The weather is getting warm, you’re spending much of your time outdoors, and you find yourself getting sweaty easily.
What is your footwear of choice?
For many, they’ll stick with the sneakers and boots that they can trust. But why? You’ve been wearing them since winter, and now that the weather is considerably warmer, you need your footwear to reflect that.
What do we suggest? Sandals.
It’s a type of shoe that is truly underrated, because people don’t realize how far they’ve improved in the last 10 years. KEEN Men’s UNEEK Sandal, for example, proves that it’s ahead of the game in terms of its comfort, looks, and handiness.
Gone are the days where you’d be laughed at for wearing them in public. You may not believe it, but they actually are good investments.
With that in mind, we have used this article to compile the 9 best sandals for men. In addition to that, we have provided you with the top buying tips and top cleaning tips.
Table of Contents
Before you buy: 7 Things to consider when purchasing sandals
Now that we have you sold on the idea of owning a pair of sandals for the summer, we don’t want you to go out there and buy the first pair you find. As with anything, not all sandals are good sandals. You need to be careful.
To give you some help, we’ve broken down the top 7 things you need to consider before making your final decision.
This may seem ridiculously obvious, but you want your sandal to be comfortable. If it’s not, then get rid of it. Yeah, the primary purpose is so that you can be breathable and stylish out in the warm weather, but you also want to ensure that you’re not going to be walking around suffering from blisters and burns as a result of wearing a rubbish pair of sandals.
One of the major comfort issues related to sandals comes down to the strap. Many men will choose to wear their sandals without socks, and without socks your feet are constantly in touch with the choice of upper material. That is to say, then, that the choice of strap material and design really can change how it feels on your feet and whether or not it’s comfortable.
Another thing to keep in mind is the sole and foot bed. Your feet want to be on something that feels like clouds. You don’t want to be walking around and pulling a painful face with every step when the foot bed has no cushioning or support.
Some newer types of sandals come in a ‘slide’ style. These aren’t meant for walking long distances, but they’re still perfectly comfortable for day-to-day use, and these are generally the most popular amongst the younger population.
All in all, we rank comfort as one of the most important things to consider when purchasing yourself a pair of sandals. We believe that if you aren’t comfortable, they aren’t worth having.
Choosing the right material really can filter out the majority of disappointing and below-par clothing. If you think about your favorite t-shirts, you want to ensure that the material is high quality, so it doesn’t shrink in the wash, doesn’t discolor with wear, and doesn’t need replacing after 3 months. Sound familiar?
It’s exactly the same with footwear, and your sandals in particular. It sounds like a pretty bold claim, but if you have sandals that are made with poor materials, they’re going to fall apart pretty quickly and feel like you wasted your time buying them in the first place.
Really, with sandals, you have two choices: synthetic or leather.
Both have their benefits, and both have their negatives. For example, synthetic may look less stylish and be slightly less durable than its leather counterpart, but then it’s likely to be waterproof, whilst leather isn’t. The choice of material comes down to your preference, but, either way, you want to ensure you’re getting the highest-quality versions of them.
If you’re thinking about a pair of sandals for the summer, then you’ll probably be expecting to wear them often. If you’re wearing a pair of shoes on a daily, or almost daily, basis, then you need to make sure that they’re robust. After all, the majority of shoes do begin to break after a certain amount of wear.
Suppose you’re on a long walk in the summer heat, wearing your sandals, and one of the straps breaks. You’re left with a pretty sticky problem. You’ll either have to do the rest of the walk without one of your sandals on your feet, or you’re going to have to hope you packed a spare pair in your bag – the former is more likely.
So, what can you do? Make sure that your sandals are durable. Closely tied in with the two criteria above, you want to get good quality, comfortable materials. These are the ones that are less likely to run into problems shortly down the line. Yes, they may be slightly more expensive, but it’s going to be worth it in the long run.
Having already identified that sandals are summer footwear, you may be wondering why we’re making you consider the purpose of them. Mainly, it’s because summer footwear covers around 4-6 months and doesn’t really make it clear as to when you should be wearing them.
