Toddler Shoe Size Guide

Figuring out the proper shoe size for play shoes and for your toddler’s school shoes can be challenging. All children are different, and toddlers can vary significantly in size even if they are the same age. Many size guides will go by your toddler’s age, but this can be problematic. This article will walk you through the best way to determine your toddler’s shoe size.

Measure Your Toddler’s Feet

To work out the correct shoe size for your toddler:

  1. Begin by measuring their feet. You can use a ruler or tape measure, whatever you have handy in your home. 
  2. Have your child stand up with their feet flat on the floor. 
  3. Ensure they are not curling their toes up, as many toddlers tend to do. Straight toes are necessary for correct sizing.
  4. Make sure they wear socks too, as this will offer you a more realistic measure because they will often wear them with their shoes.

You will want to measure from their heel to the very tip of their biggest toe. Most toddlers will have their big toe as the largest, but some may have a longer second toe. The longest toe should be your endpoint for measuring. Make sure you measure both feet, as one foot will always be slightly larger than the other.

Allow For Growth Spurts

Once you have your measurements, focus on the largest foot. Whatever measure you have, add about one centimetre to your calculation to allow for growth spurts. Taking this extra centimetre into account will guarantee your child is as comfortable as possible and that they will get the most wear out of their new shoes. 

Toddlers grow up quickly, and the shoes you buy for them today may not fit them in two weeks if they hit a sudden growth spurt. 

Check The Shoes on Their Feet

Have your toddler wear the shoes appropriate for the measurements you have taken. Get them to stand with both feet flat on the floor. Feel the tip of the shoes to check if their longest toe is rubbing against the inside. You ideally want just over one centimetre between this toe and the end of the shoe for greatest comfort and room for growth.

Next, get your child to walk in the shoes. Please pay close attention to the footwear’s heels as they are doing this. The heel should be snug against their foot and not move too much. You do not want the heel to be loose because if it moves too much, it can cause discomfort and eventually blisters. 

Choose The Right Shoes For Your Toddler

Size is critical for toddler shoes, but so is selecting the right type. You want to select shoes made of high-quality materials that are comfortable for your child to wear and conducive to walking and running correctly. The shoes should be soft and flexible, allowing for freedom of movement for their feet. They should be capable of fully flexing their feet and extending their toes while wearing them.

You should also consider width. Avoid too narrow shoes, as your child’s feet are still developing. Broader shoes will facilitate this growth. 

Toddler shoes should also be breathable to allow maximum airflow around their feet, avoid excess sweating, and promote healthy foot development.

Be sure to look at the treads on the shoes too. Toddlers love to run and play, so you want to choose good-quality treads. Shoes with smooth soles could result in your toddler tripping or slipping. Solid treads will minimise this and allow them to play with greater confidence and comfort.

Finally, do not be seduced by higher price shoes for your toddler claiming good arch support, which may sound great but is entirely unnecessary for children this age. Instead, focus on size, flexibility, breathability, and good-quality treads. After all, they will outgrow their shoes before they come close to having a chance to wear out the soles. 

Final Thoughts

It is challenging to find the perfect shoe for an ever-growing toddler. However, if you take the advice we have shared with you today, the process should be much less stressful and potentially enjoyable! Good luck with your shoe shopping, and don’t forget to pack some snacks for your little ones. If you find yourself getting ready for school, you’ll also need to consider school items beyond shoes, such as buying the best backpack. Be sure to check out the other articles we cover on our blog about school supplies shopping.

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