Dads are a tough-loving, bear-hugging, bad-joke-making paradox: easy to please with the simplest of creature comforts but seemingly impossible to shop for. And, of course – mercurial as they may be – they’re people too; though there are gardener dads, there’s no garden-variety dad. But whether the first man in your life loves sports, books or cars, you can be sure he needs something to put on his feet. While any shoe will do for some dads, choosing a gift that speaks to his one-of-a-kind personality goes a long way in showing just how much you care.
Though it might have embarrassed you on teenage trips to the mall, dad’s insistence on comfort is something you’ve likely come to respect as a grown-up. With a gift like Donnar thong sandals from Dr. Scholl’s, your pops will be so busy reveling in the egg crate-inspired footbed that he won’t even notice the touch of leather-trimmed style you’ve brought into his life. For the dad who favors comfort but spends his weekends on the golf course or watching the game, try a sportier touch with Nike’s Benassi slides – they come in red, blue and camo, so you can really show him that you know his true colors.
Some dads just don’t slow down. You want your old man to be around for as long as possible, so show him you support his active, healthy lifestyle with a fresh new pair of trainers. The FS Lite Run 2 from Nike embraces a sleek, modern style and packs the high-traction soles and FITSOLE support your dad needs, whether he likes to jog, sprint or stroll. Some dads keep on trucking but prefer rock n’ roll to basketball, and few can turn down a fresh pair of timeless Chuck Taylor All Star sneakers.
Your dad has earned the right to kick back, and with your help, he can do his loafing in a pair of shoes that aren’t from 1974. As part of the time-tested Sperry Top-Sider line, the Leeward 2-Eye Boat Shoe will never go out of style. These boaters are right at home on the dock, in front of the grill or propped up on the recliner. If your father has a creative streak – maybe he’s a laid-back type who prefers espresso and history books – wrap up a pair of Melvin slip-ons from Skechers. Their suede and canvas uppers lend them a masculine edge, while the memory foam footbed helps Dad make an easy transition from couch to bookstore.
Some dads revel in work, whether they’re pros or hobbyists. A pair of trend-proof Wolverines, such as the Cheyenne slip-resistant work boot, does the job at the construction site and in the wood shop alike. For a fella who errs on the side of rugged but needs kicks that can also run plenty of errands for Mom, take a look at Merrell’s Hilltop Vent Mid-Waterproof hiking boot, which can keep dad’s feet airy yet supported all the way from the grocery store to the hiking trail.