Meet My New Flip Flops

As a health editor, I feel conflicted about wearing flip flops. I know they’re bad for me—I’ve heard podiatrists say that they can be as harmful as 4″ heels—but when the warm weather arrives, I can’t resist. Surely you can relate.

But now maybe I don’t have to resist. I’m wearing a new-to-me brand, called Okabashi, and they are so comfortable. First of all, even in the midst of our little heatwave here in NYC, they haven’t caused any new-shoe or heat-induced blisters. Second, they offer good arch support, unlike the other kinds I wear. Third, they grip my feet so that I don’t almost walk out of them with every step, and they grip the ground so that I don’t fall on my butt like I did in the lobby of my office building one night a few weeks ago.

Hoping they weren’t too good to be true, I checked with Hal Goolman, D.P.M., a podiatrist at Weeks Medical Center in Lancaster, New Hampshire. He liked what he saw, particularly the fact that the shoe has a deep heel cup and good arch support. He points out that you generally want to avoid flip flops if you’ve certain foot conditions, like plantar fasciitis, which leads to heel pain. But if you’re determined to wear them, try a model with a bit of a raised heel because that takes some of the tension off the plantar fascia.

Other reasons I’m flipping over these flops: They’re easy to clean (you can even throw ‘em in the dishwasher), they’re made in the U.S., and they’re inexpensive. The pair I’m sporting are $15.

Okabashi boasts having sold more than 30 million pairs. Anyone else out there a convert?

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  1. by Berit Thorkelson

    On June 6, 2011 at 5:14 pm

    Kara, I checked these out for a story a few years back, for an article on summer travel gear, & I’m with you. Loved how they are supportive & inexpensive & actually pretty decent-looking too.

  2. by Sam | Baby Names

    On June 7, 2011 at 2:57 am

    I’m not so sure they are as bad as the doctors say. This kind of logic gets turned on its head every 20 years. Just recently, there was the explosion in barefoot running and the notion that the super high-tech soles in sneakers actually make us run the wrong way.

    I love my flips and wear them as much as possible.

  3. by Kara Corridan

    On June 7, 2011 at 9:42 am

    Berit, their comfort enhanced their beauty in my eyes!

    Sam, good point re: barefoot running. I can see how some flip flops (and flats) really aren’t doing us any favors, though, especially the ones with the super-thin soles.

  4. by Brenda

    On June 9, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    I LOVE my Okabashis! I have seven pairs of the flip flops (a friend and I split their Christmas special of 12 pair for $100), a pair of Oka B flip flops and a couple other pairs of Okabashis. They are comfy, good on my feet and so many great colors. I don’t know how I’ll ever wear them out, but if I do, they’re recyclable, too!

  5. by WKB

    On June 9, 2011 at 1:54 pm

    They are aso recycled and recyclable! I mailed my old pair back to the company and they emailed me a coupon for my next pair.

  6. by Laura Z

    On June 9, 2011 at 2:02 pm

    I stumbled on Okabashi sandals a few years ago. I hate the feel of a thong between my toes, so I love that they make slip-on styles. Since they’re all one piece, they don’t fall apart. And from eye level, they look like leather. I wouldn’t wear them to a formal event, but they’re dressy enough to wear with a sundress when having dinner at a resort. AND they’re guaranteed for two years. Unbelievable value!

  7. by ansley

    On June 9, 2011 at 3:37 pm

    Okabashi flip flops are the GREATEST!!!!!!!!!! My family has at least 20 pairs. LOVE THEM LOVE THEM LOVE THEM

  8. by Chris

    On June 10, 2011 at 6:15 pm

    In addition to having these in at least six colors, I have two pairs with flowers on top. LOVE THEM! I have several foot issues, and I wear these all the time. The arches are terrific, and the thong even helps make my bunion feel better.

  9. by Desiree

    On June 14, 2011 at 4:00 pm

    I have been wearing Okabashi flip flops for years. Love, love, love them!! Great arch support, massaging insole, Anti-Microbial, endorsed by the American Chirpratic Association, AND they are affordable. Also love that I can throw them in the dishwasher.

  10. by Desiree

    On June 14, 2011 at 4:00 pm

    I have been wearing Okabashi flip flops for years. Love, love, love them!! Great arch support, massaging insole, Anti-Microbial, endorsed by the American Chirpratic Association, AND they are affordable. Also love that I can throw them in the dishwasher.

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