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The Best Shoe Brands for Toddlers – The 3 Most Durable and Affordable Brands!

The Best Shoes For Kids

Do you feel like your toddlers are always wearing down their shoes before they outgrow them? Since children outgrow their shoes between 3 to 5 months (depending on their age), they should always outgrow their shoes before they destroy them.

Children’s feet grow fast enough, so it’s important that children get the most out of their shoes. One of parent’s biggest frustrations is when their children destroy their shoes before they are ready to be replaced!

I have been working for a children’s shoe store for the last 10 years now, and we specialize in fitting children with special foot needs, but we provide regular shoe fittings as well. I am familiar with which shoe brands and which shoe styles fit and hold up better than others.

Most toddlers are extremely active and impose an enormous amount of stress on their shoes, and this can lead to the shoes wearing down faster.

There are certain shoe styles that are supportivedurable, and affordable. In my experience, certain shoe brands consistently offer shoes of the highest quality construction and durability.

I have spoken with several parents who complained that their kids’ shoes fell apart before they outgrew them, and these frustrated parents all seem to have one question in common:

What are the best shoe brands for toddlers?

I have fitted most children’s shoe brands and I can tell you that the best shoe brands for kids are the ones that make durable, supportive and affordable footwear for your children! Additionally, brands that make shoes in a variety of widths such as medium, wide, and extra wide help ensure that the shoes fit the shape of your child’s foot, regardless of width!

There are 3 shoe brands that are consistent in the type of shoes that they manufacture. They all make supportive, lightweight, flexible, and high quality shoes for toddlers, but depending on your toddlers’ foot shape some of these brands will FIT better than others.

I will make sure that the shoes that you choose are beneficial for your toddler, and that they will support their natural movement and normal foot growth. It’s important to provide your toddler with a pair of shoes with good grip in order to prevent him or her from falling down.

There are several shoe bands for toddlers out there for you to choose from and some that have gained more popularity lately are See Kai Run, Pediped, and Livie & Luca. I have fitted all those shoe brands before, but I believe there are other shoe brands that your toddler will benefit from wearing since they are more consistent in the quality of their shoes and they are available in different widths such as medium, wide, and extra wide.

In this article I will describe to parents the best shoe brands for toddlers.

Toddler With Flat Feet

NUMBER 1: Stride Rite

Stride Rite is the first choice for many parents since the company designs and engineers footwear specifically to meet the needs of growing children. They are my to-go shoes for toddlers who are still learning how to walk. I normally fit ta toddler who is still learning how to walk in a pair of what I call “transition shoes,” since the shoes are engineered to help your child balance and learn how to walk while he is wearing the shoes.

IMPORTANT TIP: Don’t worry too much if you don’t see your toddler taking any steps when you try their first pair of shoes. Toddlers who are still learning how to walk use their toes to grasp the floor and feel more confident every time they talk a step. When we put a shoe in our kids’ feet, they lose that sense they had to the ground, but they do receive important sensory information from the soles of the shoes.

What I love the most about this shoe brand is how they offer shoes that are engineered specifically for toddlers who are learning how to walk, and the shoes are available in different widths such as medium, wide, and extra wide. From a fitting perspective it’s extremely important for the shoes to be available in different widths.

Whether your child is walking, running, or jumping, this brand of shoes can handle it all. Stride Rite makes shoes that are durable yet lightweight, and has been creating quality footwear designed specifically for kids since 1919.

Among this shoe brand there are certain shoe styles that are better than others. That is the reason why I put together a selection of the best Stride Rite shoes for toddlers who are still learning how to walk:


All of these shoe styles fit “true to size”, which means that you need to provide your toddler with a half a size longer of the size that your toddler measures in the shoe measuring scale in order to allow for growing room.

NUMBER 2: SAUCONY

Saucony is a great shoe brand for toddlers, as they produce shoes that are supportive, lightweight, and flexible. I recommend this shoe brand for toddlers who are already walking.

This shoe brand offers shoes in medium, wide, and extra wide widths. I have fitted several different Saucony shoe styles and I am pretty confident that your toddler will outgrow his or her pair of shoes before wearing them out! If you are making a trip to the playground with your child, Saucony’s high quality materials such as leather and mesh uppers, rubber outsoles and flex grooves, will keep your toddler’s feet comfortable and care-free.

