The Best Minimalist Sandals For Summer

8th August 2020


Less is more with naked sandals and ultra-fine straps that never go out of style.

bottega Veneta white sandals
bottega Veneta white sandals
Bottega Veneta sandals, Helmut Lang suit.

Barely-there sandals are as naked as you (and your feet) can get while wearing shoes. Minimalist styles that work with every piece of clothing you’ve ever owned, they’ll take you from work to play without breaking a sweat. You might miss their whisper-thin straps and delicate details entirely, did they not have so much WOW factor. Few other pieces in your wardrobe can be relied upon so readily to bring an outfit together, with such little effort. A calling card of ‘90s fashion, ultra-fine straps and modern silhouettes were a defining feature the decade, and were (thankfully) rediscovered a few years back. Timeless and elegant, in the dawn of eco-conscious fashion, a barely-there sandal will never go out of style. From Prada, By Far and The Row, this is an edit dedicated to lovers of all things minimal. 

No barely-there edit would be complete without referencing Miuccia Prada, the designer who defined the ‘90s with her minimalist vision and uber-chic accessories. Now, The Row is putting their own spin on the clean-and-sexy look with the cult ‘Bare’ sandal. For evening, look to Jimmy Choo for subtle metallic stilettos and Aquazurra for delicate diamanté heels. Team with a spaghetti strap slip dress or figure-hugging mini shift for ultimate ‘90s vibes.


Mules have a magic power. With nothing around your ankle, they give the illusion of endless legs, and these barely-there styles are a cool-girl favourite. Understated and on-trend, Neous’ square-toed, ultra-fine strappy mules are an ode to all things minimal, while Gianvito Rossi’s fine-braided straps tap into the season’s trend for woven footwear. Less is more.


A ‘00s throwback we thought had run its course, barely-there thong shoes are one of 2020’s most surprising revivals. They’re also incredibly chic.  LA-based label Staud specialises in minimal shoes with cool-girl appeal, and Magda Butrym’s glamorous reedition takes them from beach staple to elegant evening shoe. They’re unrecognisable. Forget what you know about flip-flops, this is a completely new ballgame. 


Sometimes, only a flat will do. When the dress-code is non-existent and the mood relaxed, take things back to basics with holiday-ready flats by Gianvito Rossi, Jil Sander and The Row. Bottega Veneta’s wrap-around sandals are fashion editor approved, but if you can’t bare the thought of a completely flat shoe, Prada and Ancient Greek’s combination of chunky soles and ultra-fine straps will give you a little boost.


This article contains commercial, affiliate links.