all realize that you’ve left the bottle opener at home. Who comes to the rescue? Whilst we’re sure one of the guys in your contingent can crack open your Bud Light with their teeth, you’ll be able to whip off one of your flip flops and use it to save the day. Yup, it’s a bottle-opening flip flop.
Whilst we understand that not everyone is looking for flip flops with multiple purposes, we certainly felt that they were worth a mention.
After all, men are looking for convenience.
Finally, we want to talk about the factor that most people hate talking about: the cost. Inevitably, we have listed slippers across multiple different price ranges, providing for all of you men looking for the best flip flops.
Without a doubt, you’re getting some of the best value for money when it comes to flip flops, but we still don’t want you to be over-paying for what you get.
Anything over $100 is always going to be pretty suspect. We don’t think that there’s any need to be dropping that sort of money on them. But, anything under a certain price point is probably likely to have some pretty flimsy material and break down on you quickly.
We like to think that, when you’re buying a pair of flip flops, you’re making a worthy investment, as they can last multiple summers and survive heavy, all-terrain wear. So, when picking up your dream pair of flip flops, keep in mind that it is sometimes worth paying a bit extra, especially if that results in getting some extra quality.
The 7 best flip flops for men 2020
Here, we’ve got a pair of flip flops that are recognizable for their great build quality and good-looking design. These really are universally accepted as some of the best men’s flip flops.
So, what makes the build quality so great?
First, you’re looking at a synthetic nubuck strap, mimicking the top-grain leather that you’d get on Chelsea boots, for example. This synthetic nubuck avoids the comfort problems I described earlier and even goes as far as providing some really durable quality. They’re resistant to wear and are fairly waterproof, making them ideal for daily wear.
Next, you’ve got a rubber sole, but it’s not cheap. It’s got anatomical arch support built into the sole, giving it some extra cushion and making it perfect for those with foot problems like plantar fasciitis. They even note that their heel has an ‘airbag’, indicating how they’ve paid close attention to the negatives that most flip flops draw. Each step takes advantage of their shock absorbing technology. They’ve really looked at having a well-rounded, comfortable flip flop, trying to be as inclusive as they can, and, as a result, we’re going to go and say that these are the best flip flops for plantar fasciitis.
Your color options are great, too. They have plenty – in excess of 10 options – and they’re all combinations that we would wear. Reef has stuck to the winning male grouping of black, brown, grey, and white, producing some truly great-looking flip flops.
The real winning point? “Thirst quenching technology”. You don’t get much more bang for your buck than walking around wearing a portable bottle opener. Yes, with this pair of flip flops, you get the famous bottle cap opener integrated into the rubber outsole. Men love convenience, and there’s nothing more convenient than being able to open your beer with the flip flops on your feet.
For those who wear half-sizes, it is worth noting that Reef themselves recommend that you go half a size up, rather than down. This is genuinely a very important point. There’s nothing worse than a pair of flip flops that are too small – you’ll just end up stubbing your toe on everything.
- High quality, synthetic nubuck strap
- Anatomical arch support
- Great color options
- Bottle opener on the outsole
- Sizes can run small. Go a size up if worried.
We included this flip flop because it’s all-round game is top notch. With a whole host of excellent reviews, we’re certain that you wouldn’t regret picking up a pair. And it has a bottle opener!
Kaiback Outfitters is known for providing quality and durable outdoor clothing for cheap, and their Drifter Sport flip flops is no different. As we discussed earlier, the top priority when choosing your flip flop should be a combination of comfort, material, and durability, and we feel this ticks the boxes in all three.
This flip flop provides an amazingly comfortable sole, making it excellent for any prospective buyer. With a thick, spongey heel, you’ll feel like you’re walking on clouds and are unlikely to run into any foot issues. This is doubled with the side-to-side support that their design delivers. Having side-to-side arch support means that you’ll find comfort in every step. The majority of the reviews surrounding this project are a celebratory description of their suitability for rough terrain. They have thick and chunky soles that make them perfect for walking through off-road conditions. So, if you’re looking for the best flip flops for walking long distances or want to wear your flip flops often, then this could be a great option, as they’re unlikely to break, and they’ll remain comfortable once broken in.
