15 Best Baby Shoes & Sneakers Reviewed

Being a parent and taking care of your infant is tough enough, why make that job any harder. Getting your baby dressed for the day can be a fun little task and gives you a chance to sift through their piles of clothes they will soon outgrow, however when it gets time to pick out a pair of shoes it can be a little less fun. Not only can infant shoes be a struggle to get on, they can also be a struggle to keep on your little ones feet throughout the day, so picking the perfect pair can be essential.

Babies feet are constantly growing and changing, so you will find yourself quickly purchasing new pairs to keep up with their rapid foot growth. Always keep in mind that materials should be soft, flexible and breathable and be able to be securely fastened onto your infants feet. Whether you prefer snap closures, velcro or zippers, you do not want to have a single worry throughout the day that your babies shoes could potentially fall off or be taken off by them.

Last Updated: February 16, 2018
By Tierney Lloyd:

The most recent update of this post has reviewed, and changed the previous 10 items, along with adding 5 more, taking the list to 15. A criteria for evaluation section has been added along with a FAQ to help the buyer better learn about baby shoes and find the perfect pair.

Featured Recommendations

BirdRock Baby Moccasins
  • BirdRock Baby Moccasins
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Genuine Leather
  • Elastic Secured
  • Price: See Here
 
Enteer Infant Snow Boot
  • Enteer Infant Snow Boot
  • 4.6 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Faux Fur Lining
  • Soft Sole
  • Price: See Here
 
Zutano Cozie Fleece Bootie
  • Zutano Cozie Fleece Bootie
  • 4.7 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Snap Closure
  • Fleece Lining
  • Price: See Here

Although they will not be walking around and on their feet throughout the day like a toddler, shoes are still important for protecting against outdoor conditions and for providing potential warmth. From moccasins, to snow boots and everything in between, this list will help go over what exactly makes a shoe perfect for babies, and how to pick a pair or two that best suits your infant.

 

15 Best Baby Shoes

 

1. BirdRock Baby Moccasins

These adorable moccasins not only come in a wide variety of colors and designs to match with any possible outfit, they also most importantly will stay on your child’s feet all day long. With their elastic back making them easy to slip on, and made of 100% leather these are very high-quality shoes. BirdRock also teamed up with a wonderful charity so you can feel even better about your purchase, if you thought the price was a little high.
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Giving Back Program
BirdRock not only makes adorable shoes for your children, they also believe in giving back to the community. With each pair of their shoes sold, they feed a child in need through Feed MY Starving Children, so you can truly feel good about your purchase.

Genuine Leather
All moccasins are made with 100% genuine leather, so you can rest assured knowing that you are paying for a quality product. This soft, durable leather will not only last a very long time, but with wear it will gently mold to your child’s feet, ensuring the perfect most comfortable fit.

Cost and value
These shoes are very reasonably priced considering all it is that you will be receiving. Not only are you getting a high-quality product that comes with a lifetime guarantee, you are also contributing to a great cause. At the end of the day, you are not only gifting your child something great, you are also giving to a child in need.
Pros
  • Genuine Leather
  • Soft Soles
  • Handcrafted
  • Elastic Band
  • Lifetime Guarantee
Cons
  • Fit is Small

2. Enteer Infant Snow Boot

Your infant may be too young to actually walk and play in the snow but that doesn’t mean their feet shouldn’t be just as protected from the cold outdoors. These snow boots will ensure that your little ones feet stay nice and toasty during the cold winter months with their faux-fur lining and easy but secure velcro closure.
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Faux-Fur Lining
As the winter months approach it is very important to have a couple pairs of winter boots on hand. Although your child is not yet walking, having a boot that will provide them with enough warmth even during a quick walk in their stroller is very important. Most body heat is lost through our feet, so it is crucial to ensure the proper footwear for your baby. These fuzzy, fur lined boots provide the perfect amount of warmth to your baby’s feet and are incredibly comfortable that they won’t want to take them off.

