The 10 Best Huarache Sandals for Summer 2022
The sandal is the queen of summer footwear. However, next to espadrilles, the traditional leather huarache remains one of its most sophisticated competitors. The best huaraches are those that embrace the Mexican tradition, taking a piece of leather and tying it to recycled rubber. Wear them with chinos, jeans and shorts – just avoid pairing them with socks to stay cool in the heat.
What are Huarache sandals?
A huarache is a pre-Columbian Mexican sandal traditionally made from leather and wood, but nowadays made from rubber. It is assumed that farmers in rural communities wore them due to the abundance of natural materials in the region. In the 1960s, the huarache exploded in popularity when hippies began to embrace the counterculture and visit indigenous sites in Mexico, exporting the shoes to Europe and America, bringing them to the world.
Although there are dozens of shoe styles – like many traditions in Mexico, styles vary by region – all huaraches are constructed the same. That is, with a single strip of leather woven through holes in the rubber sole. Not all huaraches are created equal, but all sandals are woven together to allow airflow through the feet and protect the toes from the ground.
Why wear Huaraches instead of flip flops or flip flops?
They’re stylish, comfortable and, honestly, more visually appealing than your usual pair of flip flops or flip flops. Flip-flops and thongs are take-out sandals, huaraches are I try to be seen sandals – these compliment any warm weather cut you’re battling the sun with, so keep that in mind when looking for a pair. You can find a relatively inexpensive handmade pair on Etsy that will still look higher than even the most expensive pair of flip flops.
How do you wear leather Huarache sandals?
Huaraches are sandals designed for warm weather, so keep them in rotation for spring and summer, and whatever you do, don’t wear them with socks. Because huaraches are often made with naturally tanned or vegetable-dyed leather, stick to wearing clean fabrics like linen, hemp, and cotton. You can easily wear chinos and shorts, jeans and baggy beach pants with a pair of leather huaraches, and if you’re daring enough, try pairing them with a seersucker or linen suit. Whatever you do, avoid humidity and water, as most pairs can’t handle it, so stay away from the beach if you want yours to last.
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Best Huarache Overall
Since 2013, New York-based Knickerbocker has built its brand by crafting quality essentials for men. One of those classic pieces is the huarache, which Knickerbocker makes with a family that has been producing them for more than 50 years in the Michoacán region. This one has the makings of a traditional huarache with a leather upper, insole and midsole and a rubber outsole. Get it in black or tan.
Best Huarache Upgrade
Sandal Yuketen Alejandro Huarache
Few brands understand leather like Yuketen, so it’s no surprise the artisan retailer has one of the best huaraches available. Yuketen takes the original workings of a huarache and remixes it, adding a Vibram 2060 outsole with a generally flat bottom, which helps with grip, durability and traction. Its leather is completely hand cut, hand dyed and hand woven, resulting in a smooth first wear. You’ll never have to worry about replacing your summer pair with such durable soles again.
Best Budget Huarache
Macarena Collection Huarache Sandal
Those on a budget can save big by cutting out the middleman and ordering huaraches directly from an artisan-maker, through Etsy. One of the biggest sellers on the platform is Macarena Collection, which offers your standard pair of Mexican-made huaraches for about half the price you’d drop on an imported set from a department store. These are more artisanal, made with recycled rubber outsoles and a single strip of leather. They also ship for free for even more savings.
Indigenous artisans in central Mexico combine soft leather with a flexible EVA outsole to create the Cancun Huaraches by Chamula. The tip is rounded so it won’t rub, and you can easily get in and out with the bottom tab. Plus, the leather adapts to your foot with wear, making riding even more comfortable over time.
Huaraches are often seen in smooth, polished leather, but this pair from LUCA replaces that with textured suede. Made in León, Mexico, its outsole will stretch and break over time, darkening and adding a little more character to these lounge-ready sandals. It comes in a dark brown and reddish brown.
These may be the only pair on this list that’s suitable for poolside wear, as they’re water-resistant, tied with a foam midsole for some shock absorption, and have non-slip outsoles. A well-balanced and durable huarache, Nisolo offers its version in nine eye-catching and polished colors.
Maybe Alex Crane’s sandal isn’t reminiscent of the prototypical huarache, but it is, by definition, and built with tradition in mind. Made with rawhide from León, Mexico and assembled in Oaxaca by a third-generation family business, these Primo sandals rely on recycled bus tires for their soles and a nickel buckle to adjust their back strap.
Slip On Espiritu Eternal Huarache
These easy-going, veggie-tinged blue zipper huaraches are more casual than formal. Their insoles will mold to your foot and become softer with wear, and loosen the more you put them on.
Malibu Sandals Classic Mules Colony
Not so much Mexican-made as Mexican-inspired, these huarache-style slides from Malibu Sandals swap leather for tough nylon and recycled tire soles for EVA rubber. If there was a contemporary version of the huarache beloved by hippies, it would be them.
Xankla Huarache Quetzal Honey Sandal
Shoelaces on a huarache? It’s a regional thing. These are huaraches hand stitched with cowhide, hand painted and tied with a crepe sole for a tougher quality than old rubber tires. Opt for this traditional pair if you’re looking for a more formal take on the leather huarache.
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