The underside of the soles has an impressive level of grip, and that’s certainly something you’ll notice about these flip flops. You’re never at risk of slipping, and, even if you’re walking some rogue trails on a hike, you can guarantee that these flip flops will not let you down.
The strap itself is designed with comfort and breathability in mind. Yeah, about 90% of your foot is already out in the open, but there’s nothing wrong with a breathable strap. It’s a welcome, unique design that isn’t as bad as it sounds.
Time to be completely honest: the trade-off for durability, comfort, and price point is the aesthetic of them. They’re not the best looking. We mean, they aren’t bad, but, if you’re just looking for a pair of flip flops that you’ll be wearing down at the beach on holiday with your friends or family, it’s unlikely you’ll want to be seen in these.
- Perfect for long distances
- Thick heel and arch support
- Designed for all-terrain wear
- Should last a long time
- It’s not the best-looking flip flop on the market
This ultra-comfortable pair of flip flops is perfect for ultra-long distances whilst maintaining comfort. You’ll find it hard to find a more practical flip flop anywhere.
Havaianas flip flops have been around since 1962. An iconic brand name in the flip flop realm, they truly have been here for the full journey. The name comes from the Portuguese name for Hawaiian, and they’ve been hand-made in Brazil ever since they started. That’s a trend that’s still in action today.
They’re labeled as being soft and sturdy. This is down to their 100% soft and durable rubber formula that helps to keep them as streamlined and minimalistic as possible, in line with their everlasting brand. Each pair has the signature Havaianas rice pattern on the sole, which simultaneously provides slip-resistance.
For the situation, we’re always looking at being in the sun with these. Just looking at a pair of Havaianas men’s flip flops has us dreaming of a day catching a tan.
Your choice of color with the Havaianas brand is limitless. You’ve got absolutely everything, because they’ve created absolutely everything. Much of their brand is inspired by the colors of Latin America, and we’re completely for it. From regular black to bright ruby red, you’ve got colors that will go with any outfit, in any situation, in any season.
These are an exceptional all-round flip flop for casual wear – they’re an absolute dream for a BBQ or day at the beach – but the biggest con about them would be that they’re not great over long distances. We just look at them and struggle to see how you’d be able to wear them for a prolonged period of time on a hike or on a trail. The sole isn’t quite thick enough, you don’t have the luxury of arch support, and the rubber strap is definitely going to get on your nerves after a while.
So, although you’re definitely getting the bang for your buck in terms of style and sheer elegance on a warm summer’s day, you’re not looking at a flip flop that is excelling in terms of comfort on a long distance trek.
- An iconic flip flop brand
- Timeless design, perfect for the summer
- An unlimited color palette to choose from
- An inoffensive aesthetic; you’ll always look good wearing them
- Designed for hot, summery beach days – you won’t be able to walk long distances in them
- Rubber strap could cause discomfort
If you’re looking for a brand-name classic that, in most cases, is unlikely to let you down, this is the one for you. They’re the best rubber flip flops, and they ooze class with their timeless design.
Quiksilver is the one of the best brands out there for outdoor and beach activities, so it hardly comes as a surprise that they’ve got one of the nicest flip flops in the game, as well. As our first real leather flip flop, it really is a step above in its material quality.
The real suede straps give your feet that extra level of comfort they so desperately require when walking for long distances. The strap can quite often be one of the greatest annoyances with flip flops, but Quiksilver has really avoided that with this shoe.
The practicality doesn’t stop there: the sponge sole is host to anatomically correct arch support, making them an excellent all-round shoe at an excellent price point. You can treat your feet to the luxury treatment that they deserve, all whilst keeping a healthy bank balance. It’s a win-win.
Finally, there is no doubt that this flip flop is very good looking. It’s always a bonus when you can be walking around in a practical flip flop that is also looking the part. There’s nothing worse than the wife giving you a little bit of a dig for your fashion choices, but we can’t see how she wouldn’t love these.
- Clean suede design
- Quiksilver is known for durability
- Anatomically correct arch support
- Reasonably priced
- Thick strap that can get frustrating
If you’re looking for that extra bit of style, then you want to go for the best leather flip flops. Luckily for you, one of the best is right here. Clean, comfortable, and durable.
