If you’ve got a pair of shoes that are killing your feet, particularly your ankle, then you know how annoying and painful this problem can be. Shoes that irritate your ankles are the worst and make your life miserable particularly if they are causing blisters. So how do you stop shoes rubbing the back of your ankle so that you can walk without pain and cut feet?
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Don’t have time to read the entire article? Here’s the easiest product you can use to stop a shoe rubbing back of ankle. Just use an Anti-Blister Balm to eliminate friction.
How Do I Stop My Shoes From Rubbing?
Well if you want to really stop the problem and discover how to stop shoes rubbing the back of your heel you can take one of two approaches. The first involves going back to the basics and looking at how you buy your shoes or secondly finding ways to solve the problem with shoes that you can’t return.
Prevention always makes more sense to stop shoes from rubbing the back of the ankle but if you have found out too late and are already suffering don’t worry we have plenty of solutions that can reduce friction.
So what can you do to stop new shoes from hurting? Well here are our top tips and strategies for being able to walk pain-free again.
Why Do My Shoes Always Give Me Blisters? -Wearing The Right Size Shoes
Let’s start with the most obvious way of learning how to stop shoes from rubbing the back of your ankle and that is starting at the very start of the buying process.
When you go to a shop to buy a pair of new shoes you need to think a little bit more carefully about what you are buying. Don’t just pick the same shoe size that you have been wearing for years. Take the time to try on a number of different pairs and styles to find the best fit for you. New shoes rubbing heels is relatively common but it can be avoided if you take your time trying on shoes.
Shoes that rub heels are usually caused because either the shoe is too large causing too much friction in the heel area or they are too small so your ankle will rub against the back of your shoes. Make sure that you choose a fit that gives you some room but not so much that your feet are moving around.
Also, consider the height of the back of the shoes and whether that could cause problems. Try and avoid shoes that are rubbing your Achilles tendon.
Where possible try on shoes in the afternoon when your feet have had time to swell and wear moisture-wicking socks that keep your feet dry. If you are trying on running shoes find a shop that allows you to try them out on a treadmill first so you can test them in action to check that they don’t hurt.
Taking time out to make sure that new shoes don’t hurt or rub the back of your heels from the start will save you a lot of pain and problems later on.
Shoes Rubbing the Back Of Your Ankle – Use Moleskin
If you already have a pair of problem shoes then don’t despair as there are plenty of ways to stop your shoes from rubbing the back of your heel.
One of the most popular ways to helping to prevent new shoes rubbing heels is by using moleskin. Moleskin is a form of cotton fabric that tends to have material on one side and sticky adhesive on the other. The moleskin can be bought either in strips or in plaster shapes that can be placed on the back of new shoes to lessen the rubbing.
A piece of moleskin is relatively inexpensive but it can make a big difference. We particularly love moleskin heel protectors as these have been designed to follow the shape of your foot. If you are unsure however about what you need this Molekskin Adhesive Panel Set has 11 different shapes for you to use on your shoes. Experiment with placing the moleskin pads in different places around the heel to get the best results.
Shoes Rubbed Skin off Your Heel – Wear Blister Pads
If your shoes have already caused a problem and given you blisters on the back of your heels then you will initially need a different product to help with healing as well as protecting your ankle from more damage.
Compeed blister plasters are one of the market leaders in producing products that help with friction as well as helping your feet recover when your skin has been affected.
Their blister plasters are perfect because the Hydrocolloid gel in the plaster creates the right environment for your skin to heal. They also have extra cushioning in the plaster that helps to prevent any further rubbing or irritation.
These plasters are very robust and don’t come off easily which is great if you are always on the move or running. Plus Compeed has a range of colors for their plasters. Whilst you can get translucent plasters they also come in a number of different shades to match your skin tone.
Shoes Hurt Achilles Tendon – Wear The Correct Socks
If you want to learn how to stop shoes rubbing the back of your ankle then wear the correct socks. Wearing the right socks can really help the problem of a sore ankle because they can be used as an anti-friction device.
Start to experiment with the thickness of socks you are wearing to see what gives the best results. Thick socks for example may be perfect at helping to cushion your ankle from pressure or rubbing. Thinner socks can also work especially is they are moisture-wicking as they help keep your feet dry. When your feet are sweaty that can make the problems with the shoe rub worse.
Another trick is to try and wear either double layer socks or wear two pairs together. This is a regular trick that is used by long-distance runners. The double layer of sock material helps to reduce the friction further keeping your feet pain-free.
Shoes Too Loose In Heel? – Use Heel Guards or Heel Grips
Even though your shoes may fit well everywhere else sometimes the heel is just the wrong shape which leaves gaps that can make your shoes rub and give you blisters. This gap tends to be at the top of the back of your shoes rather than at the base which means that wearing socks might not solve the problem.
