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This one’s for my ladies who wear petite size shoes and struggle to find shoes that fit! Finding petite size shoes that are on trend, fashionable, and age appropriate is not an easy task. I typically wear size 4.5 in most brands, and sometimes I get lucky and fit a small size 5. Since I’ve been on the hunt for petite shoes my whole life, so I’ve picked up a few tips along the way that I’d love to share! Keep reading for my best petite shoe buying tips!

All in the Reviews

Look for and read reviews from customers who bought the smallest size. Pay special attention to overall fit, how they break in, and whether the shoes stretch over time. Invest some time into researching reviews on shoes that you like before purchasing them. I promise that the time will be well worth it to find petite shoes that fit. There’s never any guarantee without actually trying the shoes on in person, but the more reviews you read, the better your chance of making a well informed decision.

Trust Fellow Bloggers

Search for blog reviews in addition to reading reviews on a company page. Blog reviews of products usually give more detail about the fit. I personally trust blog reviews so much more than reviews on a company page because I know it’s coming from a source who has put a fair amount of thought and care behind the review. Not only have I found some of my favorite bloggers this way, but bloggers are notoriously detailed in their product reviews, to include pictures, so you’re sure to get a great impression of whether the shoes are right for you.

Shop Stores with Free Returns

Always shop at stores with free returns. Sometimes I’ll buy shoes in a couple of sizes to try on, and I’ll send back the ones that don’t fit. It can be a pain and it definitely ties up some money while you’re waiting to get the shoes and get returns credited to your account, but it’s worth it for shoes that fit. I used to do this a lot in college when I needed professional shoes for internships and job interviews.

Pay Bargain and Wear Designer

Check department stores for sales on high-end and designer shoes. I’ve found that lots of designers and high-end brands carry extended sizes. Sometimes they even carry sizes as small as a woman’s size 3. While high-end and designer shoes can cost a pretty penny, you don’t always have to pay a fortune. Retailers like Nordstrom, Bloomingdales, and Sacks Off Fifth frequently carry petite size designer and high-end shoes at a significant discount. It’s good to shop a mixture of online and in-store. Both can be hit or miss at times, but you’re sure to find a variety of styles and prices.

Small Adjustments = Big Impact

I’m honestly never thrilled to make adjustments to shoes to make them fit, but sometimes, you gotta do what you gotta do. Slightly large shoes can work with shoe fillers and slight modifications, but the shoe can’t be too big. Adjustable ankle straps, laces, or at least a closed toe are great for making slight adjustments to the fit of shoes. The simplest adjustment in my opinion, is to add another hole to a loose ankle strap. You can also use shoe fillers to take care of the gap in the back of the shoe that keeps them from falling off the back of your foot. Sole inserts are also a great option for providing just a little bit of lift to clear a slight space issue. My last and least used adjustment tip is to stuff the toe of a closed toe shoe to push your foot further back in the footbed. Just keep in mind that these tips work best for shoes that are less than a 1/2 inch too big. Anything more, likely won’t work and could make the issue worse.

Get to Know Your Shoe Cobbler

If you find a pair of shoes that are just a smidge too big, but you absolutely love, get to know your local shoe cobbler. Shoe cobblers may not be able to fix all your shoe woes, but they can help with most. Raphael is a shoe cobbler in my neighborhood and he’s an absolute angel! No really, he’s adjusted so many shoes, resoled some favorites, and even fixed my mom’s designer handbag for a fraction of the price that the brand quoted us for.

I hope you found these tips for buying petite shoes helpful! Check out my post on my favorite petite shoe stores here. I know how much of a pain it is to find shoes in small sizes, so be sure to subscribe to my newsletter and follow me on Instagram and Pinterest to keep up with my latest fashion posts. Currently, I’m loving the petite friendly Cici Flat Platform Sandals from Steve Madden. I did a full review of them in this post, so check it out if you missed it. Have an amazing week!

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