Are you eagerly awaiting the moment when your little one takes their first steps? As they begin to explore the world around them, finding the best baby shoes becomes a top priority. But when is the right time to start? And how do you choose the perfect pair for their tiny feet? In this article, we'll dive into the world of baby and toddler shoes, uncovering the factors to consider and sharing tips on measuring their size. From the moment they start walking to their first adventures, we've got you covered with all you need to know about the best baby shoes. Get ready to step into a world of cuteness and comfort for your little one's precious feet.

When do babies start wearing shoes?

Around their first birthday or when they begin walking, it's a good idea to start thinking about shoes for your baby. However, it's important to note that shoes are not necessary for learning to walk. In fact, it is best for babies to learn to walk barefoot to promote natural development. The only reason to wear shoes while learning to walk is to protect their feet from harm when outside.

While baby shoes may be adorable, they are not necessary if your baby is not yet walking. It is recommended to avoid putting shoes on your two-month-old as constant shoe-wearing can hinder foot development. Bare feet or socks are best for foot development as your baby's feet are growing and developing.

If your baby is not yet walking and you're concerned about their feet getting cold, booties are a great option. They are like thick socks and provide flexibility for natural foot development. In colder climates, booties with extra socks can be worn to keep your baby's feet warm.

How to measure baby and toddler shoe sizes

Getting the right fit is crucial when choosing shoes for babies and toddlers. Here's how to ensure the perfect fit:

  1. Print out a baby and toddler shoe size chart.
  2. Place the chart on a flat, solid surface and have your child stand with their bare foot on the chart, aligning their heel with the heel marker. Ensure their toes are relaxed and not curled under.
  3. Use a pen or pencil to mark where your child's longest toe lands. Measure all the way to the inches ruler on the side as shoe sizes can vary across different brands.
  4. Once you have shoes to try on, check the fit by having your child stand while wearing them. Use your finger to push down on the toe box and ensure there is about a finger-width or half-inch gap between the big toe and the front of the insole.
Shoe Size Chart - Inline

For shoes with rigid tops, it may be difficult to measure your child's toes accurately. In that case, trust your observation when they are standing. If your child appears to be in pain or walking differently, the shoes are likely the wrong size.

Since babies and toddlers' feet grow quickly, it is recommended to check how shoes fit every month.

What Types Of Shoes Are Best For A Baby Learning To Walk?

When learning to walk at home, it is best for babies to be barefoot or wear lightweight and flexible shoes that resemble socks. These shoes should have a non-slip soft sole and provide good ankle and foot support. Look for shoes with a rounded toe box and soft material to prevent blisters. The Ten Little Everyday Original shoes are a top pick as they meet all these criteria.

How to choose baby walking shoes

Here are some features to look for when choosing baby shoes:

  • Comfortable and the correct size
  • Nonskid rubber sole
  • Soft and flexible sole that can be bent in half, but still provides protection
  • Velcro straps for adjustability
  • Firm yet flexible heel cup
  • Wide toe box with a slight rise
  • Pull loop at the back for easy wearing
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), comfort and nonskid rubber soles are the most important factors when buying baby and toddler shoes. It is also advisable not to spend too much money on shoes as children outgrow them quickly.

While barefoot is best, if your baby cannot go without shoes, choose soft and flexible-sole shoes that allow for natural foot movement. The shoes should be easy to twist and bend.

Soft-soled shoes vs. hard-soled shoes for babies and toddlers

Soft-soled shoes are recommended for new walkers as they are lightweight and flexible, allowing babies to balance and position their feet on the ground. These shoes should have a firm heel cup and thick soles to protect their feet.

Hard-soled shoes, on the other hand, are heavier and more rigid. They should be avoided for new walkers as they can hinder foot development. Hard-soled shoes are better for providing stability once toddlers start running, jumping, and climbing.

Factors to Consider When Buying Baby and Toddler Shoes

When shopping for baby and toddler shoes, it's important to prioritize comfort and functionality. Here are some factors to consider:

A Good Fit: Properly measure your child's feet and consult the shoe brand's size chart. Ensure there is enough room for their toes to grow.

Sole Flexibility and Traction: Choose shoes with soft and flexible soles that allow natural foot movement. Look for non-skid or skid-resistant options to prevent slipping.

Support: Find shoes that are supportive but not overly rigid. They should allow the foot to pivot and accommodate irregularities in walking surfaces.

Materials: Opt for breathable materials that feel lightweight and easy to clean. Waterproof or water-resistant options are ideal.

Durability: Select shoes made of durable materials that can withstand rough play and various outdoor conditions.

Design: Consider your child's style and play activities when choosing shoe designs. Look for easy slip-on options.

Cost: Keep in mind that children's feet grow quickly, so spending a lot on shoes may not be necessary. Choose a price that fits your budget and lifestyle.

In conclusion, choosing the best shoes for your baby is a crucial decision that goes beyond style and appearance. Taking into account factors such as the stage of development, fit, flexibility, and support can greatly contribute to the overall health and comfort of your little one's feet. From measuring their shoe size accurately to selecting the right type of shoes for their age and walking abilities, there are various aspects to consider. So, whether your baby is just starting to take their first steps or already toddling around, making an informed decision when it comes to their footwear will ensure that their feet are well-supported and protected as they embark on their exciting journey of growth and discovery.