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I cannot tell you how excited I was when my son, Parks, began taking his first steps. It was a time of nonstop celebrating! We cheered, and clapped, and soon after he took those first few baby steps, he was off and running. And so was my search for the best shoes for babies with fat feet.
It wasn’t until he started walking that I realized I didn’t have appropriate shoes for him yet! Sure, we had some cute pairs of soft shoes that were not intended for walking toddlers. But, we didn’t have shoes with hard soles or that would be good for Parks’ healthy foot development. At that time, I didn’t realize that I was going to have such a hard time finding his first pair of shoes. It ended up taking me months to find a pair of shoes that would fit his fat feet.
After a week or two of buying and returning shoes online, I gave up online shopping. I had been so excited about finding him a cute pair of slip-on Vans or Chuck Taylors. I wanted him to walk around in style (and match me!). It didn’t take long before I realized that being practical rather than fashionable was where my head needed to be. Giving up the online search turned out to be the best thing for me. However, even after coming to terms that my son might not have the most stylish shoe, I still couldn’t find a pair that fit his instep. It became beyond frustrating.
Parks has what I like to call “filet o’ feet.” His insteps are so thick that none of the shoes we tried on would get on very far. I was finishing the rounds (again) at a shoe store or three in my area, I noticed a local baby boutique I had never seen before on my way home.
I marched into Spoiled Sweet Boutique in Memphis, TN, and asked for their help. I was desperate, and they could sense my frustration.
They showed me a shoe that I hadn’t seen or heard of before. They suggested I try a size larger than Parks’ foot but add the removable insole that came with the shoe. It went on easily and fit like a glove. Adjustable velcro straps. Wide toe box. Removable insoles. All game changers. I sent Parks running around that store and I was sold. I bought two pairs–in white and brown (so I’d have a pair to match every outfit, of course).
The Search Was Over!
FOOTMATES, y’all! Footmates is the answer. Yes, I use affiliate links, but no, they are not sponsoring this blog in any way. I’m sharing and writing this because I believe in these shoes. I know I’m not the only parent trying to overcome filet o’ feet and Footmates are a great option for parents like me.
I opted for the leather versions of each shoe, though more expensive because they’re easier to clean and feel more durable. We get compliments on how cute his little shoes are all the time! I’m so happy that I found them.
What sets Footmates apart in the realm of baby footwear? Let me count the ways! I’m excited to delve into the exceptional features that make Footmates my undisputed winner in providing the best shoes for babies with fat feet.
1. Flexible Soles for New Walkers: The shoes are equipped with solid, yet flexible soles that allow for natural movement, providing the right balance between support and freedom.
2. Wide Toe Box for Perfect Fit: The wide toe box is a game-changer for little ones sporting chubby feet. It ensures a proper fit, accommodating even the chunkiest of feet.
3. Adjustable Velcro Straps for Easy On and Off: This was a big deal for me. The struggle of getting shoes on and off chubby little feet is real. Footmates shoes address this with adjustable straps, making the shoe easy to put on, take off, and tighten around your baby’s foot.
4. Removable Insole for the Perfect Fit: Babies’ feet grow at an astonishing rate, and Footmates understands the importance of keeping up with those changes. The removable insole feature allows for adjustments as our baby’s feet grow, ensuring a consistently perfect fit. This adaptability makes these shoes an investment that lasts through various stages of our baby’s early years. It also made it possible to find shoes that perfectly fit my Parks’ fat feet. We went up one size and added the removable insole. Now that he’s broken these shoes in, I’m confident they’ll still fit as his feet grow and it’s time to remove the added insole.
5. Rubber Sole and Outsole for Stability and Traction: The use of a rubber sole and outsole adds an extra layer of assurance to our babies’ steps. The rubber construction provides stability, while the outsole ensures traction–a crucial combination for the safety of new walkers.
