When To Buy Proper Shoes
Experts from The Society of Chiropodists and Podiatrists say toddlers dont need proper shoes until they can walk well. So once hes been toddling comfortably for about six weeks, its time for those first proper shoes. For this you should always have her feet measured by a qualified childrens shoe-fitter. This is important because well-fitting shoes help to control her feet and keep her balanced as she walks. Shoe retailers such as Start-riteand Clarks will have specially-trained fitters on hand.
Salt Water Sandal By Hoy Shoes Sun
Once your kid has found their balance and gotten the hang of walking you may want to invest in some summer-ready baby walking shoes. We adore these sweet sandals by Hoy Shoes. Made from water-friendly leather with rust-resistant hardware, this pair is perfect for strolling along the beach or chilling poolside with your little girl.
Buy it: $37, Zappos.com
When To Buy Baby Shoes
Whether you have just found out that you are expecting a baby or nearing your due date, youll no doubt have at least started drawing up a list of items youll need, if not purchased a few of them already.
While there are some things you know youll need straight away, such as nappies, there are others that can be purchased as your baby grows, at different stages of their life.
This is especially relevant when it comes to their wardrobe while youll be keen to pick up all the dainty outfits and cute shoes that you find, they really dont need enough clothing to rival your own wardrobe, just yet.
The important thing to remember is that babies grow fast and itll feel like they are outgrowing their outfits faster than you can buy them. Which is why it is important to ensure you buy the correct size, at the right time.
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Best Sneakers: Nike Flex Contact 4
If you have a little runner on your hands, these Nikes will help keep them safe while also looking cute. Theyre made with breathable mesh upper materials and a rubber sole for good traction. Theyre available in standard kids sizes, 2 to 10 , but youll want to be sure they fit correctly if you think your baby will be running in them.
To ensure the right fit, Dr. Casares says parents should make sure the babys toes are not crammed against the front edge of the shoes so theres room for movement as they walk.” If your baby trips and falls more when wearing the shoes than they do when barefoot, that can indicate the shoes are too large and you need to size down.
Additionally, Dr. Cunha says that children’s shoes should have shoelaces, velcro, or some other fastening system in order to be safe and secure. With a velcro strap, these sneakers will stay put but are still easy to take on and off.
So How Long Should You Wait After Theyve Taken Their First Baby Steps
There is no definite amount of time, or single answer for this question. It depends on your child. The best advice is to wait until your toddler is walking unaided for a lot of the day. This is the point at which their feet will start to need the extra support that first walking shoes can give them.
Once youve reached this stage, theyll be ready to move on from their pre-walker shoes and its time to invest in their first set of baby walking shoes.
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Does My Toddler Have Flat Feet
Toddlers dont have a visible arch in their foot like older children and adults. Instead, at this stage, theres soft tissue in this area to protect the growing bones. This, combined with the posture babies adopt when they first walk, gives the appearance of a stompy flat foot, but theyll usually adapt a more adult walking style by the time they start school. However, if you are concerned, theres no harm in checking in with your GP.
Velcro Straps Or Laces
When choosing the type of fastener, there are a few options. All of which have different benefits and strengths.
- How secure is the fastener?Whether you go for Velcro, straps or laces, just make sure that your fastener is supporting your babys position in the shoe. Good support will ensure that theyre not having to curl their toes to keep the shoes on properly.
- How much flexibility do they have?Make sure you can easily tighten and adjust fasteners to create the perfect fit for your child. And watch out for their heel slipping out of the shoe when theyre walking.
- How easy does it make getting shoes on and off?A Velcro strap makes putting on and taking off shoes a breeze and is great for busy parents. But dont forget, its also the easiest fastener for your child to open themselves. If your baby likes to wriggle out of their shoes or kick them off, these may not be the best option for you.Buckle straps and laces are a little slower to get on and off, but they can be easier to keep on during the day. Just make sure that your laces are long enough to tie a double knot so that they dont come undone and act as a trip hazard during the day.
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When Do You Recommend Children Start Wearing Shoes Regularly
Once the child has learned to comfortably and confidently walk without shoes, regular use of shoes, including hard-soled shoes, is fine when outdoors. This is usually around 15-24 months, but is different for every child.
