Olukai Vs Chaco: Which Is Better For You?

Whether you are looking for a new pair of sandals for wearing during water activities or a sandal to wear for hiking and other outdoor adventures, you are at the right place.

This article is about two renowned brands, Olukai and Chaco along with their features and major differences that help you distinguish one from another.

In the market, both brands are highly demanding because of their unique construction but which will be better for your feet, let’s discuss it!

Comparison Table Between Olukai and Chaco:

Innovative and water-resistantDurable and adjustable
Offer good arch supportOffer more arch support due to the LUVSEAT footbed
More sustainableSustainable
Sandals, boots and shoesZ-strap sandals, flip-flops, slip-on sandals and boots
Adjustable strapsHighly adjustable with a Z strap system
Suitable for outdoor activities and everyday wearSuitable for hiking, camping, water activities and everyday wear
LightweightModerately heavy to bulky
DurableVery durable
More breathableBreathable
Affordable price rangeThe price range is similar to Olukai, but some models are somehow costly
1-year warrantyNormal lifetime warranty for the footwear

Overview of Olukai:

Olukai is a Hawaiian island-inspired footwear brand with a deep commitment to nature. It was founded by Bill Worthington and Matt Till in 2005 for the creation of supreme quality and comfortable shoes to showcase the culture and spirit of Hawaii

olukai founder

In the heart of Olukai, the Aloha spirit lies, which reflects the way of deeply rooted love, care and respect for the world around it. This philosophy serves each step of Olukai, from sustainable construction methods to commitment to the conservation of marine life

Olukai is dedicated to serving the community along with the conservation of marine life with the use of premium materials and quality craftsmanship. Each Olukai shoe reflects the finest materials, such as fabrics, sustainable components and full-grain leather. Due to this construction and attention to each detail, Olukai shoes not only look appealing but also bring durability and comfort. 

The unique anatomically contoured footbed reflects the natural curve of the Hawaiian island. Due to this unique feature, each shoe offers an unparalleled level of support and comfort so you take each step with pleasure whether you navigate around rough terrains or beaches. 

Olukai partners with the Ama Olukai Foundation, which shows cultural support and conservation of the environment in Hawaii and its surrounding areas. 

The brand is a Certified B Corporation with a main focus on sustainability and manufacturing of shoes that not only last long but also minimize the carbon footprint. 

Olukai shoes are mainly designed in the US and crafted in Asia, Mexico and China by adhering to high-quality standards and environmental sustainability. 

The Olukai Ohana flip-flop sandal is considered as a best-selling product because it symbolizes the Aloha spirit and offers unparalleled comfort and support to live with an open heart. 

Overview of Chaco:

In 1989, Mark Palgen founded an American footwear brand, Chaco, which is now famous because of its adjustable Z-strap sandals for outdoor activities and water use.

chaco founder

Mark aimed to create outdoor sandals that keep feet dry and supportive without causing wrinkling so he used straps and buckles instead of Velcro in each sandal. His first sandal was named “Z/1” because his friend called the sandal “Zee One.”

At first, the company name was Gecko, but after the Chaco National Park, it was named Chaco, with its headquarters in Rockford, USA.

The adjustable sandals of Chaco can be distinguished with the single strap, which loops around your feet through the sole, which allows you to adjust the fit. The Z-straps sandals are available in different configurations and sole types that make the sandals suitable for different environments. 

The company focuses on river protection throughout the US because rivers are the main reason for the manufacturing of Chaco sandals. For this, Chaco has donated almost $10,000 to American rivers. 

Other than sandals, Chaco has extended the product line to flip flops, boots and shoes that make them a perfect choice for mountains where users need security. 

Though the quality of sandals is durable these may wear and tear after a few years with repeated outdoor use, so the company offers repair services. 

Chaco is LEED certified and focuses on sustainable practices like solar energy and water conservation to ensure eco-friendly sandals. 

