Best For Walking: Chaco Z/1 Classics
Why We Like Them: With a supportive podiatrist-backed footbed and straps that secure every part of your foot and are also entirely adjustable, Chaco’s Z/1 Classics is the ideal sandal to support your feet walking distances.
It’s Worth Noting: The sporty style is very casual and the criss-crossing straps can lead to awkward tan lines if you aren’t diligent with your sunscreen.
Both our experts agree sandals are not a good idea if you’re walking a long distance, like when you travel. But if you’re looking for the best comfortable sandal for walking around town, we love Chaco Z/1 Classics.
The classic outdoor shoe is crafted to be dependable and comfortable on long treks. The brand’s foray into trendy colorways and cool partnerships with brands like Outdoor Afro has made the adventure shoe an all-the-time shoe.
For starters, it has straps holding down every part of your foot, including a heel strap to support and keep your foot in place. The straps are all one long piece of jacquard webbing, so you can adjust the tension on each section to fit your specific foot width and height, then tighten the sandal overall with the plastic buckle. The webbing straps are also breathable, so they don’t rub or cause blisters.
Best Budget Sandals: Birkenstock Gizeh Eva Sandals
Why We Like Them: These shoes come from a trusted brand, have nearly every podiatrist-backed feature, including strap support, arch support, and a deep heel cup and run under $50.
It’s Worth Noting: Due to the full EVA construction, you might find it harder to find traction in these Birkenstocks compared to the leather-cork-EVA construction on most of their other sandals.
Considering Birkenstock’s reputation for support and shock absorption, it’s no surprise they made our list twice. The Gizeh EVA Sandals are Dr. Parthasarathy’s favorite from the brand, and they are a fraction of the cost of most Birkenstocks.
The Gizeh EVA Sandals have a thick, thong-style strap with an additional midfoot strap to support the top of your feet. Then, they have an EVA footbed to provide arch and a deep heel cup, and traction on the outsole, which is sometimes a problem in slippery EVA shoes. That EVA foam construction also keeps weight and heat down.
Best Dress Sandal: Jennifer Tattanelli Rate Platform Sandals
Why We Like Them: One of Dr. Levine’s favorite sandals, these have straps across the forefoot and ankle, footbed support, and they look perfectly at home at a summer soirÃ©e.
It’s Worth Noting: While cushioning, the insole doesn’t have a ton of support for weak or high arches.
These Jennifer Tattanelli dress sandals don’t come cheap, but supportive sandals that blend in seamlessly at a wedding or garden party are an item you’ll use for years to come. What’s more, all Jennifer Tattanelli shoes are handmade in Florence under the unique craftsmanship of local leather stylists, so they’re bound to last longer than cheaper shoes.
The platform style is one of Dr. Levin’s favorite options for sandals, as the 1.7-inch wedge heel design takes the pressure off your tendons while providing stability you don’t find in other dress-shoe designs like heels. They have braided yarn straps that cover the entire forefoot and offer adjustable ankle support to further stability. These shoes are also leather lined for durability and comfort.
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Materials That Stands Out: Birkenstock Ankle Strap Sandals
Just like all BIRKENSTOCK sandals for women, men and kids, the sandals with backstraps are made with premium materials that are free of harmful substances and suitable for the most sensitive skin. The legendary cork-latex footbed is lined with soft suede that nestles up against your foot and adjusts to its unique contour. The open-pored surface is extremely breathable and allows your feet to stay comfortable and dry even during more strenuous activities. The outsole consists of highly flexible EVA that evens out irregularities in the floor, so your step is softly cushioned no matter what ground youre walking on. What is more, all upper materials are extremely hard-wearing and have stood the test of time. This means that you can enjoy your favorite pair of ankle strap sandals for many years to come.
The BIRKENSTOCK ankle strap sandals know how to seamlessly meld style and functionality. Step into the signature BIRKENSTOCK contoured footbed and experience true comfort all day long. Each construction detail caters to a specific part of your foot, making you feel like youre standing in sand even after a long day of sightseeing or running errands.