Easy On and Off
It is important for your infants shoes to be easy to take on and off… for you. If your child can easily remove their shoes and toss them, your outing will quickly go from fun to frustrating very quickly. These boots have a very secure velcro closure that opens right up to easily slide your child’s foot into them.

Cost and value
Depending on the color the price varies slightly, but overall regardless of color they are a very affordable option, and considered a must have for infants. They are not only easy for you to take on and off, but your child will feel warm and comfortable wearing them all day long.
Pros
  • Faux-Fur Lined
  • Velcro Closure
  • Waterproof
  • Soft Sole
  • Zero Hassle Return
Cons

Not for Walking

3. Zutano Cozie Fleece Bootie

Zutano’s cozy fleece booties are a great everyday shoe, made with a cozy cotton blend and easily machine washable there is no reason not to wear these daily. Their signature two-snap closure sets them apart from other boots, and ensures they are securely fit onto your child’s feet.
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Two-Snap Closure
The two-snaps ensure the best fit possible for your child, along with the elastic ankle. Not only will these shoes stay put on their feet they will also contour to the shape of your baby’s foot, ensuring the most comfortable fit, with plenty of wiggle room.

Machine Washable
There is nothing more tedious than having to hand wash clothes, especially babies shoes that are constantly getting spills or dirt on them. The option to machine wash their clothes can make or break the purchase, in this case Zutano recognized the importance of convenience and made these a breeze to clean.

Cost and value
Zutano does not make the most affordable baby shoes, however they are amongst the highest rated on this list for a reason, they work. Zutano excels where comfort and fit are concerned and these are sure to not only feel great on your child’s feet but fit great as well. They are worth the extra dollars if you are in need of booties that will truly stay on, or if you are looking for a great baby shower gift.
Pros
  • Cotton Blend
  • Secure
  • Machine Washable
  • Snap Closures
  • Elastic Ankle
Cons

Elastic Stretches

4. Converse CT First Star

4. Converse CT First Star
Super soft padded insoles, outsoles provide a non-skid grip and well, the name is a classic…..Converse! Your baby will just love their first designer pair of sneakers. The support may not be the same as most other infant shoes, but you have to admit it’s a fun tom-boy like option for infant girls. The extra cushioning gives it a more sock-like feel that can’t be beat.
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Design
Durable canvas upper creates a sleek design and easy is easy material that can be cleaned. The durability is phenomenal and perfect for infants that are learning to crawl. The canvas is very fashionable as well and smudge proof.

Support
Great for parents who have trouble and find it difficult to take their baby’s shoe on and off. Converse Chuck Taylor First Star cones with a pull-tab on heel that helps with taking the shoe on and off. No more struggling with each foot. For once, a shoe that does it all.

Cost and Value
According to the official Converse website, these cute Converse Chuck Taylor First Star are only $22 and worth every penny.
Pros
  • Super cute and stylish
  • Very comfortable insole
  • Reasonably priced
  • Easy to clean
Cons

5. Umi Weelie

5. Umi Weelie
In a nutshell, Umi Weelies are great for an ideal walk outside. They are very outdoor-friendly with a more European-inspired look to them. With such a refreshing color palette the shoe comes in a good selection of colors and a great degree of durability.
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Durability
The Weelie is so durable and perfect for everyday use. They are just wonderful for monumental first steps for any infant. The patented anti-bacterial removable footbed makes for a chemical-free walking experience.

Breathability
With breathable, uppers made from leather and soft linings this Weelie is a perfect infant shoe. The shoe is not just soft in feel, but they are easy to put on and off, thanks to the hook and loop system that makes for a secure and well fitted closure. Also, this shoe has extra stability and comfort due to the sturdy and durable rubber sole.

