We all want shoes that are fashionable, look good and fit well. Next time you go to the mall to buy shoes, remember these rules.
And you’ll come home with the perfect pair for your feet. Too many of us walk around in shoes that simply don’t fit properly and we risk damaging our feet as a result.
Timing is important
Firstly, take your time. You should never buy shoes on impulse, no matter how gorgeous they look. If you feel pressured into buying something by a pushy salesperson, walk out of the store and go on to the next one.
During the day, your feet naturally expand and in hot weather, they may even swell. To take this into account, the best time of day to shop for shoes is the evening. You should also wear the same socks or tights you intend to wear with the shoes when trying them out.
Test them out
Always try on both left and right shoes, and stand and walk about in the shop to test them out. Check that the shoes aren’t rubbing or slipping up and down as you walk. Do they feel comfortable and cushioned? Think to yourself whether you could happily wear them all day without discomfort.
How to find the right size
As a general rule, there should be enough depth in the shoes so your toes are not squashed against the top. There should also be a finger width (or half an inch) between your big toe and the front of the shoe to allow for wiggle room. In addition, to allow the ball of your foot to sit comfortably, there needs to be sufficient space in the widest part of the shoe.
As you get older, your feet will naturally become wider so you should always be willing to try the next size up. The width of your feet is important when choosing shoes and if they are wider than average, you may need to look for wide or extra wide options. There are also narrow fit shoes if the standard fit is too wide for you. Remember that shoe sizes vary enormously between manufacturers, and that’s where half-sizes can be useful.
Make sure it fits
Check the soles of the shoes carefully. Do you need shoes with sufficient tread to stop you slipping over in the mud or on wet grass? If possible, try walking on a hard surface as well as carpet to see if it makes a difference to how the shoes feel. In addition to checking the outside of the shoe, feel around the inside to make sure there are no seams that may irritate your feet or, worse still, cause painful blisters.
If you’re in any doubt about a particular pair of shoes, don’t buy them. New shoes should fit perfectly the first time you try them on, so you don’t need to buy any that the salesperson says will need ‘wearing in’. Your feet deserve the best-fitting shoes you can find!