During the summer, the sandal options you can wear are limitless. However, with such a wide selection at your disposal, it can be hard to tell one sandal type from another. A new trend that many footwear lovers are thankful for is the flatform sandal. If you take a keen look down the runways of famous designers, you will likely see a few variations of this type of sandal paired with fancy fabrics and beautiful silhouettes. Read on for an in-depth look at the flatform sandal to help you determine if it worth your consideration.
What are flatform sandals? Flatform sandals are a type of sandal that is quite similar to the platform sandal, but unlike the latter, they feature a uniform height across the sole. In other words, they have a platform that runs across the entire foot.
As a result, it gives you an even lift and adds a bit of a retro twist to an outfit – they can be paired with flirty skirts, cheeky rompers, summer dresses, cool shorts, and even elegant jumpsuits. When selecting flatform sandals, one of the factors to consider is the stability that they offer. The straps featured in a flatform sandal play a huge role in the stability that they offer, so you will want a pair that has secure straps to keep your foot securely in place. The traction provided is another significant consideration that will ensure you can walk more comfortably on smooth and slippery surfaces. Comfort is another important factor to keep in mind. To ensure this, go for the right size flatform sandals that have a well-cushioned footbed.
While stilettos are still very popular, flats have taken more of a center stage in recent years, especially with the resurgence of flatforms. These style of sandals are a quirky combination of platforms and slides. One of the most impressive things about the flatform sandal is its ability to give you as much height as high heels without being as painful.
How to style your flatform sandals
Due to their versatility, there are many ways you can style a flatform sandal. Here are some few ideas you can use to your advantage.
For the ultimate 70s summer look, pair a short skater skirt and flatform sandals. If you want the sandals to stand out, opt to wear brightly colored ones and keep the color of the rest of your outfit more toned down. A flouncy pleated skirt will go beautifully with these sandals to achieve a more reserved yet stylish look.
2. Pants and jeans
Flatform sandals work well with wide-leg pants such as culotte pants. These pants can be paired with blouses, t-shirts, and shirts, or if you are a bit bolder with your fashion choices, try them with crop tops. When choosing flatform sandals, go for embellished varieties to add a summer feel to your look. Boyfriend jeans and mom jeans are the most suitable denim styles to pair with flatform sandals.
Maxi and midi dresses are a great way to style your flatform sandals especially if the platform heel is on the higher side to help you elevate an otherwise conservative outfit. You can either go for a bold colored dress or sandal to help your look stand out.
Shorts are perfect for a warm sunny day, and even more so if they are paired with flatform sandals. A pair of shorts worn with a pastel or white blouse topped off with these sandals make for a great summer look. If you have an edgier fashion sense, go for leather shorts or black silk shorts with brightly colored flatform sandals.
Considerations when selecting flatform sandals
With so many designs of flatform sandals to choose from, you might want to have criteria that you can base your selection on.
Stability is a crucial aspect to consider when choosing flatform sandals as it plays a huge role in how comfortable you will be in them. Lack of stability will make the sandals very hard on your feet and hinder your movements. This puts you at a higher risk of injuries as you will be more susceptible to slipping and falling.
One factor that determines how stable flatform sandals will be is the straps. The strap is a feature that is meant to keep the foot in place and prevent it from sliding out of place. When it comes to the strap width, the wider the better as more surface area is covered. They should be adequately snug, but if they are too tight, there will be too much friction which will lead to skin irritation and even the development of blisters.
The footbed shape of a flatform sandal is another important determinant of how stable it will be. This is especially crucial for flatform sandals where the support provided by straps is minimal compared to other types of uppers that provide more coverage. Although a deep heel cup and good arch support are credited for ensuring better foot alignment, it is just important for the foot to stay in place. When the rises and dips featured on the footbed match the contours of your foot, it will remain in place and ensure that you are stable. However, if the footbed is completely smooth, your foot will keep slipping out of the sandal, plus there won’t be much structural support.
Traction goes hand-in-hand with stability but is more about the outsole of the flatform rather than the general construction of the sandal. Traction in footwear is what keeps you from slipping on slippery surfaces. Although traction is often prioritized for winter footwear to keep you stable on snowy streets and icy sidewalks, it is just as important for summer footwear as you might encounter smooth floors or wet pool decks.
The degree of traction in flatform sandal will be determined by the pattern featured on the outsole. When looking for flatform sandals, consider going for varieties that have grooves in the shape of exaggerated hexagons, zigzags, or triangular patterns to ensure traction.
With flatform sandals, you have much more stability and comfort as compared to thinner heels. This is because the outsole is in maximum contact with the ground, therefore ensuring a better balance. Additionally, instead of just elevating the heel, the whole foot is brought higher up as well so that your foot is not awkwardly slanted. Despite this, a platform heel that is too high is more likely to cause imbalance and can also increase the risk of spraining your ankle. A platform of about 2-3 inches in height will allow for a comfortable all-day look that is still stylish
The material used in the construction of the flatform sandal will determine both overall comfort and durability. Most flatform sandals are made from synthetic materials. This is a general term that refers to man-made fabrics such as vinyl, EVA, and patent leather. Synthetic is popular because is cheap, lightweight, and water-resistant, which is very desirable in summer footwear. However, if the quality of the synthetic material is poor, it can cause a lot of discomfort especially when the straps of the sandal rub against your skin.
Another material that is commonly used is leather. Despite being generally more expensive than synthetic, it is flexible, stretchy, and very durable. Leather is also breathable and easily molds to the shape of your foot, allowing for a more comfortable breaking in experience.
No matter how aesthetically pleasing a pair of flatform sandals is, they are not worth your money if they end up falling apart after a couple of uses. Sturdy sandals will automatically be more expensive as the materials used in their construction is of higher quality. If you intend to wear the flatforms regularly, consider investing a bit more money in them. Leather is the most reliable material in terms of durability. On the other hand, synthetic flatform sandals are riskier, especially if they feature thin straps that can snap or break easily.
Comfort is essentially determined by a combination of stability, heel elevation, and materials used in construction. Size is another factor that plays an important role when it comes to comfort. If the fit of your flatform sandals is off, you could end up suffering from blisters, foot strain, and fatigue. Before purchasing a pair online, ensure that you check the sizing chart provided, and also go through the customer reviews posted.
You will also want to consider cushioning provided in the sandals. Although flatform sandals generally don’t offer a lot of cushioning, the thickness of the platform heel makes a significant difference. When shopping for these sandals, consider going for varieties that have EVA or cork in the midsole as these varieties provide very reliable shock absorption.
Despite being tagged as part of the ugly shoe trend, it looks like flatform sandals are here to stay. They are stylish and versatile, allowing you to pair them with a variety of outfits without looking out of place. They are also more comfortable than standard heeled sandals thanks to their uniform platform design while still offering the desired elevated effect. If you intend to buy this type of sandal, you will want to consider factors such as comfort, durability, traction, and materials used in its construction to find a high-quality pair.