Will You Wear Flip Flops?

With the initiation of resort season come the valuably hard-hitting questions that inform some of the most intellectually stimulating conversations of our time. And in the wake of the unveiling of both Raf Simons’ conception of Resort in 2016 for Christian Dior and that of Nicolas Ghesquière’s for Louis Vuitton, the most salient talking point to have emerged in the last week from Palm Springs to the South of France is this: flip flops — you in or out?

At Vuitton’s Bob Hope estate-hosted show, the flip flops looked more like FitFlops, silently extolling the virtues of allowing your toes the capacity to move freely about the cabin while also generating an excuse to jog a marathon on your lunch break in athleisure-inclined runway-wear. They say that three’s a trend but I think two is a solid enough marker when we’re considering heavy hitters like the aforementioned Ghesquière and Raf Simons. Yesterday near Cannes, the designer for Christian Dior built upon a narrative initiated by Ghesquière, showing several pairs of what Amelia insists are “elegant sandals” but what I will call Flip Flops with a capital F.

As is often the case with a visionary, it can take a bit of time to get it — to acquaint yourself with the flights of a designer’s fancy as you scratch your head in humble confusion, trying to wrap what you’re scratching around a fortune-teller disguised as a designer, telling you what you will be and what you might want look like six months down the road.

So here’s where I’m at: I would rather stab myself in the foot than see a perfectly good outfit go to waste care of flip-flop-generated destruction. Yes, they are convenient. They make getting pedicures on a whim easier. They’re reliable. They are often water proof and if you have an obnoxious big toe, they sequester it from the rest of the gang. But they’re also too easy. They don’t offer enough character to pull together a look with the kind of charm that, say, a lace up does. But Dior and Vuitton are obviously on to something that I am not. Maybe it’s another nod to normcore (outside of the microcosm that is New York, I’d likely be hard-pressed to find such vigilant flop-naysayers) or something the start of something new. Are you into it?

Images via Style.com

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  • Allie Fasanella

    i feel you that they don’t pull together an outfit, but they’re nice to just slip on for running errands or if you’re going somewhere you want to easily take your shoes off (the movies). i just picked up these pretty little leather ones in the city the other day when i was wearing heels for too long and i was about 80% dead. i need practice walking in heels, teach me your ways babe.

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    • Walking in heels is so hard. I LOVE high heels. Can’t walk in them for the life of me.

      • Allie Fasanella

        were on the same page boo

  • There were flip flops at Paco Rabanne A/W 2015 too! I hated flip flops until I saw this look at the show. I think they’re great when worn with something that is not easy at all, like these crazy frilled plastic pants:

    • Esther Levy

      Loving everything about this lewk.

  • Kelsey Moody

    Rainbow flipflops are THE footwear worn by boarding school prepsters ages 14-18, Im perfectly happy never having them on my feet again. I become nostalgic whenever I see them in my childhood closet when I go home but that, thankfully, is where they look best.

    • Amelia Diamond

      I still have mine at my MOMZ

    • HannahGS

      I. Have. Three. Pairs. Of. These. (and they are like little leather foot clouds soooo)

      • Mel

        The best ones are tkees. They are super minimal and elegant and look really cute in the summer with denim and a white shirt and a good pedicure

  • parkzark

    I wear Havaianas for the beach, but never usually anywhere else. IDK though, I’m kind of on board with this.

  • dustUP

    Just nope.
    If it is another nod to normcore, it proves that designers are more influenced by the street than we’d like to admit and not at all a fortune tellers, especially when it comes to pre-collections.

  • I have always had an aversion toward flip flops. When I was younger, the one time I wore flip flops on vacation, I didn’t realize that a frog had been sitting on my foot for an entire dinner. I’m traumatized, never wore flip flops again. Frogs aside, I never liked flip flops anyhow. Similarly to what you wrote, Leandra, I just think that because it’s so convenient, it’s so easy to throw them on…like sweatpants.

  • No. I find flip flops to be highly unflattering because my feet are wide. I compromise and wear sandals with a little wedge heel.

  • As someone who wore flipflops year round throughout middle and high school (I’m from Maryland), I say DOWN WITH FLIP FLOPS, especially if you live in a city. Any shoe that shortens the gap from foot underside to the ground I am NOT down for. Beach or pool side, sure, I can dig it, but even then I’d rather wear some other kind of slip on.
    In high school I also wore Sanuks a LOT, as did the rest of my family. ( http://www.sanuk.com/womens-sidewalk-surfers/donna-hemp/SWF1160.html?dwvar_SWF1160_color=NAT#start=5&cgid=womens-view-all )
    Just now remembered them, looking at their site I’m feeling their siren song. These in particular… http://www.sanuk.com/womens-shoes/katlash/SWF10786.html?dwvar_SWF10786_color=RED

  • Lyric

    In San Diego they’re pretty much unavoidable. I only wear mine to take my dogs out, to the beach and to Vons, which is literally directly across the street from me. I also will go to Vons sans bra and in sweatpants though, so that’s not a good sartorial guide for me. I just think they generally look lazy. I also have a general aversion to guys that wear them out at night. Like you put on jeans and a button up to go to a cool whiskey bar, but couldn’t be bothered to put on a real pair of fucking shoes?

    • amg

      Ongoing argument at my house with the hubby….

    • Lea Telivuo-Kupari

      Wow, I’m picturing a hot, toned, tanned man in a crisp light blue button up, narrow raw denim jeans and saint laurent rainbow slides in a cool whiskey Bar and I’m liking it

  • Keri Blair

    I LOVE flip flops and with so many amazing ones out there, anyone can surely find a look that’s amazing.

