What Are Huaraches?

Huaraches are a type of traditional Mexican footwear that have been around for centuries. These sandals are made from woven leather and are known for their durability and comfort. They feature a unique design with a thick sole and a woven upper that is both stylish and functional.

Today, huaraches have become popular all over the world as a fashion statement and a comfortable shoe option. They are versatile and can be worn with a variety of outfits, from casual to dressy. In addition to their stylish appearance, huaraches are also known for their eco-friendliness, as they are made from natural materials and are often handmade by skilled artisans.

Aside from their use as footwear, huaraches are also a popular Mexican dish. Huarache, the food, is a type of street food made with a masa dough base and topped with a variety of ingredients such as beans, meat, cheese, and salsa. It is a delicious and filling meal that is often enjoyed as a quick snack or a full meal. Whether you’re looking for a new pair of shoes or a tasty meal, huaraches are a great option to explore.

History of Huaraches

Huaraches are a type of Mexican sandal that have been a part of Mexican culture for centuries. The origins of the huarache can be traced back to pre-Columbian times, long before the arrival of the Spanish in Mexico. The word “huarache” comes from the Purépecha language, which was spoken in the Michoacán region of Mexico.

Originally, huaraches were made from woven leather strips and were designed to protect the feet from the rough terrain of the Mexican countryside. They were worn by farmers, ranchers, and other laborers who needed durable footwear that could withstand the rigors of their work.

Over time, huaraches became more than just a practical piece of footwear. They became an important part of Mexican culture and were worn on special occasions, such as weddings and festivals. Today, huaraches are still popular in Mexico and have also gained popularity in other parts of the world.

The craftsmanship of huaraches has also evolved over time. Traditional huaraches were made entirely by hand, with each sandal taking several hours to complete. Today, some huaraches are still made by hand, while others are made using modern manufacturing techniques.

Types of Huaraches

Traditional Huaraches

Traditional huaraches are the original style of huaraches, dating back to pre-Columbian times. They are made from woven leather strips and have a distinctive open-toe design. These huaraches were originally used by indigenous people for everyday wear and were designed to be durable and comfortable. Traditional huaraches are still popular today and are often made by hand by skilled artisans.

There are several types of traditional huaraches, including:

  • Piteado Huaraches: These huaraches are made with intricate embroidery on the leather strips, often featuring floral or geometric designs.
  • Tejido Huaraches: These huaraches are made with a simple weave pattern and are often more affordable than other styles.
  • De Piel Huaraches: These huaraches are made with a thicker leather and are more durable than other styles.

Modern Huaraches

In recent years, there has been a surge in popularity for modern huaraches. These huaraches are often made with synthetic materials and feature a variety of designs and colors. They are popular for their comfort and versatility, and are often worn for both casual and athletic purposes.

Some popular types of modern huaraches include:

  • Nike Air Huarache: These huaraches were first introduced in 1991 and have since become a popular athletic shoe. They feature a neoprene inner sleeve for a snug fit and a Phylon midsole for cushioning.
  • Xero Shoes Huarache: These huaraches are designed for barefoot-style running and feature a thin, flexible sole and a minimalist design.
  • Luna Sandals Huarache: These huaraches are designed for outdoor activities and feature a Vibram sole and adjustable straps for a customized fit.

While traditional huaraches remain popular, modern huaraches offer a wider range of styles and designs to choose from. Whether you prefer a classic or contemporary look, there is a huarache out there for you.

Materials Used for Huaraches

Huaraches are a type of sandal that originated in Mexico and have been worn for centuries. They are made from a variety of materials, including leather, synthetic materials, and recycled materials. The choice of material used for making huaraches depends on the desired style, comfort, and durability.

Leather Huaraches

Traditionally, huaraches were made from natural leather, which is still a popular choice for many people. Leather huaraches are known for their durability and comfort, as the leather molds to the shape of the wearer’s foot over time. The leather used for making huaraches can be sourced from different animals, including cows, pigs, and goats. The thickness and quality of the leather can also vary depending on the desired style and durability of the huarache.

Leather huaraches are often decorated with intricate patterns and designs, making them a popular choice for traditional and cultural events. However, they can be more expensive than synthetic huaraches due to the cost of the materials and the skill required to make them.

