Well, we've come to the beautiful time of year when flowers are starting to bloom, the lawns are greening up, and there are plenty of sunny days. For us ladies, that speaks to us of Spring fashion. I currently work as a stylist at a boutique, and whereas before style and 'outfits' were a mystery, I'm starting to embrace it.
One item we Texas women love that has stood the test of time is flip-flops. Pardon my language, and I am showing my age, but growing up we called them 'thongs'. They're the greatest invention ever, so easy to quickly slip on, lightweight, show off your latest pedicure, and come in a myriad of colors. They're perfect for the dog days of summer when you'd rather be barefooted.
Two things I've observed working in a Houston boutique: there are only about three days out of the year when flip flops can't be worn, and I think every woman must own at least one pair. So, as wonderful as they are, if you've been treated by Jim Guillory or Jack Guillory, you are now aware there are downsides to wearing this summer style as a staple shoe. I know, tragic! Now, I'm not good with biomechanics, but I think understanding the effects flip-flops can have on your feet is helpful. That's Jack Guillory's specialty, so he'll be helping us all understand the reasons why flip-flops are not the best choice, even though we love them so:
"I'll start with the good news: if you just aren't going to do much walking around in them, flip-flops will probably be okay. If for nothing more than their sheer convenience, I personally like to wear them around the house during the warmer months (all 11.5 of them) or to the beach. However, I always make a point to switch to a legitimate shoe if I plan to do any amount of walking or work. Better yet, I'll just kick them off and go barefoot for a bit if I'm at the beach or just walking around the yard. But, on hard surfaces, I just stick to the shoe.
The problem with walking in flip-flops is that they simply do not stay secured to your feet without some amount of abnormal effort from the muscles of your foot and lower leg. Basically, your toes have to grip the sandal each time you lift your foot off the ground in order to keep it from sliding around or falling off your foot. Notice the "flip-flop grip" pointed out by another foot-savvy blogger in the photo below. That may not seem like such a big deal, but after just a few hundred repetitions (which would be a very conservative number for something as seemingly minor as a trip to the grocery store) that compensation will start to fatigue the muscles of the foot and lower leg. With enough repetition and muscular fatigue, this could, and often does, begin to develop into muscle strain and injury.
The solution? Simple, and you don't have to switch to some hideous shoe or any silly gimmick. All that's needed is a heel strap to keep the flip-flop secured to your foot, eliminating the need for any compensation by your foot. With that said, heel strap or not, flip-flops still aren't the best option if you're going to spend an extensive amount of time on your feet unless they provide a considerable amount of cushion and support." - Jack
So, take heart ladies, there are some cute alternative options out there. You don't have to totally write off your beloved flip-flops. You just need a good flip-flop with a strap on the back! While there are plenty of options for women, there doesn't seem to be quite as many for men. However, a little creative DIY fix would be simple, effective and could even be applied to your current pair of flip-flops, saving you the trouble of finding a new pair. Below are some links and examples of different options you have for more "functional" and stylish flip-flops and sandals. Please feel free to drop in and visit me or contact us at Mainstream Boutique of Pearland for help browsing through our selection.