AKA:  Mexican sandals

How to say it:  wuhrah-chee

Traditional Features: 


  • flat, rubber sole
  • woven upper, leather or synthetic
  • traditionally sling back
  • can be open or closed toe

21st Century Huaraches

The huarache is currently experiencing a bit of a revival on the modern footwear market. Available in a wide range of styles and colours, the huarache has transformed from a short and stout peasants sandal into a pretty, feminine shoe perfect for hot, summer days.

DV by Dolce Vita FRYE

DV by Dolce Vita, FRYE

Seychelles Steve Madden

Seychelles, Steve Madden


…of the style: The huarache sandal originates in Pre-Columbian Mexico and has been traced to farming communities in JaliscoMichoacanGuanajuato and Yucatan -the style  was favoured for their comfort, durability and versatility.

In the 1930s the traditionally hand-made, all-leather sandal began to made with a rubber sole constructed from recycled car tires; the shoe was still mainly found in Central America, however after WWII travel into Mexico increased and the huarache made its way into the USA. The style became popular in North America in the 1950s and into the 60s when they were adopted by the Hippie Culture.

As the popularity of the huarache increased, the style of the shoe evolved, appearing in open and closed-toe versions, with sling-backs, ankle straps and even laces. Other materials also began to be used (mainly synthetics) allowing for a wider range of colours and price points.

The huarache slipped from popularity as the Hippie movement died out, but in the 21st century the style has been revived and there is an abundance of different styles of the woven sandal available on the modern footwear market. Despite its comfort and versatility of style, the huarache is a definite look and while it is unlikely it will ever disappear from the footwear landscape, it is definitely a style that will come and go with the trends.

…of the name: The term ‘huarache’ come from the word kwarachi in the P’urhépecha language – it means ‘sandal’ in English.

Random Facts

For more info on Huaraches try Wikipedia, wiseGeek, or the Fairchild’s Dictionary of Fashion

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