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Children’s Shoes Buying Guide

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Authored by Nickie Fleming in Shoes and Accessories
Published on 02-25-2009

Good shoes are very important for children, as they are growing and a bad shoe can ruin their little feet. But mothers also know that kids don’t enjoy shopping for shoes, and will only complain when they’re uncomfortable. Better check if the shoes they are wearing are still ok, by looking for worn areas or stressed seams. When you decide your kid need a new pair of shoes, here are some pointers:

In general, a decent shoe for children should have laces, Velcro or another fastening system, so that they stay on the foot. They should be made from breathable materials, and the best of course are leather or canvas. Please avoid heels on children’s shoes – they may look cute, but they are bad for the development of the feet. The soles of the shoes you buy best have texture, which will prevent your child from slipping. Soles should also be sturdy and thick, to prevent the feet from injuries. If you find a pair of shoes that fits these descriptions, you can of course let your kid have it’s say as well…

What type of shoes does my child need?

  1. A newborn needs shoes that primarily keep its little toes warm, and the socks on. Booties are most suitable here.
  2. A baby doesn’t need support from hard-soled shoes before he starts walking. Soft-soled shoes equally do the trick, and are soft and flexible.
  3. Once the kid starts walking, their shoes should offer stability and comfort.
  4. If your toddler already attends preschool, you’ll need a pair of shoes that look good for school, but can handle the playing too.

Finding the right fit is equally important in children’s shoes. Measure your children’s feet while standing up, and please measure both feet. One foot is most likely different from the other, so buy the pair that fits the largest foot. There should always be some space between the tip of the shoe and the toes, so check if your kid can wiggle them. Never buy shoes that are more than one size larger than what your child needs, how tempting it may be. Too big shoes can develop foot problems. Equally, a shoe that is too tight can do the same. Lastly, shoes should be comfortable from the moment you put them on. Never buy a pair and assume your kid will ‘break it in’.

Trying on shoes may be something of a problem, especially when the kid gets bored. Getting your child to relax is the best way to making this a fun experience. Distract the kid by telling stories about the shoes they are trying on. The more they’ll engage in this fantasy, the less they’re centered on curling their toes or pointing them. Another tip: always go shopping in the late afternoon or evening, as feet swell in the course of the day. If your kid hates shopping, visit a store that specializes in children’s footwear. The staff there knows well enough how to handle reluctant shoe shoppers.

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