1) Have feet measured by a fitter qualified by the Society of Shoe Fitters.
2) A fitting gauge is merely a guide. There is no standardisation of shoe sizing in the UK that is why a qualified shoe fitter is so important to interpret the correct shoe for the shape of the foot. It is only a starting point.
3) Look for choice - different styles and width fittings. The fitter may need to be able to consider and try different options.
4) Buy footwear made of natural materials e.g. leather. Man-made materials e.g. plastic; make feet perspire and return to their original shape – this can cause fungal infections and abrasions.
5) Children’s shoes need to be adjustable with a lace or riptape fastening across the instep, to allow for a finer adjustment without restriction, giving a better overall fit and allowing for thicker/thinner hosiery, also more room if feet get hot and swollen.
6) No one style of shoe has been designed or constructed to meet every need. Structured shoes are needed for every day support, plimsolls and trainers for sports and occasional wear, and wellies for wet conditions. The right shoe for the right occasion! School shoes are not designed for football, or scraping on playground floors or brakes!
7) Wear new shoes indoors at home before wearing outside. Trial wears at home will highlight rubbing or discomfort and help feet get accustomed to wearing shoes again after a summer of sandals & trainers. Often shoes can not be returned after they have been worn outside (statutory rights are unaffected). Many manufacturers will not accept returns after a certain period of time.
8) Children’s shoes should be professionally checked for correct fit every 3-6 weeks for infants (0-3 years) 6-8 weeks (3-4 years) and 10–12 weeks thereafter. A qualified shoe fitter will always be happy to measure and advise IF new shoes are required.
9) Never hand shoes down. They take on the shape of the previous wearer - they will rub and not support in vital areas and can harbour infections.
10) Look after your shoes. Polish them and they will look better, protect and last longer.