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Ipanema in Brazil

Brazil has long been famous for its vivid and colourful lifestyle, unbeatable Rio de Janeiro carnival, a luscious natural environment and their beautiful, passionate people; all elements you can see in the range of iPANEMA footwear. First made famous by the seductively blissful bossa nova rhythms of the 1960s, the Ipanema neighbourhood is the most glamorous in Brazil. Situated in the south of Rio, visitors agree that it is home to the most beautiful people in the world. It’s spirit and soul is drawn from the culture that emanates inland from the stunning beach, through the bustling streets, spilling lively enchanting rhythms into the air all the way. The tropical sunshine entices the beautiful people to surf and sunbathe throughout the day, and dance in the coolest bars and clubs into the night. It is from this relaxed and vibrant culture that the inspiration is derived for iPANEMA footwear.

iPANEMA on your feet

The collection is overflowing with the happy and exotic spirit of Brazilian beaches and culture. The unmistakeable pattern of the tiles running along next to the Ipanema sand feature throughout the collection. You will see that the designs work well in a variety of bright colours, adorned with bold and beautiful prints. Crystals, charms and gemstones cling to the straps. These flip flops and sandals are the focal part of your beach outfit.

iPANEMA products represent much more than fashion. There is a strong environmental commitment and ethical consideration that aims to preserve Brazil’s natural beauty for generations to come. The collaboration with Gisele Bündchen supports ISA, an innovative climate change project. The strong sense of social responsibility, along with inspirational lifestyles, surroundings and cutting-edge technologies create the unique style of iPANEMA.

Gisele Bündchen Collaborations

As a model, Gisele has graced the covers of virtually every top fashion magazine, having been the cover girl of Vogue for three consecutive issues! She has also starred in campaigns for Christian Dior, Balenciaga, Dolce & Gabbana, Versace, Givenchy, Lanvin and Luis Vuitton amongst a host of other top names.

However, as a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador, Gisele, recently named as 'the world's greenest celebrity", has been working with iPANEMA since 2002. Her charity work spans the globe and represents a variety of crucial environmental issues. It is from her work with the UN’s Environment Programme and ISA (Institut Socio-Ambiental) that Gisele’s collaborations draw inspiration. The iPANEMA and Gisele collaboration support ISA - the Socio-Environmental Institute. The basis of the campaign is "I think, therefore I coexist", promoting humankind's ability to understand the planet and be considerate towards our natural surroundings.


Rio De Janeiro Carnival

There isn’t a carnival in the world with the well-earned fame and glamour of the spectacle that happens in Rio each year. Tickets for the Rio Carnival 2014, which goes off in February, are already being snapped up for what is sure to be another spectacular and memorable edition of the liveliest, most vibrant party the planet can provide! iPANEMA have a suitable pair of footwear for every sector of your celebration, be it some stylish, sturdy sandals for street dancing with the crowds in the parades, glamorously tall wedges for spectating from the cocktail bars, or simple flip flops to relax when you’re replenishing spent energy in the tropical Brazilian sunshine! Whether or not you take a course at the samba school, you and your iPANEMA’s are very welcome to join the party!


iPANEMA designs have many special features, here we explain some of the basics for the range of footwear you will find throughout our website.


An open shoe, allowing you to remain cool yet secure, with added stability provided by an ankle strap - great for all-day wear.


A higher heel makes it perfect for dressier styles. Their popularity has grown, leading to the designers having pushed the boundaries by producing the highest ever iPANEMA wedge! Great to wear whilst sipping cool cocktails by the beach bar.


In any collection, the artists or designers always have their favourite pieces, which bring them the most pride and joy. iPANEMA is no different – we have the Premium range for the pieces which are worthy of this extra prestige.


iPANEMA’s anatomic soles are designed for both comfort and protection. They are moulded to complement every contour of the sole, meaning that less pressure is placed on your body when walking, a great feature to consider when you’re planning to stay out in the sun all day long!


Unique iPANEMA technology allows so many brilliant features, and 3D is definitely one of our favourites! Have you ever bought a pair of flip flops because of the printed design, only to be disappointed that once you put them on it is nowhere to be seen? Well thanks to 3D, this will never happen again! 3D designs cover each side of the flip flop, so even when you put them on you can still see the design on the side, all the way around!