For example, you may be buying sandals so that you can go on long-distance walks on a regular basis, but you may not be interested in going near the sea or the pool. If this is the case, you’ll be looking for a sandal that’s comfortable for those long distances, but you won’t be necessarily fussed by ones that are swim-proof.
Similarly, you may be wanting to wear them on your commute to work and around the office. This one is much riskier, but it is possible, you just need to choose the right ones.
We’ve aimed this article towards sandals that are super comfortable for walking. Regardless of your purpose, you need your sandals to match it.
Next up on our list of important things to consider is the price. As with anything, you want to be getting the best bang for your buck. It’s all good going out and buying an expensive pair thinking that it’s going to guarantee a better quality, but it’s not always the case – as you’re about to find out. This could be due to the brand, rather than the material quality.
That’s not to say that you should only go for the cheaper ones, either. You want to make sure that you can get something that is the best value for money. That is, if your budget is low, you want to make sure that you’re getting the best value relative to the budget. On the flip side, you don’t want to spend a high budget on something that’s not worth it.
The quality needs to be relative to the price.
Everyone has their favorite brands, and it’s definitely possible to find them when looking for a pair of sandals. Depending on who you are, this could make your decision a whole lot easier.
For example, if you’re a big fan of Adidas, and you know your size and how it fits, then you’ll be pleased to know that you can find plenty of Adidas sandals that’ll suit you.
At the end of the day, you want to choose something that you love and will want to wear. If that means you want to search for your favorite brand and go for something that’s reliable, then we’re all for it, and we’ve highlighted some well-known brands in our choices.
Alternatively, we want you to know that you don’t have to get a well-known brand in order to have a great sandal. If you are looking to save a few extra pennies and just base it purely on sandal quality, then we’ll help you out there, too.
Because we’re men, color is important. Most (but not all) of us don’t want to buy a pink or purple pair of sandals and roam around the beach.
Really, you just want to look for the safest colors. The darks, the khakis, and the greys will be perfect. That way, you’ll be able to wear them across a series of different scenarios without worrying that they’ll look strange. Black sandals are much likelier to go with any outfits.
Ultimately, you need to go for a combination between practicality and preference.
The 9 best sandals for men 2019
This Under Armour synthetic slide sandal is one of our favorites because of the style, looks, and comfort. Coming in a slide style, it has a comfortable over-the-foot strap that will not cause any discomfort or problems when walking long distances. Further, the strap is adjustable, meaning that it is a supportive sandal perfect for a regular person.
Fortunately for you, it is not only the slide/strap that is comfortable. The foot bed is built with not one but two layers of performance 4d foam, meaning that there’s what they describe as ‘unprecedented comfort’. Take from that what you will, but we bet it’s great.
For those of you looking for the best orthopedic sandals, this pair comes with anatomical contours, so there’s additional cushioning. If you love walking around but hate the pain that accompanies it, these could be a great choice for you come summer time.
Speaking of walking, you’ll be fine on any terrain with an EVA outsole built with durable traction pods in the heel. Regardless of whether it’s long or short distance, they should maintain a good level of comfort and suitability.
Many of the reviews describe them as being incredibly durable, with some people noting that they’ve had them for many years and they’ve only suffered minimal wear and tear. We would expect nothing less, as Under Armour are a well-known brand that takes care of the quality of their products.
The only gripe is related to the sizing. If you’re used to Under Armour sizing, then you’ll already know this, but if you’re not then you should always size up if you are a half size. If you are not a half size, just order as normal.
- 4D Foam Foot bed
- Adjustable synthetic strap with HeatGear lining
- EVA outsole with traction pods
- Sizing can run small
This Under Armour slide sandal is perfect for those of you looking to combine comfort with style. However,, if you are looking for something more formal, this isn’t for you.
Made with leather and a rubber sole, this sandal is made with super comfortable walking in mind. If you’re going to be on your feet all day, you might as well make it comfortable.
