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The Best Place to Find Kids' Shoes
for all Foot Shapes and Foot Problems

The Toddler (2nd – 3rd year)

The Best Everyday Shoes for Toddlers  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

I only review shoes that I have fitted before, since that is the only way for me to tell how well-made the shoes are, the amount of support that they provide, and how they fit.

I have been working for a specialized children’s shoe store for over 10 years now that focuses on children with foot and leg problems, but we provide regular shoe fittings as well. Over the years I became familiar with the best everyday shoes for toddlers.

 Flexible and lightweight shoes are the two most important features that your toddler’s shoes must provide. Disclosure: Keep in mind that we may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases.

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Style: New Balance KV990V5 and 680V5
Cheapest Place to Buy: New Balance Store
Fits the Following Foot Shapes: Medium – Wide — Extra Wide —High Insteps
What Shoe Size to Order? Order a half a size larger (0.3 inches or 0.7 centimeters)
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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 The winner for toddlers with wide or extra wide feet.

✅ The winner for toddlers who wear orthotics.

All of these shoes are available in medium (M)wide (W), and extra wide widths (XW). These shoes are also capable of fitting toddlers with high insteps.

Features of this shoe style:

  • 100% Leather.
  • Supportive rubber outsole.
  • Lightweight and flexible.
  • ABZORB heel for ankle support.
  • Durable.
  • Removable insoles.

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Style: Saucony Baby Ride Sneaker
Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
Fits the Following Foot Shapes: Narrow — Medium – Wide
What Shoe Size to Order? Order a whole size larger (0.7 inches or 1 centimeter)
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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The Saucony Baby Ride is one of the most popular shoes for toddlers and young kids. This style is lightweight, flexible, breathable durable, and it offers excellent lateral support. 

  • 100% Leather.
  • Supportive and durable rubber outsole.
  • Removable insoles.
  • Lightweight and flexible.
  • Breathable.
  • Rubber pods on non-marking outsole for traction.

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Style: Stride Rite Made 2 Play Artin/Taylor Sneaker (Toddler/Little Kid/Big Kid)
Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
Fits the Following Foot Shapes: Medium — Wide — Extra Wide
What Shoe Size to Order? Order a half a size larger (0.3 inches or 0.7 centimeters)
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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This is a very lightweight and comfortable shoe style with a flexible outsole and rounded edges to prevent stumbles and falls. This sneaker is perfect for their every day activities.  Its patented Sensory Response TechnologyTM construction is designed to support developing bones and muscles.

This sneaker features a hook-and-loop closure for a secure and easy fit.This style will look good any casual outfit.

  • 100% leather
  • Machine washable.
  • Supportive shoe with rubber outsole.
  • Breathable.
  • Lightweight and flexible.

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Style: Stride Rite SRTech Elliot Bootie
Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
Fits the Following Foot Shapes: Narrow — Medium — Wide
What Shoe Size to Order? Order a half a size larger (0.3 inches or 0.7 centimeters)
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

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This classic leather bootie features a leather upper. This shoe is supportive, with traditional shoelaces for a perfect fit. Paired with this is a sturdy rubber outsole, so your toddler will have traction and cushioning for those precious first steps.

  • 100% leather.
  • Moisture-wicking lining.
  • Self-molding footbed.
  • Seamless construction that cradles the foot’s natural shape.
  • Sensory pods at outsole.

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Style: Stride Rite Kids’ Layla Mary Jane Flat
Cheapest Place to Buy: Amazon.com
Fits the Following Foot Shapes: Medium — Wide
What Shoe Size to Order? Order a half a size larger (0.3 inches or 0.7 centimeters)
Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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This is one of the most popular Mary Jane shoes in the market right now. It gives the versatility of being a sneaker and a dress shoe at the same time. The rubber outsole and the firm heel counter allows toddlers  to run around and play all day.

  • Textile.
  • Rubber outsole.
  • Lightweight outsole for maximum flexibility.
  • Mary Jane closure with hook and loop for easy on and off and adjustability.

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If you need any other type of shoes such as every day, summer, winter, or sport shoes, you can find them all in a tool I created which lets you filter by the type of shoes you need. This tool is extremely effective since it will show you shoes in different widths such as narrow, medium, wide, and extra wide. I also tell you exactly how each shoe style fits (short, long, narrow, or wide) and will let you filter by the instep of your child’s foot. You can even find shoes that will accommodate an orthotic. You can find that tool here:

Find The Best Shoe Style For Your Child’s Unique Feet

If there is a particular style that you would like me to review, please do leave me a comment below and I will be more than happy to feature a review in the upcoming future. If you need immediate response feel free to leave a message or email me and I will get back at you as soon as possible.