So there you have it: barefoot is best for babys development. You might be tempted to empty your wallet over all the adorable infant shoes out there , but for the sake of your babys feet being able to grow and develop naturally, save those shoes for photo ops and brief outside excursions when the conditions are too harsh for bare feet.
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Choosing The Right Materials
Avoid cheap materials. Its so important that your childs feet can breathe. For the best first walking shoes, look for breathable linings and upper shoes made from the softest, high quality leather, which will mould to their feet contours.
Without proper breathable materials, your childs feet will sweat in the shoe and they wont dry out properly. This can lead to foot health issues like athletes foot.
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Choosing The Right Shoe Type And Support
Flat feet are normal for toddlers, so there is no need to worry about arch supports. You should avoid any high ankle shoes, as toddlers ankles should be kept free to avoid accidental injuries and help them build muscle strength.
The best shoes for walking babies are ones that are as lightweight as possible and give your babys feet support and flexibility. The soles should be flexible and non-slip to give them the best grip possible on the ground. Apart from that, its up to your own individual preference.
Browse the selections of baby shoes online and decide whether youd like a closed shoe style, a sandal style, a casual style or a formal style. Just make sure that the shoe shape follows that of your childs foot a wide front with a narrower heel.
And Dont Forget Most Importantly Of All To Have Fun
Once you know all the things to watch out for, buying your babys first pair of walking shoes is fun and marks an exciting new stage in them growing up.
Go to stores that specialise in high quality baby shoes for boys or girls and have fun selecting the colour, style and finish you want. Think about the time of year and any special occasions you might have coming up and choose a shoe that works for you.
Then sit back, relax and enjoy this very special time with your active little toddler.
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Get Your Baby Started Off On The Right Foot
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While the best thing for a baby who is learning to walk is to be barefoot, thats not always the safest option. Because of potential dangers like broken glass, sharp rocks, and unfriendly insects, Miguel Cunha, DPM, Podiatrist and Founder of Gotham Footcare, recommends the use of baby walking shoes when walking outdoors for most, if not all, of the time.
It may be tempting to grab the cutest pair of shoes you can find on the shelves, but not all walking shoes are created equal, and you want to ensure youre getting a pair that will protect those tiny toes while still supporting development. Thankfully there are many wonderful options out there that are both adorable and safe for your baby.
Here are the best baby walking shoes on the market.
Which Shoes Are Best For Your Baby
Once you know the size of your babys feet, you can purchase their first shoes.
Shoes must be made of breathable material, supportive, easy to put on, lightweight, flexible and have a good grip. You may like to consider touch-fastening or slip-on, so they can learn to put these on by themselves, before moving onto lace-ups.
Remember to try new shoes on with socks and that, while they need to fit properly, babies feet grow quickly and you need to allow room for this around 1cm. Let your baby walk in the shoes in the same way you would. You dont want them too tight but they also shouldnt be so loose that they are slipping off.
Then, make sure you keep an eye on their feet when they first start walking in a new pair of shoes, just to make sure they arent giving them blisters.
Now you know when to buy baby shoes, you can look forward to watching your little one take their first steps and learning to walk.
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It’s All About The Fit
Velcro is best. Velcro fasteners make it easier to get shoes on and off. If you get shoes with laces, make sure theyre long enough to tie into double knots, so theres less of a chance of them coming undone.
Go for a breathable, lightweight material. Comfort is key here.
Check the fit When standing, there should be just enough room to squeeze your pinky between their heel and the heel of the shoe, and a full thumb-width between the end of the longest toe and the front of the shoe. The shoe should provide just enough wiggle room without being too big. Because little feet grow quickly, it’s a good idea to check each month to make sure the shoes still fit.
Give a squeeze. If the shoe is made of soft fabric, try to grab some of the material on the top of the foot when your child is wearing them. If you cant, the shoes might be too tight.
Look for problem spots. Let your child toddle around indoors wearing them, then take them off and look for irritated areas on your child’s foot.
How To Measure Your Baby’s Feet
So, let’s get measuring! While you can hold a ruler up to those little feet, it will probably be a challenge to get an exact measurement, especially if they are kicking or curling their toes. Plus, it is important to get a measure of the foot while standing, because the foot will tend to have a different size when under a little weight. That’s why we created our handy printable size chart!
