Survey: 2 in 5 Americans Would Never Wear Flip-Flops to a Restaurant

When it comes to restaurant attire, two in five Americans think flip-flops are a no-go.

In a survey of 2,000 American consumers conducted by Nordstrom’s Trunk Club, 38% of respondents said they would never wear flip-flops to a restaurant. Sandals were also thought to be a no-no by many, with 34% saying they wouldn’t wear the style out to eat.

While flip-flops are often viewed as “ugly,” they’ve been trending in recent months. The footwear appeared on the runways of high-fashion brands aplenty for spring ’19, among them Tibi, Sonia Rykiel and Etro.


Dree Hemingway on the catwalkSonia Rykiel show, Runway, Spring Summer 2019, Paris Fashion Week, France - 29 Sep 2018

Dree Hemingway in flip-flops at the Sonia Rykiel spring ’19 show at Paris Fashion Week.
CREDIT: Shutterstock

The high-heeled flip-flop also made a return this spring, spurred on by celebrity fans like Kim Kardashian and Emily Ratajkowski. After going away in the early aughts, the style reemerged in 2019 in new fashion — with slimmer straps and a thinner heel.


Reality TV star Kim Kardashian is seen leaving the back door of a restaurant in LA with her sister Khloe.Pictured: Kim KardashianRef: SPL5096577 070619 NON-EXCLUSIVEPicture by: Lies Angeles / SplashNews.comSplash News and PicturesLos Angeles: 310-821-2666New York: 212-619-2666London: 0207 644 7656Milan: 02 4399 8577photodesk@splashnews.comWorld Rights

Kim Kardashian wearing heeled Yeezy thong sandals in June.
CREDIT: Splash News

In addition to being derided as unattractive, flip-flops are impractical for the city dweller. Many pairs lack arch support and cushioning, which can result in painful blisters and slipping and sliding in inclement weather.

Further, the open-toed silhouette can be a host for bacteria aplenty, particularly in a hot and humid climate. An FN editor found that hundreds of thousands of bacteria colonies had formed on the toes of her flip-flops after a daylong experiment wearing the style outside on a summer’s day in New York.

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