Boots – Tips for the Perfect Fit

Few things ground you as well as wearing an excellent pair

of boots. No matter what their purpose, from steel toe

construction to high-heeled fashion, if the boots are made

well and fit just right, wearing them makes you feel

capable of anything.

On the other hand, there are few things so irritating as

cheap or ill-fitting boots. When it comes to foot gear, you

get what you pay for. It’s not always true that the more

you pay for something, the better the quality, but when it

comes to shoes, it is a fact. Cheap boots are the pits.

Not only do they rarely fit well, but they have other

drawbacks, like interior fabric that chafes, or lace

openings that bind. It’s the little things where

manufacturers cut corners and you pay the price in


My collection of boots is small and superb. From my knee-

high black leather fashion boots to my felt-lined Sorel

snow-boots, rather than having several moderately good

pairs for each purpose, I find the perfect boot with the

perfect fit, qualities, and look. It saves time and hogs

up less closet space.

Have you had a pair of boots that just didn’t fit? Maybe

you paid a fair sum for them, or they looked really good,

and you just were determined to break them in. I’ve done

that, too. The fact is that if they don’t feel pretty good

from day one, they never will. So, the first boot-buying

rule is forget about ‘breaking them in.’ That little bump

in the heel, that squeeze over your left pinky toe, isn’t

going to go away. You’ll end up not wearing the boots

because they’re uncomfortable, and feeling guilty about how

much you paid for them.

Next boot-buying rule… Know what the boots are supposed to

do for you, so you have a list of criteria they must meet.

Let’s take hiking boots for example. There’s a great range

in purposes and conditions for use. If you’re a day hiker

you’ll want a lighter-weight and more flexible boot than a

trekking back-packer.

Any good hiking boot should have these features:

a. A minimum of two sets of lace-hooks (rather than lace

holes) at the top so that you can readily adjust the

tightness for uphill and downhill stretches.

b. Waterproof and very durable exterior material and with

the tongue pleated – attached all the way up to prevent


c. Smooth liner fabric that doesn’t attract seeds and is

easy to clear.

d. Stiff sole with good traction designs. And the harder

the material the sole is made from, the longer they will


e. The fit. Hiking boots will ‘pack-down’ a little and

form to your foot. But if they rub or bind anywhere, get a

different pair – sometimes another pair in the exact same

size and style will fit better. Make sure that your toes

don’t touch the front the least little bit, or all your

downhills will be miserable. And, of course, shop for

hiking boots wearing the thickness of the hiking socks

you’ll use.

Now, instead of hiking boots, if you’re buying work boots,

dress boots, or whatever, make a similar list of criteria.

Do the work boots need to be water-proof, steel-toed, ankle

high or mid-calf? Do the dress boots need to have low

heels or high, what color is most versatile with your

wardrobe, will a zipper be better for your needs than a

pull-on? With the particulars in mind, you’ve invoked the

law of attraction. You have an expectation of features

you’ll find, and the exact right boots are much more likely

to appear.

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