If you have bunions, you already know that too-tight shoes are an open invitation to lots of pain and discomfort. However, we’re here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be this way. There are ways to stretch your shoes so that you can wear them comfortably. Alternatively, you may consider wearing specially designed bunion shoes.
Tips on How to Stretch Shoes for Bunions:
- Use a professional shoe stretching tool. Shoe stretchers usually come with a spray that you spray on your shoe before inserting the shoe stretcher. The spray loosens up the fibers, which makes the stretching process more effective. Once you’ve inserted the stretcher, twist its widening handle to expand the shoe. Then let the shoe stretcher stay inside the shoe for 24 hours before removing and trying your shoes.
- Apply heat. This simple method is best used on shoes made from leather or suede. Other materials could be ruined by the heat. Before heating your shoes, put on a thick pair of socks and slip your feet into your shoes. Then, take a hair dryer, turn it on high and point the hot air toward the tight areas of your shoe. Continue blowing the hot air while simultaneously stretching the shoe by wiggling and flexing your feet and toes. Once you’ve shut off the dryer, continue wearing your shoes with the thick socks for a little longer before trying them on.
- Spray rubbing alcohol. First, take a mix of 50% water and 50% rubbing alcohol and spray, or rub it on your shoes. Next, wear the shoes around immediately after treating them with the alcohol, repeating the process if necessary. However, don’t overuse the spray as it could damage the shoe fabric. This method works best on natural fabrics.
- Stuff your shoes with potatoes, or wet newspapers. Take a potato large enough to stretch out your shoe, or wet newspapers that have expanded to a size large enough to stretch out your shoe and insert them into your shoes. After two days, your shoes should be stretched out enough for you to wear.
- Insert a frozen bag of water. Fill a bag of water, large enough to fill your entire shoe, and put it inside your shoe. Place the shoe with the bag of water into your freezer overnight. As the water freezes, it will expand and stretch out your shoe. When you remove the shoes and take out the bag in the morning, let your shoes dry for 20-30 minutes before trying them on.
Buy Specially Made Footwear for Bunions
Note that while stretching your shoes is helpful, the best solution for people with bunions is to buy special shoes for bunions, like Orthofeet’s bunion shoes, which come with a wide toe box, soft stretchable uppers, and special orthotic insoles that provide arch support, reduce overpronation and help straighten the toes. Whether you’re looking for women’s shoes for bunions, walking shoes for bunions, the best bunions shoes for men, or any other shoe for bunions including extra-wide women’s shoes for bunions, you can find them at Orthofeet.
Lacing Shoes for Bunions
A tip about how to lace shoes for bunions: use the bunion step-over technique. With this technique, you simply bypass the eyelet that overlays your big toe joint. This lacing method significantly minimizes the pressure on the bunion.