Cost and Value
Umi Weelie runs around $55, so for most parents they consider the Weelie to be a bit pricier than they would like, but since all styles and stages of UmiBaby are approved by the American Podiatric Medical Association they are completely worth it. Remember that when buying infant shoes you want to go with quality over quantity.
Pros
  • Easy to put on and take off
  • Chemical-free with a patented anti-bacterial removable footbed
  • Contoured rubber outsole provides added comfort and stability
  • Made of genuine leather for a breathable and soft walking experience
  • Comes in a ton of refreshing colors
  • Super comfy and lightweight
Cons
  • A bit pricey

6. Robeez Dino Dan Flats

6. Robeez Dino Dan Flats
If you’re looking for a slip-free, comfortable, supportive shoe that is a lot lighter than most infant shoes than Robeez shoes are perfect. These super adorable Dino shoes are very comfy with slip-proof soles. Your little ones will just love them.
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Quality
First off, these Robeez Dino Dan flats are made of 100% leather which means they are super durable and easy to care for after wearing them. Not to mention the outsoles are made of suede so it helps prevent slips while promoting good balance and providing great protection.

Protection
These adorable shoes have elasticized added ankle straps that protects the foot from sliding out and makes the shoe easier to stay on and to put on. Robeez Dino Dan flats are best for indoor wear and if worn outside the activity should be light.

Cost and Value
Robeez Dino Dan flats are only $26 based on the Robeez official website and for a basic crib shoe the price is just right. You can’t beat the price for a shoe that is all leather, comfortable and good for all stages of a babies’ development.
Pros
  • 100% leather
  • Perfect shoe for babies, infants, pre-walkers and toddlers
  • American Podiatric Medical Association Approved
  • Accommodates different feet sizes
  • Provides extra protection
Cons
  • Not good for outdoor use
  • Suede sole doesn’t provide much support

7. Pepiped Originals Adrian

7. Pepiped Originals Adrian
Established in 2005, Pepiped has been known for having over 120 styles of stylish shoes. Moms love these shoes because they are considered the “next best thing to bare feet.” Being that they are mom’s favorite they do not miss a beat when it comes to comfort, durability and class.
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Design
Pepiped Originals Adrian Sneaker has a classic design. The shoe is very breathable with comfort and easily wearable with Velcro closure. Great for babies’ feet developing. This soft suede shoe has breathable mesh panels and a slip-resistant leather sole.

Comfort
This infant’s Adrian crib shoe is very roomy and provides a cushioned insole, perfect for those wiggly tiny toes to move freely. Super cute with just about anything: overalls, rompers, miniature jeans and corduroys. So I guess you can say the Adrian crib shoe is very fashionable.

Cost and Value
Most of Pepiped shoes are $39.95 and this reigns true for the Adrian sneaker. Mom’s love everything about the Adrian sneaker and deem them to be of great value. Plus, you can choose from different styles and colors, so you won’t be disappointed.
Pros
  • Ultimate flexibility and lasting quality
  • Slip resistant soles
  • Perfect for beginning walkers
  • Comfortable, breathable leather lining
Cons
  • Not as durable as expected
  • Definitely not scuff-proof

8. BenHero Candy Shoes

8. BenHero Candy Shoes
Soft, and easy to slip on when you’re rushing to head out the door, these shoes are the perfect addition to your baby’s shoe collection. The soft rubber sole is great for protecting their little feet, and once you see the wide color selection you won’t be able to buy just one pair.
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Padded Insole
Regardless of if your child is walking yet or not, it’s nice to have a little bit of cushioning or padding in their shoe just to ensure their foot is properly protected. These BenHero slip on shoes have the perfect amount of cushioning to ensure a snug fit, yet still mold to the shape of your baby’s foot to keep them comfortable all day.

Color Selection
Baby’s go through shoes very quickly due to their rapidly growing feet, so finding a shoe that fits and feels great, and having the option to buy multiples in different colors at an affordable price, keeps things super easy and makes for fun little wardrobe changes.