This is where heel grips make be useful to prevent your shoes from causing you irritation. Heel grips differ from moleskin which tends to have a layer of fabric that is all the same thickness. Heel grips tend to have a more cushioned section of padding that is at the top of the product to prevent rubbing and to help you wear your shoes without irritation.
If your ankle is hurting at the base then heel guard protectors may also help. These are much larger than grips and can be helpful for blisters as well as a device to provide heel cushioning for cracked heels and Achilles Tendon problems.
Stopping Cut Heels From Shoes – Use a Shoe Stretcher
It isn’t unusual for people to buy a pair of shoes and then find that they are too tight. Tight shoes are never going to be comfortable and they are also going to rub in all the wrong places causing blisters and foot pain.
In the past, you might have had to throw the shoes away but now you can buy a shoe stretcher for a relatively reasonable price to increase the size of the shoe.
There are plenty of different types of shoe stretcher that you can buy but the best is the four-way product which helps to increase the width and the length of the shoes. Simply place them in your shoes for 24 to 48 hours and that should increase their size.
Shoe stretching devices are perfect if you are looking to help your tight shoes fit a little better. You can’t expand multiple shoe sizes but they can help leather and suede shoes become roomier.
How To Break In The Back of Shoes
In reality, if you want to know how to stop shoes from rubbing the back of your ankle think about wearing the shoes in before you actually wear them properly. Hard leather shoes in particular need a little help to mold to the shape of your foot so you need to think about how to break in shoes so that they fit more comfortably.
Most people would consider putting on a pair of thick socks and wearing the shoes around the house for a week or so to break them in. When you walk around in new shoes at home you should do it for short periods of time to get your feet used to the shoes. Gradually build up the time you are wearing them until they feel more comfortable.
If this method isn’t enough to make a difference then you can try our next suggestion.
How to Soften the Back of Shoes That Rub Your Heel
If wearing your new shoes and breaking them in when you first buy them isn’t enough to make a difference to heel and ankle pain then you could consider trying to soften the back of your shoes.
Softening the back of your shoes works particularly well for leather shoes but be more cautious when using products on suede which could damage the design or on other types of material such as canvas.
Some people swear by using heat on the heel to make it more malleable. The easiest way to do this is to get a hairdryer and give the back of the shoe a blast to warm it up. Then place the shoe on your feet whilst wearing some socks to mold it to your particular feet.
Rubbing alcohol is another product that can help as can vaseline. Do be aware however that some products may stain or cause problems with your shoes. Your best bet is to try a really small area first before committing to the whole heel.
Professional products such as shoe stretcher spray are probably a better bet as they have been specially designed to soften the shoes without causing damage. Footfitter shoe stretch spray is great for leather, suede, nubuck and canvas so this should even work on your sneakers.
Protect Your Heels – Use a Heel Cream Stick
Sometimes you need to think a little bit differently to protect the back of the ankle. Whilst blister plasters and moleskin often help after the fact what can you do to stop shoes rubbing your ankle in the first place?
One of the simplest ways is by using a heel cream stick which can simply be rubbed onto your heel to prevent friction which can cause irritation.
Heel stick creams are great because they are very portable, usually fitting easily into a pocket or a bag that can be carried around with you. The sticks work a little bit like lipstick. The cream is usually relatively solid in a stick shape but when you rub it onto your heel and ankle it softens up and glides onto your skin.
Usually, you will need to top up the cream every few hours or so if you are walking around to help stop shoes from rubbing. As the stick balm gets used up there is usually a device you can twist to raise the next section of balm up ready for use.
This is a really simple idea and particularly great for people who wear leather sandals that rub in the summer.
This Anti-Friction Stick is a good product to start with.
If Shoes Hurt Back of Ankle – Wear Shoe Inserts
Finally, if you want to know how to stop shoes from rubbing the back of your ankle think about investing in a pair of shoe inserts especially if your foot is moving around inside the shoe itself.
There are many different types of shoe inserts that you can buy depending on the problems you are having with your feet and where the shoes rub. Some shoe inserts are simply padded or cushioned foam which helps to make your shoes fit better. Other inserts are orthotics that can also help other foot problems such as pronation or plantar fasciitis.
Remember that a shoe insert can also lift your foot slightly in your shoe which means that the back of your ankle will touch the back of the shoe at a different point. This can make a difference depending on the shape of your feet and may stop painful blisters from forming.
Gel insoles are a great place to start as usually they are relatively cushioned giving you that needed lift at the back of your ankle. They also tend to be incredibly comfortable meaning that they are great for your feet if you walk around all day.
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