Have you been looking for a pair of supportive, lightweight, durable, and waterproof summer sandals for your toddler with wide or extra wide feet? Do you feel like every pair of sandals that you try on your toddler’s feet are too tight and hard to get on?
If every time that you remove your kids sandals you notice marks on their feet, then you need to provide your toddler with a pair of wide or extra wide sandals.
I am an expert when it comes to fitting children’s shoes since I have worked at a children’s shoe store for over 10 years, specializing in children with foot and leg problems, but we provide regular shoe fittings as well.
For the last 3 years I have been helping parents find the perfect pair of shoes for their children online.
Most parents are not aware that summer sandals for children with wide or extra wide feet actually exist, and I am not talking about sandals that “run wider” than others, the sandals that I will describe in this article are actually available in wide widths (“W”).
Some toddlers have a high instep and wide feet, which makes it almost impossible to find shoes that fit. The good news is that I have fitted certain sandal styles for toddlers with wide wide feet and high instep, and I will be able to show you which styles they are. When you are fitting a child with a high instep you need to look for sandals that are not only labeled as wide, but they must be deep as well.
There are certain sandals that are deeper than others, and that feature will allow your toddlers’ feet to fit deeply inside the sandal, preventing the instep of the foot from rubbing against the top of the sandal (this is how most toddlers get marks on the top of their feet).
Some parents like to provide their toddlers with a pair of Crocs for the summer, but keep in mind that Crocs won’t provide any support or stability. The issue with Crocs is that they will limit your child to wear them for very short periods of time (like walking to the swimming pool and coming back).
Crocs are a popular piece of footwear but I don’t recommend them for toddlers, only for older children and they must wear them for short periods fo time.
The shoe brands that I recommend the most for a toddler with wide feet are Stride Rite and Keen. However, not all the styles made by these two shoe brands will fit the shape of your toddler’s wide feet. There are only a few styles that will work and I know which ones they are because I have fitted them before.
If you provide your toddler with a pair of sandals that are too narrow, you are making him/her more prone to developing foot issues such as blisters, calluses, and corns.
Before I show you a selection of the best sandals for toddlers with wide feet, I want you to get familiar with what features the sandals must provide and how you can make sure that you provide your toddler with the correct sandal size.
The Best Sandals for Toddlers – The Features!
Besides fitting the shape of your toddler’s feet perfectly, the sandal must provide the following features:
- A Substantial Sole: The sole of the sandal must be supportive to minimize the impact that your toddler’s feet take every time they come in contact with the ground.
- Lightweight and Flexible: We want the sandal to be supportive, but lightweight and flexible at the same time in order for your toddler’s feet to not get tired easily.
- Traction: The sandal must provide good traction in order to prevent your toddler from falling down, especially when walking on wet surfaces.
- Quick Dry:This feature will prevent your toddler’s feet from staying wet through most of the day.
- Padded Heel Counter: The heel counter is the back part of the shoe, and it’s important for sandals to be well-padded to cushion your toddler’s feet and prevent blisters.
Can we find a sandal that provides all of those features for your toddler and that also comes in wide widths?
The selection is small, but they do exist!
Before I show you a selection of the best sandals for toddlers with wide feet, I want you to ask you this question:
Are you 100% sure that you know your toddler’s foot size? I always recommend parents to take their children to be properly fitted for shoes at their local kids’ shoe store, but the problem is that most stores have been closing down and parents must end up purchasing their kids’ shoes online.
Let’s first make sure that you don’t have a good fitting children’s shoe store in your area. START by taking a look at a map I created where I describe the best fitting children’s shoe store by state:
If after looking at that map you still can’t seem to find a good fitting children’s shoe store in your area, then proceed to take a look at an article I created where I describe the simplest, yet most effective way to figure out your toddler’s foot size from home:
Now that you know what features a good sandal must provide and how to make sure that you provide your toddler with the correct shoe size, we are ready to take a look at a selection of the best toddler sandals for wide feet.
Let’s declare this summer a sock-free summer!
The Best Sandals for Toddlers with Wide Feet – ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Please keep in mind that I only review shoes that I have previously fitted and tested on children’s feet, since that is the only way for me to tell how well-made the shoes are and how they fit.
Figuring out your toddlers’ foot size is just the first step when trying to find out the correct shoe size.
We always want to provide children with a half size longer (there should be 3/8 of an inch between the longest toe and the end of the shoes) of the size that they measure at the standard foot measuring scale (Brannock device) in order to allow for growing room. However, shoes can fit short, long, narrow, or wide, and depending on how they fit you will need to adjust the final shoe size that you get for your child.
For example, if your toddler measures a foot size 8 in the shoe measuring scale, but the particular shoe style that you are looking for your child fits “short”, then instead of needing a shoe size 8 ½ (that will be the size your child needs to allow for growing room if the shoe fitted “true to size”) your will have to provide your child with a shoe size 9 since the shoes fit “short”.
Makes sense? Now that you have a better idea about how shoes should fit, let’s take a look at a selection of the best sandals for toddlers:
These sandals all fit “true to size”, which means that you need to provide your toddler with a half a size longer of the size that he/she measured at the measuring tool, in order to allow for growing room.
All of these sandal styles will fit a toddler with wide or extra wide feet (including toddler’s with high insteps), as long as you choose the correct shoe width (“W”).
Another great advantage of these sandals is that they all come with rounded edges (wide toe-boxes), and this will prevent your toddler’s toes from overlapping or rubbing against each other.
It’s important that your toddler’s toes to not overlap each other or rub against the side of the shoes, since that constant friction can lead to blisters, calluses, or even corns.
These sandals will allow your toddler with wide or extra wide feet to walk and run around comfortably all summer!
I want you to make me a promise, if you can’t seem to find a particular pair of shoes for your toddler with wide or extra wide feet, do not get a longer pair to compensate for the width. Please contact me first and I will be able to HELP YOU find it.
I am always emphasizing to parents that it doesn’t matter how narrow or wide their kids’ feet are, there is always at least one particular shoe style out there that will fit the shape of their feet perfectly.
For example, did you know that soccer cleats for children with wide or extra wide feet existed? The same applies to other sports shoes such as baseball or basketball. I have also fitted wide snow boots, dress shoes, and hiking boots for toddlers with wide feet.
Are your Toddler’s Sandals Starting to Smell? – Let’s Find Out What to Do!
If your toddler will be wearing his or her sandals for most of the day, the chances are that they will start to smell.
I don’t want you to waste money in any products that claim to get rid of the smell, because they don’t work (they might work in sneakers but not in sandals).
There is a home based product secret which involves using baking soda and vinegar to get rid of the smell. Please make sure you rub it throughout the sandal, especially in the neoprene part. This is the most effective solution in order to get rid of the smell, and parents who already tried this method said that they have been amazed by how well this works in reducing the smell.
The other thing that I recommend parents doing is to wash the sandals with a water hose and let them air dry, this will help reduce the smell.
Have you tried any of the sandals that I recommend for toddlers with wide feet? Is there a particular summer sandal style that you can recommend? Please share your thoughts and experiences below so other parents can benefit from them!