Sandal season is almost here, and that means it’s time to put the winter boots away and dust off your favorite pair of open-toed shoes. If you need a new pair of sandals, we’re here to ensure you buy a pair that will keep your feet from aching. Below, we share five tips for buying the right pair of sandals.
1. Activity Awareness – You might be eyeing up that more fashionable pair of sandals, but they may not provide your feet with much support based on what you plan to do when you don the footwear. Lightweight sandals are great for walking, closed toe sandals are preferred for simple hikes or city walking and a more durable/waterproof pair may be better for camping or rafting. Don’t just buy for looks, buy for use!
2. Quality Over Quantity – It may seem like you’re getting a good deal on your sandals, but if they aren’t high-quality, you might be back in the shoe store before you know it. Obviously nobody wants to overspend on sandals, but under spending can be just as problematic. Choose a quality and durable shoe so that your pair will last a few summers.
3. Arch Support – This tip feeds off the above point, but you want to buy a quality shoe with ample foot support. A lot of cheaply made sandals are little more than cardboard and fabric, which can put unneeded stress on your feet. If you plan on wearing your sandals pretty regularly, ensure that you buy something that supports your feet and keeps them comfortable.
4. Heel Cushioning – Heel bruises can occur if you step on a stone or a pebble without much cushioning on the heel of your foot, and a lot of readers have complained that they suffer these types of injuries while wearing sandals. Unlike athletic shoes or dress shoes, sandals don’t typically come with much padding in the heel, especially in cheap sandals. Always check the cushioning of potential sandals by pushing your thumb into the heel. If the area doesn’t give when depressed, look for a different pair.
5. Read Online Reviews – Do some research before you buy sandals. Online reviews can provide good insight into how durable or cheaply made the sandals are. Additionally, online reviews can be a great way to provide answers to the above questions. Even if you plan to buy sandals in-store, do some research online before going shopping.
Lance Silverman, MD
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