There’s a double strap – one that goes over the top of the foot and another goes over your toes – meaning that you’re not going to have to worry about them coming loose or undone whilst you’re on the move. You’ll also be pleased to hear that they’re both fully adjustable Velcro.
If you need sandals with good arch support, then these are an ideal choice for you. They’re great sandals for those who have suffered from plantar fasciitis, and reviewers have noted that they are able to wear them all day without any troubles.
The primary problem with them is that they are not water resistant. They are a great, comfortable shoe, but if you are looking to be walking in all weather conditions or near the beach, the suede upper will run the risk of getting damaged.
- Leather upper
- EVA foot bed with arch support
- Secure double strap
- Not water resistant
Picking up this Men’s Hudson sandal is a great pick for those with foot troubles looking for something that provides all-day relief and comfort.
This is the true definition of an everyday sandal.
Coming in a beautiful leather design that truly looks the part, you’ll be able to grab a pair of these and wear them in almost any scenario. Well, other than playing sports maybe. If you’re looking for style, then these are a winning choice.
If you’re also looking for durability, then you’re in luck. As it’s high-quality buffalo leather, they’ll wear over time, leaving the prestige look that leather goods get.
In terms of comfort, you’ll be benefiting from an orthopedic form support that means that, regardless of whether you have foot issues, you’ll be walking around in supreme luxury.
The benefits don’t stop there. The insole layer is made from natural leather and foam. The more you wear them, the more your foot custom molds the foam, making the break-in process that much more rewarding. Once you’ve done so, you’ll have a pair of sandals that are perfectly molded to your feet, making them incredibly comfortable.
- Great-looking leather
- Shock-absorbing sole
- Orthopedic design
- Not great for long distances or sports
This everyday buffalo leather sandal has all the benefits of being a finely-crafted leather item whilst still retaining a competitive price point.
As an outdoor-orientated brand, ECCO produce some of the best men’s sandals for walking. This pair is highly versatile and makes use of a sturdy nubuck upper. With unrivaled durability and support, the straps make them a great choice for almost any activity. There’s three-point adjustability, meaning that your feet will be secure over long distances, and the foot bed has a soft microfiber cover that will give additional stability should you need it.
Underneath, there’s a specially-designed tread pattern providing excellent comfort and ensuring that you’ll be getting superior grip on any outdoor terrain. The material is fine to withstand a bit of water damage, but they aren’t labeled or sold as being water resistant – so we wouldn’t advise you to do it often.
- Excellent comfort
- Best sandals for walking all day
- Reasonably good-looking
- Not good for wide feet
This is the ideal sandal of choice if you’re looking to be walking long distances. They will experience little to no wear and tear, and they look good, too. They are a solid all-rounder.
As implied in the brand name, Dr. Scholl’s footwear are made with orthotics in mind. With state-of-the-art foot medical technology going into their shoes, they are a foot care brand that specializes in injecting comfort and fashion into all of their sandals.
This Gaston fisherman sandal comes in a great-looking 100% leather upper, guaranteeing that you won’t be walking around in something that looks bad.
Moving onto the orthotics, you’re spoiled with a memory fit foam insole that is made to remember the way your feet sit. That way, after you’ve worn them in, you’ll be absorbed into perfect comfort each and every time.
The main issue noted with this shoe is that the cushioning and padded insole make it more suited for those with wide feet. If you are looking to wear them but have particularly narrow feet, you either could size down or just wear socks to widen them up.
- Orthotic pair of sandals
- Memory fit foam
- 100% leather upper for durability
- Not suitable for narrow feet
Finding the most comfortable sandals for problem feet can be a pain, but these make it simple. You won’t go wrong with a pair of Sandals that are made with orthotics in mind, and that is exactly what these are.
Taking a step away from the leather style, this Dockers slide sandal is 100% synthetic with distressed and tumbled uppers to create an authentic look that’s fit for many scenarios.
