Although it seems like an eternity, it was only a few seasons ago that the fashion crowd convinced us that the chunky “dad sneaker” was, in fact, cool. We’re looking at you, Balenciaga. A couple of seasons and a pandemic later, it’s evident: we are witnessing an ugly shoe apocalypse. With clogs, wedges, chunky flip-flops, and – the current “It” shoe – the humble “dad sandal” coming at us from everywhere, 2021 is undoubtedly the year of the ugly shoe, begging the question: how did we even get here?
While we are sick to the core of some of our lockdown obsessions – like loungewear – the quest for comfortable fashion has pushed the Birkenstock style, dual-strapped-and-buckled sandal to the very top of the trend charts. So much so that even luxury brands can’t help but stamp the ugly dad sandal with their covetable logos. While Birkenstocks have always maintained a niche yet loyal customer group, their sudden popularity is rooted within the changed consumer behaviors of the pandemic. In fact, Birkenstocks ranked high on Lyst‘s fourth-quarter index of both the hottest womenswear and menswear products. But one can hardly ignore Chanel‘s glamorous nudge that pushed the otherwise ordinary dad sandal all the way to the cool-kids’ block.
Speaking of the cool kids, last summer, “It” girls stomped around in the covetable Chanel dad sandal so much that it was almost impossible to get your hands on a pair. This year, the gatekeepers of coolness are flaunting the rebooted version of the dad sandal by pairing them up with their summer dresses, jeans, and even beachwear. Major brands like Gucci, Prada, Dior, and Balenciaga, among others, have already given their nod of approval to the foamy souls, velcro straps, and bulky buckles that were once considered uncool. Now combine this with the laid-back, effortless sartorial aesthetic – characterized by oversized shirts and slouchy pants – which still remains popular, and who knows how long the dad shoe trend might stay.
If you’re like us and can’t help but give in to the not-so-ugly ugly shoe trend, here’s a great way to stock up your shoe closet. We have rounded up – we can’t believe we are saying this – the coolest dad sandals of the season. Scroll down to shop.
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