What To Look For In Sandals For Arch Support
When purchasing shoes its important to consider your feet size and your everyday activities before you buy. If you have wide feet, make sure you pick out a pair that can accommodate wide widths. After all, a foot needs space to splay, Cutri said. If you’re walking 10 miles around Europe your feet will require different support than running after your kids at the playground. Either way, Cutri says one thing holds true: flip-flops are not going to provide you with enough support.
You can also examine the sole a little bit closer. When DeGirolamo evaluates shoes with patients, she first grabs the sole and tries to fold it in half. If you can fold it up or curl it up and bend it in half, its technically just covering your foot, she said. Its not supporting it.
DeGirolamo recommends shoppers look at the American Podiatric Medical Associations seal of approval program. This is about as close to getting a shoe handpicked by a podiatrist as you can get. If youre ready to get the footbed support you need for all your summer walks, we sourced expert-recommended sandals from Hoka, Amazon, Keen, and more. Youll find popular brands like Birkenstock and Crocs, along with a few others.
All products featured on SELF are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
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Best For Summer Travels: Teva Verra
Why We Like Them: With arch support, added shock absorption in the heel, and quick-dry material on its many straps, this shoe properly supports your feet whether you’re hiking, in the water, or on other long summer adventures.
It’s Worth Noting: The rugged design isn’t ideal if you need comfortable summer sandals to take you from day-to-night on your next getaway.
Summer adventures mean hiking, river soaks, and long treks to find a cold beverage. That means you need a shoe that can handle a lot of different terrains, different weather patterns, and long miles.Teva is one of the original adventure shoe companies, and its Verra is a single bullet to take on every adventure.
The podiatrist-approved EVA foam midsole is contoured to provide high arch support and has a specific shock-absorbing pad in the heel. The outsole has good, reliable traction to handle different types of terrain, from asphalt streets to rocky mountain sides.
We also love these Tevas because of their straps: Not only do we have straps from every angle, including cupping the heel and ankle, so your foot is better kept in place with every stride, but the straps are also quick-dry and breathable, so it won’t give you blisters if you have to tromp through a river or get your feet wet in the ocean. They’re also made from recycled materials and infused with MicrobanÂ® zinc-based protection, which prevents the growth of bacteria, mold, and mildew.
Best For Athletes: Hoka Ora Recovery Slide
Why We Like Them: With the APMA Seal of Acceptance, these sandals are ridiculously comfortable for tired feet with a plush midsole, Hoka’s signature rocker geometry to glide you through every step, and a lightweight feel thanks to the EVA foam construction.
It’s Worth Noting: Since these are a slide, they don’t have an ankle or heel strap for added stability.
An athlete loves nothing more than taking off cleats or sprinting shoes and sliding their overworked feet into a pair of comfy slides. Hokaâa running shoe brand so comfortable it has a near cult-like followingâtakes that experience and makes it better.
Hoka is beloved for its unique oversized, plush footbed and rocker design that assists a runner’s natural gait cycle to help you roll off each step easier. The Recovery Slide has both, so your feet feel like they’re walking on pillows. The plush footbed is a true treat for sore feet.
The Ora Recovery Slides are made with EVA foam, so they’re incredibly lightweight and have arch and heel support. The forefoot strap will keep all of your toes and tendons strapped down, and it’s designed with ventilation to prevent your feet from getting hot, sticky, and blistered.
Lastly, this shoe even has The American Podiatric Medical Association Seal of Acceptance which confirms this product is beneficial for foot health.
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Birkenstock Arizona Sandals For Women
One of the brand’s most iconic pieces of footwear and a consistent bestseller, Birkenstock’s Arizona sandals were first introduced in 1973. The design has lasted through the decades thanks to its classic construction and relaxed style, but it’s the incredible comfort that really makes them stand out. The contoured cork footbeds adapt to your feet with wear, providing support with every step. Each pair is still made in the company’s native Germany, with respect for health and the environment at its core.
