6 Wedding Shoe Tricks That'll Keep Your Feet from Hurting on the Big Day

Dance until dawn with these genius insider tips.

bride holding wedding shoes

Photo by Jake Anderson

Your first dance with your partner should be a moment characterized by joy and unadulterated love, but sporting the wrong shoes on your big day can transform a blissful spin around the dance floor into utter agony. And while brides shouldn't have to choose between elegant footwear and comfort on their big day, unfortunately, that's oftentimes the case.

With the correct preparation, though, stiletto-sporting brides can indulge in their ultimate shoe fantasies without any unnecessary foot pain. So for those who crave the elevation heels provide without the accompanying suffering, read on for six wedding shoe tricks, according to an expert.

Meet the Expert

Veselina Chebanova is the founder of Arteana, a luxury sustainable footwear brand founded in 2019. Handmade in Italy, Arteana's shoes focus on the pillars of craftsmanship, sensible sourcing, and responsible production methods.

Break in Your Heels

"As a footwear designer with a decade of experience in the industry, I know that the right pair of shoes can make or break an outfit—and this is especially true on your wedding day," says Veselina Chebanova, founder of luxury sustainable footwear brand Arteana. "But as much as we all love a stunning pair of heels, the truth is that new shoes can often be uncomfortable and difficult to walk in. That's why it's essential to break in your wedding shoes before the big day. Not only will breaking in your heels make them more comfortable to wear, but it can also help you feel more confident and graceful when walking down the aisle or dancing the night away."

According to Chebanova, the best way to break in heels is to wear them around the house leading up to your special day. "This will help stretch and mold the shoes to your feet, ensuring a better fit and greater comfort. Plus, it's a great excuse to practice your aisle walk and perfect your posture and poise in your wedding shoes. That way, you can focus on enjoying your special day to the fullest, without any shoe-related worries or discomfort," she adds.

If you want to increase the expansion of your shoes, try wearing thick socks as you break them in.

Lubricate Strappy Sandals With Deodorant

If your primary problem with your wedding shoes is that the straps rub your feet the wrong way, consider lubricating the skin irritated by the shoe with deodorant. Just as oil buffers the interaction between machinery cogs, so too will deodorant provide a cushion between your feet and your footwear of choice. This is a great tip to help avoid any potential blisters and will save you the trouble of having to find a bandaid to cover any sore areas.

Purchase a Pair of Inserts

Investing in a pair of cushioned inserts might be more important than selecting the perfect pair of heels. "Shoe inserts, also known as insoles or footbeds, are an often-overlooked accessory that can make a big difference in the comfort of your wedding shoes," Chebanova notes. "These inserts are designed to provide additional support, cushioning, and stability to the foot, helping to alleviate pressure and reduce pain and discomfort. In addition to their comfort benefits, shoe inserts can also help improve the fit of your shoes, especially if you have flat feet, high arches, or other foot conditions." The best part is that there's an array of insert options available to choose from, so select a style that works best for your particular needs.

Line Your Shoes With Plush Fabric

Before sporting your heels on the big day, consider lining the interior of your shoes with a thin, soft fabric. Heels with especially aggravating straps or restrictive designs can be made more wearable with the addition of moleskin or an equivalent material. And what's ultimately great about this tip is that it helps avoid any external changes to the look of your shoes—a win-win situation.

Increase the Width With Heat

To increase the width of your wedding shoes, warm your heels by placing them in close proximity to a radiator or use a hairdryer as your heat source of choice. This will elevate the temperature of your shoes, and as a result, increase the elasticity of the fabric, allowing your footwear to conform to the contours of your feet once you slip them on moments later. However, be sure to refrain from overheating your shoes, as you don't want burned soles on your big day.

Select Heels That Are Slightly Large

In order to secure some wiggle room for your toes, select a shoe size that's a half size to one full size above what you would normally wear. When testing shoes before your purchase, make sure there is adequate room at the toe and heel, yet not enough space to make movement difficult.

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