Difference Between Flip Flops and Sandals

Footwear is very important to protect our feet from extreme and varied climatic conditions like extremely hot and extremely cold conditions. They have also become a means of fashion and styling yourself better.

Many different types of Footwear have been developed to solve the problems of people from varied backgrounds of climate and weather. Two of the most popular and important summer wear footwear are Flip Flops and Sandals.

Both of them are open types of footwear and are generally lighter to carry, softer in soles, and comfortable to wear. Both of them are suitable to be worn on vacations, shops, and other casual places but not at places where you need to present yourself as formal being like churches, offices etc.

However, certain sandals are considered formal.

Flip Flops vs Sandals

The difference between Flip Flops and Sandals lies in their construction, Flip Flops are generally made of a soft and flat sole with a Y-shaped strap that are attached on the sole between the place for the big toe and the second toe to hold your feet back while Sandals are a flat or high heeled sole that has straps attached to it in different fashions, with necessarily an ankle support.

Flip Flops vs Sandals 1

Flip Flops do not have ankle support while Sandals have a strap to support the ankle at its place.


Comparison Table

Parameter of ComparisonFlip FlopsSandals
What are they?Flip Flops are flat soles attached with a Y-shaped strap between the positions of the big toe and the small toe to hold your feet back.Sandals are flat or high heeled soles over which straps and thongs are attached to firmly hold the sole along with ankle support.
LooksThey look more casual and indoor wear.They look sophisticated and can also be worn outdoor.
Ankle SupportThey do not offer ankle support.They offer ankle support with a durable strap using a buckle or velcro at the ankle
MaterialThey are made of rubber usually. But can also be made from cotton, coconut, or hemp.They can be made of leather, wood, or rubber.
AffordabilityFlip Flops are cheap because of the very low costs of production.Sandals are more expensive than Flip Flops because of the variety and sophistication required in production
UsageThey can be used while taking a shower, going on a vacation, walking on a beach. They are used while doing any activity that makes us wet.They can be used during vacations, or for going to outdoor places like shops, hotels, restaurants, etc.


What are Flip Flops?

Flip Flops are flat-soled footwear with a Y-shaped strap attached between the positions of the big toe and the second toe. Flip Flops are very popular in areas where there are very hot climatic conditions.

They can be used while any activity that makes you wet, for example, while taking a shower, walking on a beech, while swimming in a pool, etc. They are chosen for vacations because they are very soft and comfortable.

They are usually made of rubber but can be made from cotton, coconut, etc. also. When you walk in them, a flip flop sound is created, and hence, their name.

Their production is very easy and cheap, making them affordable for a wider public.

They do not provide any ankle support and look less attractive and stylish. They are mostly worn indoors.

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1 Amazon Essentials Men's Flip...
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3 Hurley Women's Kylee Flip... Hurley Women's Kylee Flip Flops
flip flops

What are Sandals?

Sandals are flat or high-heeled footwear with straps attached in varied fashion. They are also common in areas of very hot climate.

They can be used to go to casual outdoors like malls, shops, parks, etc. They can be worn on vacation and during leisure times, because besides being comfortable and soft, they are also stylish and impressive.

They can be made of leather, wood, rubber, etc. They come in variety of straps and designs, making their production costs and price higher.

They support the ankle with a strap using a buckle or velcro at the ankle. They look stylish and attractive and can be worn outdoors.

There are various types of Sandals: Wedged Sandals, Gladiator Sandals, Casual-Heeled Sandals, Dressy High-Heeled Sandals, Everyday Sandals, Regular Flats, etc. Some of them can even be used during formal events.

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1 Steve Madden Women's Kimmie... Steve Madden Women's Kimmie Wedge Sandal, Black, 9 M US
2 adidas Unisex Adissage Slides... adidas Unisex Adissage Slides Sandal, Black/White/Black, 11 US Men
3 adidas mens Adilette Comfort... adidas mens Adilette Comfort Adjustable Slide Sandal, Black/White/Grey, 7 US

Main Differences Between Flip Flops and Sandals

  1. Flip Flops are flat-soled footwear that have a Y-Shaped strap running between the big toe and the second toe for support while Sandals are flat-soled or high heeled footwear with straps and thongs in varied fashion, along with ankle support using buckle or velcro.
  2. Flip Flops look very casual and are worn indoors while Sandals look sophisticated and fashionable and are worn outdoors too.
  3. Flip Flops do not offer ankle support while Sandals do provide ankle support with straps using buckle or velcro at the ankle.
  4. Flip Flops are cheaper than Sandals because of very low costs of production. Sandals require variety and sophistication which makes their production costlier.
  5. Flip Flops can be worn during any activity that can make you feet wet while Sandals can be worn to outdoor places like shops, hotels, restaurants, etc.
Difference Between Flip Flops and Sandals


  1. https://jfootankleres.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1757-1146-6-45
  2. https://link.springer.com/content/pdf/10.1007/s11845-016-1421-y.pdf
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Last update on 2022-11-29 / Amazon Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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