Thing I love #17: Flip Flops

Photo courtesy of Cin/Flickr

Flip flops are the best shoe ever, for all time, no question. They’re like the cool, sexy cousin of TEVAs or Birkenstocks. The one whose hair always looks good and gets free drinks at bars.

I wear flip flops year round. To swim practice. Running errands. Defiantly through puddles on rainy days. I wore them under my prom dress in high school. I never go on a trip without throwing in a pair. Even to the snow. And they are totally appropriate/functional in all the above situations. And ladies, I ask you this: is there anything hotter than a guy in a suit and flip flops? No. There isn’t.

In case you are somewhere other than California and want to talk about flip flops, please use the below information:

USA, West Coast: Flip Flops
USA, East Coast: Zorries
USA, Texas: Clam Diggers
USA, Hawaii: Slippers
Australia: Thongs
New Zealand: Jandals
South Africa: Plakkies, Slip-slops, or just Slops
Greece: Sayonares

The choice of flip flop also says a lot about a person. Yes. I judge based on appearances.

Rainbows

JV027/Wikipedia

The Wearer: Someone who plays a water based sport, and/or lives in California. And/or is a freedom-loving, outdoorsy, hippie type. Goes well with bleach-blonde hair, weathered jeans and ray bans.
Why: They’re on the pricey side of the flip flop spectrum ($40ish) but are so, so worth it. They last for freaking ever and because of their leather/foam/rubber construction, conform to the feet. Which is awesome. Try on a pair of Rainbows someone else has worn for a couple of years and you’ll know what I mean. Because they’re leather, they are not friends with water. Like cows.

Reefs

magnusotis/Flickr

The Wearer: Decidedly sporty types.
Why: Reefs come in many different styles, but their most popular ones are spongy rubber soles with mesh straps. A very solid choice by flip flop wearers in general, they can take more water abuse than Rainbows. They also have a style that feature a bottle opener on the bottom. As someone who doesn’t mind eating food off the ground, I think this is a fantastic idea.

Sanuks

Daniel Y. Go/Flickr

The Wearer: A slightly quirkier population than Reefs or Rainbows, although they certainly overlap. Sanuk wearers usually have a more extreme dedication to a certain kind of lifestyle, be it eating organic food, playing an obscure sport – basically, staying out of the mainstream. You can find them slacklining, kayaking, and pickling their homegrown vegetables.
Why: Sanuks themselves are quirkier. Some of them come covered in astro turf. They’re wider and less sleek-looking than other ‘flops. And they have a line of “Sidewalk Surfers” that they claim are still sandals (although I’m pretty sure they’re shoes, guys). Also they have a weird brand name. I like ’em.

Havianas

kefern/Flickr

The Wearer: Europeans. Hipsters. People who fancy themselves just a little bit edgier than the average flip flop wearer.
Why: I guess because they’re Bazilian they’re cooler? Not really sure. Havianas are a rubber, but thicker and higher quality than the cheap ones found in drug stores. They also come in national/flamboyant colors and funky patterns, depending on where your loyalties lie. Mine lie with neon.

Fitflops, flip flops worn with toe socks, and platform flip flops

obscene_pickle/Flickr

The Wearers: Posers. Tramps. People who suck.
Why: These people don’t get it. Flips are functional and basic, and each of them are trying to turn flip flops into something they aren’t. Wearing them with toe socks? Put on shoes, you pussy. If you can’t stand the cold, get out of the freezer. Or something. Fitflops? The same overweight Americans who think that shoes like shape-ups will make them skinny. Idiots. Platform flip flops? NO. Flips flops are for ease, convenience and comfort. Anyone wearing platform flip flops probably also has a cheap dye job, a cutoff jean skirt, and some kind of top that puts their tits on display.

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