    • amg

      I’m with you – I live in South Florida and I am not okay with sweaty feet…. The only time I wear socks is when I’m forced to head north….

  • Lua Jane

    I am still not sold on that look. I love normcore, I’m sad to see it go, but only not normcore thing about me is my footwear. Where I love my jeans and slacks black, and my sweaters and shirts gray, I love my shoes fun, colorfull, pretty and weird. Shoes usually pull my outfit together and make it what it is. In that sense flip flops are not my thing. They can be used on the beach, but that’s it for me.

    • Leandra Medine

      don’t you also find sometimes though that it takes seeing the trend shown in the wild to finally start to get it. with the birkenstocks, i was definitively anti for the first, let’s say 6 months of that trends existence but when i started to see the shoes kind of seamlessly fit into peoples style narratives, they made so much more sense and i was like oooooh, i get it now!

      • This makes for an interesting point because it leaves me wondering if that is what trends and style are about: “getting it”. Is it just a matter of seeing something so much and so often that you get used to it and start to like it or is it that you understand the reasoning behind it, or how you are supposed to appreciate it as you would a Dada or Suprematist work of art and then you can accept it and maybe even sport it.

        I like the convenience of slipping on flip flops and they sometimes sound like a good idea but once I try them they definitely feel like they subtract from my outfit. I also feel like my feet are vulnerable in a way that sandals don’t make me feel. Yet, I am really curious to see where this trend goes and if it picks up. If it’s going to go that route I expect some pretty fantastic flip flops and outfit pairings because the associations I make to them so far are not all that great.

      • Lua Jane

        Exactly. It took me a while to accept birkenstocks too. And seeing them “out in the action” helped definitely. I guess some trends just need time and to be seen in practice to become likeable.

        • amg

          I really want to try them but my teenagers told me they will disown me if they catch me wearing them…lol…they are not seen as fashion forward to the younger set

  • 丽雯

    i dont feel it formal enough.Sometimes i feel uncomfotable wearing it in public.

  • starryhye

    This is tricky for me. On the one hand, I live in Arizona and have small children, so owning and wearing flip flops is just the most convenient option. On the other hand, flip flops add zero style to any outfit. My flip flop wearing is strictly limited to kid/pool activities. I’ve found that a chic gladiator or T-strap sandal ups the style ante immensely, with minimal effort.

  • Nooo no no. Flip flops are not real shoes. Flip flops are given out for free at nail salons and weddings to wear for two hours and then recycle or donate to Goodwill. The worst part of flip flops is the AWFUL clapping sound they make. Flip. Flop. Flip. Flop. Flip. Flop.

    I HATE flip flops.

    • amg

      But there are many cute, simple stylish options besides foam flip-flops – Tkees and Yoshi Samra are super cute and so are Tory Burch Millers….

      • pamb

        I love the Tory Millers, am on my second pair, but they’re sandals, not flip flips. They have padding and everything!

  • I don’t mind how they look, but I don’t find them comfortable at all. I’ve also seen some nasty looking blisters after someone walked all day in them

  • Hennalounge

    Sadly, I wear flipflops all the time because they’re easy to slip on in the mornings. My flipflops are ugly and worn out. I actually don’t care for the trend, with the exception of the Dior resort wear, somehow that totally works.

  • pamb

    When I think flip flop, I think the rubber kind that you buy at Old Navy, that inevitably break when the strap pulls out of the shoe. The runway flip flops look more like sandals to me, and I definitely wear sandals.

    However, I only wear thong styles, as I’m not fond of the big toe separated strap look on me. And a little padding, please. After a day in sandals with a hard flat surface, my back is aching.

    • Jessica Peterson

      I just want to thank you for your name. Pann.

  • I only wear flip flops to the beach (for their sand-hardy nature) and post-pedicure. Then again, I live in London, so I don’t need to decide whether or not to wear them very often, as the weather usually decides on my behalf.

  • Brett

    Having previously banned flip-flops, presumably for life, from my wardrobe (not to mention my friends’ wardrobes), I found myself in the middle of the literal desert at Coachella this year actually wishing for my J.Crew nude flip-flops I kept hidden from society. Back in Los Angeles, I couldn’t help but notice the ease of the guys and girls wearing them. You said they are easy, but if your attitude and personal style tends toward that word (we’re assuming in an elevated sense here), is there really anything wrong with donning what you think is a beautiful pair of footwear?

  • I think it’s all about what you wear with the flip-flop. Skinny jeans + flip-flops? No. But a majority of the styles above pull it off with a wide leg, slouched pant or a cuffed linen pant. Works.

  • ultracookie

    Fuq no… I got this far in life so I DON’T have to wear flip flops…

  • Graciela Molina

    Theres no way im going out on simple flip flops if im not going to the beach… sandals yes sometimes if I feel the need of slidding something into my feet or when im tired of squeezing my feet into every imaginable shape of shoe.
    This ones could pull together an outfit maybe but not in the elegant way that you think its more like an ugly shoe that in its ugliness can be a statement.

  • Fuck a flip flop. Honestly they are only good at the beach because you never have to worry about getting sand in your shoes. I think they destroy outfits and I would not pay LV or Dior money (which is a lot of $$$$$) for flip flops!!

  • fireonthewater

    Ugh, no way…such a sloppy and unfeminine look when out in public. I only wear heels or wedge sandals out and about. They are convenient when you’re just in the house on a lazy day cooking and cleaning, padding around the house. In general, I think flip-flops only look cute paired with jeans and a french pedicure.