9 Types of Men’s Sandals – Meet Any Adventures in 2024 | Fashion’s Digest

9 Types of Men’s Sandals – Meet Any Adventures in 2024 | Fashion’s Digest

It’s always exciting when summer rolls around but one thing that might be nagging you is that old pair of sandals in your closet.

With the inevitable influx of pool parties and beach trips, it’s important to have a reliable pair of sandals for these types of outings. However, there are far more types of men’s sandals than what may initially come to mind. Sandals can be worn while hiking a trail, going for a run, or even out to a nice dinner.

The recent bombardment of heat waves might be a good reason to incorporate some open footwear into your wardrobe. Sandals offer a ton of versatility and don’t suffocate your feet in the heat. With so many different offerings on the market, you can likely find one that fits your exact needs. This list breaks down 9 different types of sandals for men and what purposes they serve.

So let’s take a plunge into the world of sandals.

Key Takeaways

While developing this article, I spent plenty of time reviewing lifestyle photos, customer reviews, and even my closet to better understand the sandal market.

In doing so, I’ve been able to establish where each of these options thrives, where they fall short, and how they can be used. I’ve also provided recommendations for the best products in each of these categories, with some of my favorites being the Saffiano Leather Flip-Flops from The Resort Co and the Sugar Sliders from Allbirds.

theresortco / Instagram

Hoka Hopara

Why they’re great: Hiking sandals are often more rugged and heavy-duty than standard sandals, all while offering extra security around your feet. They allow you to quickly tread through a stream but also dry up just as fast. More often than not, hiking sandals feature a closed-toe design so your feet aren’t completely exposed to the elements out on the trail.

How they feel: Hiking sandals provide almost all of the benefits hiking boots offer, while excelling in ventilation. They’re generally more comfortable than a constricted, stuffy pair of boots.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Hiking sandals should only be reserved for weather conditions that complement them. They’ll work great for you during the spring and summer but don’t expect to use them all year round unless you live in a mostly warm climate.

Recommendation: The Hopara outdoor sandals from Hoka are an excellent choice if you’re in the market. They’re streamlined and sleek, yet still functional for long treks into the wilderness.

The Resort Co. Saffiano Leather Flip-Flops

Why they’re great: Flip-flops are probably the first thing that pops into your head when you think of the different types of sandals for men –they’re a classic. They come in tons of styles and materials, meaning you should easily find a pair that fits your specific needs. If you want something that will never go out of style, these are your pick.

How they feel: Flip-flops are perfect for the beach and those summer pool parties when you’ll be doing more swimming than walking.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Flip-flops can be a bit uncomfortable when walking a lot and they aren’t very secure to your feet. As long as you wear flip-flops in the right environment, they’ll excel at their intended purpose.

Recommendation: If you want to invest in a quality pair of flip-flops, look no further than the Saffiano Leather Flip-Flops from The Resort Co. These leather flip-flops are excellent quality and will boost your style points when out in the sun.

Myrqvist Solvik sandals

Why they’re great: Leather sandals are among the classiest types of men’s sandals you can buy. Most of the time, you will find leather sandals made from smooth, full-grain leather because it offers natural water resistance. However, suede sandals are also an option for a softer, more comfortable experience when you’re landlocked.

How they feel: Leather sandals can be worn casually or semi-formally, and are great for vacations. They may not be quite as comfortable but they emphasize style.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Since they are made of leather, they might get a bit hot if the sun is fully ablaze. It’s generally best to wear these out to dinner once the heat has subsided.

Recommendation: The Solvik sandals from Myrqvist are an excellent pair of leather sandals. They’re available in both full-grain and suede leather to give you the most amount of options.

Xero Shoes Z-Trek Sandals

Why they’re great: Running sandals give your feet complete flexibility which encourages a natural range of movement. Not to mention, your toes can splay out as needed, which is a crucial anatomical feature often limited by narrow shoes. They don’t confine your feet like shoes which may get hot and cause blisters, among other running injuries.

How they feel: When wearing running sandals, it’s most important to ensure they are correctly fastened to your feet, so they won’t slip off while on the move.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Most running sandals don’t offer as much padding or overall protection as dedicated running shoes may provide. However, if you’re someone who has hopped on the barefoot shoe trend, this aspect may be more appealing to you.

Recommendation: If you want some great running sandals, the Z-Trek Sandals from Xero Shoes are an excellent choice. Xero shoes is a dedicated barefoot brand and they specialize in running shoes, so you can trust these when heading out for a jog.

Jerusalem Sandals Amos

Why they’re great: As the name might suggest, gladiator sandals are capable of withstanding a lot of hard wear. This type of men’s sandal often has plenty of straps and is typically made of leather. They provide a regal yet rugged look for your next adventure, preferably to the Colosseum.

How they feel: Gladiators are a type of mens sandals that can be worn casually or dressed up depending on the occasion. Most offerings are relatively comfortable, although not as comfortable as something with substantial padding.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: These sandals might be a bit cumbersome to get on since they typically feature multiple straps. However, this means they will be securely fastened to your feet once you do get them on.

