Toe box expanders
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I was inspecting the inside of my shoes and noticed that on almost all of them I have a spot of erosion (enough to break through the fabric lining). I know I should buy wider shoes in future but a) sod's law dictates that the ones I like the design of don't usually have wide fittings b) I have feet like a duck and have a wide fore foot and narrow heel hence wide shoes cause heel slippage. Has anyone played about with using shoe expanders to get around this?
Have you tried this?
I also have ducks feet and the same problem. My experience is that the mechanical expanders you can buy don't work. At least not for classic men's shoe styles, because the stretchers all have rounded bottoms and the toe part turns up. This means the toe part will sit half an inch or more above the sole when put in the shoe. I suppose they could work for cowboy boots.
Bag of water in the fridge or cramming it full of wet newspaper is pretty pointless too. If you have shoes like me, you probably have the most problem over the "ring" and "pinky" toes, and they tend to be positioned _exactly_ where the toe box stiffener is. Since toe stiffeners tend to be made from plastic* these days, you can soak your feet with shoe stretch fluid until they bleed** and the plastic will of course not move an inch.
Some people insist that any decent shoe repair shop will have a machine that can 'last out' the shoes for you; decent shops are not available where I live unfortunately, so I haven't tried.
I'm considering giving up on shoes and going Scrooge Mc'D style. ***
* if you can afford shoes with leather stiffeners, you can afford MTM instead. At least this is what people seem to be saying online (plastics even in C&J), perhaps there are exceptions.
** and they will bleed pretty quickly if you walk a lot because the stretching fluid is basically just alcohol.
*** but I'd probably add pants, at least to the office.
Edited by bluebeans - 3/25/13 at 11:18am