Shopping for shoes can be a daunting task. At times, you have an idea of the kind of shoe you want to buy but get overwhelmed by the different brands, colours, and styles on display that you become confused on what best to choose. Other times you simply have no clue on what to choose or you’re worried about exceeding your budget.
No matter your situation, If you are thinking of purchasing a pair of shoes but not exactly sure which will suit you, this article will help you have a clear idea of what best to choose when next you go shoe shopping.
Here are 8 tips to help you choose wisely.
1. Find Out Your Taste.
Everyone has a pair of shoes that they find themselves wearing often. On the other hand, there is always a pair sitting at the back of your wardrobe, almost brand new because it hasn’t been worn in ages.
Accessing your current collection of shoes is a good way to find out what you prefer. Perhaps you like the colour or texture of a certain brand, so you always wore it. Or it was how comfortable it was. Or maybe the quality and details of the shoes.
You could find out you prefer heels to flats or that your sneakers are well worn compared to your loafers.
Whatever it is, discovering what makes you like your favorite pair of shoe and what makes you dislike another is a great way to figure out your taste and know what kind of shoes you should buy in the future
Having a budget always helps to keep you in check when considering what kind of shoes to buy.
It’s never a good idea to get carried away and buy an expensive pair of shoes without prior planning. Not only does it have an adverse effect on your finances, you might end up buying a pair of shoes you won’t wear because you didn’t really need it.
On the other hand, getting a pair of shoes because it’s cheap isn’t a good idea either. It could lead to more expenses in the long run if it ends up wearing out fast.
Writing a budget and sticking to it helps you stay centered and make better purchasing decisions because you’re no longer swayed by price.
If funds are low, a good way to raise some will be selling some of the shoes you no longer need.
Before buying any pair of shoes, you should know your correct measurements. This ensures you buy only shoes that fit you properly. Bad fitting shoes result in injuries and make movement in them generally uncomfortable.
Listed below are some steps to help you get your measurement if you don’t know your shoe size.
- Find a piece of paper and tape it to the floor.
- Firmly put your leg on the paper. You can do this while sitting or standing.
- Trace your feet with a pencil onto the paper. You can do this while wearing socks.
- Use a pen to draw straight lines touching both sides of your tracing.
- Use a ruler to measure the length of your feet. This will determine your shoe size.
- Measure the width. The same size of shoe can come in different widths.
- Use the length and width measurement you got to find your shoe size on a sizing chart
An easier way of having your measurement is taking the tracing paper along with you to the shoe store. Insert the paper into the shoe you want to buy. Both must fit in properly without bending at the edges.
Apart from having a correct shoe size, here are several other tips to have in mind while looking for a pair of shoe that a will fit you properly
- Most people find this hard to believe but it’s true. One of your feet is slightly bigger than the other. This means that a shoe would seem like a perfect fit if it was only worn on the smaller foot. To avoid this, it’s advisable to wear both pairs to be sure they are comfortable and fit properly.
- Due to several factors like pregnancy, weight gain and changes in temperature, the size of your feet can vary. It’s always better to measure your shoe size before making any new purchase. This helps you make adjustments in case there has been changes from the previous measurements. This is especially important when the weather is hot. Our feets get swollen from the heat. This means that a pair of shoes that was comfortable earlier in the day can get too tight in the afternoon.
- Do not buy shoes that are obviously too tight with the hope they will expand in the future, and you would be able to manage them till then. This can lead to poor blood circulation, blisters, and other complications. Moreover, they restrict your movement and eventually lead to poor appearance. Best to choose a shoe that fits properly at the moment.
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Shoes that are properly made last longer and save more money in the long run. They also look better too.
Identifying quality shoes can be quite difficult as more brands mass produce. Here are some tips to help you figure out some quality pairs of shoes when next you’re shopping.
a. Inspect the shoe construction
A shoe construction is how the upper and lower part of the shoe are held together. There are mostly two ways this is done. With stitches or with glue.
Shoes with glue construction are cheaper to manufacture but are usually low quality. The lower parts pull out easily if they come in contact with water.
High quality shoes are mostly held with stitches. They last longer and can be easily maintained. If you live in a rainy place, you won’t have to worry because the sole falling out.
b. Avoid Mass Produced Shoes
If you are looking for quality shoes, you most likely won’t find them in a mass-produced shoe. Not only do they use low-quality materials, but there is also a lack of attention and detail in their production process. Most shoes that are mass-produced won’t last long.
