Slides have become the latest fashion accessory to have, with the general rule of thumb being to accessorise the slides with a pair of socks.
Slides have a long history in fashion, which can easily be traced back through the use of the term used to refer to the shoe. While they are regarded as slides today, due to their resurgence in mainstream fashion, slides can also be referred to as flip flops. In this regard, no one can think of slides existing in silos outside of its predecessors.
Sandals versus flip flops:
One of the most traditional pairs of shoes are sandals, which are most commonly worn in warmer seasons. The initial design of a sandal was that it would have a flat sole with straps added on top, in order to secure the foot. In the years that followed, the sandal received multiple interpretations as the straps became Velcro straps for easy access, and took on a more adventure-based shoe with its utilitarian designs.
Similarly, the sandal dates back to 4 000 BC in Egypt. However, back then the sandal had multiple straps. The flip flop traditionally has one y-shaped strap which connects to either side and the front of the sole. The strap fits between the big toe and the long toe. These, unlike the sandals which were designed to stay secure on the foot, are designed for easy access in and out of the shoe.
Origins of the original slide:
So, therefore, a slide is the median between the sandal and flip flops, more so with the design of the shoe. It took the best design aspects of sandals and fused them with the best design aspects of flip flops. This is as slides either have a strap or multiple straps running across the front of the foot, but do not have a back strap to secure the shoe. Moreover, a slide is never designed with the y-shape strap.
That being said, what it did incorporate was the comfort of the flip flop. This is as sandals can be made from uncomfortable material like wood or straps which will cut or chafe the foot. Flip flops were designed using plastic material or malleable synthetic material to ensure comfort as the shoe is thought of as a version of a slipper or house shoes you can also wear outside. While earlier versions of slides did not adhere to this rule, the reinterpretation of slides does.
Origins and the popularity of the contemporary slide:
Arguably due to the pandemic and remote work, the lines between professional and casualwear have been blurred. Between 2020 and 2021, slides have not only been incorporated into everyday clothing items, but are now also considered fashion items. The phenomenon has been seen through slides which have been showcased during the most prestigious fashion weeks of the past two years, including with luxury brands like Gucci.
Gucci slides are one of the most recognisable slides currently. This is as one of the most popular Gucci slides are the men’s Web Rubber Slides. The classic design is described by the brand as, “A distinctive House code, the green and red Web is reimagined in a pop inspired take on this flat sandal, a slip-on design crafted from black rubber.”
How to wear contemporary slides:
Due to the distinct use of the green and red band with the Gucci logo, styling the slides might be hard for some men. However, the rule of thumb when thinking about how to dress up your slides is to think what they are most synonymous with. A good pair of comfortable socks would be the answer. Although, is pairing slides with socks not a no-no, you may ask? The answer is no, not anymore.
As previously highlighted, the pandemic blurred the line between formal and casualwear. Therefore, with the resurgence of slides, they should be paired with socks like a white pair of Nike socks, for instance, or the Adidas white socks. However, for men who are more attuned with their style and are fashion aficionados, they can opt to play with the colour of their socks to match the colour inspired the slide. However, if the aim is comfort and not fashion, then you can also wear the slides without socks and let your feet free.