Guidelines for Buying the Right Pair of Shoes

Young woman trying on high heel shoes
Young woman trying on high heel shoes

A common misconception is that a tight shoe will stretch over time to fit your foot.  This is not necessarily true so you should always buy the shoe that fits your foot correctly to begin with.

If the shoes do not fit, do not buy them. They will not stretch enough so that they will be comfortable, and your feet certainly are not going to shrink.

Use the following guidelines to find the correct shoe size. About 1/2″ space should be allowed between the tip of your biggest toe and the end of the shoe. Your feet are longer when standing, so make sure to stand up when being fitted. Try on shoes at the end of the day when your feet are largest (due to swelling).

Both feet need to be measured, as they probably are not exactly the same size. Do not buy shoes just because they are high fashion, as they may cause corns, bunions, hammer toes, or ingrown toenails. These symptoms are quite common with stilettos.

Young woman trying on high heel shoes
Young woman trying on high heel shoes

Women must be taking this into consideration because there are nearly 15% fewer women wearing high heel shoes (more than two inches) to work than there were 10 years ago. More women are becoming practical and are wearing more sensible shoes to work.

Many podiatrists suggest a chunky heel that is one and a half to two inches high with padded insoles and room for the toes to move.

If you do need to wear heels, limit the amount of time you wear them, and trade off with a good pair of flats for part of the day. Also wear comfortable shoes on the weekends or at other times when you are not working.

Shoes with laces rather than slip on provide a better fit. If you wear sandals, make sure they have straps.

In order to cushion the foot when you must wear thin soled high heels, have a thin rubber sole cemented to the bottom of the shoe.

Keep in mind that if you wear pantyhose, they may cause the feet to perspire excessively which in turn encourages fungal infections, such as athlete’s foot. Some nylon pantyhose may cause cramping and pressure in the toes which could lead to ingrown toenails and hammertoes.

If you are over 65, choose shoes with lightweight and shock-absorbing soles. Also make sure they are not slippery and that the leather uppers can breathe.

Do not wear high heels if you are pregnant. You will not only be more uncomfortable, with the added weight and swelling of the feet, but you take a risk of tripping or falling. Instead, wear comfortable shoes with thick, supportive soles.

The Increasing Popularity of Online Shoe Shopping

OnlineShoeShop1With today’s busy lifestyles online shopping has become more popular than ever.

More and more people are beginning to shop for shoes online rather than getting into their cars and driving to their local shopping centers to try on numerous pairs of shoes before deciding on one or more pair. There are several reasons why people are beginning to buy shoes online. We are so busy nowadays, and it is so convenient to shop from our homes.

Also there are so many more choices online, i.e. many different brands, designers, sizes and styles, that we will not be able to find in our local shoe stores. You can narrow you choices when shopping online. For example you can even indicate your desire for some obscure pair of shoes such as: “women’s size 10, extra narrow, yellow pump with a 2-inch heel,” and chances are you will be able to find it and many different online shoe stores.

Of course, you may be able to find some good deals online, but keep in mind those good deals could be offset by the shipping charges. Therefore, you need to find out the shipping charges before you purchase the shoes because if the charges are too high, the shoes may not be worth it. You could end up paying a lot more for the shoes than you anticipated, especially if you are ordering from a foreign country. However, some online shoe stores actually offer free shipping, either routinely or at different intervals. If this is the case, you might very well find a great deal on shoes by ordering online.

You also need to know the return and/or exchange policies if you are shopping online. If the shoes are defective, do not fit properly, or look different in person than they did in the photo, you need knwon whether you will be able to return or exchange them. Do not assume that an online shoe store has a return policy. You may be willing to take a chance on shoes that can be purchased at a huge discount, but, in any event, you should still be aware of the return/exchange policy before purchasing the shoes. In the event that you need to return or exchange your shoes, you need to find out if you must pay for the shipping.

If you need shoes by a certain date, check the shipping schedule. You may need to pay extra to ensure that your shoes reach you by a specific date. If you are faced with this type of situation, it is best to order your shoes far in advance, or buy them in person. Most online shoe stores are prompt in shipping their shoes, buy you probably shouldn’t count on it if you are pressed for time. For example, you need to make sure that the shoes you are ordering are actually in stock, if they are not, it could take a long time before you will receive them. Only deal with reputable online shoe stores and pay particular attention to details such as quality and shipping policies. It is probably worth it in the long run to shop online for shoes, because you can find a wider selection and often at discount prices. And, of course, you will be shopping in the comfort of your own home.

