Jaclyn Miklos | email@example.com
Photo contributed by Jaclyn Miklos
There isn’t a pot of gold at the end of this rainbow, but you will find one of St. Augustine’s most popular sandals. Flagler College freshman, Jamie Greco, agrees with the popularity and admits she has three pairs in her closet.
“They are the most comfortable shoes in the world, I practically live in them,” said Greco. “Most of my friends own a pair. I think they are a top choice because they’re made of top quality and last a long time.”
Jay R. Longley, Jr., founder and creator of Rainbow sandals, envisioned a flip-flop that would make him a successful man. In 2007, the brand brought in $50 million dollars in sales.
The hemp and leather styles of the Rainbow sandal are triple-glued for a “lifetime of the sole” guarantee. Longley personally formulated the memory foam layers to mold to feet for lasting comfort.
St. Augustine residents say that sandals are a year-round style for Floridians. They have not only become acceptable footwear for a day at the beach, but for every-day life.
Lauren Duncan, employer of The Surf Station in St. Augustine, explains the high demand for the Rainbow sandals.
“We sell so many, at least three pairs a day,” Duncan said. “I think the popularity comes form the variety of styles, comfort, and the fact that they are the number one shoe choice for people living in Florida.”
Megan Amig, employer of Aqua East Surf Shop in St. Augustine, describes the sandals as one of the most popular shoes in her store. She says Rainbow’s biggest competitor is Reef sandals. Both brands sell the sandals from $30 to $60 a piece.
The University of Florida designed a blue and orange Rainbow sandal that Amig and Duncan both said were the most currently sold.
“The gators ones are selling like crazy,” Amig said. Other than those we are selling black and brown thin strap ones the most.”
Rainbow sandals offer 12 different styles that range from leather to hemp. On the Rainbow sandals website you can find all the styles including hats, shirts, wallets and key chains. According to the local surf shops, the women’s new studded crystal collection is a big hit.
“I love Rainbows, I’m even wearing them right now. I just think they are really comfy and I have had the same pair for like 3 years,” said Erica Carothers, Flagler College freshman.
So why does everyone wear Rainbows? Some may say comfort and some may say longevity. As a loyal Rainbow wearer, I simply think it’s because you can wear them with just about everything. Whether it’s the beach or the office, Rainbows do the job.