You can’t deny the ease and practicality of flip-flops, yet you have to acknowledge that showing skin isn’t appropriate for every situation.“
A wise man once said there are three sides to every story: your side, their side and the truth. And when it comes to summer’s favorite footwear, that advice couldn’t be more relevant. If we had it our way, we would bare 10 toes 365 days a year, a flip-flop devotee until the end. But the fashion mags and style elitists mock this comfortable creation as a sad product of stylistic surrender. In reality, the fate of the flip-flop exists somewhere between these extremes. You can’t deny the ease and practicality of flip-flops, yet you have to acknowledge that showing skin isn’t appropriate for every situation — even when the mercury tops 90. That’s why this collection of dos and don’ts is specially designed to help you hoof it in the heat.
Summer is the season where our feet come out to play in public for friends, family and strangers alike. A DIY clip-and-scrub is mandatory. Always keep an eye out for open sores and blisters. They’re a surefire sign you need to switch to shoes — stat.
Find ones that fit
You can hear the slip-slap sound of a pair that’s too big from a mile away. And seeing the embarrassing toe-curl created by a pair that’s smaller than it should be isn’t much better. Sizing can be tricky since flip-flops are typically made in ranges to cover half sizes (like 9-10 or 11-12). The rule: They should extend just past your heel. Pick a pair closest to your sneaker size, and always remember to try them on first.
Unlike a leather lace-up or even a canvas-clad slip-on, your flip-flop collection needs to be replenished every summer. It’s not just to capture the latest trend — though that’s an added perk. The reason you need to stock up on an annual basis is because a flimsy flip-flop simply can’t hold up to repeated beatings by sun, surf and sand. And yes, while restocking does depend on how often you decide to throw on your thongs, dropping a few extras bucks on a fresh set each beach season will ensure they’re never gnarly — or worse, whittled paper-thin.
Rub ’em down
Flip-flops have a relatively short lifespan – a single season could (and probably should) end in their demise. Fortunately, a little care can extend their days. Wipe your flip-flops with a clean, damp cloth after each use. For models fashioned in foam, which bruises easily, a bath of soap and water is what works. When it doesn’t, toss ’em in the trash.
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