The 6 Sandal Trends I Predict Will Define Summer 2021


(Image credit: Courtesy of Staud; Courtesy of Acne Studios; Courtesy of Givenchy)

Six months ago, the S/S 21 collections wowed us with their fresh batch of shoe trends, and now that the season's deliveries have finally hit the market, the wait to wear all the new-season newness is over. While in certain parts of the country, sandal season is still wishful thinking, we're of the mind that it's never too soon to start discussing, planning, and shopping for the season ahead. This is why we've turned our attention to the biggest sandal trends to emerge from the runways.

Whether it be intricate details like toe-ring ties or throwback silhouettes like cushy padded thongs, we studied the spring collections and discovered the following six overarching sandal styles that we're predicting will make a big impact during the warmer months ahead. To see and shop each trend, keep scrolling.


(Image credit: Courtesy of Coperni; Courtesy of Jacquemus; Courtesy of Kenzo)

Who else remembers those platform flip-flops from the early 2000s? These are like the elevated version of those retro sandals with cushy soles and extra-wide straps.


(Image credit: Courtesy of Coperni)


(Image credit: Courtesy of Jacquemus)


(Image credit: Courtesy of Kenzo)

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(Image credit: Courtesy of Ulla Johnson; Courtesy of Gabriela Hearst; Courtesy of Altuzarra)

Ready to get lifted? Flatform sandals—especially those with lace-up ties and espadrille soles—are soaring into the spotlight with notable versions from Ulla Johnson and Altuzarra that will pair perfectly with all your floaty summertime frocks.


(Image credit: Courtesy of Altuzarra)


(Image credit: Courtesy of Ulla Johnson)

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(Image credit: Courtesy of Staud; Courtesy of ACNE Studios; Courtesy of Givenchy)

We spotted this trend on the S/S 2021 runways at ACNE Studios, Khaite, and plenty of others, which tells me that it's one to watch. With elements like complicated straps and asymmetrical cutouts, no one will be able to take their eyes off of these.


(Image credit: Courtesy of Sportmax)


(Image credit: Courtesy of Givenchy)


(Image credit: Courtesy of Acne Studios)

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(Image credit: Courtesy of Sea; Courtesy of Staud; Courtesy of Jason Wu)

It's confirmed: Chunky sandals are here to stay. The spring runways were littered with sporty Velcro sandals (fashion's take on elevated Tevas) with updates like colorful fabrics and whimsical embellishments.


(Image credit: Courtesy of Jason Wu)


(Image credit: Courtesy of Sea)


(Image credit: Courtesy of Staud)

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(Image credit: Courtesy of Versace; Courtesy of Dion Lee)

Exaggerated square-toe sandals were another consistent theme we noticed throughout the spring/summer collections and seeing as this trend isn't necessarily new, this your official notice that it's not time to phase out the silhouette just yet.


(Image credit: Courtesy of Versace)


(Image credit: Courtesy of Dion Lee)

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(Image credit: Courtesy of Rosetta Getty; Courtesy of Michael Kors Collection; Courtesy of Simon Miller)

How could we forget house slippers? These cozy flats are what kept us the most comfortable last year, and they’re about to serve their purpose all the way through 2021 as well with luxurious updates like faux fur and pretty pastel tones.


(Image credit: Courtesy of Rosetta Getty)


(Image credit: Courtesy of Michael Kors Collection)


(Image credit: Courtesy of Simon Miller)

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Up next, I'm a minimalist at heart and these are the five trends of 2021 I'll try first.

Senior Editor

Anna is an editor on the fashion team at Who What Wear and has been at the company for over five years, having begun her career in the Los Angeles office before relocating to New York, where she's currently based. Having always been passionate about pursuing a career in fashion, she built up her experience interning at the likes of Michael Kors, A.L.C., and College Fashionista before joining the team as a post-graduate assistant editor. Anna has penned a number of interviews with Who What Wear's cover stars over the years, including A-listers Megan Fox, Issa Rae, and Emma Chamberlain. She's earned a reputation for scouting new and emerging brands from across the globe and championing them to our audience of millions. While fashion is her main wheelhouse, Anna led the launch of WWW Travels last year, a new lifestyle vertical that highlights all things travel through a fashion-person lens. She is passionate about shopping vintage, whether it be at a favorite local outpost or an on-the-road discovery, and has amassed a wardrobe full of unique finds. When she's not writing, you can find her shooting street imagery on her film camera, attempting to learn a fourth or fifth language, or planning her next trip across the globe.