Sandals do not always feel comfortable to wear after they are purchased. Choosing the right sandals is important, but choosing even the best sandals can feel awkward at first. Softening sandals shouldn't be too difficult, but there are things you can do to make the process easier. For a more comfortable feel, choose the right sandals, upgrade your sandals, and soften them up.
Method 1 of 3: Soften Sandals
Step 1. Avoid wearing new sandals if you are going for a long walk
Wear the sandals at short intervals at first until they start to soften. Otherwise, your feet can become blistered, cut, and feel uncomfortable. You can also experience leg muscle pain if you are not used to sandals. Do not be too pushy in the first few uses of sandals.
If the sandal does not have adequate arch support and cushioning, it means that the sandal is not suitable for long-term use. The only exception is sandals designed for climbing, but these are made for walking first
Step 2. Take a short walk in sandals
Surround the house and garden to help soften the sandals. If possible, visit the beach and walk on the sand. Then, let go and go barefoot to rest your feet. Stop wearing sandals when they don't feel comfortable for you.
Step 3. Wear thick socks with sandals
If the sandals are quite tight, wear thick socks before putting on the sandals to stretch. Matching sandals and socks may not look good, so it's best to wear them at home. To speed up the process, you can use a hairdryer to heat up the sandals while wearing them with thick socks.
Wool socks are suitable for this stage
Step 4. Put the feet in a bucket of water
This method only works for leather sandals, but don't do it if your sandals have cork soles like Birkenstock. Step into a bucket of water for a few seconds while wearing sandals until they get wet. Once done, pat the remaining water off with a towel to prevent the color from changing. Then wear sandals while they are still damp. This moisture allows the sandals to soften and feel more comfortable on the feet when worn.
If you don't want to step into a bucket of water, use a spray bottle to spray water on your sandals
Step 5. Try exercises to prevent leg pain
Sandals that lack support can damage your feet over time. If you don't connect your feet properly, sandals can cause pressure and stress on the soles and feet. You can prevent this by practicing and strengthening your arches and toes.
- To strengthen the arch of the foot, place your feet flat on the floor. Place a coin under the base of your toes and a pen under the arch of your foot. Flex your arch muscles. The coin should be able to be pushed down, but the pen should not. Keep your toes relaxed, and repeat 5 times.
- Flex your legs and strengthen them with toe curls. Stand on a towel and lift your fingers and flex your feet. Then, trace your foot back on the towel. Curl your fingers inward and try to create space under the arch. Repeat five times for each leg.
Method 2 of 3: Improving Sandals
Step 1. Rub the soap on the sandals
This method will only work on leather sandals. Rub the soap over the areas that will rub against the soles, fingers, groin, and heels of your feet. This will help the leather to stretch out a bit. The soap will also smoothen the friction between your feet and sandals. Ideally, you should use saddle soap. Wipe with a damp cloth and wipe until the sandals are dry.
Step 2. Put on a Band-Aid or moleskin plaster
Stick the Band-Aid inside the sandal on the part that will rub against the foot. Make sure you wear a Band-Aid or thick moleskin. Regular plaster will peel off easily, while moleskin is usually quite thick, but be sure to buy a self-adhesive moleskin.
You can buy Band-Aid Friction Block (anti-friction) sticks. It costs around IDR 100,000 and looks like a small deodorant stick
Step 3. Purchase arch supports
If you feel that your sandals don't support the arch of your foot, or that the cushioning isn't comfortable for walking, add an insole to your sandal for added cushioning and support. These special insoles can be purchased for added softness in the inner zone of the sandal. Look for insoles designed for sandals and hard shoes. This accessory is also ideal for absorbing moisture.
Dr. Scholl's has a variety of arch supports
Step 4. Use heel grips
If you feel the sandal is too big, insert the heel grip into the back. This accessory will prevent slipping and block the remaining space in the slipper. Heel grips are made of a variety of materials, including sponge, suede and rubber.
Trader and Dr. Scholl's make this accessory
Step 5. Watertight sandals
Sandals should only be released if they are made of cloth. Taking your shoes off can prevent water from seeping in so they don't cause friction and blisters. To remove the shoes, buy beeswax and rub it all over the outside of the sandals.
Depending on the type of sandal, the material may already be waterproof
Method 3 of 3: Choosing the Right Sandals
Step 1. Choose a sandal type
Think about the activities you will do while wearing sandals. This activity determines the type of sandals that should be obtained. Choosing the wrong sandals can make them feel uncomfortable, even if they are usually comfortable to wear. In addition to the type of sandal, it's a good idea to decide whether you want an open or closed toe design. Some types of sandals include:
- Hiking sandals are designed to have a rugged outsole, stiff midsole and strong toe boxes. Straps of hiking sandals should cover the feet tightly.
- Water sandals should be lighter than hiking sandals. These sandals should also be waterproof. This type of sandal is usually worn walking on the beach, in the pool area, and boating.
- The main style of sandals prioritizes appearance. Do not wear sandals of this type for physical activity. These sandals are usually worn on special occasions, such as weddings and parties.
- Flip flops/ huarache are suitable for walking. These sandals are lighter than hiking sandals. Flip-flops usually have a rubber sole and a toe divider around the thumb.
Step 2. Choose a strong material
We recommend buying quality sandals that will support your feet well and last longer. The type of material selected depends on the type of sandal needed. Some quality sandal materials include leather, suede, and fabric straps. Nylon and polyurethane are suitable materials for water activities. For the sole, look for memory foam, ethylene-vinyl acetate, and strong rubber materials that will last a long time and provide good support.
Step 3. Choose a good brand
Look for a brand that produces quality, strong sandals that specialize in making footwear. For example, Birkenstock and Tevas are known for making sandals that are well-supported and comfortable (even if they don't have the best look). Havaiana flip-flops are generally comfortable and trendy.
Ask shop staff for advice, or search the internet for recommendations
Step 4. Try on sandals at the end of the day
Your feet are the smallest when you wake up in the morning. As the day progresses, the feet will swell. We recommend that you try on sandals when it is late afternoon or evening to prevent buying sandals that are too small.
Consider how much your feet will swell after a physical activity such as climbing
Step 5. Make sure the sandals fit properly
Even if you have the best quality sandals for the activity you need, they won't feel comfortable if they don't fit your feet. There are no feet hanging off the sandals; neither toes nor heels. The size of the foot must be exactly the same as the sole. The sandals should not be too big so they don't slide or rub against the feet, which will cause blisters.
- Make sure the crib is wide enough to accommodate the widest part of the foot.
- Check the straps of the sandals to make sure they fit snugly, but don't choke your feet.
- Don't peel the blisters. There are many products over the counter that will help the blisters heal faster, or just see a doctor.
- Test the flexibility of the sandal by holding the base of the toe box on the table with one hand, and lifting the tip of the toe with the other. The toe box should lift off the table easily.
- The ruptured blisters allow bacteria to enter the skin and trigger problematic conditions. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for advice on how to treat it.
- If your fingernails are yellowing or discolored, you may need to treat a fungal infection.