Reviews You Can Rely On

Astral Rosa Review

A fantastic choice for anyone that loves both flip flops and sandals and wants everything combined in one shoe
Astral Rosa
Photo: Astral
Top Pick Award
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Price:  $75 List | $70.00 at Amazon
Pros:  Removable ankle strap, water-resistant, durable, lightweight
Cons:  Contouring by toes is oddly placed, ankle strap can slip
Manufacturer:   Astral
By Hayley Thomas & Penney Garrett  ⋅  Jun 11, 2021
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76
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 14
  • Comfort - 30% 6
  • Support - 20% 9
  • Traction - 20% 8
  • Versatility - 15% 9
  • Style - 15% 7

Our Verdict

The Astral Rosa is no ordinary flip flop. This little gem converts to a full-on sandal by way of extra webbing that threads through the main straps and around the ankle. This feature provides fantastic footbed support and launches what would otherwise be a very basic flip into an award-winning position. We love this shoe for hiking and scrambling because the versatility it provides means you can easily be ready for anything. Water, uneven terrain, rocks — you name it. Threading the ankle strap into the main straps is a bit tedious, but this fun shoe can easily become the only warm weather companion you'll need.

Compare to Similar Products

 
Astral Rosa
This Product
Astral Rosa
Awards Top Pick Award Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award Best Buy Award Top Pick Award 
Price $70.00 at AmazonCheck Price at REI
Compare at 3 sellers
Check Price at REI
Compare at 3 sellers
$44.95 at Amazon$27.75 at Amazon
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Pros Removable ankle strap, water-resistant, durable, lightweightAttractive, supportive, comfortable, adjustable strapVery comfortable, grippy footbed, stableComfortable, no break-in period, affordable, waterproofSuper comfy, simple, true to size, lightweight, made from yoga mat material
Cons Contouring by toes is oddly placed, ankle strap can slipStiff, breaking in takes time, expensiveSporty look, runs a bit bigMaterial doesn't breathe, less durableNo footbed contouring, minimal outsole traction and support
Bottom Line A fantastic choice for anyone that loves both flip flops and sandals and wants everything combined in one shoeA beautifully unique sandal that provides amazing support and personalized comfort by molding to your feet over timeA durable flip flop that feels amazing, offers good support, and handles water like a proA lightweight and affordable version of the leather original, this flip is fun and functionalThis simple flip flop is impossibly comfortable with wide, supportive straps and a squishy, pillow-like footbed made out of real yoga mat material
Rating Categories Astral Rosa Birkenstock Gizeh OluKai Ohana - Women's Birkenstock Gizeh E... Sanuk Yoga Mat
Comfort (30%)
6.0
9.0
10.0
8.0
9.0
Support (20%)
9.0
10.0
8.0
8.0
6.0
Traction (20%)
8.0
7.0
7.0
7.0
6.0
Versatility (15%)
9.0
6.0
7.0
7.0
6.0
Style (15%)
7.0
9.0
7.0
7.0
8.0
Specs Astral Rosa Birkenstock Gizeh OluKai Ohana - Women's Birkenstock Gizeh E... Sanuk Yoga Mat
Sole Material Granite Grip rubber EVA (ethylene vinyl acetate) Non-marking rubber or gum rubber EVA Rubber
Footbed Material Dual-density EVA Cork lined with suede Molded EVA with soft ICEVA drop-in footbed EVA EVA
Strap Material Cushioned synthetic leather with knit liner, ankle strap: polyester webbing Birko-flor (PVC) lined with fleece Water-resistant synthetic nubuck leather lined with quick-drying jersey knit EVA 95% synthetic/5% polyester
Weight (per pair) 12.7 oz (11.8 oz w/o ankle straps, size 9) 13.5 oz (size 39) 13.7 oz (size 9) 6.5 oz (size 40) 5 oz (size 8)
Length 10.5" (size 9) 10.625" (size 39) 10.75" (size 9) 11" (size 40) 10.25" (size 8)
Length of Toe Box (just above toe post) 1.75" 1.50" 1.75" 1.375" (size 40) 1.50"
Unique Features Extra strap converts flip flop into a hikable sandal Adjustable strap, contoured footbed that molds to feet ICEVA (soft EVA) drop-in footbed Adjustable straps Made from real yoga mats
Animal Products? No Yes No No No

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Astral Rosa quickly became a favorite with our testing crew. It's almost unfair to put it up against a bunch of regular ol' flip flops because the additional ankle strap that converts it to a sticky supportive sandal is a game-changer. If you're someone who can't decide between a flip and a sandal because you love having both, the Rosa might be your new go-to for everything.

Performance Comparison


Should you get a flip-flop or a sandal? Get both all in one!
Should you get a flip-flop or a sandal? Get both all in one!
Photo: Matthew Blake

Comfort


The Rosa isn't the most comfortable model we tested, but it's decent and doesn't require much breaking in. With the help of the removable ankle strap, we found ourselves happily jumping from rock to rock through rivers and across trails.


While this isn't an uncomfortable shoe by any means, the footbed is rather hard. Unlike some of the other flip flops in our review, the stiff rubber does not offer the foot a cushiony experience. That being said, the thick EVA footbed feels good right out of the box, and other than allowing some time for the straps to soften up, the shoe does not need much breaking in.

The footbeds are comfy right out of the box, although the straps...
The footbeds are comfy right out of the box, although the straps take a little breaking in.
Photo: Matthew Blake

Unfortunately, the contoured ridge between the toes and the ball of the foot is poorly placed for some folks. For us, it seemed to sit a bit too far back. This is confirmed in other online reviews as well. Not a dealbreaker, but something to be aware of; you'll probably want to try this shoe on and walk around in it a bit to make sure it's a comfortable fit for your foot shape. It is also worth noting that the straps, which become more comfortable over time, are narrow. Some of our reviewers felt that they dug into their feet a bit when they were fresh out of the box.

