7 Longest Lasting Flip Flops

My super tough 3$ tire tread flip flops

(Updated for 2023)

I own the longest-lasting flip-flops on earth…

My African friends know a thing or two about tough flip-flops and the rest of the world is missing out. They’re hand-made from recycled truck tire treads…and quite frankly, they last forever and are highly repairable. 

I bought mine from a street vendor in Benin for only $3!

Apparently, the Mexicans have a similar version they call “huaraches.” I just wish we could buy these guys on Amazon.

So, you want the most durable flip-flops?

Below is a list of some of the most durable well-built flip flops money can buy. For more on each model read on.

Most Durable Flip Flop Recommendations:

Oluka Mea Ola
Olukai Mae Ola
Tough Full-grain leather,
embossed strap, laser etched
Check Latest Price
(on Amazon)

Birkenstock Gizeh
Dressy, forms to your foot,
Plenty of color options,
loved by millions
Check Latest Price
(on Amazon)

Rainbow Sandals
Premier Leather
Lifetime Warranty, triple glued
Premium Nubuck leather
Check Latest Price
(On Amazon)

REEF Fanning
Air ride, footbed bottle opener,
tons of colors, waterproof
Check Latest Price
(on Amazon)

Crocs Bayabands
Cushy, relaxed, waterproof
great for beach or poolside
Check Latest Price
(on Amazon)

Clarks Breeze
Dressy, very durable, super-affordable
Insanely good reviews
Check Latest Price
(on Amazon)

Sole Workshop Wanderer
Bespoke, hand stitched,
durable Vibram soles

Say, “No” to Throw-Away Flip Flops

By the end of every summer, I’m sure, millions of cheap flip-flops get dumped into landfills after one annoying and uncomfortable summer of use.  It’s pure waste and it encourages companies who sell junk to keep churning out their crap for next year’s suckers. 

Obviously, the main challenge with flip-flops is durability and comfort. The bargain store flip flop bin is just a loser’s game of the lottery.

Enough already!  Just bite the bullet, get a decent pair of flip-flops and spare the landfill for the next 4-5 years.

What to Look for in Durable Flip Flops

Olukai Hikianalia
Olukai Hikianaliias:(reviewed here)are an earlier version of the Olukai Mae Ola(Amazon link)

Quick tips:

  • Pick a brand with a good reputation and track record
  • At least a 1 year warranty
  • A guarantee that covers:toe strap pull-outs, side strap pull-outs,  stitching, and de-lamination.  See photos below.(credit: Rainbow Sandals warranty page)

After a ton of research, I can say with a high degree of confidence that these companies make the longest-lasting flip flops.   I had nine companies on the shortlist but trimmed it down to six because I wanted every single recommendation to be rock solid. So, no “hit-and misses” here.

Note:  There is no particular order to this list.  Each Company is unique in its own way and offers extremely long-lasting flip flops.  Depending on your taste, you’ll be happy with any one of them


Olukai (on Amazon)

I’ve worn my full-grain leather Olukai flip-flops(reviewed here) daily for 3 years! They’ve even outlasted my wife’s Birkenstocks.

Olukai is a high-quality Hawaiian brand that has certainly earned my respect for durability. They are a formidable competitor to those Southern Californian surfers(Rainbow sandals). Olukai has also garnered its own large following in surf culture.

I think Olukai’s strength is in their leather flip-flops.  They have the most comprehensive and luxurious line.  I find Olukai to be a bit pricier but the leather flip-flops, like the Mea Ola,(Amazon link) are very attractive and insanely durable.

So, if you’re into leather, take a serious look at Olukai.  

Olukai offers a robust warranty against straps pulling out, de-lamination of the sole, and frayed or loose stitching. They also put a lot into their footbeds and reviewers with foot issues find them to be exceptionally comfortable.  As a brand, they have also expanded into shoe making.

Recommended Olukai Model: Mea Ola

The upscale and classy-looking Mea Olas(Amazon link) are the latest iteration of Olukai’s very successful line of luxury leather flip-flops. I’m still wearing the predecessor to these after three years.

These flip flops are intricately crafted from full-grain leather, thick leather embossed straps, rich whipstitched accents, a hard-wearing outsole, and beautiful laser-etched artwork in the footbed.

These flip-flops are just good-looking, they are extremely durable. They age well too. With use they developed that classic patina that is unique to full-grain leather.

The Mea Olas can handle getting wet occasionally but are not designed for wading in the ocean all the time.

