Footwear can be pretty expensive, so it makes sense to find ways to make shoes last longer. Besides, when you find a pair you really love, you want to get the maximum life out of them. It’s also more environmentally friendly to keep your shoes in good condition so they last as long as possible, rather than throwing them away and buying new ones. So here are some good ways to make shoes last longer.
1. Don’t Delay Repairs
When you’re looking for ways to make shoes last longer, pay attention to signs that they are going to need repairs soon. Watch for the heels wearing down, worn soles, and loose buckles. It can be cheaper to get any of these repaired, rather than pay out for a new pair. Wait too long, and the heels will wear so much that the shoe itself is damaged and can’t be fixed. So get repairs done in time.
2. Buy Quality
Sometimes you really do get what you pay for. Okay, handmade shoes that will last a decade are out of reach for most of us, but when it comes to footwear, buy the best you can afford. A $20 fashion pair just isn’t going to last, whereas a $100 pair will give you much better value for money – providing they are cared for. Look out for sales, and you can pick up a good pair of shoes that will last for years.
3. Store Correctly
How do you store your shoes? Do you kick them off and leave them on the floor, or throw them in a cupboard? Shoes won’t last if they’re treated in this way; they’ll get scuffed and chewed by the dog. So always store your shoes properly, either on a shoe rack or in hanging shoe containers.
4. On and off
Now, you probably think that at your age, you don’t need to be told how to put your shoes on and take them off. But think for a moment about it. Do you kick off your shoes using the toe of one to prise off the other? Or take shoes off without undoing the laces (my habit)? This will quickly cause wear to the shoes, so always undo fastenings before taking shoes off.
Be honest – how often do you clean your shoes? Most probably, not that often. If they are made of leather, shoes need polishing to keep them in good shape, and suede pairs should be cleaned with a suede brush to stop them getting dirty and faded. Give your shoes a regular clean and polish, and they will last longer.
6. Appropriate Use
If you want your shoes to last longer, wear them only for appropriate occasions. For example, if you’re going to be doing a lot of walking, leave the high heels at home. They’ll be uncomfortable and wear out faster. Use shoes for the correct purpose, and you’ll get more use out of them.
7. Shoe Trees
Shoe trees are a good way to keep expensive shoes and boots in good condition when not being worn. Even if you don’t use them for every pair, get some for your best shoes and boots. It will help maintain the shape. And of course, store them in a shoe cupboard or closet, where they will be safe from damage.
These days it’s common to treat clothing and footwear as disposable items that can be discarded when you get bored. Not so long ago, however, people couldn’t afford to keep buying new shoes, and so looked after the ones that they had. They may not have been able to ring the changes, but their shoes sure lasted. For many reasons, it’s worth following the same example and making your own shoes last longer, such as if you find it difficult to get shoes that fit. Do you treat shoes as something for the short term, or do you have pairs that you’ve owned for years?