Okay – how do we feel about socks with sandals?

Let’s face it! Pairing socks with sandals looks simply weird. But this odd look is what seems to be in vogue now.

Although this look is commonly associated with dorky dads and tourists, this fashion faux pas seems to quickly make its way up to today’s cool fashion trends. Celebrities like Rihanna, Kendall Jenner, Kanye West and Justin Bieber have been spotted rocking the thong sandal sock look, proving that the combo can be as cool outdoors as indoors. Even popular luxury footwear brands like Fendi and Gucci have signalled that the old-style faux pas is back and even better.

For many of us, the sock-sandal combo, like slippers and sweatpants, is reserved for a quick mailbox or store run or to take the trash out. But this combo is being spotted in public places, gradually becoming everyone’s favourite, especially in the summer.

We know what you’re thinking right now. Should you wear socks with sandals? It’s a debate that’s as old as time, and after much internal deliberation, we agree that it’s a trend to try. Yes, this fashion trend is a major contradiction since sandals are meant to keep your feet cool while thongs socks keep them warm. But you can pull off the sock-sandal look with, of course, a few caveats. Let’s dig into the history of socks and sandals and how you can pull off this new “cool” look, whether you’ve tried it or want to learn more.

The History of Socks and Sandals

The socks and sandals combo is as old as time and only just recently made its way to the mainstream. People have been happily wearing socks and sandals together since ancient Roman times. Even in modern times, the sock-sandal combo is widely acceptable in professional settings like India and China. Not combining socks and sandals in these places might be considered offensive.

People often spotted this pairing in German tourists wearing socks with their Birkenstocks. Sandals are the traditional footwear in many Asian cultures, and combining them with socks is a common practice.

So how do you pull off the sock-sandal combo?

The first trick to pulling off this look is understanding that not all socks and not all sandals go together. An idea on how to pair your socks and sandals will ultimately prevent you from looking like a clown.

  1. The number one rule is ensuring that your socks are clean and without holes. If you’re going for a stylish look, dirty and holey socks instantly kill the vibe.
  1. Next, you’ll want to pair your clean socks with the right sandal. The ideal sandals to wear with socks are the famous leather Birkenstocks. Also, slide-on shoes like crocs sandals and sporty slides by Adidas and Nike are suitable for wearing socks. 

However, you will want to avoid pairing your socks with thong-style flip-flops or sandals between your toes. It doesn’t look great and can get very uncomfortable. 

  1. Wear contrasting or complementary colours with your sandals.

Avoid wearing similar colours of socks with your sandals. You wouldn’t want to look like a clown, wearing red from head to toe. Instead, wear complementary colours of socks with your sandals. For example, if you’re wearing grey socks, you’ll want to pair them with beige-to-brown shade sandals. It allows you to achieve some colour coordination between your socks and sandals. Also, black socks are good when your sandals have a black sole.

  1. Don’t pair patterned socks with a patterned outfit. 

If you wear a patterned outfit with sandals and want to pair them with socks, go with plain socks.

Conclusively, the socks and sandals combo has been a significant fashion faux pas for many years, but it seems to be becoming more socially acceptable now.

Still unsure whether to wear socks and sandals or not? The answer is entirely dependent on your personal preferences. You should go for it if you believe you can pull it off. After all, that seems to be the trend among celebrities like Justin Bieber and David Beckham.

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