As one of the world’s major sports footwear manufacturers, New Balance is recognizable by everyone. They are known for their production of high-quality shoes, and this Pinnacle flip flop matches expectations.
It’s a bit more expensive than your regular flip flop, but for good reason. It combines all of the greatest elements of a flip flop to create a true powerhouse.
These are orthotic flip flops, as they make use of a 360-degree heel cup and anatomical arch support. All of this is folded up in what they describe as a REVITALIGN foot bed, made to increase performance and stability whilst preventing sore feet or flare ups of any long-term problems by promoting proper foot alignment. Many of the reviews for this product agree, and many people note that they’re able to walk as much as they want in them without foot pain. This is greatly important, because people don’t want to be in pain whilst walking around.
The benefits don’t stop there. It’s important to note that, in other flip flops, you either have to prioritize style or comfort, and it’s quite difficult to find a pair with both. New Balance completely disregards that idea and has made sure that these look good, too. A genuine leather upper with a clean brand tag makes them recognizable whilst maintaining the look that most flip flops should be striving for.
The leather upper is sure to last for a considerable amount of time, as it’s of a higher build quality than their rubber counterparts. We truly feel that this flip flop is built with durability in mind.
- Perfect for those with foot issues
- REVITALIGN foot bed for comfort
- Great looking design
- They are quite heavy at the heel
The New Balance Pinnacle flip flops are absolutely perfect for those looking for a combination of style and comfort at a higher, yet still affordable, price point.
With Nike, you always know that you’re getting a quality product, because their reputation is so high. They work extremely hard to ensure that they’re not letting anyone down.
With this shoe, you’re getting a rubber sole – but one with durable injection phylon. In more general terms, this means you’re getting decent cushioning, so you should be walking around in comfort.
Not only that, but they’ve gone that extra mile to make sure the outsole has the best traction possible for multiple surfaces, making it a real all-rounder. This means that, regardless of whether you’re looking for a flip flop that’s suitable for in the house, at the beach, or walking on the trails, this should tick all the boxes without breaking a sweat.
They’re well fitted and have a wider sole, thanks to the general cushioning they’ve gone for. Those of you with wide feet probably struggle with finding a pair of flip flops that fits right, but these are the best men’s flip flops for wide feet.
Nike know their target market, and they recognize that most men buying flip flops will want to stick to the black, navy, red, and blue color coordinations. All color options are good looking, and you should be able to wear any of them with any number of outfits.
The only con is that, with the Nike name, you’re paying a slightly inflated price. There’s no doubt that you’re paying in part for the sex appeal they provide, and not just for the practicality, but it’s not too expensive, and it’s probably worth it. We’d definitely recommend wearing these around.
- A consistently good Nike product
- Stylish design
- Well fitted and suitable for wide feet
- Slightly inflated price, due to brand name
Buying a pair of flip flops from Nike means that you’re sure to look stylish with the swoosh on your foot. But, you’ll still be walking around in comfort, thanks to the cushioning sole.
Alpine Swiss has gone out of its way to create the perfect summer flip flop at a low price point.
They are made with an EVA sole, a material that ensures you’re getting good shock absorption. That’s always good, because you don’t want to be walking around in severe discomfort, just because you’ve decided to go for the budget option.
The strap is comfortable, and they’ve even filled it with EVA foam, to make sure that you won’t have it rubbing against your toes and creating blisters. You’ll enjoy this flip flop if you’re looking for a cheap fix for the summer days, as you’ll be getting a comfortable, easy experience.
The con is that, if you’ve got narrow or wide feet, these won’t be for you. They’re flat sizes designed especially for medium width feet. This extends to those of you looking for a flip flop with arch support. This doesn’t have any and isn’t intended to be worn for long-distances.
Also, a word of warning: don’t expect these to last years. Reviewers have mentioned that they’ll probably break down after a couple months of intensive use.