Here you can find a selection of the best Saucony shoe style for toddlers:


All of these shoe styles fit “short”, which means that you need to provide your toddler with a whole size longer of the size that your toddler measures in the shoe measuring scale in order to allow for growing room.

I recommend this shoe brand for toddlers with narrow, medium, and wide feet. Even though Saucony offers shoes in extra wide widths I believe there are other shoe brands that will fit a toddler with extra wide feet better.

For example, if you take a look at a Saucony shoe in a size 10 extra wide, and you put a New Balance shoe with the same length and width next to it, you will notice how different their toe-boxes are. New Balance tends to make shoes with rounder toe-boxes than Saucony, so if your child has extra wide feet, I always recommend that parents stick with New Balance!

Take a look at the picture below, where you can see a Saucony and a New Balance lace-up shoe, both in a size 10 1/2 extra wide. Notice the difference in the toe-boxes of the shoes. The New Balance shoe is much rounder (wider):

New Balance Wide Kids Shoes

This brings us to our next best shoe brand for toddlers: New Balance!

NUMBER 3: NEW BALANCE

New Balance is my to-go shoe brand for toddlers who have extra wide feet or need orthotics to be fitted inside their shoes. New Balance makes some of the widest shoes since they make them deep (meaning that your toddler’s feet will sit deeply inside the shoes even if they have a high instep), and they also make shoes with the roundest toe-boxes.

One of the things I like about New Balance is that they really care about making good quality shoes for children and adults. For example, did you know that New Balance has a policy that prohibits the company from endorsing any public figure to market their products? Therefore, their profitability is dependent solely on the quality of their shoes.

The fact that this shoe company makes shoes in different widths such as medium, wide, and extra wide, is also a life saver for those children who have extra wide feet!

When I see a toddler with extra wide feet and a high instep, I immediately START by trying the New Balance shoe styles.

Parents also love how durable this shoe brand is. You won’t have to worry about your toddler’s shoes falling apart, since they will most likely outgrow their shoe before they get destroyed.

New Balance shoes are partially manufactured in the United States. The company makes domestic manufacturing a top priority, producing and assembling over 4 million pairs of athletic shoes per year in the United States.

But not all New Balance shoes are American made. If you prefer to purchase American-made shoes, then you need to check the label located inside the particular shoe (inside the tongue of the shoe) they intend to buy to determine where it was made. At our store, for example, most of the New Balance shoes appear to be assembled in the US, while some were made in China, Indonesia, and Vietnam.

Take a look at these three pictures of New Balance shoes for kids which are made in three different countries:

American Made Children Shoes

American Made Shoes

American Made Sneakers

Here you can find a selection of the best New Balance shoe styles for toddlers:


These shoe styles will fit a child with medium, wide, or extra wide feet. Please keep in mind that these shoe styles WON’T fit a child with narrow feet.

All of these shoe styles fit “true to size”, which means that you need to provide your toddler with a half a size longer of the size that your toddler measures in the shoe measuring scale in order to allow for growing room.

Now that you know which are the best shoe brands for toddlers you are ready to make the most informative decision.

Before you leave, I want to make sure that you are providing your toddler with the correct type of socks.

Socks Play a Key Role in Keeping your Toddler’s Feet Healthy!

I always explain to parents how socks play a key role in keeping their kids’ feet healthy since they act as a barrier between your kids’ feet and the shoes. Socks prevent the build up of bacteria inside your kids’ shoes and also prevent the formation of blisters by cushioning your kids’ feet.

This is why I always recommend parents to have their toddler’s wear socks with their shoes. If your toddlers are always fussing and refusing to put the socks on,  then you should look for a pair of seamless socks.

Seamless socks are great for children who feel every bump and lump  when wearing socks. While I can’t get into too much detail in this article about which are the best socks for toddlers, you should take a look at an article I wrote called:

The Best Toddler Socks

What is your favorite shoe brand for toddlers? Is there a shoe brand that you have tried, and I didn’t mention? Please share your thoughts in the comments section below so other parents can benefit from your experiences.

STOP BUYING THE WRONG PAIR OF SHOES FOR YOUR CHILDREN.LET’S START TAKING CARE OF THEIR FEET!

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 kid’s feet and get my guide for free: 10 Mistakes Parents Must Avoid When Buying Shoes for their Kids.

Join the rest of the parents who are taking care of their kids’ feet and get my guide for free: The 5 Most Common Mistakes Parents Make when Buying Their Kids’ Shoes

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