Cost and value
These super cute shoes are very well priced and a great value, made with nice breathable materials and cushioned to ensure your baby’s feet are comfortable. There are so many fun colors to choose from and at this price, why not grab a couple pairs.
Pros
  • Padded Insole
  • Canvas
  • Easy On and Off
  • Breathable Fabrics
Cons

May Run Large

9. Estamico Bowknot Boots

9. Estamico Bowknot Boots
These little booties are the perfect touch to any outfit, but they are more than just cute, they’re functional. With faux-fur accents around the collar, and a soft lining on the inside these boots were not made for walking, but they were made to keep your infants feet warm and looking cute.
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Anti-Slip Bottom
Your child may not be taking their first steps yet, however trying to stand or crawl even with shoes that are slippery is very difficult, and can be unsafe. The added touch of having grip on the bottom of the shoes makes these great to keep around in larger sizes for when your child does begin to walk.

Cute Designs
Functionality is great when your child begins to walk, and needs different kinds of support, but for infants whose shoes are not touching the ground, fun and cute designs are a must. These booties come in not only different colors but totally different styles as well and look absolutely adorable with any outfit, while also keeping your child’s feet warm which is a huge bonus.

Cost and value
Similarly priced to others on this list, these booties are not highly priced at all and are worth the money. You will find yourself wanting to continue purchasing the next size up as soon as your child begins to outgrow each pair.
Pros
  • Faux Leather
  • Hook and Loop Closure
  • Anti-Slip
  • Cute Design
Cons

Sizing is Off

10. Lidiano Bowknot Mary Jane

10. Lidiano Bowknot Mary Jane
These flats are well made and are perfect for any occasion in your little ones life. From birthdays to family events these are so simple yet cute and match with any outfit. They are made with a soft cotton blend that feel nice and comfortable and are a breeze to take on and off. As an added bonus these also come with a matching headband to make their outfit even more adorable.
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Soft Cotton Blend
At this age your child’s feet are constantly changing and growing, so having a soft materialed shoe for their feet to comfortably grow and move is very important. Although this shoe is sturdy and secure, it is spacious and soft so they will not leave any red marks or irritations on your child’s feet.

Hook and Loop Closure
Infants shoes can easily fall off, or be taken off by the child so it is nice to have a pair that can securely be fastened on, while still being comfortable and not too tight. This closure allows you to adjust how tight or loose the shoes are optimizing comfort and fit.

Cost and value
These Mary Jane flats are absolutely adorable and perfect for all of the occasions in your child’s life. They are very fairly priced and are a pair of shoes you will find yourself constantly reaching for anytime a fun event arises.
Pros
  • Cotton Blend
  • Non-Skid Sole
  • Hook and Loop Closure
  • Easy On and Off
Cons

Headband Does Not Fit Well

11. Estamico Plush Boots

11. Estamico Plush Boots
These boots offer great support and are not at all flimsy. Whether your child is just wearing them or able to walk in them as well, they will comfortably keep your child on their feet. The fuzzy inside is great for the colder months, and they are still spacious enough to be worn with thicker socks if need be.
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Lace Up
For toddlers laces can be tricky, especially if they are prone to wanting to undo them and take their shoes off, with babies however they can be great. The small lace up detailing on these booties allows for you to loosen up the shoes and easily put them on, as well as perfectly tighten them to fit your child. They are the right length to be able to double knot, ensuring they stay on all day and feel great.

Warm Lining
Keeping your child warm starts with their feet, so having a cozy pair of boots that are lined with a nice fuzzy faux-fur is perfect for colder days. These are by no means classified as winter boots, but they will definitely do the trick of keeping your littles ones toes toasty during the late spring, and fall months.