Make sure to measure both feet! It is normal for one foot to be bigger than the other, so you will want to know the size of both feet and shop based on the size of the bigger foot.
Now that you’ve sized your baby’s feet, you’re ready to pick their new favorite pair of baby shoes. Keep in mind that brands vary in sizing standards, so look for the exact inches or centimeters when using sizing charts.
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Best Shoes For Babies Learning To Walk
Price: $$$Parents tend to be huge fans of Stride Rite shoes due to their range of sizes and the comfort of knowing that they have a seal of acceptance from the APMA.The soles of these shoes are nonslip and rounded to decrease the likelihood of slips and falls. They also have memory foam insoles to help prevent skin rubs. While not the cheapest shoes on the market, they check off a lot of the key safety and comfort criteria.
Best Water Shoes: Stride Rite Unisex
Little walkers are at the perfect age for splashing around in the kiddie pool or at a water table, but that poses a problem for their little feet, especially when the pool is surrounded by potentially hot asphalt.
According to podiatrist Dr. Cunha, shoes should be lightweight, supportive, and durable. It is important to pick a shoe that offers as much durability and protection as possible without sacrificing comfort or flexibility. So, as tempting as it may be to put your baby’s little toes into some flip flops, thats not going to be the best thing for their feet.
Instead, pick up a pair of these Stride Rite water shoes. Theyre designed to get wet and keep your babys feet from sliding around and causing falls. Theyre available in sizes 3 to 6 , including half sizes, and in medium or wide widths.
If you live in a colder climate, your tot may need some really warm boots for the cold winter months. Ugg has a lot of great kids boots , but the Bixbee Ankle Boot is great for babies and new walkers because it features a velcro strap that will keep the shoe firmly in place.
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Common Shoe Sizing Mistakes To Avoid
If you follow the tips above, and make sure to use a size chart from the brand you’re shopping with, you shouldn’t have any problems selecting the perfect size shoes for your baby’s feet. Here are a few “gotchas” to make sure to avoid…
Try to avoid hand-me-downs while your little one is still mastering motor skills. Shoes mold to the child’s foot through use, and hand-me-down shoes will be molded to the original wearer’s foot. This could cause irritation in places where the shoe rubs against the foot, and might even cause them to shift their weight incorrectly while walking.
Keeping an eye on foot size
They grow up so fast, and in the blink of an eye they will need to size-up about every 3-4 months. Monitor that growth with regular checks every couple months to make sure they don’t start to outgrow the shoes. It helps to set a reminder on your phone so you remember to check.
If your little starts taking shoes off, hobbling around, or rubbing their feet, those are late signs that they’ve outgrown their shoes and need a new pair quickly!
If you have done all the calculations and find your baby between sizes, go with the larger size. A little extra room to grow is a good thing.
Are Your Kids’ Shoes Too Small Too Big Or Juuust Right
Properly fitting shoes are a must-have for babies, toddlers and kids of all ages. Wearing footwear that isnt well fitted or properly designed for their delicate, growing feet can lead to poor development and foot problems down the road.
In fact, a recent study by The College of Podiatry shows that nearly 30 percent of children in the UK are wearing the wrong size shoes, which could permanently damage their feet!
As your child starts to explore the world around them, make sure their shoes support them every step of the way. Learn everything you need to know about properly fitting kids’ shoes with this guide.
Here’s what our fit guide covers: Click on a topic below to jump straight to that section.
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Best Baby Shoes For Winter
Price: $$$Chances are your baby just needs something to keep their feet warm during the winter months. These Ugg booties will take care of that with their furry, machine washable fabric.The fabric soles are great for foot flexibility, and theyre designed with texture on the bottom for some traction should your little one want to pull up or test out walking. Note, however, that these booties definitely arent waterproof any attempted standing or walking should probably be done indoors.
Can You Measure Your Babys Feet Yourself
Babies feet grow so quickly, that you might like to be able to measure them yourself at home. That way you can keep a close eye on their size without going into a shop and it is helpful when ordering online saving you the time and effort of sending back shoes that are far too small or big.
Dont forget, you need to make sure that you check both the length and the width.
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