Olukai Ohanas

If you plan on getting your flip-flops wet I’d recommend the Olukai Ohanas(Amazon link) which are exceptionally durable beach flip-flops. They are a tried and true design with plenty of fans and repeat customers.

The Ohanas are true-blue beach flip-flops designed to handle years of hard use of on the beach and in water. 

Buy them if..

  • You’re into water sports etc.
  • You have foot issues but still want to wear flip flops

Skip them if..

  • You’re on a budget.
  • You absolutely must have the most durable flip flops(still durable, but not as durable as others)
  • You don’t want an uncomfortable break-in period(1-2 weeks)


Birkenstock Gizeh (credit: Birkenstock.com)

Zee Germans, zay know how to make zee goot stuff!

 Birks stand out as the king of durable sandals.  They have very few rivals in that regard.   They do make a few pairs of really tough flip-flops too.

The flip flops don’t break from Birkenstocks tried and true construction methods which are practically bullet-proof.

Long wearing EVA outsoles and and their trademarked “BirkoFlor” foot bed literally mold to the contours of your feet for a perfect fit.

They “ain’t cheap” so get ready to bleed a little when you hit the order button.

Recommended Model: Birkenstock Gizeh

Birk Gizehs in Silver(credit Birkenstock.com)

The Gizehs certainly are dressier than most of the other options on this list.  You’ll notice that the side strap is anchored further back than most flips which keeps them on easier while offering more stability.

The Gizehs have a less flexible sole and wear more like sandles than flip flops.

You can adjust the fit of the strap via the buckle.  The Gizehs are available in a ton of different colors and finishes  You’re looking at least the $100 price range.

You can get the latest pricing on Amazon here

Buy them if..

  • You prefer a dressier look
  • You want a comfy flip flop that will mold to your foot
  • You have wider feet

Skip them if..

  • you’re on a tight budget.  Birks are one of the priciest on this list.
  • don’t want a “break-in” period.  Birks can be uncomfortable at first.
  • you plan to walk long distances at a time
  • you will be getting them wet(not water friendly)


Crocs are best known for their bulbous and rather ugly looking “Come as you are” slip on sandals.   Desipite that, their comfort and durability  has made millions of fans.

Mercifully, Crocs also offer more reasonable looking flip flops that’ll weather many summers.  Most reviewers recommend them especially for days at the pool.

Recommended Model: Crocs Bayaband

Crocs Bayabands scream “poolside Carribean vacation!”

In typical Croc style, the side straps are molded right into the base to make breakage almost impossible.  The Bayahand’s certainly are bold, but they have a huge following of devout pool-side aficionados.

The Bayabands feature crocs famous and comfy “Croslite” foam cushioned sole and a relaxed fit to match your relaxing vacay…and next years vacay…and the one after that.

The Bayabands are very reasonably priced (under $50.)

You can check their current pricing here on Amazon

Buy them if…

  • You’re a swimmer, or use gym locker rooms.
  • Money is an issue, Croc flip flops extremely well priced for the durability and comfort you get.

Skip them if…

  • You’re looking for a more refined, dressier look
  • You don’t like the plasticky construction
  • Your an understated person

Rainbow Sandals

Depending on the model, Rainbow makes one of the longest lasting flip flops on this list.(see my model recommendation below)

I don’t know of too many people that take flip flops as seriously as Sparky, the founder of Rainbow sandals.  He started off in 1974 with $200 in his pocket making flip flops in his garage.  Over time his reputation for quality long lasting flip flops has payed off big time.

Sparky said he wants to make his Rainbow flip flops be like the Levi jeans of the flip flop world.  I’d say he’s well on his way.

Recommended Model: Rainbow Premiere Leather Sandals.

Rainbow Premier Leather Sandal(Amazon link)

These two Rainbow flip flops have attained legend status.  The only difference between the two is one is thicker for those who prefer a deeper form fitted foot-bed(302), vs the thinner version(301).

These are true “go-anywhere” flips and have been known to last for over 10 years. If you watched the video above, you’ll notice the well-used ones that have been framed and mounted at Rainbow headquarters.

Check the latest pricing on Amazon

 Buy them If…

  • You’re a Californian surfer
  • You’re a beach bum
  • You want a relaxed casual flip flop
  • You want a flip flop that forms nicely to your feet over time
  • You anticipate long walks and heavy use

Skip them if…

  • You don’t want to endure the 1-2 week break in period.

The Sole Workshop

Credit: TheSoleWorkshop.com

You may not have heard of this small but mighty flip-flop brand. The Sole Workshop is a high-end, hand-made luxury flip-flop brand.