Cost and value
These Estamico boots are a great deal, and will become a pair of booties you reach for often. Great to wear year round, but especially when it gets chillier out, these boots are adorable and come in many different colors and styles.
Pros
  • Warm
  • Easy On and Off
  • Cotton
  • Anti-Skid Sole
  • Fuzzy Lining
Cons

Sizing Runs Large

12. Under the Nile Booties

12. Under the Nile Booties
These 100% organic cotton interlock booties may look like socks but don’t let that fool you, not only will these keep your child’s foot nice and warm they will also stay up. Made to be durable, and last and also made by extremely sustainable practices, ensuring everything is created by people who are treated fairly.
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Alternative to Baby Socks
Under the Nile booties may look just like socks but they have the total durability of a boot and will not only protect your child’s feet but keep them nice and warm. When you need to quickly run out of the house and do not want to spend the time putting on a pair of shoes, and socks are not enough these are the perfect alternative.

100% Egyptian Cotton
Each pair of booties is made with ethically hand picked organic cotton, with absolutely no pesticides or chemicals used. They are then handmade to ensure the utmost care and quality is put into creating them. Not only will your child adore them, but because they will only fit your child up until 3 months, they are a quality item you can pass down to younger siblings.

Cost and value
These booties may not last too long based on their sizing, however quality wise they can be passed down to younger generations for years to come. For the price, which is rather low considering what you are receiving they are a fantastic purchase, and unlike any other shoe on this list.
Pros
  • Organic Egyptian Cotton
  • Organic Dyes
  • Sock like Appearance
  • Ethically Made
  • Warm
Cons

Small Size Range

13. Lucky Love Prewalker Shoes

13. Lucky Love Prewalker Shoes
Prewalker shoes that are easy to slip on are ideal for any infant who just needs their feet protected against the outdoors. These are not made to walk in, although they have a slip resistant suede sole just in case. The flexible and breathable leather will form to the shape of your baby’s feet and feel comfortable rather than too tight.
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Breathable Material
Made with soft, breathable leather, these shoes are not only flexible and easily mold to the shape of your baby’s feet, they also will keep them nice and cool during the summer when their feet tend to get sweaty and clammy. You never want to purchase a shoe that doesn’t allow for airflow, unless it is for cold winter months.

Textured Suede Sole
These prewalker shoes are not made for walking, however they can be great for when your child is in the early stages of taking their first steps. They are comfortable and fit nice and snug, and because of their textured sole, they will not have your baby slipping and falling all over the place.

Cost and value
Lucky Love prewalker shoes are a more expensive option, and although still affordable, there are many similar shoes on this list that are more affordable. These are made of leather and are great quality however your child will be quickly outgrowing all shoes at this age, and you do not want to be throwing expensive shoes to the back of their closet within a month or so.
Pros
  • Classic Look
  • Soft Soles
  • Breathable Leather
  • Easy On and Off
  • Elastic Ankle
Cons

May Have a Slight Smell Out of the Box

14. Luvable Friends Loafer

14. Luvable Friends Loafer
Luvable Friends loafers are adorable and perfect for when you need shoes for a special event or occasion, although not made for walking or substantial use. The next time you have a wedding or event coming up these are the perfect shoes to slip on your little one for a cute, stylish look.
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Durable
These loafers are not really made to walk much in, however they are made with sturdy and durable materials and will hold up wear after wear, as long as they are used correctly and properly cared for. All materials are synthetic so they are not the most luxury shoe, but for an infant who will only be wearing them from time to time they are perfect.

Elastic Front
The struggle of getting your infants shoes on can be real, so any trick or added feature on a shoe to make that an easier task is fantastic. Luvable Friends have a stretchy elastic friend where the laces are placed to give you enough space to easily slide your child’s foot into the shoe without any hassle or discomfort.

