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Online Shoe Shopping: How to Measure Your Feet

Shopping for shoes and boots online can be a bit of a gamble if you’re not very sure of your size.  Making matters even worse is the fact that the same size of shoe or boot can vary between different manufacturers:  A size 7 shoe or boot might be too small in one shop or too big in another.

One way to avoid sizing problems while shopping for footwear online is to physically measure your feet.  You can go to a bricks and mortar shoe store and ask a specialist to measure your feet for you, or you can do it yourself.  Here is how:

Step 1:  Gather together two pieces of paper that are larger than your biggest foot, a pencil or pen, tape of any kind, and a measuring tape or ruler that is goes down to the millimetre or 1/16th of an inch.

Step 2:  Securely tape the pieces of paper side-by-side on the floor; use a hard surface rather than a carpet.

Step 3:  Put socks on your feet and place feet on the pieces of paper, one foot per paper.  Make sure you stand rather than sit because when you stand your feet expand a bit.

Step 4:  Bend over and start to trace around your foot with the pen or pencil, holding the writing instrument perpendicular; do not hold it at an angle or else the measurement will be wrong.   If possible, in order to get the most accurate tracing possible, ask someone else to do it for you.  Trace both feet; most people’s feet are slightly uneven in size.

Step 5:  Mark the width and length of your foot.  Once your tracing is complete, draw a straight line on the outermost points on the drawing of your foot:  the bottom, the top, the inside, the outside.

Step 6:  Measure from the top of the drawing to the bottom using the measuring tape or ruler; measure to the closest millimetre or 16th of an inch.  Write down the number.

Step 7:  Determine how wide your foot is.  Measure the distance between the inside and outside of your foot that you marked in step 5.  Measure to the closest millimetre or 16th of an inch, and write the number down.

Step 8:  Make sure both feet are traced and measured.

Step 9:  Compare the measurements of both feet, then use the measurements for your largest foot.

Step 10:  Convert your measurements into the appropriate size.  If your measurements fall between two sizes, always go for the larger size, never the smaller.  You can find the conversions online; just remember that there are different sizing standards for different countries or regions.  If you’re planning on buying shoes online from the United States, make sure you look at US shoe size charts.

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