Synthetic Huaraches

Modern designs of huaraches often use synthetic materials, such as rubber, foam, and plastic. Synthetic huaraches are often cheaper than leather huaraches and can be more comfortable due to the flexibility of the materials used. They are also easier to clean and maintain than leather huaraches, making them a popular choice for everyday wear.

Synthetic huaraches can come in a variety of colors and designs, making them a popular choice for fashion-conscious individuals. However, they may not be as durable as leather huaraches and may not mold to the shape of the wearer’s foot as well.

How to Wear Huaraches

Choosing the Right Size

When it comes to huaraches, choosing the right size is crucial for both comfort and style. Huaraches are typically true to size, but it’s always best to try them on before purchasing. The neoprene upper tightly hugs the foot, offering maximum lateral support, and the back strap tightly secures the heel. Make sure the back strap fits snugly but not too tight, as this can cause discomfort.

It’s also important to note that huaraches may stretch over time, so if you’re in between sizes, it’s best to go down a size rather than up.

Styling Tips

Huaraches are versatile and can be styled in many different ways. For a casual look, pair them with jeans or shorts and a simple t-shirt. If you want to dress them up a bit, huaraches can also be worn with a sundress or a skirt.

For women, a tight-fitting dress that ends just above the knees is a great option. Depending on the time of year, the dress can be long or short-sleeved. Alternatively, huarache sandals can be worn stylishly with a midi skirt and cute top. The flat design of the huarache sandals paired with a loose, flowy midi skirt creates a bohemian-inspired look.

For men, huaraches can be paired with trousers, jeans, or shorts. The combination of a printed shirt and huarache sandals gives your look a fun and playful touch.

When it comes to color, neutral tones such as brown, black, and tan are the most versatile and can be worn with a variety of outfits. However, if you want to make a statement, huaraches are also available in bright colors and patterns.

Overall, huaraches are a great addition to any wardrobe and can be styled in many different ways. Just remember to choose the right size and have fun experimenting with different outfits!

Maintenance and Care for Huaraches

Huaraches are a type of Mexican sandal that is made of woven leather. They are comfortable, breathable, and stylish, but they require proper maintenance and care to keep them looking and feeling their best. Here are some tips to help you take care of your huaraches:

  • Keep them dry: Huaraches are made of leather, which can be damaged by water. Avoid wearing them in the rain or getting them wet. If they do get wet, let them air dry in a cool, dry place. Do not use a heat source, such as a hair dryer, to dry them as this can damage the leather.
  • Clean them regularly: Use a soft-bristled brush or a damp cloth to remove dirt and dust from your huaraches. Do not use soap or water as this can damage the leather. If your huaraches are particularly dirty, you can use a leather cleaner that is specifically designed for woven leather.
  • Condition the leather: Leather can dry out and crack over time, so it’s important to condition your huaraches regularly to keep the leather soft and supple. Use a leather conditioner that is designed for woven leather and apply it with a soft cloth. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and let the conditioner absorb into the leather before wearing your huaraches.
  • Store them properly: When you’re not wearing your huaraches, store them in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. You can stuff them with tissue paper or a shoe tree to help them maintain their shape. Do not store them in a plastic bag or airtight container as this can cause the leather to dry out.

By following these simple tips, you can help extend the life of your huaraches and keep them looking and feeling great. With proper care and maintenance, your huaraches can be a stylish and comfortable addition to your footwear collection for years to come.


After researching the history and evolution of huaraches, it is clear that these sandals have a rich cultural significance and have undergone many changes throughout the years. From their origins as pre-Columbian footwear to their modern-day popularity in the fashion world, huaraches have come a long way.

One thing that remains constant is the comfort and breathability that huaraches provide. They are a great option for warm weather and can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. However, it is important to note that not all huaraches are created equal. Authentic leather huaraches may require some breaking in, but they are a worthwhile investment for those looking for a durable and long-lasting sandal.

It is also exciting to see the return of classic huarache styles, such as the Nike Air Flight Huarache, which is set to hit stores in April 2023. This shows that huaraches continue to be relevant and popular in the fashion world.

Overall, huaraches are a unique and versatile sandal with a rich history and cultural significance. Whether you are looking for a comfortable and practical sandal or a stylish fashion statement, huaraches are a great option to consider.

Mateo Sibila

Content Writer