If you’re looking for quality shoes, best to purchase from a brand that pays attention to each shoe in its production line.
There is a well-known belief that high-quality shoes are mostly expensive. While this is mostly true because quality materials and construction cost more, there are exceptions.
A brand might decide to take advantage of this belief and sell a low quality shoe for a high price. This is why it’s always advisable to carry out your own inspection before purchasing an expensive shoe.
On the other hand, you want to avoid footwears that are very cheap. Cheap shoes mostly mean low quality shoes that wear out over time.
6. Don’t follow trends
This is hard to do because trends are very tempting. Buying a pair of shoes because it’s popular might seem like a good idea at that time but it makes you forget the fact that because a pair of shoes is popular now doesn’t mean it will be later.
A good question to always ask yourself before jumping on the latest trend and buying a pair of shoes; would I still want to wear this shoe 3 months from now? Will I still find it stylish when it’s no longer popular and a new style becomes the new trend?
If yes, then you can go ahead and buy it. But if not, you’re better off saving your money or investing in a pair of shoes you actually would love to wear even when it’s not trendy.
One of the most important things to consider when shopping for shoes is comfort. No matter how attractive a shoe is, if it isn’t uncomfortable when you move in it, then you won’t be wearing it for long.
For a shoe to be comfortable, it has to be a proper fit but apart from correct size, there are several other factors that contribute to how comfortable a pair of shoes will be.
Here are some tips to help you know a comfortable pair of shoe when next you go shopping
a. Find out the flexibility of the sole.
This is especially important for flat shoes and casual wear. Take both sides of the shoe and bend it slightly. A shoe that has little or no flexibility will prevent normal movement of the foot muscles after a period of time.
This could result in improper gait and muscle cramps. A shoe that has an adverse impact on your health is definitely not what you should spend your money on. So when next you go shoe shopping, choose the ones with flexible soles for maximum comfort.
There should be a soft and thick inner sole lining the interior of the shoe. It should not feel rough and bare when you wear it. A shoe without adequate padding would be quite uncomfortable to move in as time goes on.
c. The cuff
The cuff is the area where the shoe meets with the heel of afoot. An uncovered cuff will bruise the heel when it comes in contact with it. So always ensure the cuff of a shoe is properly lined before buying.
d. Test it yourself
If you want to ensure a shoe will be comfortable to move in, trying it on is a wonderful way to do that. A few steps should be taken around with the shoe on. If you feel any pain or discomfort, you should look for another pair of shoes.
In this era of wide spread online shopping, you might want to purchase a shoe online due to convenience and more options but might be worried about what to choose.
Below are some helpful things to consider while shopping online.
Shoe sizes vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. If you’re purchasing online, it’s best to use the sizing chart of the manufacturer or vendor you wish to buy from.
b. Pay attention to Reviews
When considering a set of shoes to purchase online, it’s important to read the reviews left by others who have purchased the product. This provides a lot of insight into the quality of the product. Do not buy shoes from a vendor or an online store that has poor reviews. On the other hand, a shoe with numerous good reviews is likely to be a better choice.
c. Product Description.
As products are online, you don’t have the option to physically see or feel the shoe. Although images are provided, it’s insufficient to gauge its quality. That’s why product descriptions should be carefully read to get the details of the materials used.
d. Return Policy
Shoe shopping, especially online can be tricky so buying from a store with good return policy is important. Buy from stores that offer free return policies on shoes that don’t fit. This would help you avoid paying extra in case you have to return a product.
e. Wear to see if they fit
Once your purchased shoes have been delivered, try them on to see how they fit and feel. This should be done carefully indoors and with the tags on to avoid any damage that could make them impossible to return.
f. Compare prices
You can get quality shoes for cheaper prices online. If you find a style of shoe you want, search for it on other sites and find out if you can get it at a cheaper price. Do not forget to factor in shipping fees and quality while researching for cheaper options.
Still confused on how to choose what’s best for you while shopping for shoes? Why don’t you take a fashion savvy friend with you when next you go shoe shopping to help you make a choice?
Keep in mind that shoes can make great fashion statements and should be picked carefully. So take your time. Do not feel pressured by time, price or trends. Happy shoe shopping!