Sandals are an open type of footwear, with a sole held to the wearer's foot by straps or thongs passing over the instep and around the ankle. While the distinction between sandals and other types of footwear can sometimes be unclear (as in the case of huaraches—the woven leather footwear seen in Mexico), the common understanding is that a sandal reveals most or all of the foot (especially the toes) to view. People may choose to wear sandals for several reasons, among them economy (sandals tend to require less material than shoes), comfort in warm weather, and (especially for women) for reasons of fashion and attractiveness.
Usually, sandals are worn in warmer climates or during warmer parts of the year, because feet stay cool and dry. The chances of getting a fungal infection on the feet (athlete's foot) is lower than with wearing an enclosed shoe and wearing sandals may be part of treatment for a fungal foot infection.