Online searches for ‘dad sandals’ have increased by 2800% – here’s how to actually wear them

16 August 2019

Prepare for maximum comfort.

Whoever you think your style muse is for summer, we’re here to tell you that it’s actually (or should be) a middle-aged man on his holidays.

Not in terms of what clothes you’re wearing, obviously, but regarding what to wear on your feet. This is the sort of thing fashion throws at you that elicits an initial reaction of horror, which quickly dissolves into unadulterated pleasure when you realise how incredibly comfortable and content you are while wearing the said thing. This specific thing is a pair of “ugly” or “dad” sandals, so-called because they’re – well, they’re not exactly beautiful. But they sure are comfy.

Like many trends, this is one that has always existed but has only recently been appropriated by fashion’s power players – in this case, it was Prada. Online search platform Lyst recently reported a 34 per cent increase in searches for “rubber sandals” since the beginning of March, with a search for “Prada velcro sandals” every seven minutes. That sure is a lot of velcro.


The logo sandals have been an instant hit, selling out everywhere, with only limited sizes now available. And in the past month alone, consumer shopping app LiketoKnowIt has seen online searches for ‘dad sandals’ increase by a whopping 2800 per cent.

It’s not just Prada, who are players in this trend either. The Olsen twins have created their own luxury take on this pragmatic shoe for their brand The Row, culminating in a pair of buttery soft, black leather sandals that, despite being over $950, are alarmingly desirable.

Chloe, Gucci, Balenciaga, Acne and Louboutin also all have their own take on hiking sandals, although the latter are admittedly more glitz than the others. Even Chanel has a pair, emblazoned with the famous logo. And if Chanel’s doing it…

Before you dismiss these pragmatic sandals completely, just think about Ganni’s hiking boots of last season. They went from confusing choice of shoe to one of the sell-out pieces of autumn/winter, and were – needless to say – ubiquitous on Instagram. If you haven’t already seen your Insta feed flooded with images of Prada’s sandals, you’re clearly not looking hard enough.

Scroll to see the dad sandals that are taking over:

Subscribe & Unplug

As a Fashion Quarterly subscriber you enjoy exclusive content, giveaways, invitations to VIP events, and more.

Subscribe & Unplug

As a Fashion Quarterly subscriber you enjoy exclusive content, giveaways, invitations to VIP events, and more.

Sign up to the FQ newsletter and WIN*

Get the latest fashion, beauty, and lifestyle news delivered straight to your inbox each week.

*Ts&Cs apply.

Find out more at fq.co.nz/fq-newsletter