Comfortable and Fashionable Shoes For Mature Women
Tips for Finding Attractive Shoes That Feel Good on Mature Feet
I think we can all agree that there’s some truth to the stereotype that women love shoes. For some of us, “obsessed” would be a more appropriate word. Throughout our lives, shoes have been a part of our identity. Now, as we get a little older, we have to learn to adapt to our changing feet.
Image above: Skechers Parallel Trapezoid Wedge Sandal (super comfy – see reviews!)
Elements of a Comfortable Shoe
You probably already know how you like your shoes to look on you, but at this age, it’s also important to pay attention to what makes that great shoe comfortable.
There is no one criteria that makes a shoe comfortable. In fact, the “comfort” of a shoe has even been measured in a 16 step process by SATRA (Shoe and Allied Trades Research Association). Are you kidding me? Sixteen steps to determine the comfort of a shoe? As much as that is a valid scientific way to assess shoes, it has to be easier than that!
Let’s simplify the SATRA process down to four key elements: correct size, shape, stability, and style.
Our feet are often different sizes and widths. The size you measure doesn’t always fit the best. Shoes of the same size and width also can vary substantially due to manufacturing and materials.
You want to allow 5/8″ room between the end of the longest toes and the end of the shoe, about one thumb width. This is often the 2nd toe, not the great toe. Also, try on shoes at the end of the day. Your foot does swell and it is bigger in the afternoon than in the morning.
Note: Most people are wearing their shoes too small. If your feet are truly different sizes, buy the bigger pair. Better to add a filler to the smaller side than to try to stretch the larger one. If you are going to wear socks with your shoes, have them with you when you try them on. Don’t guess that the nylon sock available at the shoe store is the right thickness.
When in doubt, buy the wider shoe. Most people in the United States actually need a wide not just because of the width of your foot but the thickness of your foot.
The only people I know that look at the shape of a shoe are podiatrists or runners. A shoe is made on a distinct last. This determines the shape of the shoe. A shoe can be curved, semi-curved, or straight lasted. Determine the shape of your foot then try to find a shoe that is made off a last that is the same shape. A straight foot in a curved last is like putting a round peg in a square hole. Not comfortable!
How rigid is the shoe? How rigid is your foot? If you have a wide, flat foot, then you need a stable shoe. If you have a high arched, rigid foot, then a more cushioned flexible shoe will be more comfortable.
A great way to determine if a shoe is stable is to look at the rigidness of the heel counter (the rear end of the shoe) and also to do the twist test. If you can make a shoe pretzel, chances are it is not a stable shoe.
Well, this is the zen factor. It doesn’t matter how well a shoe fits if you can’t stand what it looks like and won’t wear it. Choose a style you like to look at and all of a sudden it is instantaneously more comfortable. Funny how the power of suggestion works that way!
Know Your Lifestyle
Many people buy shoes because they have a “feeling” about them. Others just like the way that a pair of shoes looks. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to look stylish, but, by the time we reach our 60s, we hopefully know enough about ourselves to choose shoes that match our lifestyle.
It’s better to invest in a few high-quality pairs of shoes that will add value to your day-to-day routine than to buy numerous pairs of colorful, but, ultimately useless shoes that grab your attention in the store.
If you do a lot of walking, invest in good pair of walking shoes. If you have mobility issues or any health challenges or physical limitations, think of stability and safety. If you travel a lot, look at options that are good for walking on uneven sidewalks and perhaps suited for some spontaneous dancing (I’m speaking from experience here). Shoes are not just a fashion statement; they are your connection to the world, literally.
Know Your Feet
When it comes to shoes, size matters. As women get older, our feet change size and sometimes get wider. This makes it especially important to measure your feet every time you buy a new pair. Don’t order shoes online without an unconditional return policy. Most of all, when it comes to fit, don’t compromise.
Don’t believe a shop assistant when they say that a pair of shoes will “wear in.” They won’t. If they don’t fit perfectly in the store, don’t buy them.
Next, make sure that you buy each pair of shoes with a purpose in mind. Don’t be afraid to get a pair of heels for special occasions, but don’t fool yourself into thinking that they can be your everyday shoes.
One final tip for getting a great fit is to try shoes on at the end of the day. If you try on a pair of shoes at the end of the day, when your feet are slightly swollen, you will be more likely to get a perfect fit.
Know Which Brands to Shop
If you’re looking for fashionable shoes that are known for high quality and comfort, here are some ideas…
Marc Joseph New York prides itself on offering footwear that is modern & fashionable, yet extremely comfortable and of luxurious quality…most importantly at great value! Every shoe is designed with an unsurpassed attention to detail, handcrafted in Brazil by skilled artisans
They are best known for their luxurious Driving Moccasins and Loafers however as our following grew that extended to a full Lifestyle collection of many products. The footwear is hand- stitched and crafted from premier quality leathers using state of the art machinery and the most contemporary techniques.
According to Joseph, the brand’s co-founder and Creative Director, “My goal is to design shoes that are unique and distinguished in character, incorporating the use of the most luxurious hand finished leathers & components, while remaining practical in every sense. My continuous direct communication with our loyal clientele keeps me in tune with what they desire and seek. I place extensive effort into making sure comfort and fit is unmatched. Each and every style is laboratory tested for its quality, comfort and wear and tear.”
Easy Spirit has an entire line of comfortable women’s shoes, with styles ranging from flats to sandals and wedges to clogs.
Aerosoles is a unique shoe company because they create comfortable shoes in a variety of styles – not just flats. Using the same types of fabric and construction allows them to create shoes with maximum comfort.
Clarks is a well-respected brand of British shoemakers that has been around since 1825, and is known for quality and classic styles.
Leonardo da Vinci described the human foot as “a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art”. And to make sure we can look after it better than anyone else, Clarks has studied it. From the cradle to old age, they’ve looked at the way it develops and scrutinized its biomechanics (the way it moves at work, rest and play), and what it takes to keep feet healthy and happy.
For over 40 years, Earth shoes have been making women’s shoes including casual shoes, sandals, sneakers, wedges, and boots with exceptional comfort and fashionable style to the delight of discerning women.
Earth Shoes are inspired by their founder Anne Kalso – a Danish Yoga Instructor – and her core belief that wellness and healthy living should start from the ground up. Anne created the original wellness shoe with a trademark negative heel design, called Kalso Earth Shoes. They still make the negative heel shoes today, as well as traditional and contemporary fashion comfort shoes.
Finding great-looking comfortable shoes, sandals and boots for older women doesn’t have to be a frustrating experience! There are more options than ever for women our age to find shoes that our feet actually love – while enjoying some fashionable fun.
Thanks for visiting and reading …
I hope this article provided you some practical information on finding some great-looking, comfortable shoes.
I welcome your comments below.
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