19 Different Types of Sandals for Women

A woman sitting on the concrete steps wearing a pair of fashionable sandals.

There is no denying that sandals are a wardrobe staple for every girl out there. There is nothing not to love about this open-styled footwear. Sandal lovers remark that the ease and comfort that this type of footwear offers are unmatchable. You can slip them on and off in the blink of an eye, making the perfect shoes for times when you are in a hurry.

Sandals also make an ideal footwear choice in summers. Since heat and humidity take over the land, you can easily roam around in sandals without the fear of having sweaty feet. In summers, it is likely that you spend most of your time around pools and beaches, anyway.

By wearing regular shoes, you can run the risk of getting the shoes and socks wet, and waiting for them to dry may take hours. Wet shoes and socks are also bad for the feet, as they can promote the growth of foot fungus and foot odor. But since sandals are open-toe in design, they are a better alternative. Even if your feet or sandals get wet from say dipping your toes into the water, they’ll dry up really quickly.

Considering the wide range of functional benefits that sandals offer, one may assume them to be a recent invention. But that’s far from the truth. History shows that the ancient Greeks and Egyptians used to wear old versions of sandals which were made of leaves, twigs, or fibers.

According to an ancient Greek historian – Herodotus – sandals of papyrus were an essential part of a priest’s attire. The soles of the Greek sandals were designed from cattle skin, fastened by a multitude of straps, and were available in colored leather. Moreover, ancient Romans (men and women) used to carve their sandals with over-the-top designs.

Women’s shoes, specifically sandals, come in plenty of types; and here’s the lowdown of all the common and not-so-common types of sandals for women!

1. Flip Flops

A woman wearing a pair of cute flip flops.

Flip flops are light sandals designed with a foam sole and plastic toe to provide support to the wearer. To rock this ultimate style, go for the one made of leather. Basic flip flops come with simple elastic straps that can be worn to beaches and picnics. But if your personal style is fancier, you can get these summer sandals in woven leather straps, adorned with gems or sparkles.

These elaborate flip flops take no time to elevate your otherwise ordinary look. It is also interesting to note that these supremely comfortable items of footwear are extremely versatile. They come in a wide range of designs, patterns, and colors that make this casualwear worth the investment. Go with the one that goes well with your swimsuit or outfit. With so much flip flop variety on the market, it will be quite a challenge for you to choose just one pair.

2. Wood Sandals

Two pairs of wood sandals.

Also known as Geta in Japan, wood sandals are a modern type of sandals that are prized for their strength and durability. As it is evident from their name, these sandals are made out of wood – one of the toughest materials out there.

Similar to denim sandals, wood sandals are dust and water-resistant. They also come in a number of shapes and styles that last for a long time. If you are not a fan of this hardy material, you can go with sandals that are not completely made of wood. For example, you can consider sandals that have wooden heels or a wooden base only. The remaining part, such as their upper sole, boasts a synthetic material.

3. Leather Sandals

Pairs of women's leather sandals on display.

Although leather sandals are costlier, they are totally worth it – for so many reasons! Firstly, they possess a higher durability factor, unlike many casual flip-flops. Usually, leather footwear is lightweight and pliable. This means that it’s not just better-looking than most casual sandals, but it is also functional.

You can flaunt this winter staple in warmer months without losing the comfort, style, and aesthetic of everyday wear. Available in stunning colors, designs, and styles, leather sandals are worth every penny. As compared to men’s leather slippers, women’s slippers boast more prominent designs. Make use of light-shaded leather sandals as they appear more visually pleasing. Every leather sandal has a soft and comfy interior that will keep your feet cozy and relaxed.

4. Heels

A woman wearing gorgeous heels.

This list wouldn’t be complete without discussing every girl’s favorite – heels! From little girls to teenagers to older women, everyone likes to have a collection of killer heels. However, these sexy sandals come in many different types, making them super versatile.