Best Stylish Sandals: Naot Kayla
Why We Like Them: These APMA-backed low wedges combine function and style with multiple straps, a contoured footbed for support, and 19 colorways to choose from to match your style.
It’s Worth Noting: The straps on this attractive sandal aren’t adjustable, except the velcro strap that crosses the front of your foot.
These sandals have it all: Multiple straps to lock your foot down, including a heel strap for added stability an anatomic cork and latex footbed for stability and the ability to mold to your foot shape a 1.5-inch heel, which is within our podiatrist-recommended range for pressure relief and an EVA sole for shock absorption. With all these features, it’s no surprise it also has the APMA Seal of Acceptance that it’s a reliable, health-supporting shoe.
To top all that comfort off, it’s also stylish. The suede-lined straps and slight wedge give this sandal an elevated look that would fit in at any summer party, and its classic, simple design means it’ll never go out of style. Lastly, it comes in 19 colorways, so it’s bound to fit your wardrobe.
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Best For Plantar Fasciitis: Oofos Oolala Sandal
Why We Like Them: These sandals utilize OOFOS’ proprietary shock-absorbing foam footbed and a supportive footbed and slight heel to take the pressure off your plantar fascia.
It’s Worth Noting: Due to their flip-flop style, your toes might grip the footbed as you walk.
Dr. Parthasarathy calls late August and September “plantar fasciitis season,” since that’s when she sees a flood of patients coming in with heel pain. Plantar fasciitis is a fairly common but quite painful condition wherein the ligament that runs from your toes to your heel tightens, often because it has been working overtime in unsupportive shoes.The best way to help plantar fasciitis is to wear supportive shoes pretty much anytime your foot touches the floor, and for that, we love OOFOS’ OOlala Sandal.
OOFOS is a unique company that has a proprietary foam footbed that absorbs more impact than other shoes and a proprietary footbed designed to reduce the stress on your joints. The OOlala sandal has the ease of a slide-on flip flopâwhich increases the chances you’ll wear it around the house and outsideâbut with the slight heel that is great not just for sandals but for plantar fasciitis pressure relief, too.
They’re also machine washable and designed to minimize odor, so you really can wear them anywhere and everywhere. And best yet: OOFOS shoes come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Why Do You Need Arch Support
You might not know it, but what you wear on your feet matters. At Dr. Amy DeGirolamos Miami podiatry practice, roughly 75% of patients who come in with foot pain just need better shoes. Sometimes thats my entire treatment plan, she says. Before we get all crazy with medical studies and diagnostic tests, why dont we try wearing good shoes with arch support and have you come back in a month?
Physical therapist Dr. Nick Cutri, founder of MOTI Physiotherapy in Los Angeles, often evaluates shoes for his clients. He tends to get asked some obvious questions, like when can I get back into high heels after an ankle sprain. The answer is preferably never, he said.
When it comes to arch support, the question isnt whether its important, but whether its important for you, experts say. If you have high arches, youre going to want more support, Cutri says. But if you have low arches, its better not to change the ground beneath too much. The key is flexible support and something thats shock-absorbing. Is it going to move with them or is it just going to hold them in an arched position? Cutri said. The arch of the foot is meant to be flexible. If we have something thats too rigid, it prevents that.
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Functional And Feminine: The Backstrap
All BIRKENSTOCK clogs and sandals for women feature the legendary BIRKENSTOCK footbed that cradles your foot and provides maximum comfort while you go about your busy day. Active women who need extra support during hectic movement scenarios, opt for sandals with practical backstraps that gently wrap around heels or ankles. Backstraps do not only keep your sandals in place, they also add a playful and feminine touch to your summer wardrobe. Thanks to the signature metal pin buckle, each strap can be individually adjusted to create a comfy custom-fit. Whether you prefer models with elegant slender straps like Daloa or Marillia or timeless ankle strap sandals with wide soft leather straps like Tulum or Milano the BIRKENSTOCK collection will meet all your summer footwear needs.
