5 ways to know that the shoes you’re buying won’t kill your feet

Only a couple of weeks ago, I was with my boys at the local mall. Our mission was to simply stock up on groceries, pop into the library to return and borrow books, and get some new school shoes.

Over an hour of waiting in line to fit little one’s feet for new school shoes. Agggh!


Instead, we left the shopping centre with a bunch of CDs and DVDs from the library, a pair of school shoes, two pairs of little boy runners, a couple of milkshakes and an awesome pair of new shoes for me. Both the milkshakes and my shoes were rewards for getting through the tediously long wait to buy school shoes.

Yet when I wore my new shoes the next day, I ended up with a big blister and red, raw marks criss crossing my feet.


So how can you tell if the shoes that felt comfortable in the shop will stay comfortable when you’re out? Are there certain things to look for that will indicate whether a shoe and your foot will be a marriage made in heaven?

And are there warning signals that the two of you are only destined for a fling, the kind that will leave you with an unsightly souvenir – kinda like that cold sore you picked up from a pash & dash back in your uni days?”


Luckily, on a recent trip to Copenhagen to attend Fashion Week and the ECCO Walk in Style Awards, I was able to sit down with shoe designer Niki Taestensen – the creative brains behind all of the women’s shoes for ECCO to ask him these burning questions. Here are his top tips.

Outside the ECCO shoe store in Copenhagen where I chatted their head shoe designer.


5 things to look for in a pair of shoes so they’ll stay comfy long after you’ve left the store.

1.       When you try on the shoe, close your eyes to diminish distractions and really think about how your foot feels. Is it comfortable or is there pressure at certain points?

2.       Try both shoes on, and go for a walk around the store. It’s important to try the shoes on different terrain, so walk on carpet and bare floors to get a feeling for how your foot feels on impact with these surfaces.

3.       Ensure there is about ¾ cm between your longest toe and the front inside edge of the shoe. Otherwise, your toe nails will press into the shoe and hurt.

4.       Check the width of the shoe by standing up, then squeezing the sides of the shoe together. Snug is good, but be sure that the leather has some give. If it is too rigid, the shoes are simply too tight, and after wearing them for a short time you’ll feel like your foot is wedged into a vice.

5.       Make sure that the shoes are lined in leather, especially if the shoe is to be worn in direct contact with your skin, like a sandal or a pair of killer pumps. Leather will allow your skin to breathe and remain comfortable. To check that they are fully lined, simply put your hand into the shoe and feel all the way down to the tip.


Ever had a tawdry fling with a shoe that left your foot in tatters? Did you stick it out and see whether it’d improve, or did you see the writing on the wall and kick it to the kerb, stat? What are your tips to finding a shoe that will go the distance with you?

baby hanger