These are made with a purposefully relaxed fit, meaning that they’re roomier and allow for a bit more foot movement. Other than that, the memory foam insole will shape and form to the foot for instantaneous comfort as soon as you put them on, and the fusion foot bed provides another layer to an already comfortable sandal.
Coming in two color choices, they are both safe for men who want their sandals to seamlessly fit in with their other everyday outfits. Since you’ll probably be wearing these quite often, it is important you don’t look silly doing so.
- Fusion foot bed for extreme comfort
- Synthetic, but with distressed uppers for an authentic quality look
- Memory foam
- The grooves underneath the sandal carry and collect dirt and stones around
This durable pair of sandals is made with the everyday male in mind. With a design and comfort fit for a multitude of scenarios, you’ll never look too out of place whilst wearing a pair.
These relaxed-fit Fisherman sandals by Skechers are made for the outdoors. Featuring two adjustable hook-and-loop straps and a memory foam cushioned foot bed, you are in control over whether they operate as a great sandal or not.
You’ll be able to make the most of a highly-durable synthetic upper and highly-adjustable straps. The heel is 1.25” from the surface, meaning that you can get optimal comfort that suits you whilst walking around.
The memory foam sole makes them a great choice for people with foot pain. Some reviewers mention that, even though they have severe foot problems, they still are able to wear them without pain. Even if you don’t get foot pain, you’ll be pleased to hear that these sandals won’t give you any blisters.
- Memory foam cushioning sole
- High level of adjustability
- Highly durable
- The front strap sometimes rubs against the toes
With an elevated heel, these Skechers sandals have been produced with comfort in mind. Coming in a relaxed fit and featuring a memory foam foot bed, you’ll be giving your feet the luxury treatment they deserve.
Made by one of the most famous brands in the world, this pair of slide sandals feature the iconic three stripes on the face of its design. It’s a timeless look that men love to wear – and one that others love to stare at.
They are made from 100% synthetic material, including a synthetic sole, but that is not to say that they are of a poor build quality. In fact, the foot bed has been contoured for a perfect fit every time, and the strap has a coated bandage for lightweight durability.
If you’re wondering how they’ll survive outside walking long distances – just fine. They have soccer cleat-inspired outsoles that have been innovated purely for grip. Spending time outside in any weather will be fine, too, as they’re completely water resistant. You even can wear them in the shower – talk about multi-purpose.
- Adidas brand quality
- Innovative design
- Water resistant
- They are flimsy compared to some other sandals
Those of you looking for a sandal made by this iconic sports brand will not be left disappointed. Coming with superior quality and innovative design, the Adilette slide sandal is perfect for any day of the week.
On the surface, these sandals are not the best looking. You’d be forgiven for feeling like you’re about to jump off the back of a boat and go deep sea diving. However, looks only tell a small part of the story with these. The metatomical EVA foot bed provides superior quality, comfort, and traction whilst walking, making them an excellent choice for everyday wear. You’ve also got a considerably raised platform at 1.5 inches. We see this as a win-win. For those of you standing at 5’10”, you can finally be an actual 6 feet tall in these.
The durability is second to none. We’ve even noticed that some reviewers have described them as ‘virtually indestructible’, and that’s as close to perfectly durable as you can get.
- Supremely durable
- EVA foot bed for superior quality and comfort
- Perfect for multi-terrain walks
- They are quite ugly
If you don’t mind sacrificing a few fashion points for comfort and durability, then this could be a great choice for you. It is one of the best on the market in terms of raw quality, but the heads you’ll be turning whilst wearing them probably will be for the wrong reasons.
How to look after and get the most out of your sandals
As we’ve discussed intensively throughout this article, sandals tend to appear when it’s warm and when regular footwear is too much of an inconvenience. Whilst deciding to dust off the sandals in the warm weather is more than acceptable, it is unacceptable to keep wearing them without regular care.
To put it bluntly, your sandals will begin to capture odor and other unpleasantries each time you wear them. A good reason to keep on top of the maintenance of your sandals is to keep the smells at bay and prevent yourself from stinking out each room you enter.