Cost and value
These loafers are a good value considering the amount of use you will most likely get out of them… depending on your life and the amount of special occasions you go to these probably will not get as much wear as say a pair of runners. It is important to keep that in mind when making a purchase, however at this price they are a good deal.
Pros
  • Easy On and Off
  • Cute Design
  • Non-Skid Soft Sole
  • Synthetic
  • Elastic Front
Cons

Not Made of Quality Materials

15. EQUICK Moccasins

15. EQUICK Moccasins
Made in both a suede or leather option, each having a different design and coming in a wide selection of colors, these moccasins are a great shoe to add to your child’s wardrobe and will match with any possible outfit. They are great quality and extremely easy to take on and off, which as every parents knows is a huge bonus.
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Elastic Back
Easy to slip onto your infants feet with the flexible elastic in the ankle, these every day shoes make getting ready in the morning easy. Whether you are heading out for the day, or just hanging around the house these moccasins are great for all day wear.

Material and Design Options
Each pair either comes in leather or suede and is made with quality and care. These breathable materials makes these great to have around all year, and because of the affordable price they not only are great for your baby but they make a great gift as well.

Cost and value
The most affordable pair of shoes on this list, and although cheaper, they still are comparable to the more expensive options quality wise. It is important to determine what the shoes will be used for and therefore see if these will work for you. For prewalkers they are a great option and look very cute, they are not recommended for any age that is walking.
Pros
  • Faux Leather
  • Soft Sole
  • Elastic Ankle
  • Color Selection
  • Easy On and Off
Cons

Not Made to Walk In

Baby shoes are not an investment piece as they will outgrow them so quickly so focus on quality yet try to keep a budget in mind. As they approach the walking stages and are in need for a more secure shoe, looking into higher priced running shoes, or rain boots is important and your toddler will need certain things in a shoe they previously did not. At this infant stage however all you should really keep in mind is whether or not these shoes provide warmth, while still being breathable, are flexible and have soft yet sturdy soles, and are somewhat durable.

Try to keep an eye out for shoes with small features like snap closures and elastic ankles as they are important for ensuring that the shoes will comfortably stay on throughout the day. Laces are not ideal at this age, and are relatively unnecessary, so avoid them if you can and stick with velcro or snaps. With some many brands constantly putting out new baby shoes, we have taken the time to thoroughly go through some of the new trends and narrow down the shoes to the top 15 we feel will fit you and your baby’s needs the best.

 

Criteria Used to Evaluate the Best Baby Shoes

Function

At this stage of your child’s life, your main focus is to protect their little feet, and ensure proper growth, therefore a running shoe or anything that is made for walking, running etc is not suitable for your infant. Keep in mind that your baby’s feet are so soft and precious and need plenty of space to grow, so a soft slightly cushioned shoe is best.

When deciding on the types of shoe your baby needs think about when and where they will be wearing them and the use they will really be getting out of them. For the most part of their early stages of life you will probably find yourself putting them in onesies that have their feet covered for you. Shoes only start to come into play when you either need to properly dress your baby, go outside, or perhaps a special event.

On a day to day basis basic slip on moccasins work wonderfully; they are easy to slip on and because of their elastic band in the ankle area of the shoe they will stay on nicely. Your child is of course not yet walking and so a nice soft sole that their feet can essentially mold to is perfect and will leave your child feeling comfortable throughout the day. Ensure that their shoes also are made with a nice breathable material so that they are not sweating and uncomfortable, especially during warmer months.

It is very easy to want to follow trends, or get tempted to buy the cute flip flops or strappy sandals at the store, these are not functional though and can make it very hard for your child who is soon to try to stand up and take their first steps. The restrictiveness of these shoes can really affect the muscle development of your baby’s feet in the long run, and they are not worth it.

Where winter shoes are concerned, you do not need to worry to traction or the type of sole they have. As long as the entire shoe is waterproof, and properly lined to ensure the utmost warmth to your child, things like rubber soles and grip are not a concern because your baby’s feet most likely will not even be touching the ground when out in the snow. Try to always keep in mind, that regardless of how cute a pair of shoes may be; will they not only fit into your infants wardrobe and be used, but how often?

You will find yourself going through shoes very quickly at this age, so finding a pair you love and know works well for you child is ideal. It is even better when the company continues to make that shoe is larger sizes, allowing you to continually repurchase it for your child without having to do further research each time your infant outgrows another pair.

