Doctors and etiquette experts constantly flog flip-flops for mistreating the feet.

But they keep pounding the pavement to your office anyway.

Now, companies are working to rehabilitate the flip-flop’s image, by creating stable, supportive versions worth a try for your commute.

Here’s a look at a few pointers and brands that are like chicken soup for your soles.


PROFILE: If you can twist a flip-flop, don’t buy it, says PecheBlu (pronounced pesh-blue), whose men’s and women’s flip-flops cross the stability of an athletic shoe with the freedom of a flip-flop. They start with a hard rubber Z-Flex lug design, arch support, cushioning and padded toe straps to reduce friction. The footbeds are antimicrobial to reduce odor.

OUR TAKE: Athletic styling means these won’t work with sundresses. But they’ll serve nobly for long commutes to work and intense sightseeing or just sitting at a desk – the arch support is the best of this bunch. Combined with the wide straps and cushiony footbed, you have comfort food for the feet.

BOTTOM LINE: In tan, green, blue and pink, they’re $59.99 for women and men at


PROFILE: These made-in-the-U.S.A. flip-flops have heel and arch support and are endorsed by the American Chiropractic Association to minimize the foot, ankle and back problems associated with other flip-flops. Made of Crocs-like antimicrobial Microplast material, the contoured insole has beaded surfaces at the instep and toes.

OUR TAKE: The straps felt a bit too floppy on the “Ocean” style. But the “Flip-Flop” style proved more secure while still comfortable. We love the range of vibrant colors, especially the yellow, and appreciate that the shoes can be washed in the dishwasher or washing machine.

BOTTOM LINE: The price is right! If you have wide feet, try the “Ocean.” Otherwise choose the “Flip-Flop” style, $13.99 at or 800-537-5238. (Men’s and kids’ styles available.)

OKA b.

PROFILE: The sister line to Okabashi, OKA b.’s styling takes comfort cues from Crocs but styling cues from fashion runways. Massage beads and a cushioned footbed are crafted from antimicrobial material. Made in the U.S.A., they’re top-shelf dishwasher safe.

OUR TAKE: The rhinestone-studded copper “Savannah” pair looked dignified enough to pair with a sundress for a baby shower and comfortable enough for quick dog walks. A new favorite.

BOTTOM LINE: $30 at (A few men’s styles available.)


PROFILE: This Chicago-based company supplies its Italian-made PVC sandals with built-in drainage to upscale spas across the country – as well as to “Oprah” for use by the show’s special guests. But contoured footbeds on some styles and air holes make these a breezy respite for feet anywhere. And they’re built to last, blowout-free.

OUR TAKE: The Monte Carlo boasts sleek, square-toe styling that’s ideal for airports, hotel rooms, locker rooms and padding around at home. A flat footbed means this style is not geared toward speed-walking on your morning commute.

BOTTOM LINE: Monte Carlo is $27 at If you’d like arch support and a contoured footbed, check out the “Ibiza” style, $30. (Men’s styles also available.)


PROFILE: More than 50 interchangeable straps, all irresistibly cute, make Switchflops a flip-flop lover’s fantasy. You can buy one pair of shoes and then top them off with different Velcro straps to suit what you’re wearing.

OUR TAKE: Flipflop shoe styles include traditional flats, wedges and even a kitten heel in black, brown, tan and navy. Strap options include polka-dot grosgrain ribbon with a pearl button detail, Burberry-colored stripes with a black button, preppy pink ribbon embroidered with lobsters and many, many more.

BOTTOM LINE: Perfect for lightening your suitcase’s load this summer, the shoes are $32 to $47 and straps are $10 at

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