Are you one of the millions of shoe lovers out there? If so, you’ve probably already bought shoes online at one time or another. I usually buy my footwear on the Internet because the choice of styles and brands is so much greater than any local shop can possibly offer. Add to that the usually much lower prices online and the amount of time I can save by not having to drive to the mall and spend hours and hours hopping from store to store, and you’ve got a winner!
When it comes to buying footwear, however, for all the advantages online shopping offers there is also one important shortcoming – you can’t try a pair of shoes over the Internet like you would at the mall. And ordering the wrong size can be very annoying and result in wasting time and money that you shouldn’t have to.
It’s happened to me more than a few times in the past, so I’ve compiled a short list of things you can do to lower the chances of slipping in the the wrong shoes.
Measure the Size of Your Feet
Before you whip out your credit card for that cool pair of heels you just fell in love with, it’s important to first measure both of your feet. It’s quick and easy and you only need to do it once, but it is well worth the effort, trust me on that one. There are many ways to measure your feet, and many good folks out there have already put together guides on how to do it properly.
Ask the Seller for the Exact Shoe Insole Measurement
This part is more tricky, because unless you’re buying from a small online boutique store, the chances are you won’t get a quick reply, if any at all. However, if you can get the exact insole length from the seller, it’s without a doubt the best way to make sure that your new shoes will fit. Look around their website and try to find a phone number or an email address where you can contact them. Calling is usually better because you’re much more likely to get the information you’re looking for. After all, they can’t really ignore your request once you get them on the phone. If you’re sending an email, be patient and wait for a few days to get a response, especially if you’re dealing with a big company.
Once you know the sizing of the shoes, you simply need to compare the insole length with the length of your bigger foot (some people’s feet differ in length). If your foot’s length is anywhere from 0 to 0.5 centimeters less than the shoe’s length, you’ve got a good fit . If your foot is shorter than the insole length by more than 0.5 centimeters, it’s best to go down half to a full size, depending on how big the difference is. Normally half a size is between 0.3 and 0.5 centimeters, and a full size is double that number. If, on the other hand, your foot’s length is greater than the shoes’, you must go up by half to a full size, again depending on the magnitude of the difference.
Find an Accurate Shoe Size Conversion Chart
Finding an accurate shoe size chart is usually more difficult than it should be. If you do a Google search for ‘shoe size chart’ you’ll find scores of websites providing sizing charts. However, if you take a closer look and start comparing them, you’ll quickly find out that pretty much no two charts completely agree with each other! This makes it quite difficult and time-consuming to decide which one to use.
To add insult to injury, sizing can vary greatly between brands. For example, you can compare a size 9 from two brands and find out that they differ by as much as 1.5 centimeters and sometimes even more!
So in order to get it right it’s always best to find the shoe size chart that is specific to the brand you’re looking to buy. Want to get new Nike runners? Then find a Nike shoe size chart, not a generic one. Unfortunately, In some cases the brand-specific information is not available, which is when you can fall back to consulting an accurate generic size chart. And if you do, make sure you buy from a seller that offers free return shipping.
I’ve found that it’s quite difficult to find brand-specific charts. I’ve spent on occasions hours going over forums and websites just to find bits and pieces of information of dubious accuracy. Luckily, I discovered a great website (http://www.shoesizeconversionchart.net/) several months ago that not only contains accurate shoe size charts based on the standard Brannock device for women, men, and children of all ages, but also offers brand-specific size charts for more than 500 different brands! The site helps you to quickly and easily find information on the correct shoe size for your brand of choice, and enables you to convert sizes between US, UK, Europe, Canada, Australia, Mexico, Brazil, China, Korea, and Japan sizes. Trust me, if you ever buy shoes online, having all this information compiled in one place is priceless!
I hope this little guide will make your future shoe shopping experiences a lot smoother and more enjoyable, while saving you both time and money. Happy shopping boys and girls!