How to Soften the Back of New Shoes – Use These 10 Simple Hacks

  • By: Edmond Clark

“How to soften the back of new shoes?” This is the question that my site readers often ask me.

So today I am trying to provide my most useful 10 tricks that I have tried in the past.

I hope they will be also be useful for your new shoes.

I know how it feels when you buy new shoes and try them out for the first time.

But you find out that its not fitting in the backside properly.

Now you either think of returning these new pair of shoes or you either think of stretching it out a little.

If you are in favour of trying out the second scenario, then you have come to the right place.

Because instead of just returning your favourite shoe, why not just soften it a bit!

By simply using few tricks, you can soften the back of your new footwear and make it more comfortable and supportive for your feet.

So, this article is for those folks who really want to learn the simple tricks to soften the back of their new shoes.

This way, you will be able to keep your newly ordered shoes to yourself and will not have the problems like blisters and corns in the future.

My 10 Personal Tips to Soften the Back of Your New Shoes

1. Use Your Hair Dryer To Heat the Back of Your Shoes

BaBylissPRO Nano Titanium Hair Dryer

This method is only applicable to your new leather and suede material shoes.

You can simply heat the back side or heel side of your new shoes with the help of your hair dryer.

This will expand and soften the material in the back side.

Caution: Don’t use it on any other types of shoes because it will certainly ruin the material of the shoe.

2. Use Zip Lock Bags to Freeze the Back Side of New Shoes

Ziploc Storage Bags, Double Zipper Seal & Expandable Bottom, XL, 4 Count, Big Bag

This is also a very simple method that you can try at your home.

Just buy a bunch of zip lock bags online and use them to soften or widen the back of your new footwear.

You will just need these zip lock bags, some water to store and your freezer to store these bags inside your shoe.

Its very easy to do this trick at your home.

Just pour the water inside a zip lock bag and close it.

Then put these bags inside your new shoes near the heel side.

Now store them in your freezer and keep them for about 5-7 hours.

When you take them out, you will see the back side or heel side of your new shoes has widened a bit.

This happens because the water inside the bag when freezes, it becomes ice.

This ice then causes the back of your shoes to stretch out gradually.

3. Use a 2-way Shoe Stretcher

FootFitter 2-Way Shoe Stretcher Premium Professional, Women's Small (US 3.5-6.5)

Another best method to stretch out the tight back side of your new shoes, is to use a reliable 2-way shoe stretcher.

The best 2-way shoe stretcher that I personally prefer is FootFitter Premium Professional 2-way Shoe Stretcher.

This is the best stretcher that can effectively be used for softening the back of both the left and right shoes.

You can stretch these shoes width wise and length wise too.

You can widen the back of the shoe up to 0.5 inches without any issues.

Leather and canvas material shoes are only allowed when you use such types of shoe stretchers.

Watch this video to learn how to use a 2-way shoe stretcher to widen the back of your new shoes.

4. Wear Thick Padded Socks Regularly

Thorlos Unisex KX Thick Padded Hiking Crew Socks, Pewter, Medium

Believe it or not!

You can slightly stretch your shoes on the front as well as on the back side with this simple hack.

Just buy a good reliable pair of thick padded socks.

Wear it along with your new shoes.

If you want the best kinds of socks, then check out our article regarding the socks for long distance walking.

And then walk in these shoes for few days in and around your house.

After few days, you will experience that the heel side of your shoe has been expanded a bit or stretched a bit.

This method will work greatly when your new shoes are slightly tighter on the back.

But if they are really tighter than normal level, then you will need to use the first 2 methods that are mentioned above.

5. Put Wooden Insert Inside the Shoe

Stratton Men's Cedar Shoe Tree (Medium)

This method is very similar to the method no. 3.

There is a small difference between the two methods.

Here instead of trying to stretch manually, you do it automatically.

Just get a new reliable shoe wooden insert and then place it inside your new shoes for few days.

After few days of regular usage, you will see some stretching of your new shoes.

You will experience the tightness of the back of your shoe is now gone.

6. Use Wet Newspaper

Some people also use newspaper to widen the back or heel side of the footwear.

Again, this is a very simple trick that you can try at your home.

Just take some old newspapers from your home and wet them in the water.

Now squeeze excess water from it and stuff this wet newspaper ball inside your new shoe.

I recommend you wait for at least 24 hours or till it becomes dry.

By repeating this method few times a week, you will be able to expand the back side of your new shoe in few days.

7. Try Shoe Stretch Spray

FootMatters Professional Boot & Shoe Stretch Spray – Softener & Stretcher for Leather, Suede, Nubuck, Canvas – 4 oz

Several people have used this method and have got some success with their new tight shoes.

You need the best quality shoe stretch spray for this method to become successful.

I think FootMatters Shoe Stretch Spray is the best product out there that can be used to stretch the back of your new shoes without any issue.

This is simply the easiest method that you can try at your home.

Just get a new shoe stretch spray and spray the back side of your new shoe.

You can also spray other areas of your shoe wherever you feel some tightness for fitting.

If you repeat this procedure for next few days, you will experience some stretching and widening of the back side or heel side of your new footwear.

8. Perform Soap Rubbing

This is slightly odd method that you can try at your home.

Take a soap bar available at your home and wet it with water.

Now simply rub it on the backside and on inside of shoe wherever you feel some tightness.

Once this rubbing is done, wear your shoe immediately and now walk in it for few hours.

By repeating this process for next few days, you will be able to stretch out the heel side of your new shoes to a comfortable level.

9. Use Rubbing Alcohol

Swan 70% Isopropyl Alcohol First Aid Antiseptic, 16 Fl Oz (Pack of 12), 192 Fl Oz

Rubbing alcohol is another very cost-effective method to try at your home.

Just get a bottle of rubbing alcohol spray online and use it on your new shoe.

Spray the rubbing alcohol on the tighter areas of your shoe.

The back side or heel side of the shoe must be properly sprayed to get the desired result.

Once sprayed properly, wear the shoes and walk in them for few hours.

Repeat this procedure till you feel that the back of the shoe is properly stretched out.

10. Apply Vaseline Petroleum Jelly on the Affected Area

Vaseline 100% Pure Petroleum Jelly Skin Protectant 3.75 oz (Pack of 2)

Yes, this is also one of the most recommended methods that I have seen many people trying out.

Get Vaseline Petroleum Jelly pack and use it generously on the back of the shoe.

You need to apply lots of jelly on the back side.

Do it until it completely gets absorbed inside the material of the shoe.

Remove the excess jelly from your shoe with the help of a cloth.

Now keep it for several hours and then wear the shoe to see the stretching for yourself.

If you don’t feel enough widening of the back then re-apply the jelly more to widen it more.

Final Thoughts

So, basically these are my 10 best tips that will help you to soften the back of your new shoe.

All these tips and tricks are simple to implement at your home.

If you want to read our complete guide about stretching shoes with 15 simple tricks then click here.

My recommendation is you first try them out yourself to see the results.

Just take some precautions like use these methods only on leather and suede shoes.

If you have shoes other than the leather and suede, then simply don’t use the method no. 1 and 2.

Best of luck friends!

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