Shoes can indeed make or break our ensembles; however, besides being statement pieces, they largely dictate our productivity and efficacy as well. If you have tried running important errands wearing a troubling fit, we reckon that you will agree to the previous claims. Now let us be honest, the memory of painful blisters rarely allows one to disagree!
Blister jokes aside, there are also experts out there who posit that our taste in shoes speaks of our temperaments. Hence, if you go around sporting the wrong size or uncomfortable—and/or gaudy—fits, then that does not reflect well on your personality.
What we are trying to get at with the discussion above is that shoes are not as insignificant as we like to believe. Therefore, one needs to be diligent in one’s purchase. But sometimes, sadly, no matter how gingerly you select a pair, it ends up being a thorn in the side.
Fortunately, however, there is no mountain high enough when it comes to breaking in shoes. Especially the ones that rub against your heels. In point of fact, if you would like to overcome the said plague of rubbing or chafing at the heels, proceed immediately to our oncoming tips-and-tricks list.
7 Tips For Breaking in Shoes that Rub Your Heels
Purchase a Well-Fitted Pair
It goes without saying that an ill-fitted pair is a usual suspect when it comes to blisters and chafing at the heel, especially if you are an athlete. Understandably pairs that repeatedly slide off or are fitted to a fault will not afford comfort and cause rashes. Thus, try not to buy a pair with these shortcomings, to begin with.
But even though it is recommended to be particular about your fit before the cashier runs your credit card, some of our oncoming hacks can still help you allay a lousy purchase. Yes, you heard us right. Keep reading if you want to know how to perfectly fill out your pesky pair!
Wear Chunky Socks
One of the easiest and most affordable ways to break in shoes is wearing chunky socks. Not only will the plumpness of your socks cushion your heels from the constant scraping, but also force the shoe to distend over time. Hence, it works for both oversized and tight pairs.
We personally think that even though this hack trumps some of the others because of its affordability, it is very time-consuming and a bit of a nuisance. Chunky socks are, moreover, very unsightly and embarrassing in professional settings.
As absurd as it sounds, your blow dryer can help stretch out your tight shoes. Here is how this works:
- Simply plug your dryer in.
- Put on your chunkiest pair of socks with the troublesome pair.
- Blow-dry for 20 to 30 seconds at the heel area from a safe distance.
- Take a walk around the room.
Once you have the preceding steps down, remove the socks and see if it fits any better. If yes, then congratulations! If not, try a few more times until you see solid results or overcome the heel-related issues.
This surreal procedure helps stretch out the fabric a little and works best for leather boots. However, since you will have to do this time again till the shoes are wholly broken in, it might incur electricity expenses.
The “Ice Ice Baby” Technique
If you are afraid of burning your heels off with a blow dryer, you should try the ice pack hack. All you need for this hack to come through is two ziplock bags filled with water. Next, stick one bag inside each shoe and leave them in the freezer overnight. Once the water turns to ice, the ziplock pouches will expand, and consequently stretch out the shoes.
Notwithstanding, this hack is safer and reduces heat-induced chafing on account of the coolness; it can, however, do irreparable damage to your shoes as well. Hence try not to get carried away with this one and only leave your shoes in the refrigerator for a set time.
Make Use of Moleskin
Another excellent way to reduce rubbing at the heel is to stick moleskin to the problematic areas. This may come as a shock to you, but this adhesive fabric can be applied to the back of your shoes or directly onto your heels. Thus, if you would like to rid yourself of a sore heel, then head over to your local drugstore this minute.
Before application, just ensure that there is no dirt on the problematic surfaces to get the best of this hack.
Look Into Insoles or Heel Grips
If you can spare a few bucks, then invest in insoles or heel grips. These add-ons will keep your feet grounded by reducing the heel-to-shoe contact and keep your feet firmly in place.
Buy an Anti-Friction Balm/Stick
As the name suggests, these sticks or balms will lessen the heel-to-shoe friction by nicely lubricating your heel. Unfortunately, they wear off very quickly and will require quite a few reapplications.
What is the ideal time limit for the ice pack hack?
We suggest leaving it in there for 20 minutes maximum. However, this will only somewhat stretch out the fabric. Thus, if you do not want to repeat the hack several times, leave it in the freezer overnight or while you are getting your recommended 6-hours of sleep.
What can I use instead of a blow dryer?
A wad of wet newspaper can also help break your shoes in if you are afraid of using a blow dryer. We advise you to use this hack instead for shoes that do not take well to heat.
A chafed heel can become your Achilles’ heel if it keeps you from performing well, thus our hacks are nothing short of life-savers. Nonetheless, you need to remember that hacks do not go a long way and, therefore, you need to be more mindful about your purchases. In short, you cannot go on making horrendous investments, in the shoe department and otherwise, and expect tips and tricks to fix them. Hence, buy responsibly, so that you do not have to spend time fixing your shoes.