For me buying new shoes is a real ordeal. Shoe shopping is time consuming, brain hurting and it is expensive. It can take me up to a month until I find something that I like which fits my budget, personality and my feet. I wish I could just grab an 8.5 size pair and go home, but not all sizes are the same. Also a size just determines the length of the shoe, some shoes are just too narrow or too wide. And some have impossible high heels, shoe rims that pierce into your skin or zippers that just don’t zip up. Here is my shoe shopping saga on how I go about when searching for that perfect shoe.
1. Window shopping. When in need of new shoes I am on a prowl, hunting for those shoes that I want and need. I decide what type of shoe (flat, pumps, boots, sandals) I am looking for, and then I spend weeks window shopping. Selectively remembering which brands, stores, and looks appealed most.
2. Price. Everyone has a budget. So what is your maximum? Are you willing to pay $300 for a pair of shoes that will last you 2 seasons tops, or is a $100 your cut off line. Decide your maximum and look at the shoes that you are thinking about buying. If they are over your budget say goodbye and carry on.
3. Inspect the shoes. Think of a store where you saw most variety of shoes that you liked. Go into that store and inspect all shoes that you liked. Touch them. Look at them. And smell them if needed. If the stitching looks good, shoes don’t smell like glue, they can stand on their own without falling, the leather is nice and soft, and there are no rough edges proceed to the next step. If shoes have any obvious defects don’t even think about trying them on.
4. Try them on. Ask for your size and + half size. This will save you time. Then once you have the shoes, try both of them on. When they are on go for a stroll inside the store. Are they falling off? Is one shoe a bit too snug? Can you balance your walk? Is there any discomfort at all? If they are not comfy, give them back.
5. Inspect the shoes. If you like these shoes and they are comfortable (i.e. you can wear them in your daily routine and by the end of the day you won’t have any pain) don’t rush into buying them. Take off the shoes and inspect them for defects: scratches, stains, glue marks, bad stitching, etc. If all is well take them home.
I hope my suggestions will help you out when shoe shopping and will save you a buck. I am currently in a process of shoe shopping for spring shoes, so if interested keep posted on my progress and other shoe related blog posts.