Shoe Shops: Tips on Buying Shoes

Buying the right fit shoes is not rocket science. There are plenty of ill-fitting shoes walking around because their owners did not follow some basic rules in buying them. The number one rule is easy. Do not buy shoes early in the morning. It has been scientifically backed that our feet tend to swell throughout the day so it is best to buy a pair in the evening or late afternoon. More often than not, the shoes that are bought in the morning tend to cramp and pinch toes.

Whilst at the store, have a salesperson measure your feet. Most people have one foot bigger than the other and knowing this could prove helpful when buying a pair of shoes. If your other foot is indeed bigger than the other foot, settle for the bigger size and just add an inlay on the other pair if necessary. It would be better to use an inlay than settle for the smaller size and let your other foot suffer the pinching and cramping.

Try the shoes on and walk around them a bit. Your initial reaction should be “these shoes are comfortable” and not “oh I can break them in to fit well later.” There is no such thing as “breaking-in” a pair of shoes not counting ballet toe shoes. If the shoes do not fit well and comfortable whilst still at the store, then there’s no way they will feel comfortable later. Do not settle for a “little tight” or a “little lose fit”. The shoes should fit snugly- no slipping of heels and no side to side sliding of feet.

Make sure you are wearing socks, tights or hosiery that you intend to wear with the shoes. You would be surprised at the different shoe fit you will get when you wear a pair of shoes wearing sheer nylon hose against thick tights. Do not try on a pair of shoes on bare feet if you intend to use the shoes even for light dancing. You would not want to lose a shoe whilst dancing would you?

Do not opt for some fancy material shoes that would bode well for a costume party and not for everyday wear. Avoid synthetic materials that are stiff and do not “breath”. Buy for quality. If your budget allows it, choose soft leather or quality synthetic ones. Avoid unyielding cheap plastics as they could inhibit air circulation in your feet which could encourage bacteria growth thereby leading to foot odour or worse, athlete’s foot.

Make sure you know what type of feet you have- low-arched; average-arched or high-arched. High-arched feet would bode well with cushioned in-step. Average-arched feet should look for shoes that offer stability. People with low arches should look for shoes that offer motion control. These classification works well when choosing running or training shoes.

In a nut shell, always choose quality shoes over cheap ones. This is not saying that you should go overboard with your shoe budget. As long as the basic requirements are met and the pair of shoes is within your budget, then go for it.

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