Olukai Vs Reef: Which Is Better For You?

When you decide to buy a new pair of shoes, two main factors come to mind: comfort and style. These are not only important factors, but you may also want to find shoes with unique features. 

Here comes Olukai and Reef, with huge fame in the footwear market and attractive sandals for casual and beach wear

Though the shoes of both brands are somehow similar, they are different in many aspects, which I will uncover in this article. So stay with me in exploring Olukai and Reef. 

Comparison Table Between Olukai and Reef:

Innovative and water-resistantCushioned and innovative
Offer better arch supportOffer enough arch support
More sustainableEco-friendly
Sandals, boots and shoesShoes and sandals
Suitable for outdoor activities and everyday wearSuitable for beach activities, outdoor adventures and everyday wear
LightweightSlightly bulky
Durable construction with full-grain leather and rubber outsoles.Durable materials suitable for water and sun exposure.
More breathableBreathable
1-year warranty1-year warranty

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 Reef:

The Reef is a well-known footwear brand with a slightly long history and is famous for causal sandals founded by two brothers, Fernando and Santiago Aguerre, in 1984, who shared their love for travel and beaches all over the globe. 


As the brand is the inspiration of attractive ladies on the beaches of South America, the founders of Reef decided to introduce a new element to the surf market, which then became the iconic brand in the footwear market.

The reef is well-defined with three main aims that revolve around Product, Beach culture and Impact. The brand is unified with the spirit of the beach, so it delivers innovative and comfortable shoes to users who want to celebrate their life at the beach with fun. 

The brand is committed to producing products that let you feel relaxed and offer you the same freedom as walking on the sand barefoot

Reef’s Love for Beach manufactures unique and comfortable shoes that let all users access the beach and its freedom. 

Besides, Reef is committed to saving the environment with the use of eco-friendly materials such as ethical leather, recycled paper and plastic bottles. 

Reef shoes are manufactured in Vietnam, Brazil, Indonesia and China

Among many other unique Reef shoes, the best seller product is “Reef Fanning shoes,” which are the fusion of style, comfort and performance while paying attention to surf culture with an exciting spirit that describes coastal living. 

Differences Between The Brands

This section is designed to help you choose between Reef and Olukai by describing some major differences:

1) Comfort

Olukai sandals offer extraordinary comfort and support to feet because of footbeds that never sacrifice style just for comfort. With the use of supreme quality and elastic materials, these sandals avoid blisters and discomfort to feet.

Moreover, the use of an ICEVA footbed in these sandals doesn’t let the water enter and can easily soak sweat or moisture, which keeps the feet comfortable and clean

In comparison, reef shoes are also comfortable with a soft footbed that is designed according to foot shape and offers maximal cushioning. With the use of stretchy materials, these shoes minimize the chances of discomfort and foot injuries. 

Moreover, the proper arch support of these sandals evenly distributes the weight across the foot and minimizes strain on pressure points, which then reduces fatigue

2) Popularity

Olukai shoes are well-known for their construction and durability, along with the use of quality materials that resist wear and tear and maximize shock absorption. 

With a lot of customer reviews, these shoes are on hype of fame which indicates that shoes can remain for almost 4-5 years without being damaged. 

Reef shoes are also famous for durability but not as strong as Olukai shoes because of the use of fabricated materials that can resist water and sun damage. 

With a lot of research, it is revealed that Reef shoes can remain for 1-2 years without breaking and deterioration. 

3) Target Market

Olukai targets all genders, mainly between the ages of 21-35 because of the comfort and style these shoes offer while on adventurous journeys, running, hiking and beach strolling. 

Reef sandals are the love of every user who needs to go to the beach, stroll along the city, head over to the park, sit poolside or step out of the home for daily chores because these feel cozy for high arches and support tendons and heels.

In simple, Reef sandals target all ages and genders, so no one remains apart from the comfort and style of these sandals. 

4) Price

For Olukai shoes, you have to pay almost $80-$150 while for sandals, the cost is higher compared to boots.

While Reef shoes ask you to pay between $40-$100

5) Design

Olukai shoes are available in stylish designs inspired by the spirit of Aloha or Hawaiian culture with vibrant colors and classic to modern patterns. With decorative stitching, embossed logos and quality straps, these shoes look unique. 

The EVA contoured footbed keeps the shoes lightweight and durable, which also allows the shoes to mold according to the foot shape and avoid odor. 

On the other hand, Reef shoes have a laid-back and informal style with a variety of exciting colors and patterns such as versatile, plain, bold and remarkable. With embellished stitching, embroidery and fabricated straps, these sandals look iconic

The EVA and memory foam footbed keeps the shoes supportive and comfortable during the whole day wear. 

Conclusion: Which Is Better For You?

Hopefully, you are now able to decide which brand is better for you, either Olukai or Reef, based on features. 

Reef shoes are the better investment if you want to get enough comfort to protect your feet from injuries, while Olukai is the right option if you prefer sustainable shoes.

No matter which brand you choose, both will be a rewarding investment. 

Leave a Comment