Mens Sandals With Backstraps
Discover your favorite BIRKENSTOCK models with an additional backstrap for extra grip and support. Functional, robust and ultimate comfort in all situations mens backstrap sandals that last.Timeless design meets ultimate comfort: Two strap sandals from BIRKENSTOCKBIRKENSTOCK mens sandals with backstrapsclogsA shoe that fits: Mens backstrap sandalsBIRKENSTOCK mens backstrap sandals Tradition and craftsmanshipboysMens sandals with backstraps: For extra grip and securityMilanoKairoVersatile and timeless The BIRKENSTOCK backstrap sandals for menFind your perfect BIRKENSTOCK backstrap sandalsmens sandals
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Womens Ankle Strap Sandals
When the temperatures rise on the thermometer and spring turns into summer, its time for a new pair of sandals that go with your favorite jeans and floral dresses. The BIRKENSTOCK strap sandal collection offers ankle strap sandals that combine feminine designs with high-quality materials and an anatomically shaped footbed that promotes your health and wellbeing with every step you take. No matter if youre running errands, going to a party or discovering a new city on your vacation the BIRKENSTOCK sandals with ankle straps are perfect for busy women on the go who value a secure step and dont want to sacrifice comfort over style.
Birenstock Sandals With Ankle Straps: Yara
The BIRKENSTOCK backstrap sandal Yara doesnt only project an elegant vibe, it also boasts with comfort and true functionality. The curvy narrow strap gently wraps around the ankle and holds the sandal in place even when the road gets rocky. The stylish model with the integrated cork-latex footbed is available in a variety of attractive shades and upper materials. Women who appreciate the feel of true leather on their skin, enjoy the oiled leather version of the ankle strap sandals. The natural material can be recognized by its untreated surface giving the strap sandals a more robust and bohemian look. Leather alternatives like breathable Birkibuc or Birko-Flor are lined with a soft layer of fleece that prevents rubbing and promotes comfort.
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Best For High Arches: Aetrex Jillian Braided Quarter Strap
Why We Like Them: Aetrex is a trusted and tech-advanced footwear brand that offers a unique footbed to stabilize high arches, relieve pain, and support the other structures of your footâall in a stylish package.
It’s Worth Noting: The leather straps and decorative flourishes are better for city walking than for more adventurous endeavors.
As one of the leading orthotics and footwear brands, Aetrex brings a depth of technology to its sandals. With an option for every foot issue, including plantar fasciitis and bunions, we particularly like these stylish sandals to support high arches.
When you have higher arches, it means less of your foot is actually touching the shoe when you walk, so there’s less shock absorption. And, according to our experts, shoes with improper support can throw off your biomechanics and leave your feet tired, sore, and stiff. The Aetrex Jillian sandals have proprietary arch support designed to stabilize higher-than-average arches and relieve arch pain. They have a memory foam footbed for cushioning and support, including a Met Bar Pod to alleviate discomfort in the ball of your foot and a padded heel. The heel height on these sandals is just over 1 inch, as our podiatrists recommend, and the adjustable straps make these sandals work for narrow, wide, or regular feet.
And with a timeless design and 16 colorways to choose from, these sandals will go with almost any outfit.
Strap Sandals For Your Best Summer Look
The versatile BIRKENSTOCK ankle strap sandals can easily be dressed up or down, depending on your personal style and mood. Pair feminine models like Lola with light blouses, flowy skirts or elegant summer dresses. The attractive wedge sandal Lana even comes in festive shades like metallic light copper and silver, making them the ideal companion for special occasions and glamorous moments. The stable wedge heel and the anatomically shaped cork-latex footbed provide unparalleled comfort and support even after extensive walking or hours on the dance floor. Sportier BIRKENSTOCK sandals with backstraps like Rio or Milano are ideal for achieving a casual yet sophisticated look. Throw on your favorite pair of raw denim jeans and a white t-shirt and you are ready to take on the day.
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