- All-round comfort with EVA sole and strap
- Perfect for the summer or casual wear
- Great budget option
- Will not last forever. Prone to breaking after a few months of intensive use
There’s nothing really special about these, but they do the job. They’re advertised as a summer flip flop, and, as long as you are buying them with the intention of sticking around the pool or at the beach, they’re a great buy.
Taking care of your flip flops
Flip flops need to be cleaned. You’ll probably be wearing them with dirty or wet feet – or even in a communal shower. It doesn’t take rocket science to work out that they’ll get infested with bacteria quickly if you don’t keep them fresh.
So, how do you do it?
Well, you’ve got a few options, but they depend on the materials used.
As probably the laziest method of all, throwing your flip flops in the washing machine on a gentle cycle is probably the easiest way to keep them clean.
Most flip flops are water resistant, as their very purpose is to be worn around the pool, shower, or beach, so they won’t be damaged on a quick cycle. They’ll also air dry in a matter of hours, so this is actually an incredibly effective way of cleaning them.
Unless you want your housemates or significant other to scream at you for leaving threads all over the washing machine, you should probably put the flip flops into a laundry bag or empty pillowcase first. This’ll prevent them from falling apart from being smashed against the drum of the washing machine at 100 kilometers an hour.
The second method of cleaning your flip flops requires a bit more elbow grease, but it’s still easy to do.
Simply fill a bath tub with warm-hot water and put your flip flops in. You can then use a sponge or a scrub to give them the quick once over and make sure you’ve killed off all spare bacteria.
This is probably your best bet if you’ve got fragile flip flops, as you can be as gentle as you want.
Dish Soap and Water
The third and final method is the old classic: using dish soap and water. To do this, mix them together until you get a soapy, foamy consistency, and then use a sponge to apply it to your flip flops.
This’ll get rid of any spare or bad bacteria on your flip flop, and then they should dry off in a matter of hours.
If you’re still wondering how to clean them, check out this video to learn more:
Flip flops vs sandals. What’s the difference?
It’s that question everyone wants to know: what is the difference between flip flops and sandals?
To be honest, not a lot. It’s very subtle. We’ve decided to condense the differences into bullet points to make it easier for you.
- Sandals often have an ankle strap to keep your foot securely in the shoe. Flip flops do not and just have the single thong.
- On that note, flip flops have a Y-shaped thong that goes from the sole and between your first two toes. Sandals have straps that hold your feet firmly against the sole.
- This is rare for men’s fashion, but sandals can often have an elevated heel, creating a fashion piece of evening wear. Flip flops probably shouldn’t be worn at a dinner party, unless you’re that kinda guy.
How did we choose these products?
It’s a good question, but one we’re suitably prepared for.
Selecting 7 pairs of flip flops out of a directory of thousands is a difficult task, but we went about it in a practical way that makes sense.
Firstly, we wanted to find the flip flops that provide the most comfort. As noted already, men love convenience, and convenient flip flops will be comfortable enough to wear in many situations. To do this, we looked for the best men’s flip flops with arch support, cushioned soles, and straps that have extra care taken to ensure they won’t be causing any blisters or sores.
Then, we wanted to find some flip flops that are good looking. It’s one thing being comfortable, but you don’t want to be walking around in flip flops that are eye sores. It defeats the point.
And we can’t lie and say we didn’t think about price. We wanted to ensure that all 7 pairs of flip flops were worth the investment relative to their price point, and we think we did that. We have listed flip flops from the most budget to the upper-tier and made sure that their qualities are worth what they are sold for.
All in all, we found products that just make sense. They’re comfortable, durable, and are worth their price.
We think you shouldn’t listen to the anti-flip flop brigade; they’re a great choice for those who are in warmer climates and/or are looking for an open-footed shoe that is both stylish and comfortable.
Long gone are the days where all flip flops are flat and uncomfortable. Yeah, you have to be very careful with the flip flops you select, but you can easily find them with anatomical arch support and all the rest, making them an excellent choice for any man. With our picks, you won’t go wrong.
Even though we have argued that flip flops have never really gone out of style, we’re aware that many men shy aware from them for one reason or another.
We welcome your suggestions and comments on them. Have you ever worn flip flops? Do you prefer another particular pair that we haven’t included? Get in touch; we’d love to chat.