Shoes hold no weight in a quarantined world. Stuck inside, bare feet and socks reign supreme. As summer approaches and my skin turns pasty white from too many days indoors, it’s time to venture outside responsibly. Be it for a climb to the rooftop, a sunny walk to the grocery store or an ambitious trip to the backyard, footwear is about to make a return to my life.
But I won’t be muddying my white Converse or wearing down my leather Doc Martens. Why ruin good shoes if no one is there to see them at their finest? It’s time I invest in a summer shoe, quarantine-style. Turns out there’s a whole array of soft slides and comfortable Crocs to get me through quarantine.
Your mom’s house shoes are trendy, and Uggs are leading the soft-shoe resurrection.
Sure, you’ll find cheap, cozy slippers at Costco. Now that you’re spending all day at home, why not invest in a pair of comfy shoes that don’t make you look even more depressed? RockDove’s memory-foam slippers are an Amazon favorite, while Glerups’ Model A Wool Slipper is minimalist cool.
Then there’s Uggs, the 2000s celebrity paparazzi shoe. They’re back, with a variety of slippers and boots that offer the comfort you expect in fresher styles than what Paris Hilton wore a decade ago.
What to actually buy: UGG X Stampd Tasman
Slides Into Style
If you played basketball in high school, chances are you probably already own Nike slides. The same goes for soccer players and Adidas or Under Armour and football bros. Instead of reliving your heyday, upgrade to a leisure slide fit for your work Zoom call. Vans offers its checkerboard sneakers as slides, while Gucci has a dope striped red-and-black pair.
What to actually buy: Hunter Boots Original Adjustable Slides
Well-cushioned, velcro-strapped sandals are great for looking like you know your way around Joshua Tree. Of the two leading brands, Tevas are for hipster college students who go to UC San Diego, and Chacos are for retirees.
Recently, though, brands like Nike entered the sports sandals market. Nike’s Canyons are the Frankenstein of summer shoes. They have the cushioned sole of a basketball shoe, the velcro back of Tevas and the open-toed freedom of slides. Great for hiking Runyon Canyon. Not so necessary for leaving your bedroom for the first time in a week.
What to actually buy: Suicoke DEPA-CAB
Crocs Aren’t Clogs
These rubber water shoes aren’t for your 5-year-old niece anymore. Crocs are trendy, available in flip-flops, slides, clogs, slip-ons and sneakers. Somehow they evaded going down with disgraced wearer Mario Batali after his numerous allegations of sexual misconduct.
Fortunately, we have a seemingly good guy in Hollywood who wears the slip-ons. If Shia LaBeouf wears Crocs and Shia LaBeouf is hot, then Crocs are hot.
What to actually buy: Classic Clogs White
The best shoes I’ve ever owned are a pair of Birkenstocks purchased in 2011. These close-toed shoes with a cork sole molded to my feet over the years, making them more comfortable than literally any other shoe. They’re like a walking foam mattress on my feet.
Seriously, do some soul searching and your soles a service by snagging a pair of Birkenstocks. Even Kanye West approves.
What to actually buy: Birkenstock Arizona Leather Antique Cognac
The truth is, socks hold the greatest value in foot care. For runners, ill-fitting and cotton socks can cause blisters. Dave Zimmer, owner of Fleet Feet Sports in Chicago, told Runner’s World we should all invest in acrylic or polyester socks to wear around the house. They wick moisture away from the surface of the skin, while the typical cotton sock absorbs water. Put simply, you can avoid “COVID toes” by never going outside — and treat your feet to some high-quality socks.
What to actually buy: Carhartt Force Performance Quarter Sock