Some of the classic and modern heels are discussed in detail below:

Wedge Sandals

A pair of super stylish wedges.

Not into typical heels? No worries! We have a way better substitute in store for you. Let’s hear it for wedge sandals!

Wedges are considered as an ideal alternative for traditional heels. While both of these provide an elevation of height to the wearer, the way they provide it is quite different. The difference lies in the way these sandals are designed. Wedge sandals tend to have a thick block for a heel, making them stable and hence comfortable.

Wedge sandals also usually have more cushioning, which allows the feet to be more protected. They also help support your arch, which keeps the entire foot well-balanced. Owing to the lack of comfort, you may not consider wearing sandals on a daily basis. But with wedges, you can make the most of your love for that extra height. Pick them in neutral colors like cream, beige, or white so that they can go with almost every outfit.

Peep Toes

Stylish peep toes sandals on display.

Peep toes, arguably, are the sexiest kind of heels, available in all sorts of lengths. However, the higher the heel, the more attractive the style appears. But what is exactly a peep-toe? It is the kind of women’s shoe that has a small opening at the toe-box, giving a sneak peek of the wearer’s toes.

This type of sassy footwear was all the rage at the beginning of the 20th century. But they soon lost their glory in the late 1960s. That being said, peep toes made a resurgence in the 1970s/80s until they completely fell out of fashion in the mid-1990s. In recent times, these unique styled sandals have become trendy all over again in the form of peep-toes boots, wedges, flats, etc.


A pair of lovely pink slingback sandals.

A slingback is a type of women’s footwear distinguished by an ankle strap that encircles the ankle or heel. Slingback heels offer reliability and comfort to the wearer, which is all because of the strap they encompass.

Women who want to flaunt high heels with full confidence but are afraid they may fall should consider slingbacks. Owing to their style and practicality, they make for the perfect daytime and party wear shoes.

The best part about slingbacks is that they come in a plethora of styles. If you are not into slingback heels, you can always opt for slingback pumps or wedges. Since they are also available in different heel lengths, they are favored by all kinds of women with varying preferences for heel heights.


A pair of gorgeous sequin stilettos.

Designed in 1906 by a renowned French shoe designer – Andre Perugia, stilettos are identified by the thin, long heel that they sport. Their needle-like heel makes these women’s shoes slightly intimidating. For a bolder and distinctive appeal, stilettos are a perfect choice.

Owing to their dagger-type heel, these sandals may not be every woman’s cup of tea. And for the first-timers, walking in stilettos may be no less than a feat of athletic ability. Practicing with slightly wider heels might be a good idea before deciding to buy and wear stilettos.

Many people may not know this, but stilettos give the illusion of slimmer and longer legs, a smaller foot, and greater height. If you want to achieve all of this, get a pair of trendy stilettos for yourself!

Like all high heels, stilettos have a primary disadvantage of causing an immense amount of pain and discomfort if you wear them for a really long time. They can also be impractical to wear in outdoor environments that feature mud, sand, grass, or slippery surfaces.

Block Heels

A woman wearing a pair of lovely black block heels.

Sometimes known as chunky heels, block heels are quite self-explanatory – a type of sandal with thicker heels than a stiletto. Due to its bulky heel, the sandal offers a firm and solid base, which makes it easy to walk on.

Besides providing a good foothold, these chunky heels go with almost every outfit, whether it is a sophisticated office skirt/blouse or a sexy party dress. Unlike stilettos, they are practical for outdoor environments like sandy, grassy, or rainy grounds. They won’t stick in the mud or sink into the grass. The best part is that you can easily dance with these heels on!

Strappy Sandals

A pair of stunning strappy black-and-white high heels.

As the name suggests, strappy sandals come with a lot of straps which make the overall style of heels cool and modish. While they were a popular trend of the 90s, the barely-visible heels are set to take over the fashion shoe scene of 2019. With their sleek and super skinny straps, these sandals are just the way to update your otherwise meh wardrobe.

