One of the peskiest things about getting new shoes or boots is breaking into them. We have all been there- the blisters, the bunions and the pain of small shoes. The problem is worse for synthetic boots or shoes than materials like leather. Even though synthetic shoes are perfect alternatives for those wanting to steer clear of animal products, the materials are usually not as flexible or breathable like leather. Hence shoe stretching is even more important for synthetic boots and shoes if you want to avoid those annoying blisters.
Knowing how to stretch synthetic boots can save you a lot of pain!
The problem with most shoes or boots is that even if you know your correct’ shoe size, people have different proportions. You have wider feet than average for someone with your shoe size for example, or you might have muscular ankles. Combined with the fact synthetic materials are usually quite stiff and rigid, it is even more important to know how to stretch synthetic boots properly. Generally, it would take around a month to break into new shoes without proper stretching. But why endure a month’s worth of pain and blisters?
Below is a list of several different methods, tips, and tricks on how to stretch synthetic boots:
One of the more obvious ways of breaking new boots or shoes is to spend time walking around in them. Wear thick socks and walk around in your synthetic boots or shoes. Adjust thickness of socks depending on how much stretching is needed. Flex and bend shoes while you do this as well.
You could also try to speed up the above method by putting on a hair dryer at a hot setting while you flex and bend your shoes. Hold the hairdryer onto the tighter areas of the boots.
You could use anything from a bunch of newspapers, plastic bags, and even a potato to stuff your shoes. Stuff them however much you want and then leave them for about two days and you will have comfortable stretched shoes.
Rub some alcohol on the inner linings of your synthetic shoes or boots. Make sure not to spill any on the outer material as it could damage it. Use cotton balls soaked in the alcohol to target the tightest spots. After applying the alcohol, you can stuff the shoes with blank paper (if you use ones with ink, the alcohol may cause the ink to run) to the level you want and leave them overnight.
One of the smartest and most effective hacks is to place an empty plastic bag inside the boot or shoe and fill it with water. Tie it securely and place the shoes or boots in the freezer overnight.
Water expands when it freezes which will expand your boot or shoe.
You could also combine this trick with the previous one of stuffing the shoes. Stuff the shoes with newspaper or plastic bags and leave them in the freezer.
Invest in a shoe stretcher
If you’re feeling fancy, you could purchase a dedicated shoe stretcher. Shoe Stretchers are comprised of a two-part mold that expands when you turn the leadscrew. They usually work with a shoe stretcher spray.
Another tip on finding the correct shoes is to go shoe shopping towards the end of the day. Our feet expand slightly towards the evenings!
I hope you enjoyed these tips and tricks on how to stretch synthetic boots or shoes and that it will save you a lot of trouble so that you can enjoy blister and bunion-free journeys in your new shoes!