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I’d be lying if I said I was into the summer slides trend the first time it came around. When the shoes initially pervaded our lives, our stores and our Instagram feeds last summer, all I could think about was how damn impractical they were. My concerns weren’t at all aesthetic; by all means, slides were cute, low-key and just edgy enough to make any summer outfit all the more interesting. But they were slides. Surely, they’d slip off as easily as they’d slipped on. I couldn’t fathom the lived experience of wearing them everywhere. (Mules inspired a similar panic in my anxiety-prone mind.)
While I’m still not totally convinced that slides won’t slip off my sweaty summer feet every time I scurry around New York City, I’m no longer sure I care. Because they’re cute—and more importantly, they’re comfortable. Sensible shoes are the thing this year. The zeitgeist is showering us with excuses to sport them. If last year’s summer slides trend had come and gone, I could’ve stomached the thought of never giving it a go. Three-monthlong fads are tempting, but they don’t inspire too much fashion FOMO. (Sometimes, they even inspire the opposite. I was strong enough to withstand the thing that caught everyone’s eye, I can tell myself. I was rational. I was good. I was different.)
Summer slides have endured, though, and I’m not sure I can summon the strength to ignore them any longer. Every glimpse of them I get, my wherewithal wears further. Aren’t they worth a try? At least if I buy them, wear them and hate them, I can move on with my life assured that I gave them a shot. I didn’t prematurely close a door that could’ve opened my sartorial world up to new, magical possibilities.
Reader, as I’m sure you’ve guessed, the slides won this one. I fully intend to give them a shot this summer. Now, a new question looms overhead—which pair of the endlessly trendy things should I buy?
Pearls and chains and braided ropes—oh my.
Hot pink cow spots are the summer animal print I had no idea I needed.
Because the clear accessory trend continues to endure.
I mean, they’re vibrant and fuzzy. Need I really say more?
Fuzzy soles and patchwork straps does a match in heaven make.
Because the shell accessory trend has expanded far beyond jewelry.
Iridescence is always a good idea.
Black slides with enough statement-making detail to keep things feeling fresh.
Basically fuzzy slippers that are socially acceptable to wear outdoors.
The snake print trend is far from over.
Part espadrille, part slide—all cute.
Bedazzled anything gets a hard yes from me.
The perfect complement to your favorite gingham ensemble.
Black slides with just enough detail to feel current.
The perfect going-out slide.
Basically fluffy quilts for your feet.
A pop of floral sure to complement your finest floral dress.
More beads, please.
More textured than your average animal print.
Perfect for poolside wear.
A not-so-basic snake print slide? We’ll take 12.
Few things delight me more than a bedazzled buckle.
The more cow spots in your rotation, the merrier.
Statement-making from every angle.
So retro. So delightful.
Because your shoe situation deserves a little shell action too, don’t you think?
The kind of low-key go-to everyone needs in their arsenal.
It was really only a matter of time before tie-dye made its way to footwear.
A standard silhouette, rendered in a delightfully unexpected palette.
Animal print slides abound—and I’m low-key eyeing all of them.
In case you wanted a twist on the classic Birkenstock.
Flatform slides are abundant—and I’m just excited to have so many comfy going-out shoes on offer.
A nautical slide fit for days spent by the pool (and really, anywhere else).
More shell shoes, please.
Slides sure to elevate any ensemble you pair them with (in more ways than one).
A different approach to the classic animal print slide.
Slides with multiple straps are definitely on the sartorial menu, too.
Your love of tortoiseshell can officially extend into the slides-sphere.
Another classic go-to, because you deserve options.
Woven slides for the shopper who can’t pick between straw sandals and black ones.
Dr. Scholl’s—so you know they’re comfortable.
Hard to resist hot pink anything—especially when it’s rendered in such a comfy silhouette.
A slide with just enough of a wedge to warrant night-out wear.
It’s probably time for me to admit that I’m also here for the jelly sandal renaissance.
The perfect addition to your day-to-day rotation.
A low-key statement shoe sure to elevate even the lowest-maintenance of tee-and-jeans combos.
Dressy enough for date night—and like, every other night.
All kinds of comfy.
Need a last-minute pop of color? These suede slides have you covered.
Low-key, versatile and assuredly cozy—what’s not to love?
Because white go-tos are as necessary as black ones.
Green is underrated summer shade—don’t sleep on it.
Cozy enough to wear well into fall.
Is it just me or do woven shoes drip with summery appeal?
Our mission at STYLECASTER is to bring style to the people, and we only feature products we think you’ll love as much as we do. Please note that if you purchase something by clicking on a link within this story, we may receive a small commission of the sale.
A version of this story was originally published in May 2019. Updated July 2019.