These sandals go well with every outfit and help make the legs appear elongated. With low heels, sky-high heels, wide-apart two straps, numerous enclosed straps, nude-colored straps, dark-colored straps, bold and vibrant shades – the options are endless!

Make sure that whichever strappy style you go for, you round it off with a nice pedicure.

Kitten Heels

A pair of bold kitten heels.

Kitten heels are and will always be associated with Audrey Hepburn – the trendsetter for these cute, lovely sandals. If you are someone that totally detests super high heels, these low-key heels are just for you.

When sporting these underrated heels, you have to be careful with what you pair them up with. Teaming these classics with a wrong dress can ruin your overall look. Take note that this low-heeled style looks phenomenal when paired with skinny jeans or a pencil skirt. In other words, they are perfect for both work and play.

Silk or satin kitten heels can be your best bet as they instantly uplift casual, simple attire and even enhance an embellished dress.

Cut Out Heels

A pair of stylish purple cut out heels.

The most prominent feature of these stylish heels is that they are all cut out in impeccable floral or shape-based designs. Available in several sizes, colors, shapes, and designs, cut out heels look sexy and neat at the same time. In the past couple of years, these one-of-a-kind sandals have become increasingly popular.

And there is a stand-out reason for it – cut out in lovely designs, these heels can elevate your plain and simple look in a twinkling. For times when your feet are not manicured and need covering, you can always slip on your favorite pair of cut out heels.

5. Thong Sandals

A woman wearing a pair of white thong sandals with golden embellishments.

Also called t-straps, thongs are a fancier version of flip-flops. In most parts of the world, thongs and flip-flops are interchangeably used. Although they are simple footwear, they are equally sexy and stylish. A typical pair of thongs will have a thin to thick strap that passes from the right side of the toe to the left side. Owing to their easy-to-wear quality, they make for ideal last-minute sandals.

It is common to see most tall women avoiding heels as they may make them appear oddly tall. What other options do they have to make a style statement? According to fashion experts, thong sandals are their best bet!

Leaning toward a more casual wear option, t-strap sandals go well with short/long skirts and everyday jeans. Whether you are going to your office, a casual party, or doing some spontaneous shopping, thong sandals can come in handy. They will provide you with ease and comfort that is usually expected from footwear.

6. Gladiator Sandals

A woman wearing a pair of gladiator sandals at the beach.

A type of sandal that came about merely to fulfill the utilitarian purpose is now a symbol of high-class fashion and aesthetics. In the depiction of ancient and modern art, gladiator sandals are usually flaunted by the gods. In ancient Rome, people belonging to the upper-class used to wear this type of sandal. This made it an apparent marker of status. Moreover, many ancient Romans used to wear this safe and durable footwear to battle.

At that time, gladiator sandals were made from strong and sturdy leather. The soles of gladiator sandals were made from the thickest and toughest materials to add to the sandal’s durability while the straps were made from the softer leather. Fast forward to today, and gladiator sandals come in a variety of fabrics such as denim and faux leather and are attached by leather or denim straps, cord, or braided thongs.

The question is, what are gladiator sandals? The answer is simple – they are flat sandals with one or plenty of wide straps around the ankle. If you’re looking for safe and secure footwear, gladiator sandals are the best possible option on this list.

7. Pumps

A pair of charming light-colored pumps.

Pumps are simple, classic, and oh-so-chic!

A girl’s wardrobe is incomplete without a nice pair of pumps. They go well with every kind of outfit and every type of outing. Are you heading to the office? A flat or low-heeled pair of pumps is the wisest pick. Meeting friends for lunch? Flat pumps in a bright, vibrant hue will take your look to another level.

When shopping for pumps, the best you can do is get them in a neutral shade so that they can be paired up with any kind of outfit. But if you’re looking to spice up your overall look, an exuberant pair of pumps is the way to go!