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15 Comments on The Toddler (2nd – 3rd year)

  1. Interesting site with good information. Parents of kiddos requiring orthotics find it quite a challenge to find suitable shoes so your recommendations here are very useful.

    I am hoping you could do a review on the popular Converse All Star Chuck Taylors some time. I love the look of these shoes especially for kids but when wearing them myself I find the innersole too flat and I wonder what effect, if any, this would have on the feet of growing children?

    • Kim,

      I will let you know as soon as I do a review on the Converse All Star Chuck Taylors. Keep in mind that these are what I call “fashion shoes” and should not be worn as your everyday pair. Like you mention in your review, they are flat and they do not provide much support. I would not recommend these type of shoes for the feet of a growing child unless he/she wears it for a short period of time (no more than 3 hours per day).

  2. I’ve heard nothing but good things about New Balance shoes. Both for children and for adults. What are your thoughts on sport shoes for children, are there other variables that need to be taken into consideration?

    I’d be interested in reading your review on Nike shoes for all ages. I’ve read differing opinions on how good this brand is for foot health.

    • Curt,

      I happen to mention New Balance and Saucony because these shoes come in different widths (N,M,W,XW) and they happen to be the best fitting shoes for children. However, there are lots of good brands out there. Nike is one of them. The only downside to it is that it usually fits in the narrow side and the majority of children tend to be in the wide side. Thank you for sharing!

    • Stride Rite, Preschoolians, See Kai Run have great wide width shoes.As to your question, it drveis me mad that every shoe company has their own sizing chart.For goodness sakes, can someone give me a universal sizing chart for shoes for toddlers?Stride Rite has a good print out guide that helps you determine the size and width for your tot.I will suggest, if possible you have them measure her feet at the store though. Even if you don’t buy a shoe there, it’s a good idea. I do that all the time and my husband is mortified but if I can get the size and buy the shoes cheaper online, I’m going to. My kid’s feet grow every three months! Price is important.Oh, one last thing, measure both feet. I found out that my kids feet were different sizes. That made it that more fun and interesting for us.

  3. I like the one that you recommend New Balance 900 for wide feet and especially it caters for children with flat feet. As I learnt from some of the shoe salesman that flat feet people need to wear orthotics. Now, I have one more option for my son. Thanks for writing this article.

    • Stanley,

      The New Balance 900 works great for children who require orthotics. I am glad that you found another option for your son!

  4. Hi there! We have always a problem when it comes to finding the right shoes for my nephew. It is because he has a wide feet. And most of the shoes available in the market won’t fit with him. Good thing you have mentioned about the New Balance 900. So you have mentioned the pros of this shoes. But I want to know if it has any negative features. If there’s any, can you tell me some because I am thinking of buying one.

    • John,

      From a fitting standpoint there is no cons about this particular style. The shoes have a deep end, come in medium, wide and extra wide widths, it has a thick velcro strap and it is well made. The only cons I see about this style is that is not very appealing to some children since it does not come in bright colors. Aside from that, one of the best shoes that I continue to fit for over 5 years.

  5. Hi Juan,

    What a nice article, I really needed to read this because this is just what I was looking for:) My daughter has large feet and she need a good pair of shoes since she plays sports.

    I really like the New Balance, they look very strong and the material looks also great. My concern is if the shoes don’t fit her, can I have a refund?

    I have bookmarked your site so I can show this to my daughter:)

    Thank you very much!

    • Daniella,

      You can’t go wrong with the New Balance 990! You DO NOT have to pay for shipping and YOU CAN RETURN the shoes if they don’t fit her. Thank you for sharing!

  6. Great job! I like the content which is very thorough and informative. The information on kids shoes for toddlers is very helpful. I particularly like your images that speaks volumes about your content. The section on Mens’ and women’s’ socks is greatI would love to be part of a newsletter subscription. Thanks a bunch!

  7. Thanks for these reviews, they’re very helpful, especially when there is so much on the market. I love Stride Right shoes and both my children have worn them in the past. I’m curious though about the bacteria repellent lining and treatment they put them in – do you know what type of products they use? I’m assuming they are good for kids with sweaty feet right?
    Thanks in advance! Alice

    • Hello Alice,

      Stride Rite shoe have been leading the baby/toddler shoe industry for a while, and they make excellent shoes that are lightweight, flexible, supportive, and come with breathable materials. Some of their shoes are also machine washable which is great for kids with sweaty feet!

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