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Women’s Sandals Fit Guide

Women’s Sandals Fit Guide

In this guide:

When the temperature rises, it can only mean one thing: it’s time to break out your favourite sandals. These spring and summer staples let your feet breathe, come in a range of styles for every occasion and are easy to wear every day.

It’s important that your favourite sandals fit correctly to avoid those dreaded blisters and discomfort. In this guide, we’ve thought about how women’s sandals should fit and what to think about before you buy a pair, ready for those sunny days.

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How Should Women’s Sandals Fit?

Sandals are one of the greatest additions to any summer wardrobe. While they are designed to look stylish, they should also be comfortable, allowing you to wear them all day long without getting unsightly and painful blisters. Take a look below at what you should look out for to get the perfect fit.

Width

The proper fit of women's sandals should accommodate the natural width of your feet, avoiding any pinching or discomfort. Look for styles with adjustable straps or buckles, allowing customisation to your foot's width. Pay attention to any rubbing or pressure points, as this may indicate an improper width fit. Additionally, consider the specific width options offered by some brands, such as narrow, regular, or wide, to find a sandal that matches your foot shape and provides a snug, yet comfortable, fit.

Also, keep in mind that our feet naturally expand and swell throughout the day. So, this is something to consider while shopping for sandals.

Length

Sandals that are too small can cause pain, discomfort and even damage to your feet – and we know that’s definitely not the summer vibe you’re looking for. Likewise, you also don't want overhanging toes or heels, as this puts you at risk of tripping or hurting yourself.

So, make sure to get your feet measured regularly to find shoes that are the correct fit. If you have one foot bigger than the other, go for the larger size, as shoes too small will be much more of a problem than shoes too big.

Straps

Many of us love strappy sandals. However, while they look pretty, the straps should securely hold the foot in place without causing pressure points or digging into the skin. If you are looking to buy the perfect strappy sandals, adjustable straps, whether buckles, Velcro, or elastic offer a customised fit.

Make sure that straps are neither too tight nor too loose, allowing for natural movement without compromising stability. And check for any rubbing or irritation during a test walk.

The right strap fit contributes to a secure and comfortable feel, making your sandals suitable for various activities and prolonged wear.

How should sandals fit in the front?

The fit of sandals in the front is crucial for comfort and proper foot support. The toes should have ample space within the sandal's toe box, allowing natural movement without crowding or constriction.

Make sure that there's a little space (about a half-inch) between the longest toe (usually the big toe) and the front of the sandal. This prevents discomfort, friction, and potential issues like ingrown toenails.

Additionally, check for any rubbing or pressure points around the toes, ensuring a comfortable fit that accommodates the natural shape and movement of your feet.

How should sandals fit in the back?

The fit of sandals at the back is vital for stability and comfort. The heel should rest comfortably against the back of the sandal without slipping out or causing friction. Straps or closures around the heel should provide a secure fit, preventing any excessive movement.

Of course, avoid sandals that allow the heel to hang off the back, as this may lead to discomfort and instability. Check for any rubbing or pressure on the heel, ensuring a snug but not overly tight fit.

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Are My Sandals Too Big?

Ask these questions when trying on your sandals to work out if they’re too big:

  • Do my feet move around in the sandal? -
  • If your feet are slipping back and forth or sliding out the sides of the sandal, they may be too big.

  • Are my toes or heels catching on the floor? -
  • Not only is this dangerous because you could trip but it could also lead to scuffs and scrapes on your feet.

  • Am I having to change how I walk? -
  • If you’re overcompensating with smaller steps or trying to prevent your sandals from falling off as you walk, they’re probably too big.

You might also notice blisters cropping up on the soles of your foot, where you apply extra pressure to stop the sandal from sliding off.

Which sandals are best for wide feet?

If you’re shopping for women’s sandals for wide feet, there are some styles that may fit better.