6. Variety of Colors to Suit Every Style: I was excited to find the cutest and most stylish shoes for my son. So I was disappointed when none of the shoes I had envisioned him wearing would fit his chunky feet. Footmates’ shoes resemble the Chuck Taylors that I’ve always loved. But they’re better quality, made of high-quality materials, and come in a variety of colors, allowing us to choose the perfect pair to complement our babies’ wardrobes. From classic neutrals to vibrant hues, Footmates made sure that our fat-footed babies can also step out in style.
The first thing you’ll probably notice when you start looking into Footmates shoes is that they’re rather expensive–especially considering how fast our babies’ feet grow. But I promise that our babies’ comfort and proper foot development are worth the investment. The durability and long-lasting quality and sizing of these shoes make them a cost-effective choice in the long run.
The removable inserts make Footmates a shoe designed to grow with your baby, accommodating the changes in their feet as they reach new milestones.
As Parks’ foot grows, I plan to remove the added insert. At this point, he’s been wearing the same Footmates shoes with the removable insert for about six months. The shoes are broken in and comfortable for him. Since they’ve been broken in, I know that I’ll still be able to get them onto his feet when it’s time to remove the added insert. That means that I found a pair of shoes that will fit him longer than those that don’t come with a removable insert.
Healthy Foot Development
The early stages of a baby’s life are crucial for the development of their feet. We must consider their foot development from the beginning–and ensure we are outfitting our babies and toddlers with good quality shoes that are meant for walking. What I’ve learned in my research on the perfect shoes for babies with fat feet is that the most popular styles could be the worst for their foot development.
According to the American Podiatric Medical Association, ill-fitting footwear can irritate kids’ feet and aggravate existing conditions. Here is what they recommend to help you identify the perfect and best-fitting shoes for your little ones’ feet.
- Take your baby or toddler with you and have them try on the shoes to ensure it’s the right size. Every shoe fits differently so even if you think you’re buying the correct shoe size–it could differ depending on the brand. I, personally, do not recommend buying shoes for babies and toddlers online. This was my first mistake and I wasted a lot of time and energy without finding what I needed.
- Always measure your child’s feet before buying new shoes. Their feet grow so quickly that the size you need could change month to month.
- Shop late in the afternoon when your baby’s or toddler’s foot is at its largest. Feet tend to swell by the end of the day and you’ll want to buy shoes that allow enough space for their swollen feet to remain comfortable.
- Never buy shoes that are too large or need a “break-in” period. Shoes should be comfortable immediately. Buying shoes that don’t fit properly or aren’t comfortable can lead to tripping or injury.
- Once you’ve bought some shoes, watch your baby or toddler walk in them to make sure they are the correct size and appear comfortable. Is your baby tripping all over the place? Do the shoes look like they’re flopping around? Your child should be walking as well as they would if they were barefoot.
- At the end of the day, examine your baby’s feet for signs of irritation.
When it comes to choosing the best shoes for babies with fat feet, Footmates emerged as my unrivaled option as the best toddler shoes. With the combination of properly fitting my son’s fat feet, durability, stylish designs, and a commitment to healthy foot development, Footmates became my go-to brand.
I’m screaming about them from the rooftops. I didn’t see them listed on any of the popular blogs’ lists of top picks and I feel the need to correct this. Why aren’t they ever listed as one of the best shoe brands for baby feet? Because a lot of companies pay blogs to post about them! That’s right. Lists that make the top of Google search results as the “best baby shoes” are often getting paid to publish them and rank them as such. Stride Rite shoes and the See Kai Run brand, which are often touted as the best walking shoes for babies, did not fit my son’s chunky feet after many failed attempts with multiple shoes. Shoes that come up on all of those lists may be fine options, but they’re not always the best options.
If your baby or toddler has fat feet (like mine), consider the factors that made Footmates stand out for me. From the wide toe box accommodating chubby feet to the flexible soles promoting natural movement. The adjustable features, including velcro straps and removable insoles, make Footmates a practical choice that evolves with our babies’ changing needs. The rubber sole and outsole provide stability and traction, ensuring that every step is taken with confidence and comfort.