These are the Ferraris of the flip-flop world but get ready for some sticker shock: check out what I mean.

Beyond luxury, they make among the very toughest leather flip-flops in the world. So, if you are the OCD type that simply must have the absolute best in the world then The Sole Workshop is probably your best bet.

Recommended Model: Original Wanderer

Luxury and durability don’t usually meet in a sweet spot as is the case with these flip flops. As I mentioned you’ll need some deep pockets if you want to step up into these world-class flips. (Check latest pricing.)

The Original Wanderers come with an exclusive lifetime warranty that covers you “as long as the sole has tread and the leather has not worn through.” That means you’re covered for toe or side-strap pullouts.

The Wanderer is saddle-stitched by hand from full-grain leather available in 3 color tones. That’s the best grade of leather available and the only leather that develops that classic rich patina with age.

If that weren’t enough you can have them made to order with whatever leather embossing you’d like.

What I really love are the Vibram soles though. For some perspective, Vibram is industry leading rubber usually found on the soles of the most durable industrial work boots like the Danners, Thorogoods and Redwings I recommend in this article on tough workboots..

Buy Them If….

  • you’ve got deep pockets and simply want the best.
  • You love the story Full Grain leather tells by its patina
  • You want a truly customized one-of-kind hand-made piece
  • You want to give an extra-special gift

Skip Them if…

  • Leather isn’t your thing
  • You don’t have money coming out your wazoo


REEF is another surf brand from California. They compete with the big guys for the most durable flip flops out there.

Their signature design which became a hit was their affordable and rugged Smoothy(Amazon link) with its woven strap design and high-density EVA outsole.

They’ve come a long way since then and now have a real die-hard fan base. That’s always a good indicator that a brand is making a high-quality product.

Recommended Model: REEF Fanning

REEF Fanning with bottler opener

Talk about viral success! The REEF Fannings are practically worshiped by beach party-ers.

Besides being very durable they are the only flip flop that doubles as a bottle opener. So, now you get to do the party trick and be the hero at the same time.

The Fanning design is so popular its now available in a number of variations.

Buy them if:

  • you need a bottle opener
  • You need excellent heel cushioning that cradles your foot.
  • You’ll be around water and sand

Skip them if:

  • you want a more traditional looking flip
  • You prefer a more refined/upscale look


Ok, Ladies these ones are for you.  I’m gobsmacked by how militantly devoted folks are to this brand.  Clarks has over 190 years of brand heritage in the shoe industry.  They’ve developed a very good reputation for quality and durability.

Clarks have an overwhelming assortment of shoes to choose from. Some might call it the mother-load of shoe shopping happiness…

Anyway, their flip flops are consistently rated among the top 10 longest lasting flip flops.  Anecdotally, I’ve heard they offer excellent warrantee service too.

Recommended Model: Clarks Breeze Sea

Hold back throng!  The Clarks Breeze Sea have a cult following. I’ve was absolutely stunned that Amazon had over 8000 near-perfect reviews.  I’m a little worried about death threats if I bad-mouth these flip flops.

Nevertheless, they are certainly one of the longest lasting flip flops out there.

The Breeze Seas are really affordable, durable and  versatile flips.  Options range from bold magenta to a dressy synthetic patent black.

The straps are adjustable for a perfect fit via a hook and loop adjustment.

Most ladies love them most for their comfort over long days and distances.  They’re waterproof too, so they can handle the beach or an evening date.

Throw them in the washing machine and air dry them to freshen them up.

You can often snag decent sales on them on Amazon:so check the latest pricing.

Buy them If…

  • you want a flip for long distance walking
  • Some folks with plantars fasciitis swear by them.
  • you want a mature/dressy flip flop without sacrificing comfort
  • you’re on a budget.

Skip them If…

  • ..umm…I’m afraid to say anything bad, there are just too many fanatics out there..this interview is over!


Hack:  Cool Trick To Get Long Last Flip Flops For Way Less

If you’re not in a hurry to buy, I’ve found a neat way to get sizeable discounts on these and other high-quality products that I recommend here on WellRigged. 

Here is how I do it:  How to Buy Quality Products on Amazon for Way Less

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Don Longworth

Don was born and raised in sub-saharan Africa. Now based in Canada, his extensive experience in non-profit work has served him well over multiple deployments in Africa. Don's experiences have made him a practical "to-the-point" type person. He is a no-frills, low-key guy who appreciates quality and simplicity.

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