We love the versatility of the Rosa - with the ankle strap or...
We love the versatility of the Rosa - with the ankle strap or without, this is an almost perfect shoe to have along for adventures.
Photo: Matthew Blake

Support


This is where the Rosa really shines — the ankle strap takes this simple flip to another level.


Scoring the Rosa in this category was a little tricky. If it didn't come with the ankle strap, it would have ended up somewhere in the middle, as the flip flop by itself is pretty basic and there's a lot of high-caliber options in our review. But with the strap, no surprise, this is one of the most secure models in our fleet. Ultimately we decided to award it high scores because — let's face it — it's a great design! Maybe it would have been fairer to put it in The Best Sandals for Women Review, but we chose not to, and our flip flop testers had no complaints about that.

With the ankle straps, the Rosa is highly stable. Without, it's...
With the ankle straps, the Rosa is highly stable. Without, it's somewhat insecure.
Photo: Matthew Blake

However, the strap is not the only part of this shoe that offers support. The heel is slightly concave encouraging your foot to stay in place. The small toe ridge also offers support, but like we said, it's placed a little far back, so it's best for those with longer toes.

For the sake of transparency, we do want to mention that, without the straps, the Rosa is not a particularly stable shoe. The footbed is a bit slippy if damp from water or sweat. If you're going to be hiking around in the woods or on a riverbed, you'll want the ankle straps for sure. Those straps are the reason this shoe wins an award. We also had issues with the ankle strap loosening while hiking, but found that if we cinched the little rubber ring up close to the buckle this didn't happen.

Threading the straps correctly on these sandals has a slight...
Threading the straps correctly on these sandals has a slight learning curve. They have a little rubber ring (seen here sitting on the heel) that can easily get lost but that we needed to keep the ankle strap properly tight while hiking.
Photo: Matthew Blake

Traction


Like support, this category is a bit of a mixed bag for the Rosa. With the ankle straps, it's fantastic because you are secured to the footbed and there's no worry of slipping off your shoe. Without the straps, however, traction is just so-so.


The Rosa has decent outsole traction, though it isn't the stickiest in our test suite. We wouldn't be sad if, in later iterations, Astral put more aggressive treads on these puppies.

The outsole traction on the Rosa is pretty good, but you might slip...
The outsole traction on the Rosa is pretty good, but you might slip around a little on particularly loose terrain.
Photo: Matthew Blake

The internal footbed traction is a bit underwhelming without the ankle straps — it feels slick when wet. With the straps, it's stable because you're attached, but less airflow does create a noticeably slimy feel when water gets between your foot and the shoe. We awarded a score in this category based on performance with the straps because if you're hiking or boating you'll surely be using them.

All strapped up and ready to hike in the Rosa! With the extra...
All strapped up and ready to hike in the Rosa! With the extra straps, it's easy to feel secure and sticky wherever you go.
Photo: Matthew Blake

Versatility


We may sound like we're repeating ourselves, but without the ankle strap the Rosa are rendered much less versatile, and with it we felt like we could take on the world. The fact that you can pick and choose, customizing this shoe to your activities, means it earned a high score.


The traction on the bottom of this shoe plus the ankle strap make these shoes great for boating. However, the footbed can feel slippery when wet so it is important to tighten that ankle strap all the way down. After walking around in a river, the footbed on the Rosa took 20 to 30 minutes to dry completely. This isn't a particularly impressive time, but we didn't feel that the shoe was any less comfortable when wet. If you're planning on strutting around on easy terrain the ankle straps can be removed, but you'll have to make sure you don't lose it or these flip flops lose their competitive edge. Overall, the Rosa is a tough and durable shoe that offers good traction, making them great for steep and loose terrain. If you need a pair of shoes to scramble up or down a trail or for an afternoon of rafting, then these are a great option.

Good materials mean good durability, no matter what activity you get...
Good materials mean good durability, no matter what activity you get into. From water to mud to rocks, this sandal keeps on looking like the day it came out of the box.
Photo: Matthew Blake

Style


The Astral is cute and versatile but still pretty sporty looking, so it landed about in the middle of the pack for style.


For the right kind of sporty gal, this sandal can be dressed up with a cute summer dress or down with some yoga pants or hiking shorts, but regardless of what you're wearing, you're going to look outdoorsy. The Rosa comes in fun bright colors as well as neutral tones, which gives it a leg up in the style department. There is next to no platform or heel which makes this pair a great option for hiking around, but might not be your first choice for a night out on the town or a fancy dinner.

The Rosa is pretty sporty looking, but can still be dressed up. We...
The Rosa is pretty sporty looking, but can still be dressed up. We like that there are so many options and that you can just flip the ankle straps over the top to convert to a flip flop without fully removing the straps.
Photo: Matthew Blake

Value


This sandal is a bit on the pricey side but well worth it when you consider what you get. Instead of paying for flip flops and sandals, the Rosa can give you both in one simple purchase. The materials are also durable, so this is an investment that will keep on giving for many seasons.

Conclusion


Our testers love the Astral Rosa — it's great in the water, stable on the trail, and grippy when it needs to be. While we feel some of the footbed contouring is awkwardly placed and don't like the fact that the straps sometimes slip, overall, wearing this hybrid is a joy. For anyone who wants one summer shoe that can do it all, this is a clear winner.

The Astral Rosa is a highly versatile shoe and we thoroughly enjoyed...
The Astral Rosa is a highly versatile shoe and we thoroughly enjoyed putting it to the test.
Photo: Matthew Blake

Hayley Thomas & Penney Garrett