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How to Buy Shoes for Babies – Let’s Keep your Babies’ Feet Healthy!


Editor’s Note: This post has been updated and revised for accuracy on April 2022 and reflects up-to-date information on how to buy shoes for babies.

Is your baby ready to start walking? The first pair of walking shoes is the most important one as it helps babies take those first steps with confidence.

My Experience Fitting Children’s Shoes

I have been working at a specialized children’s shoe store for over 10 years now, and I handle approximately 100 shoe fittings and try-ons per week. I have fitted hundreds of babies for their first pair of  walking shoes, and I am familiar with which shoe brands and which shoe styles are better than others.


I always recommend that parents have their babies’ feet measured at their local specialized children’s shoe store, as these stores hire shoe fitters that know how to fit babies’ shoes properly. The issue is that most independent children’s shoe stores have been closing down, and parents don’t know where to take their babies to be properly fitted for shoes.

If you identify with this, start by taking a look at a resource I created where I describe the best children’s shoe stores by state. These are actually fitting shoe stores, not big retail stores:

The Best Kids Shoe Stores in the United States – Where to go for Proper Fittings!

If you still can’t seem to find a local children’s shoe store in your area then let’s keep on reading, as I will show you the most effective way to figure out your baby’s foot size from home.

It’s extremely important that you fit your baby’s first pair of shoes correctly as they play a key role in helping your baby take those first steps with confidence. If you don’t fit your baby in the correct pair of shoes in the correct shoe size, you might end up creating all sorts of issues to your baby’s feet such as blisters, calluses, or corns.

It seems like this generation of parents doesn’t put the same emphasis on the importance of well fitted shoes as the former ones. Why is it so important to get the correct shoe size for your baby? Because the shoes that you choose for your baby can and will affect their overall foot, leg, and back health.


Do you want to know what is the most common mistake that parents make when trying to find the correct shoe size for their babies? They assume that the size that their babies’ feet measured on the foot measuring scale automatically translates into their baby’s shoe size.

The main reason why this is the wrong way of finding your baby’s correct shoe size is that shoes can fit short, long, narrow, or wide, and depending on how they fit then you need to adjust the size that you get for your baby. Makes sense?

The size that your babies measure at the shoe measuring scale is only a starting point when trying to find the correct pair of shoes for them.

Did you know that most babies have wide or extra wide feet?

Babies are still growing, developing, and working on their coordination. The right type of shoes helps protect their feet and help them take those first steps with confidence.

Let me show you how to buy shoes for babies in case you don’t have a local children’s shoe store in their area that they trust. To order your baby’s correct shoe size online, you need to know your baby’s exact foot size first.


Getting the Correct Shoe Size for Your Baby! – 5 Simple Steps

If you don’t have a children’s shoe store in your area, below is a set of guidelines you can follow to figure out your baby’s exact foot size”

1- Make sure you have the proper device at home to measure your babies’ feet. I have found that the Brannock device (standard foot measuring tool) is the most effective one when it comes to measuring children’s and adult’s feet. I describe this shoe measuring tool in more detail in an article I wrote called:

Shoe Size Measuring Device – Stop Buying the Wrong Shoe Size

I understand that it can be hard for families to invest 50 dollars in this foot measuring device, so feel free to measure your baby’s feet with a ruler or measuring tape and I will input those numbers into the Brannock device I have at home to figure out your baby exact foot size. You can learn more about this process in another article I wrote called:

How to Measure Your Kids’ Foot – 2 Simple Steps to Determine Foot Length and Foot Width

2- The next step is to make sure that you measure your baby’s feet when they are fully standing. On weight-bearing, the foot stretches in both length and width, and this is the only way to get the true shoe size.

3- You also need to make sure to measure both feet — most of us have a half a size difference between our feet — The longer of the two feet is the correct length to be fitted.

4- Measure to the longest toe, which is not always the “big” toe, but could be the second, or even the third toe.

5- Don’t forget to check if your baby has narrow, medium, wide, or extra wide feet.


Did you know that the volume of the foot also plays an important role when finding the correct type of shoes? The volume is the total amount of foot that is to fit inside the shoe. For example, some babies’ feet are thin and bony, while others are stocky and muscular. All these different types of feet might measure the same length and width, but will fit and feel different in the same shoe because of the difference in volume they put inside the shoe!

Sounds complicated, doesn’t it?

Don’t worry! I will show you the best fitting shoes for babies that I have fitted before. These shoe styles provide all the features a baby needs to start taking those first steps with confidence.

The baby shoes that I describe below come with rounded edges which help decrease stumbles and falls. These features also allow your babies’ toes to freely move inside the shoes and help them balance. These shoes also provide important sensory information from the soles.

The Best Baby Shoes ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Below you can find the deepest baby shoes that come with the roundest toe-boxes for babies with medium (M), wide (W) or extra wide (XW) feet and high insteps. Disclosure: Keep in mind that we may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases.

What Shoe Size Should You Order?

To allow for growing room, I highly recommend that parents order these shoes half a size larger than their child’s current foot size. This translates to 3/16 of an inch or 0.4 centimeters of space between your child’s longest toe and the end of the shoes.

Make Sure your Babies’ Shoes Fit – Get it Right!

You might think I am exaggerating, but there are 4 steps you must follow to make sure that your baby gets the correct shoe size.

1- Length Fit: Allow approximately 3/16 of an inch or 0.4 centimeters of space between your baby’s longest toe and the end of the shoes.

2- Tip of the Little Toe: Make sure the little toe is not pressed against the side of the shoes, as this can cause corns or blisters.

3- Instep Fit: The instep is the top part of the foot. Always check for any tight fit around this area, and make sure there are no marks on your babies’ feet when you remove your babies’ shoes. This can happen especially with fat/fleshy or stocky/muscular feet.

4- Heel Fit: Make sure the heel of the foot fits snugly without any heel slip.

If these 4 points check out properly, your baby will have a good fit! I assure you that this is really hard to do, that is why you need to take your baby to your local children’s shoe store to have their feet properly measured.

Below is another video that I created where you will be able to visualize how to make sure your babies’ shoes are fitting correctly:

How to Tell if the Shoe Fits – Let’s Check if Your Kid’s Shoes are the Correct Size!

Now that you know how to buy shoes for babies, you are ready to keep their feet and legs healthy.

Are Any Other Shoe Choices Available?

Do not hesitate to contact me directly at my e-mail if you have any further questions or if you need a different pair of shoes for your child. My e-mail address is:


Do you have a good children’s shoe store in your area that you trust? Is there a specific method you use to figure out your kids’ foot size from home? Please share your thoughts and experiences below so other parents can benefit from your experiences.


I created this webpage to help parents understand the importance that shoes have in healthy foot development and how they can prevent foot problems in the future.Join the rest of the parents who are taking care of their kids feet and get my guide for free: 10 Mistakes Parents Must Avoid When Buying Shoes for their Kids.

Do You Buy Your Kids’ Shoes Online?

Subscribe and get my personalized shoe size chart for free to help you find what size to order online.

Shoe Sizing Chart

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