Helpful Tips to Make Shoe Shopping Easy

woman-shopping-for-shoesIf you are shopping for a particular type of shoe, it is best to shop at a shoe store, rather than a discount store.

Shoe stores have much more space for shoes, and thus, more sizes, widths, brands and styles available than other department or discount stores.

Shoe stores will most likely employ people who are experienced at fitting shoes. These experienced shoe salesmen have fit shoes to people who have different size feet, as well as many different shoe needs. You will receive special attention and there is a much greater likelihood that you will achieve a good fit, as well as the style that is right for you. The shoe salesman is probably very knowledgeable about the type of shoe you are considering, including the materials used and how to care for them.

If you are in the market for a special shoe, such as a cowboy boot, you should visit stores that specialize in western wear. Cowboy boots have a style and fit all their own, and by visiting a store that specializes in western wear, you will be dealing with people who are knowledgeable in that area. They will be up-to-date on the types of boots available, as well as the latest styles, materials, and most of all how they should fit.

When shopping for ski boots, you should also seek out the advice of people who specialize in ski apparel. There is a special manner in which the ski boots should fit. This is very important to all skiers, but if you are new to the sport, you need to seek assistance from someone who can help you with the fit of the boots.

Even skateboarding shoes should be purchased at a store that specializes in those types of shoes. By specialized shopping, you’re likely to get more choices in that particular area as well as more knowledgeable staff that will be able to help answer any questions you may have on the shoe. They will also be able to recommend for you which shoe would be good with your needs.

Shoes are such an important purchase because they need to fit your feet properly in order to provide comfort and to preserve the health of your feet. Therefore, when you shop for shoes, allow yourself plenty of time and do not make a purchase based on the fact that you find the shoes to be very attractive. If they don’t fit properly, they will end up in your closet.

Try on several pairs of shoes before deciding which ones to purchase. You may need to go to several shoe stores before deciding on the pair that fits you correctly and that you find attractive.

You can do some research before shopping for the type of shoes that you need. Go online or search the yellow pages for the shoe stores in your area. If you are looking for a particular brand of shoes, or you need a specific type of shoe, you may call several stores to find out if they have the particular shoe or brand of shoe for which you are searching.

When you try on shoes, wear the type of socks or hose that you will be wearing with the shoes. If you wear inserts or orthotics, bring those with you as well.

How To Care for Leather Shoes

images (42)When you care for your shoes, they not only benefit from a nicer appearance, but they will last longer as well.

It makes sense to care for your leather shoes whether or not you spend a lot of money on them. Of course, if you are spending big bucks for a pair of designer shoes, you may want to take extra special care with your shoes and protect your investment. After all, some designer shoes can become collectibles. But even if you do not have a lot of money to spend on shoes, you need to care for the ones you do have. You may prevent having to buy shoes to often or buy extra pairs for different occasions.

Leather can dry out easily if it is not cared for properly. In fact, they will ultimately crack and fall apart without proper care. Then you won’t want to wear them out of the house even if they were very expensive.

You cannot just apply a coat of shoe polish when your shoes start to look scruffy, rather you need to take steps to protect and preserve your leather shoes, as well as to keep them looking good.

In order for your shoes to keep looking their best, follow these four steps: clean, condition, polish and preserve/ weatherproof.

There are distinct differences between caring for leather shoes and caring for shoes made of other materials such as suede, exotic skins, nubeck or athletic shoes.

To care for smooth leather shoes like those of men’s or women’s dress shoes, you can purchase products at most general stores, shoe stores and shoe repair stores. If you do not feel comfortable cleaning and caring for your own shoes, shoe repair shops will clean, polish and condition them, normally for a reasonable price.

However, you can learn to care for them yourself. Make sure that the products you buy are meant for smooth leather shoes. You should have the following products on hand: newspapers, gloves, soft cloths or soft rags, soft shoe brush, smooth leather shoe cleaner and conditioner, shoe polish and leather protectant, such as a waterproofing product. Follow the instructions for the specific types of shoe products that you purchased. Only use the products designed for your specific shoe materials. (For example, do not use products designed for suede shoes on smooth leather shoes.)