Among all other Chaco Z strap sandals, the best seller product is the Z/1 strap sandal which feels a little bulky but is cushioned and comfortable with deep lugs that offer support and durability on long-distance day hikes

Differences Between The Brands

Now I will examine some positive and negative aspects of both brands, so keep reading till the end:

1) Comfort

Olukai shoes offer exceptional comfort with the infusion of Aloha spirit along with anatomically contoured footbeds that reflect the natural curve of the Hawaiian island. With this natural curve, your feet feel support and cushioning and each step you take feels like walking on the beach. The footbed is also responsive and keeps the feet stable during different adventures.

Each Olukai shoe incorporated dual-density PU along with innovative materials that not only offer comfort but also enhance the personalized experience. This technology not only fits better to your feet but also encourages healthy foot alignment and reduces fatigue. 

Moreover, the incorporation of gel materials in the heels of shoes enhances cushioning and shock absorption, which makes shoes a perfect option for people who have to spend their whole day in different activities. 

Other than this, Chaco shoes are durable but also comfortable at the same time. With the use of LUVSEAT footbed technology, these shoes align the feet shape and offer supreme arch support which then minimizes discomfort during long adventures. 

Along with this technology, each Chaco shoe is equipped with a ChaPu polyurethane midsole that not only enhances cushioning but also offers shock absorption, which makes the shoes super ideal for prolonged activities and walking

2) Popularity

Olukai is committed to exceptional comfort and Hawaiian island-inspired style, which became its reason for popularity among other footwear brands. The shoes of this brand are used among beach towns, urban centers and coastal communities where users not only want to enjoy comfort but are also dedicated to sustainable shoes.

Besides the brand’s inspiration for Hawaiian Island, celebrity endorsements also added a new layer of the limelight. Some famous celebrities such as Jason Momoa and Dwayne Johnson were seen wearing Olukai shoes which reflected the brands’ commitment to style, sustainability and comfort.

In contrast, Chaco shoes are popular because of the unparalleled comfort and innovative construction that has gathered cult-like status among outdoor adventurers and water activists. 

When it comes to celebrities seen wearing Chaco sandals, Oprah Winfrey and Kristen Bell are on top because both praised the brand due to its commitment to comfort and versatility.

3) Target Market

Olukai targets both genders who are seeking for comfortable, stylish yet functional shoes with bold stitching and colorful options that make shoes perfect for outdoor and beach adventures.

While Chaco targets various demographics ranging from late teens to middle-aged customers, along with users who want comfortable and durable shoes for outdoor activities.

4) Price

Olukai shoes are available in an average price range of $80-$150 but sandals are less costly compared to Olukai boots. 

Chaco sandals have an average cost of $100-$150. However, a basic sandal may cost upto $80, while a special sandal may cost upto $200. 

5) Design

Olukai shoes reflect the fusion of quality craftsmanship and the spirit of the Hawaiian island with the addition of natural elements and modern sensibilities. The use of premium grain leather and quality fabric not only enhances durability but also adds a new touch of island-inspired style. With sophisticated detailing, logos and stitching, the sandals look stunning.

The midsole of Olukai shoes is equipped with cushioning technologies such as dual-density PU and gel insert in the heel, which enhance shock absorption and support your feet. 

The use of rubber in the outsole with razor siping enhances durability and allows you to stroll along beaches, city streets and coastlines. 

Chaco shoes have a trail-ready design with durable construction, bold aesthetic and strappy outlines. Due to adjustable straps, these sandals are customizable and bring elegance to each product. 

The use of a LUVSEAT footbed along with ChaPu midsole in each Chaco sandal keeps the feet supportive and cushioned all the time.

Using the ChacoGrip rubber outsole, the shoes offer enhanced durability and traction on challenging surfaces. 

Conclusion: Which Is Better For You?

In the end, it is somehow a difficult thing to take one brand as winner over the other because each user has different requirements for outdoor shoes

Olukai is the best option for users who want lightweight yet supportive and protective shoes for their feet during outdoor and beach activities.

Chaco may also go better for people with high arches and who want a pair of shoes for water use. 

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