www.flojos.com, 12 ounces
When some people dream of winter, images of snow-laden trees, deep powder, and glistening icicles dance in their heads. But for others, cold weather signals that it’s time to flee south to white-sand beaches, sun-filled skies, and Mai Thais. For those days when your ski boots aren’t appropriate, we recommend Flojos Andre Slides. We love the slip-on styling that is more dignified than flip-flops, and dispenses with the inevitable rubbing of the thong strap between your toes. The egg crate-style footbed not only provides that aaahhhh comfort we love, but also delivers a massage-like feeling as you walk. We not only like the Andres for the beach, but for apres ski and snowboard wear as well. The vegan-friendly footstrap is wide, which helps keep the slides from sliding off, and it provides some additional support if you’re hiking across rough terrain to the hot tub. The sole is ribbed for traction, but because of the composition, it’s suggested you don’t leave these baking in the sun while you catch a few waves.
If you enjoy the outdoors you have probably heard of Chaco sandals and even if you don’t necessarily call yourself a “Chaconian” MyChacos is still for you. Chaco has launched a one-of-a-kind “Made In America” custom sandal program and it is amazing. Visit into www.mychacos.com and you will find four styles to choose from, and then it is a blank canvas where you can select everything from the sole pattern to the webbing designs, and even stitching color. Your selections immediately change on the sandal on your screen. Warning, you will lose hours playing with this. I created probably at least ten different designs and finally narrowed it down to three that I liked best, and still could not decide (the winner is pictured above, the runners-up down below). So I solicited the opinions of family and finally ended up selecting the more conservative design because I thought I would probably wear it with more things (yes I like to match)… I started out with the double strap with toe loop sandal then I went through every webbing option (the two straps can be different!). After that I selected the color of the heel leash, riser, buckle, buckle strap, footbed…they warn you there is more than tens of millions possibilities. There are two Vibram designs for the sole, one for wet terrain, and the other for loose terrain. Since I usually wear my Chacos at the beach and in water, I went with the wet option. MyChacos are made in Rockford, Michigan, by the ReChaco team and waiting on my creation to arrive in the mail was exciting too. When they arrived they looked just like I had seen online, and it is thrilling to know that no one else will have these! Chacos are great for anything from walking to the store to climbing on rocks through the rushing water of Dunn River Falls in Jamaica and their design and durable materials mean they’ll last a long time, too–but then if you can’t decide, you can always get more than one pair.
No shoes, no shirt, no service. But what about when you’re where flip flops and a Lei are considered acceptable attire? We admit to spending more time than our mothers would like balancing a fruity concoction in one hand and a shot glass in the other. What led us on the path of destruction? Flip flops, those care-free, devil-may-care sandals that are as at home on the beaches as, well as, the beach. Fortunately for all of us misguided fools who haven’t fled to the islands of our minds, flip flops are now de rigor wear for casual Fridays. And our pair of choice? Sole Casual Flips. The orthopedic shape mimics the natural, barefoot stride. The footbed is cork, which molds to your foot after wear. Plus it’s sustainable. In contrast to many flip flops, the Sole Casual’s have a textured rubber sole that provides grip on trails, sidewalks, and everything in between; the tread is big enough to rebuff sand and dirt. The upper is a durable, washable cotton canvas, backed by a thin foam and synthetic liner. Like all the gear in Gearzilla, you’ll thank us for our stamp of casual approval. We also like to leave a pair in the car for a comfortable drive back home after days stomping through the backcountry.