Fit

One of the most important things to always keep in mind when purchasing shoes for your infant is how they will fit and how long they will fit for. Shoes with a little bit of wiggle room, yet that still fit securely are ideal because not only do they give your infants feet space to splay out correctly and comfortably, but they also will allow for a decent amount of wear time. It may seem tedious feeling like you are constantly buying shoes at this stage, however you want your child’s feet especially at this young age to grow properly.

It is not recommended to buy shoes for your baby until they reach around 6 months of age, because of the rate at which their feet are growing and changing. After that 6 months any shoe that is worn should encourage natural foot development, and fit just right. Always avoid trying to prolong the life of a pair of shoes by purchasing them in sizes larger than what fits your child, you are trying to encourage potential first steps, not have them wobble and slide around in shoes that do not fit.

How can you find the perfect pair of shoes for your baby that will fit just right:

  • The shape of the shoe should be similar to that of your child’s foot; no narrow, pointed toe shoes, always go for square or oval shapes.
  • Your baby’s longest toe (generally big toe) should be around ½ an inch from the front of the shoe.
  • Do not buy if their heel is constantly sliding out.
  • Any high-top styled shoe, such as booties will always be more secure on an infant.

Take the time to familiarize yourself with baby shoe sizes and how they work and you will be sure to find the right fit quickly. Your baby will be wearing up until a size 4-4.5 before they start walking, so the general guide is:

  • 0-3 months = size 1
  • 3-6 months = size 2 – 2.5
  • 6-9 months = size 3 – 3.5
  • 9-12 months = size 4 – 4.5

That is not to say your baby should follow this chart exactly, every child is different and so are different brands so always take the time to properly measure their feet, and check on the fit every month or so to ensure everything is good.

Your baby’s shoes should have absolutely no break-in period, these are not a pair of Louboutins, they should easily slide onto your child’s feet and feel comfortable immediately. If for whatever reason they pinch, or cause discomfort that will not go away after a couple wears –  you need a new size.

Quality

Your baby has finally reached the stage where it is time to put away the little baby socks and venture into the world of infant shoes. This can be a scary time if you are not sure what exactly your baby needs in terms of foot protection, and cushioning. You do not want to be splurging on shoes that either don’t work for their age range or are not functional, so it is important to firstly have an idea of the types of shoes your child is going to need for the next 1-2 months.

Your baby will go through shoes very quickly, so if you can plan ahead it can be very helpful. If you know there is a wedding or special event coming up in a few months, buy the size that will fit them then, and be prepared to not get too many uses out of those shoes. Baby shoes can be a bit of a catch 22, especially at the infant, pre walking stage because of the rate at which they will go through them. You will want to buy good quality shoes that protect their feet properly, especially if they are cold weather shoes, however splurging on brand names, or trendy shoes and sandals that have no function can be a waste.

When it comes to baby’s shoes it’s easy to wonder if buying quality over quantity is an adage that actually rings true. You would want to buy quantity due to the fact that your baby is going to continually and rapidly outgrow most of their shoes, however these are the most important years for foot growth and you want those feet to develop properly. Investing in quality shoes may seem expensive and unnecessary but it will pay off in the long run, plus quality does not only mean expensive, let’s find out why.

The first thought that comes to mind when you think of quality is money, name brands, and expensive materials but that is not always the case. Many brands create exceptional quality products for infants at affordable prices, and won’t leave your wallet hurting in any way. Firstly think about material, and how it affects your child’s feet.

Any sort of synthetic or plastic material in a shoe is not only going to be uncomfortable but it will not allow for their foot to properly breathe or allow moisture to escape. Your baby’s feet will sweat a lot, especially during the summer so any sort of material that doesn’t allow for proper air flow is a big no no. The easiest way to find a quality pair of shoes, regardless of brand is to see if they are flexible, allow for breathability, fit nicely, and are durable. If you can find all of these qualities, the pair of shoes is a total keeper.

