The History of Flip Flops
Flip-flips are a style of sandal footwear that has been worn throughout the world by people of many nations, countries, and cultures originating in various early Egyptian artworks as early as the ancient Egyptians in 1,500 B.C.
Many researchers agree that flip-flops are one of the earliest forms of footwear with paintings and other forms of artwork portraying people wearing them as their primary form of footwear. It is noted that the flip-flop became popular in the United States when soldiers began returning from World War II. Upon their return stateside, they brought with them the Japanese Zori made of rice straw.
Zori are a type of sandals from Japan that are made of straw, wood, leather, cloth or synthetic materials. Unlike their American counterparts, Zori are considered formal shoes that are worn with a kimono to Japanese rituals, ceremonies, fireworks, and celebrations. Zori are both beautiful as well as practical, making it easy to take off at the door when entering someone’s home.
The popular version of today’s flip-flop can be traced back to the Ancient Greeks. They created straps that were worn between the first and second toe. In other countries flip-flops can be found with the strap between the second and third, or third and fourth toe.
In the 1950s is when flip-flops really caught on as a fashion statement in the United States. Even today, most Americans love them because of their portability, ease of use, and comfort. Flip-flops come in all types of youthful designs and colors, which have created an industry generating over $20B annually in sales. Some flip-flops can be used to help reduce or relieve foot pain and/or assist people recovering from foot surgery.
Flip-flops quickly became popular as casual unisex footwear of children and adults. They are commonly worn in place of sneakers or loafers as the standard, everyday article of casual footwear. As they became more popular, the sandals were redesigned and changed into the bright colors and high-end styles and some people started wearing them for dressier or more formal occasions.
Did you know that the third Friday in June is National Flip Flop Day? Flip-flop day was founded by Tropical Smoothie Café. Customers who visit a participating Café on Flip-Flop Day wearing – you guessed it, flip-flops – will receive a free smoothie. Not only does Tropical Smoothie Café give its customers a free drink and the chance to air their feet, it also uses Flip-Flop Day to raise money for Camp Sunshine – a camp that offers respite and support to children with life-threatening illnesses and their families.
Flip-flops got their name because of the slapping sound the sandals make when they slap between the sole of your foot and the floor. These shoes have evolved throughout history and offer society a comfortable, stylish, but simple solution to footwear reflecting your personality whether at the beach, in locker rooms, showers, community pools, or around the home.
Today, people are wearing flip flops regardless of season or weather!