Sourcing Vintage Shoes on eBay

One of my favourite books is Vintage Shoes by Caroline Cox. She is one of the go-to people on shoes. Recently interviewed Caroline on vintage shoes and she gave her tips for shoe collections and sourcing shoes on eBay.

Below are some excerpts from the interview or you can read the full interview.
The Inside Source: How do serious shoe collectors use eBay online auctions as a style resource?Caroline Cox: eBay is an amazing resource for vintage shoes, as you have the whole world to shop in. There are plenty of bargains to be had out there.
The Inside Source: What vintage shoes have you bought recently on eBay online auctions yourself?Caroline Cox: I use eBay all the time. My most recent purchase was a pair of vintage biker boots. And I bought an amazing pair of Kumagai shoes!

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Australian Shoe Fair Wrap Up

Last weekend we exhibited at the Australian Shoe Fair in Sydney. It was the first time our foot pamper ranges had been displayed offline and we received some great feedback.
In between showcasing the products, I had a look around the fair and found some great new shoes.

California Comfort Shoes

This brand is new to the market and are stylish, comfortable and versatile. And I mean comfy! With two styles to choose from – Mary Jane’s (with sensible 3 inch heels) and Ballet Flats, they have changeable shoe clips to take you from day to night. You can some at this site. The inner sole is cushioned and is really soft under your feet and there are a range of colors available. The clips come in a variety of designs from plain roses and bows to decorative and sparkly (we all love a little sparkle at night). If you are looking for versatile and comfy shoes, check out California Comfort Shoes.

Aussie SolesThese Aussie Soles say they “relax ya feet!” and they do. They are really light, fit perfectly and have support under the arch. They are injection moulded so there is no chance of having the straps pull out from the sole of the thong. Not only are the thongs great, Aussie Soles believe that everyone should have the opportunity to wear shoes and have donated over 300,000 pairs of shoes to charity.


pipduck are designer rainwear. I have been looking for some designer wellies for winter and really like their range. Their designs have won prestigious awards and the hard part now is to decide which design I want.

One of the accessories pipduck stock are InnerBooti’s. I think these are great! It is an inner sock with faux fur that you can slip under your boots (and wellies) to add some fur to the top of your boot. There are several styles available.

Of course, there were so many other shoes but these are a few favourites!

How to give yourself an at home foot spa session

As winter approaches, we tend to hide and neglect our feet. But regular at home foot spa sessions will keep your feet looking good and you feeling great, and it won’t break the bank (leaving you more money for much needed shoes)!

To have a relaxing and revitalising foot spa session at home, you will need a foot bowl (or use your bath tub), a cloth and towel, a jug of water, your favourite fashion mag or book and at least 30 minutes.

Foot Soak

Before you soak your feet, exfoliate them with a pumice stone (wet or dry) to remove any dry skin and soften hard skin areas. Put some warm water in the foot bowl, enough to cover both your feet to just over your ankles. Add either a blend of essential oils (5-6 drops) or 10ml of foot bath salts. Soak your feet for up to 5 minutes, rinse and towel dry.

Foot Wash

Wet your feet with clean water and add 5ml of foot wash to each foot, lather all of your feet including between your toes, thoroughly cleaning your feet. Rinse and dry thoroughly.

Foot Scrub

Apply the foot scrub to dry feet, add a little water and massage into your feet focussing on the hard skins areas. Massage the whole foot as it will exfoliate your skin and  provide some circulation to your feet. After the gel dries, wipe off with a damp cloth and towel dry.

Foot Cream

Massage a scoop of thick foot cream into each foot and don’t forget your toes and your heels! Allow a few minutes for it to soak in to nourish the skin.

Foot Mask

Wet your feet with clean water and apply 5ml of the foot mask and rub into your feet, again focussing on the dry and hard skin areas. Allow the foot mask to dry so it can help draw out toxins and impurities. Wipe off the mask with a damp cloth and dry your feet thoroughly.

Foot Lotion

Apply a water based foot lotion using circular motions. Rub into each foot and let it soak in so your feet feel soft and moisturised.

Foot Spray

The last part of the foot spa session is the foot spray. Spray each foot, top and bottom, with the foot spray to cool, soothe and rehydrate your feet.

Treat yourself to a foot spa, it will relax you and your feet will look gorgeous!