Comfort

Your baby’s footwear, aside from fitting properly, and staying on their feet throughout the day, should be extremely breathable and flexible. Not only does this allow for optimum comfort, it will keep their feet nice and cool to prevent clamminess and sweating and it will also bend and move freely with their feet. If you can, always choose a canvas or soft leather shoe, as it is the easiest material to stretch and mold to your child’s foot.

Their shoes should be soft, yet firm and offer a relatively decent amount of support. These shoes will not yet be supporting a toddler that is running around, so it is okay for them to not have thick soles and offer the most support, however some cushioning on the bottom is nice for protection. If you are going for a more high-top style like booties, padding around the heel and collar are a nice added touch to further prevent any sort of rubbing or possible irritation.

At this age the most important purpose of shoes is to keep their little feet warm, so fuzzy linings and cozy snug materials are ideal, and will feel nice for them. Try to not focus on what you like, and what style you think is cute and keep the main focus on what will feel nice for your baby. Those gladiator sandals may look adorable, but will they feel comfortable, are they going to leave red marks all up your little ones leg. You do not want your baby to feel anything but comfortable when wearing shoes because you are trying to get them used to the feeling.

If your child is constantly taking off their shoes, or at least attempting to, try to go through different pairs and see if maybe there is either a specific pair they like and find out why that is. Whether it is due to the fact they feel the nicest, or they like how they look, not struggling with your child to keep their shoes on all day is a plus.

Once your child begins to walk, then it is time to start looking into different styles, different soles with all sorts of levels of traction etc, but for the meantime try to stay focused on the protection of their feet and what feels best for them. The period of time between being too young for shoes, and suddenly needing walking shoes goes by very fast, so enjoy it and focus less on style and more on comfort.

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

 

 

Q: How much growing room should their shoes have?

A: There should be about ½ an inch of space from your child’s longest toe to the front of the shoe. Any less, and they are not a proper fit, and can cause discomfort and pinching in your child’s toes. Any more than that and you may find your child not being able to properly stand or walk when they wear them.

Q: At what age does a baby need their first pair of shoes?

A: Your child’s first pair of actual shoes, used for walking, running etc should be bought when they are up on their feet and properly walking around. Until then, babies can start to wear shoes for more warmth and protective purposes around 6 months of age. These shoes should be very breathable and flexible with soft soles. They should not be meant for walking in, but crawling around, and providing warmth when on outings in different weather conditions.

Q: Should I buy a ½ – full size up for my baby to grow into?

A: Absolutely not. This can cause the shoe to slide around on their feet and make them trip, and also does not allow for a proper comfortable fit. All baby shoes have that build in ½ inch of growing room already, that is all your infant needs.

Q: Are sandals or flip flops okay for babies?

A: No. Although you may think they look cute they are really bad for your child’s foot health and just do not provide a stable walking experience for your baby.

Q: How do I care for my baby’s shoes?

A: Depending on the shoe, most are completely machine washable which makes things super convenient. If they are not ok to be thrown in the washing machine, most dirt or scuffs should come out with a damp soapy towel. It is always recommend to buy machine washable shoes at this age, due to how quickly they will always get dirty.

Q: Are lace-up or velcro shoes better?

A: That can be a personal preference, and the best way to find what suits you and your baby best, is to try on both. Laces can be time consuming, and not fun to potentially have to keep re-tying throughout the day. If they come undone often they can also be a potential tripping or choking hazard. Velcro shoes are easy, and like snap closures are adjustable and harder for a baby to muck around with and undo.

Sources

  1. Lenora Jane Estes, Picking the perfect first shoes, Website,
  2. Kate Hilpern, 12 Best kids shoe brands, Webpage, Jul 27, 2017
  3. Lauren Gaines, Best baby shoes for early walkers, Website,
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