8. Platform Sandals

A white platform sandal on a purple surface.

People often confuse wedges with platform sandals due to their slight resemblance in appearance. However, these two forms of footwear are very different from each other. While both serve as a summer staple, wedges come with a raised heel in such a way that it serves as both the heel and sole. They provide the wearer a lift with a supportive footbed.

Although platform shoes also have a raised heel, the difference is in the thickness of the sole. Unlike wedges, platform sandals give a boost in the front as well as the back. For this reason, they make for a better option than wedges as they offer a high level of stability.

You can never experience discomfort or blisters when walking in platform sandals. To enhance your casual style, platform heels should be your go-to shoe choice.

9. Loafers

A woman wearing ripped jeans and a pair of trendy black loafers.

Also known as penny loafers, these classic shoes are no longer for only back-pack or uniform-wearing students. These classy sandals have resurfaced in so many breathtaking designs that will make you fall in love with loafers if you haven’t already.

These slip-on shoes are believed to be created in the 1900s when some students traveling to Scandinavia saw fishermen rocking a simpler form of moccasin-made loafer. This inspired fashion houses in North America to design shoes in a similar style.

Unlike most sandals, loafers have never found themselves in the “sexy shoe” list. Although this unique footwear lacks sassiness, it is highly fashionable nonetheless. However, styling women’s loafers are kind of tricky. You need to make sure that you choose the right outfit, or else, it will ruin your entire look. The simplest yet best way to style loaders is by teaming them up with your favorite street-style outfit. Go ahead and channel the rock n’ roll vibes.

Here is some good news – loafers can greatly complement your office dress. While it is always best to stick to the office style code, you can add your own personality by opting for a rocking pair of loafers. You don’t really have to think out of the box when styling loafers. A plain all-black or white outfit is nothing but the best excuse to sport your favorite loafers!

10. Crocs

A pair of cute pink crocs.

Crocs are perhaps the comfiest sandals that one can purchase and must be appreciated for everything they are. Let’s admit it – crocs are quite unorthodox in design, and therefore they tend to grab every beholder’s attention in the first go.

Whether you wear the most basic and simplest crocs, let’s say, the ones in white, it’s highly likely that you’re going to get a lot of attention. Don’t worry; this attention is going to be good. You might even get some compliments!

Did you know that crocs are waterproof? Hence they are great footwear for when you’re going out to the beach, lakeside, or poolside. On rainy days when you are not sure what will be safe to wear outside, choose crocs.

Since they are the flag-bearer of casual footwear, you can flaunt them with the most casual outfit – a casual tee and baggy pants or lounge/gym pajamas. They can also be paired well with a sleeveless shirt and short skirts.

11. Ballerina Flats

A pair of simple yet charming green ballerina flats.

Inspired by the shoes worn by professional ballet dancers, these shoes are the epitome of comfort and style. They are also a super cool option for a comfort-over-style look. Without letting go of your personal style, you can adapt comfort into your attire via ballerina flats.

With every passing year, ballerina flats are being upgraded in their overall style and appearance. Today, you can find a multitude of ballerina shoe-inspired flats everywhere in the market. Since they are so versatile, you can wear these flats with simple and basic workplace outfits or carry them with elegance to formal or semi-formal dinners or hangouts.

12. Boot Sandals

A pair of sexy red leather zip-up boots.

Boots with low or high heels are a current shoe trend that is too sexy not to try. While they are the hottest trend, not everyone can successfully pull off boot sandals. You need to have some fashion sense before planning to wear booties – both knee-length and ankle-length ones.

Keep in mind that ankle boots go well with long skirts and skinny jeans while knee-length boots look best with short skirts and cowboy outfits.


There is, indeed, a wide variety of women’s sandals, and each of them comes with their own unique identity and history. Well-prized for being practical, beautiful, and desirable, sandals are exactly what we thought they are – a woman’s best friend!

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