As any heel wearer already knows, there is nothing quite like the pain of shoe discomfort. It can literally become all encompassing and become the only thing you're thinking about in the moment It's why hacks that'll make your shoes more comfortable are kind of life changing.
As someone with super wide, super flat feet (I did not win the genetic foot lottery my friends), I am no stranger to the struggle of finding shoes that not only fit, but provide lasting comfort. And things get even tricker when I actually want my shoes to look good too. You'd be surprised how few cute options there are out there when you're also trying to prioritize comfort.
And the reality is sometimes, we're just gonna wear uncomfortable shoes that aren't necessarily the best for our feet. We've all been there, and we're all likely going to do it again at some point. It's just how it is. And it's during those times that having a few tricks up our sleeves in terms of comfort and pain relief are absolutely key.
If you're in the market for some major help in the shoe-comfort department, here are 11 tips that should help.
1. Get Heel Grips When They're A Little Too Big
Heel grips are a game changer — especially if you have a pair of heels that are just the tiniest bit too big or are between sizes. They add that extra little bit of filling that can make all the difference when a fabulous-looking shoe is just slightly off in terms of sizing.
2. Get Inserts for Heels
The American Osteopathic Association stressed the fact that high heels can wreak major damage on our feet — especially the balls of our feet — because they put some much of our weight on our toes. If you're going to wear them, they recommend in investing in heel-specific insoles that take pressure off your toes.
3. Invest In A Shoe Stretcher If You Have Wide Feet
OK, I know that these things look kind of weird, but trust me — they're revolutionary if you have wide feet and often find shoes that often fit you length-wise but are just a little too narrow.. You just insert them into the problem shoes and leave them for a couple days, and viola, your shoes are just a littler wider.
4. Rub Sandpaper On The Soles For More Traction
A compilation piece for Awesome Inventions noted that a super effective way to deal with shoes that don't have enough traction is by getting some sand paper and gently sanding the bottoms. And voila! Traction!
5. Always Go Shoe Shopping Later In The Day
Awesome Inventions also noted that because our feet swell throughout the day, it's always best to go shoe shopping in the afternoon or evening. That way you'll be sure you're not purchasing a shoe that will actually be too snug throughout many parts of the day.
6. Stretch Shoes With Socks And A Hair Dryer
Life Hacker suggested warming your shoes with a hair dryer, and then wearing them for 30 minutes with a pair of thick socks. This will work as a DIY stretching technique for shoes that are just a little too narrow.
7. Never Buy If They're Not Comfortable In The Store
This one is a personal tip that years of shoe-shopping experience has taught me. If a shoe already doesn't feel comfortable while you're in the store, it definitely won't feel comfortable after several hours of stomping around — and will likely make you miserable. Do yourself a favor and don't buy them, no matter how awesome they look.
Gurl.com reminded us to never forget the mighty wedge when we're looking for a shoe with some height. The wedge helps to evenly distribute our weight throughout our whole foot as opposed to just on the balls of our feet, like with most other heels. Your feet will thank you!
9. Rub Lip Balm On Your Heels In A Pinch
This is another super useful hack from Gurl.com. If you feel like a shoe is going to give you a blister on your heel, rub some lip balm on the area to help reduce the blister-causing friction. This is especially useful in a pinch when you don't have any other footwear options to change into.
10. Get Insoles
Insoles in general are a super effective and cost-efficient method for reducing foot discomfort. I've found them to be especially game-changing when I've had to be on my feet all day do to various jobs, or when I know I'm going to be walking a ton, like when I'm traveling. Seriously, I can't stress enough how helpful this one tiny addition can be.
11. Use Baby Powder On Sweaty Feet
This final tip is one I've read all over the web and heard for years, though I honestly keep forgetting to try it for myself. If you suffer from sweaty feet, sprinkle some baby power in your shoes to absorb the moisture. It's supposed majorly help.
Our feet are important — so it's important that we treat them well! I promise you'll be WAY happier and more comfortable because of it.
Images: Duang Tran Qouc/Unsplash