Another good reason is that when you’re walking over different terrains or long distances, you’re almost guaranteed to get your sandals dirty and worn out. If you’re treating yourself to a pair of the best sandals for men, and particularly ones that are super comfortable for walking, you’ll want to ensure that they are not starting to break and wear out after a couple of uses.
So either way, you will lose if you don’t look after your sandals. You’ll either be the one who stinks out the room, or you’ll be the one having to buy a brand new pair because the old ones have worn out.
Fortunately, cleaning them regularly provides a preventative and protective measure that ensures that your sandals will last a long time and prove to be a worthwhile investment.
The first thing you should always do after wearing your sandals is give them a little clean. This process can be as simple or as complicated as you’d like, but the goal is clear: remove all dirt from the surface and give the foot bed a good scrub.
Note: The following cleaning process is meant for synthetic materials.
And for the cleaning process, you generally want to do it in this order:
Prepare your sandals by getting them wet and ready to clean (again, if you’re using real leather/suede, then skip these instructions and look below).
Add some sandal wash to your water. If you’re wondering what sandal wash is, then don’t worry: you can also use some dish soap or shampoo. Long story short, you just want to be making the water soapy.
Give the sandals a wash in the water, and grab yourself a soft brush to wash away all of the grime – internally and externally.
Once you’ve washed them thoroughly, you can then leave the sandals outside (or inside, if outside weather is terrible), so they can dry. The most important thing is that you let them air dry at a normal temperature. Try not to put them on a heater or in direct sunlight, as you’ll just be extrapolating the number of bacteria.
If you’ve got sandals with an animal product like leather or suede, you’ll want to just use a leather cleanser. You’ll be able to find these from any good shoe store, and they’ll keep your leather sandals in great condition. Other than the cleanser, you can use a brush or a sponge to clear out dust and dirt that could be changing the appearance of your sandal. If you’ve got a pair of leather sandals, and you’re looking for some more tips, follow this video, and you’ll be in good hands:
Following these tips will make sure that your sandals are well looked after, and you shouldn’t find yourself suffering from any poor odor or durability issues. However, we must stress that you need to check the designer’s care guide before you go ahead and settle on a care routine.
The difference between sandals and flip-flops
Summer footwear comes in a few forms. Today, we’ve chosen to focus on the sandal because it’s a great, comfortable choice for walking in warm temperatures. On the other side, you’ve got the flip-flop. As another excellent summer choice, flip-flops can be worn everywhere, but they may not be perfect for the same purposes we’ve spoken about today. However, on the face of it, they both look very similar.
So what is the difference?
To give you all a clearer distinction between the two, we’ve decided to fully break it down to make it easier to understand.
We know that we’ve spent the entire article championing what is great and what is not about a sandal, but it is still important to recognize what sets this apart from the flip-flop.
First, one of the foundational differences that you’ll find between the two is that sandals are generally made with sturdier and more durable material. When looking for a pair of the best sandals for men, you’ll likely find many of them made from leather and other durable materials. The reason for this is because sandals are made with longer walking distances and wearing in mind. They’re a fashion piece that can be worn with evening outfits and to meals, so they need to have the material quality to back that up.
The second primary difference is in the aesthetic of them. This is one of the clearer differences and one that you’ll probably recognize yourselves. Sandals can come in a multitude of forms, but they’ll generally have more of a strap/foot securing mechanism than the flip-flop. They are more likely to involve something that is structured and holds in your toes and heels, so that you’re comfortable walking longer distances. Speaking of the heel, sandals also are more likely to have a heel or an elevated foot bed. This is because they are designed to be comfortable and prevent you from wearing something that’s flimsy.
We just mentioned it in passing, but the third difference is in the purpose. Sandals have a wider purpose in that they’re also acceptable for many social and professional scenarios. Because of that, sandals often are made to seamlessly fit in evening and casual, social wear. Similarly, you can get dressier sandals that make for a great choice in the office. But be warned: your co-workers may not be best pleased with your feet on show around the workplace.
