In our house, summer calls for a lot of time outside. Hot days and warm nights make socks a discarded item. With all the heat and time outside there is always a fair amount of water play and sweat. So finding the right summer shoes is important for both dads and kids. Fortunately this week I’ve found a few pairs that fit our style and lifestyle.
Many people love the traditional flip flop or even crocs, but for me neither of those are preferred. I do love a nice pair of leather sandals but those aren’t great for the water or the beach (two places we like to visit as a family). I’m not saying those are terrible choices, they just aren’t my preference.
For the dads
Just this week I was made aware of a new style of Birkenstocks (one of my favorite sandal or clog options). Currently I have a fake pair of “leather” Birks that I picked up in Thailand a few years ago. They have served me fine but are not as comfortable as the real ones, plus they make a farting noise when suction is released from the sole of my foot on the footbed.
Anyway, Birkenstock has created the Arizona style sandal in what they are calling “Essentials”. These sandals are 1/3 of the price of a normal pair because they are made entirely of waterproof EVA (Ethylene-vinyl acetate – basically a rubber like material). The shape of the straps, footbed, and heel cup are identical to the regular Arizona’s. They seem to be quite popular and limited in their distribution but I’ve found them available in black, green, and navy from a select few stores.
I love the approach that Birkenstock took in making these because of its cost effectiveness and the waterproof nature. Both of those aspects make these great for all our summer activities. If Birks are your thing, like they are for our family, then these are a great choice .
For the kids
As I mentioned before a lot of people choose crocs because of their mass availability and comfort. I however fall into the camp of disliking the style and thus looked for an alternate solution. I’d love to take credit for finding this alternative but alas Lindsay (my wife) is way more in tune with finding great brands. But in doing the research for this post I realized they have some pretty rad adult styles as well.
Native Shoes has stolen my attention because of their attention to style and color story. In addition to being a great and well fitting shoe. They have a variety of styles that you can check out here. We went with the Jefferson. The five selling features they highlight on their site are the perfect examples of what make these shoes so great:
- Waterproof – as stated earlier, very important for our family (as you can see pictured above).
- Hand-Washable – the fact that they are washable makes it easy to keep them clean and cute.
- Shock Absorbent – with a hopping, jumping, running toddler this makes me happy (and probably her feet as well).
- Odor Resistant – ummm… yes please! Even at 2 there are some significant foot smell issues.
- Beast Free – this is the least important to me but is a selling point that they are vegan friendly.
We have already put our pair to some good use and they still fit great. I must mention as well the ease in which these slip on and stay on with the back lip (that isn’t a full back) is awesome and makes my life so much easier.
So whether you are in the market for some summer shoes or not, I’d suggest checking these out for the future or a good-to-know file. But ultimately, get outside, explore, and enjoy time with your family no matter what shoes you wear.