Most flip flops are made of rubber – which may not have made a difference to you in the past. However, once you’ve tried iPANEMA, which are made from patented super-soft Melflex plastic, you’ll instantly notice improvements in comfort and support. Melflex is an incredibly flexible hypo-allergenic plastic, which allows the designers to go wild and create unique and individual designs. Not only this, but it is also 100% recyclable PVC, which means iPANEMA shoes are some of the most environmentally friendly around.

Mould Casting

iPANEMA have been making plastic shoes for a long time, so no-one has made as many, nor continues to make, such an extensive range of creative designs. This is possible because plastic shoes are made in moulds, meaning that design options are truly endless. iPANEMA footwear gets more and more adventurous every year!


iPANEMA go a bit further when adding quality to shoes. Just as other manufacturers would be packing shoes into their boxes, iPANEMA’s are given a finishing touch to make them more alluring and special. Whether it is a glittery shine or a matt coating, a crystal or a charm, iPANEMA puts the icing on the flip flop!

iPANEMA RJ by Oskar Metsavaht

Simple yet sophisticated, stylish yet subtle. This is the iPANEMA RJ Flip Flop. It combines cutting edge design and the latest technology to form the hottest piece of luxuriant beach footwear out there. The foot bed imitates the famous white beach, with ‘Ipanema’ quite literally written in the sand. The toe strap takes its inspiration from the intricate texture of fish scales. When wearing iPANEMA RJ, your footprint leaves behind an impression that mirrors the transition from sea, to sand, to the famous tiled walkways of Ipanema.

Oskar Metsavaht is the designer behind the popular Brazilian luxury brand Osklen. He thinks of himself as an artist who creates fashion collections through a creative process, as opposed to a fashion designer per se. He and his brother produced a fabulous snowboarding film trilogy, Surfing the Mountains, which ran alongside his collection for Sao Paulo Fashion Week; a fitting demonstration of his creative versatility.

Ethics & The Environment

iPANEMA shoes are produced with a strong ethical standpoint. Wherever possible, processes are chosen on merits conducive to minimising harm to the environment. Here are just some of the ways in which this is achieved:-

  • The entire range uses 100% synthetic materials (this means they are suitable for vegans too!).
  • 99% of any “waste” from the production process is recycled - meaning there is virtually no waste!
  • Melflex plastic lasts far longer than ordinary rubber flip flops, however, should you decide it is time for a new pair they can be recycled due to the cleverly designed and patented PVC. Rubber flip flops are much more difficult to recycle due to rubber being produced using crude oil.
  • The production processes are tightly controlled, so you can be confident that everything is done properly.
  • All employees are adults who are treated properly.
  • Alongside the high profile work alongside Gisele Bundchen, iPANEMA continues to work with charities and foundations for the preservation of the environment. You can read more about this work on the links below.



Football World Cup 2014 Brazil

Brazil’s largest stadium hosting this global event is situated in Rio de Janeiro, a simple bus ride from the neighbourhood inspiring the iPANEMA brand. With a capacity of 76,000 people, Maracana Stadium is sure to make Rio one of the most buzzing cities on the face of the planet during the tournament, especially since most of the competing teams will be based there. If you miss out on your World Cup tickets, don’t despair; the atmosphere will be sheer excitement, even if you only catch the televised coverage! Just seven matches will be played in Rio during the World Cup, but this does include the most glorious of all: the final. Every single Brazilian hopes and dreams to see their team play here during the tournament; the only route for them to do this is by reaching the legendary World Cup final!


Fun Flip Flop Facts

The term ‘flip flop’ has been used since around 1972 to describe what would otherwise be called a thong sandal. It gets its more poetic name from the sound that is made by walking in them, making ‘flip flop’ an example of onomatopoeia.

In its most basic form, a flip flop is an open piece of footwear with a thong toe-strap that sits between the big and second toes. This style of footwear has been worn by many cultures throughout the world, originating in Egypt as early as 4000 BC. Much debate rages over whether it was Morris Yock, a New Zealander, or John Cowie, an Englishman (living in Hong Kong), who was first to think of creating a synthetic version of the traditional Japanese woven soled zori or jonge sandals. Nowadays, the flip flop takes on far more diverse designs but the theory is still the same: a thong-strap connected to a sole. Rubber remains the most common material to make the flip flop, however, our modern, fantastic, PVC plastic is most certainly the best!

Here’s what they are known as in different countries...

Jandals (New Zealand)
Chappal (Hawaii)
Qainchi Chappals (India/Pakistan)
Thongs (Australia and Canada)
Slops (South Africa)
Ojotas (Spain)
Chanceletas (Central America)
Chinelos (Brazil)