Recommendation: If you want a great pair of gladiator sandals, Jerusalem Sandals offers a wide variety of options. The Amos is a modernized gladiator sandal that still maintains some classic elements of this age-old piece of footwear.

Merrell Hydro Mocs

Why they’re great: Water sandals/water shoes are often made entirely of rubber to prevent distortion when frequently exposed to water. They also feature a closed-toe design so crabs can’t pinch your toes, yet they have plenty of vents to filter out water when you inevitably return to land.

How they feel: These types of sandals for men are often very comfortable and offer a ton of traction when walking over both dry and aquatic terrain.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Since most water sandals are made entirely of rubber, they can be a bit squeaky at times, especially when you have wet feet. So just know you probably won’t be sneaking up on anyone in a pair of these.

Recommendation: The Hydro Mocs from Merrell are a great pair of water shoes that fully embrace the Crocs aesthetic. They feature a somewhat futuristic design sure to catch some attention, and the adjustable heel strap adds a level of convenience when slipping them on.

Sugar Sliders from Allbirds

Why they’re great: Slides are one of the most prominent types of men’s sandals in the market today. They thrive with casual outfits and many of them feature significant padding for an extra comfortable walking experience. They take less than a second to slip on and are perfect when you just need to get some errands done.

How they feel: Most slides are heavily padded, making them comfortable even when walking for extended periods. They can be worn out and about in many places, but can still be used by the beach or pool too.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Slides are a very casual footwear option, and they can quickly feel out of place with dressier outfits. The best way to pull these off is with some sweats and a “don’t care” type of attitude.

Recommendation: The Sugar Sliders from Allbirds provide total comfort while still offering everything you need from a pair of slides. Oh, and they’re literally made from sustainably sourced sugarcane which hopefully sweetens the deal even more.

Keen Newport Sandal

Why they’re great: Fisherman sandals are rugged and durable, as they’re meant to be worn while fishing. They typically have a closed-toe design and feature grippy rubber outsoles to prevent slippage. Since they’re built to withstand working conditions, they can also last a pretty long time.

How they feel: Fisherman sandals are best worn when fishing or participating in similar activities. They easily keep your feet comfortable and well-protected when compared to many other types of men’s sandals

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Fisherman sandals are typically not the most stylish piece of footwear, so they might look clunky when worn without a fishing rod in hand. However, they are primarily designed for work and are therefore more utilitarian than stylish.

Recommendation: The Newport Sandal from Keen is probably the most iconic fisherman sandal you can purchase. They can proudly tout it as “the world’s ugliest sandal” because they know just how loyal fans of this sandal have become over the years.

Todd Snyder Tuscan Double Strap Sandal

Why they’re great: Dress sandals are an excellent choice when you want to look spiffy but don’t feel like wearing uncomfortable dress shoes in the heat. They can pair well with plenty of formal outfits, taking you from dinner to late-night summer parties.

How they feel: Dress sandals are often made of leather and feature less padding than casual options. However, they can still offer much more comfort than a pair of narrow dress shoes.

Flaws but not dealbreakers: Of course, dress sandals can’t be worn to every formal event. You shouldn’t purchase a pair of these expecting them to be 100% interchangeable with a classic pair of dress shoes.

Recommendation: The Tuscan Double Strap Sandal from Todd Snyder is a great example of a classy dress sandal. These are made from supple Italian leather and can complement a nice dinner outfit.

wearing the hopara outdoor sandals by Hoka
this.thing.of.ours / Instagram

Why You Should Trust Us

As a writer at Fashion’s Digest, I’ve done my fair share of research into men’s attire and style trends. I’ve also been putting these principles into practice for over a decade, especially when it comes to footwear. In researching this article, I sifted through dozens of options and narrowed it down to these 9 types of sandals for men. These recommendations will hopefully inform you of what to expect when you begin searching for your brand-new pair of sandals.

wearing a pair of sugar sliders by allbirds
darmacrash / Instagram

Final Verdict

Overall, it’s hard to go wrong with a solid pair of flip-flops or slides, depending on your intended usage. Flip-flops are an excellent choice for activities involving close proximity to water. Slides are also suitable in these types of situations but can be worn in daily life too.


    • When it comes to open footwear for men, sandal is really just an umbrella term for a variety of different styles. Men most prominently rock slides when dressing casually and flip-flops around the beach or pool. However, as discussed in this article, there’s an expansive gamut of men’s sandals out there for all lifestyles. Each type of sandal has a specific name, and most of them make perfect sense when you understand what they are used for.

      • There’s a strong stigma around men wearing sandals, and this leads many men to just avoid wearing them entirely. However, this stigma is frankly dumb because sandals are great, especially when you’re around water. Let’s face it, nobody wants to wear sneakers to the beach.

        • It’s hard to say any type of men’s sandals can go with “everything” because that’s very difficult for any piece of footwear to accomplish. However, the classic flip-flop is a timeless staple and it can often be paired with most warm-weather outfits. Slides are another extremely popular choice when you want something to slip on while still being super comfortable.

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