Flip-flops are equally as useful when looking for a hot weather shoe. They can be thoroughly comfortable, stylish, and just ideal to slide on when you’re getting out of the house quickly.
As opposed to the purposefully high-quality material found on a sandal, flip-flops are quite often made with flimsier material. That’s not to say that they aren’t worth buying, they’re just made to fit a different purpose. Usually, you’ll just be wearing the flip-flops for a BBQ or a trip down the beach, and you just need something quick to throw on and get on with the day.
If we’re going to look at the aesthetic once again, then you’ll probably be unsurprised to hear that flip-flops just have the Y-shaped thong that goes over your feet and between your toes. That’s about the extent of their style. Whereas sandals have all sorts of different layering and straps, you will not find that to be the case when looking at flip-flops.
As we just mentioned, flip-flops have a totally different primary purpose to the sandal, and so it is no surprise that flip-flops are more suited for a trip to the pool or on vacation to a beach paradise than they are for an evening meal.
Really, then, the differences look minimal, but they are quite severe. Flip-flops are made for casual wear, they’re flimsy, and they never really look any different. Sandals can have different styles of straps that suit every occasion, and they’re made for comfortable wear over long distances.
How did we choose the best sandals?
It is always important for us to go ahead and pick the very best when choosing our reviews. After all, if we’re leaning towards a certain product, then we want you to feel assured in our selection process and trust that it’s a good one.
Trying to narrow down thousands of sandals into 9 pairs of the very best is no easy challenge, but we feel like our selection process made it easy to do.
Earlier, we went through a bunch of criteria that need to be considered before deciding on your perfect pair of sandals, and really we have gone ahead and tried to make sure that our picks are the perfect combination of them all, so that we know you’re getting the best.
Firstly, we had to filter them by some of the primary qualities we look for in sandals, namely, quality material, comfort, and durability. As men, we need to make sure that we’re buying items that look after our feet. We’re on them all day, right? We don’t want to be walking around in something that’s feeble and going to give us blisters and fall apart.
Another key quality was the aesthetic of the sandal. If any man says that he doesn’t care what he looks like walking around in public, then he is probably lying. It is important that you still look stylish whilst walking around in sandals, and we wanted to ensure that you would.
Then, we went ahead and looked at some of the most common foot problems, and we wanted to find the best sandals that combatted some of the major issues. For example, we wanted to find sandals with good arch support and supportive sandals that would help those with plantar fasciitis and swelling.
Combining sandals with these additions and the other necessities like durability, quality, and material is a win-win formula.
Finally, we had to go ahead and find ourselves sandals in different price ranges. Keeping to budget is important for every man, and each man has a different budget. It would have been easy for us to go ahead and pick out 9 different pairs of sandals that are the ‘best’ by selecting the most expensive brands and designs, but that wouldn’t have been representative of those of you reading our blog.
Instead, we wanted to find the best sandals in the above criteria whilst sticking to different price points. If you’re only spending a small amount, we still want you to get the best available quality relative to that price. Similarly, if you’re spending a lot of money, we want you to be getting sandals that are worth the investment.
To summarize, we selected our sandals by keeping to a set criteria and making sure that they’re worth the money you’ll be spending on them.
If you’re looking for something to wear on your feet when the warm weather comes around, then it is a great idea to go and get yourself a good pair of sandals. They’re a great choice as a summer shoe and even can fit into your daily outfits without too much of a stretch.
Fortunately, sandals these days look great, are made by your favorite brands, and come with some incredible comfort. With our advice and selections, you’ll be able to find yourself some sandals that are worth the investment.
Even though we have spent much of this article championing the use of sandals in the summer, some men still heavily oppose them. We’re interested to hear where you fit in this argument. Are you open to wearing sandals, or is there no chance you’ll be going to buy a pair? Get in touch. We’d love to hear what our men think about it.