We recommend choosing:

If you have wide feet, it’s also worth considering buying sandals in a size bigger. This gives you that extra wiggle room you may need to accommodate your feet, while avoiding any rubbing or toe and heel overhang.

Which sandals should people with wide feet avoid?

We never want to limit your style but if you have wide feet you may find sandals with over the foot straps uncomfortable, this includes:

This is because sandals that cover the top and sides of the foot can start to rub and cause discomfort throughout the day, if your feet are a little wider.

Which sandals are better for narrow feet?

If you have narrow feet, sandals with adjustable straps are a great choice. These keep your feet in place while walking and can be adjusted to grip your sole for extra confidence.

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How to tell if my sandals are too small

Knowing whether your sandals are too small involves considering various factors. Check for any discomfort, pinching, or pressure points on your toes, sides, or heels. If your toes hang over the edge or touch the front, the sandals may be too small. And make sure the sides of your feet aren't spilling over the edges. Pay attention to any rubbing or irritation, which can indicate a poor fit. If you feel constrained or experience pain while walking, it's a sign the sandals may be too small.

Fitting sandals with foot problems

We know that if you’re living with a health condition that affects your feet, finding the right shoes can be tricky. That’s why we’ve broken down which women’s sandals are best for a range of common issues.

Canvas Shoes

Best sandals for arch support

Flat sandals don’t offer great arch support, which can lead to cramps in your feet, muscle fatigue and even a sore back.

However, that doesn’t mean you need to throw your flat sandals away. Instead, just be sure to wear them at the right moments.

Flip-flops and strappy flats are best for running small errands or when you’re heading to the beach where you can take them off. Leave the sandals with arch support (mules and wedge sandals) for travelling, shopping and anything that requires a bit more walking.

Canvas Shoes

Best sandals for plantar fasciitis

If you have plantar fasciitis you can still enjoy great looking footwear, while staying comfortable. Choose sandals with built in arch support, or you can add insoles to create this.

Lace Ups

Best sandals for feet with bunions

The best sandals for feet with bunions are designs with a small amount of covering, as these will allow your feet to breathe. That means strappy styles and flip-flops are a great choice.

Look for toe post styles with ankle and back straps – these sandals will provide a nice fit while leaving the bunion alone.

Canvas Shoes

Sandals to help prevent swelling

Warm weather can make our bodies hold on to fluid, which leads to swelling. If you’re prone to swelling, then flat sandals that offer ankle support are the best choice.

Open sandals that keep your feet cool will also help regulate your body temperature on those hot days.

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How should women's high heeled sandals fit?

When it comes to fit, high heeled sandals should fit in a simlar way to your regular flats.

One thing to look out for though, is overhang. The shape of heeled sandals means gravity pushes our feet down, especially when we walkin heels, so your toes may hang over the end of the shoe.

Women's Flip Flop

If your heel is hanging out at the back of the sandal, that also suggests that they’re a little too small which could lead to discomfort later.

Ready to Shop the Latest Sandal Styles? Shop Now

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How to make sandals fit better

Have a new pair of sandals and want to improve how they fit and feel? We have some hacks for you:

High Heel Sandal

1. Rub soap on leather sandals to soften them.

2. Stock up on blister patches if you’re going to be walking in new sandals.

3. Spritz your feet with antiperspirant to reduce friction – and to stop them sweating!

4. Mould leather sandals by putting them on then putting your feet in water for a few seconds. Pat out the excess water and wear them while they’re still wet and they’ll mould to the shape of your feet.

5. Stretch out tight fitting sandals with a hairdryer and a pair of fluffy socks. Don the socks and the shoes then heat your feet up with your hairdryer to mould them.

6. Sandals too big? Use insoles that sit under the ball of the foot to add extra grip. Heel grips are also a clever way of ensuring your feet don’t slip in your shoes.

Looking for more inspiration and advice when it comes to shopping for your next favourite pair of shoes? Then check out our range of guides.