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How To Stretch Sandals Wide in 8 Steps [Updated 2022]

If you are on this post, chances are higher that you have a pair of tight sandals or you want to know all about how to stretch sandals wide?

While online shopping has become easier and reliable than ever before, but you can still find a pair of sandals that don’t fit well. After all the hard work, It is one of the most hurtful things, that you cannot wear and show off your new sandals to your loved ones.

So, if your sandals are too small, how about stretching them out to get perfect? Yes, it is very much possible! There are many ways to stretch your sandals.

At shoes knowledge, we’re writing about different footwear for different kinds of users, for example, how to waterproof leather cowboy boots. So, also give a read to them.

If you don’t know how to stretch sandals and how to stretch shoes wider? Below, you will find some basic and practical ways that you can use for the same.

  • Wear socks with your sandals
  • Use heat to stretch them out
  • Soak your sandals in water
  • Use a shoe stretcher
  • Try using rubbing alcohol
  • Frozen zip-close bag method

Whether you intend to buy a shoe stretcher or experiment with any home solutions, you want your sandals to fit in your feet comfortably and smoothly.

That said, here are some ways and techniques that you can use for this purpose.

How to Stretch Sandals Wider- Easy and Practical Methods:

how to stretch sandals wide

Till the end of this guide you will understand:

  • How to stretch strappy sandals for wide feet.
  • How to stretch slide sandals.
  • How to stretch plastic sandals.
  • How to stretch non-leather sandals.

Having said that, it’s time to check out our tested methods and tricks to widen your tight heels!

Step#1: Wear Thick Socks with Sandals

Here is the simplest method to widen your sandal: start wearing the socks with your sandals.

You will find many people that tell you that wearing socks with sandals is against fashion and trends. But this is not the fact.

If you want your new pair of sandals to be super comfortable, try to wear socks with sandals. By doing so, you can mold the sandals to your feet.

Socks help to widen your feet and protect them from the abrasions and scratches of leather or other materials used in the sandals. You can buy Socks from Amazon.

wear thick socks

The materials can be harmful to bare skin. Wear socks with sandals and take short walks in your home; it will widen your shoes and keep your feet safe from unforeseen damages.

Step#2: You can use Heat

If you don’t like to wear socks with sandals or you are looking for a quick method, you will have to use some heat for your sandals.

First, wear your sandals for a couple of minutes. Then, remove the sandals, and use a hair dryer or space heater. Point the dryer to that particular spot and start using the heat.

Note: be cautious while doing this as the sandal’s material can catch fire in no time. Instead, warm it to the point where you need it the most.

Repeat this procedure once a day for three to four days. After a few days, you will find the same sandals more comfortable, and you will not feel tightness.

Step#3: You can soak the sandals

This method is not the best for certain types of sandals. However, it is an effective one. You can also widen your sandals by using the water.

Before you begin, Note that this is not for all types of materials. This widening method works perfectly for leather sandals.

When you will place the leather sandals in a water bucket, the water will enter into the pores. And you will remove them from the water; you will find your sandals more flexible due to the exposure to the water.

Please note that this widening tactic is not useful for plastic sandals. So, if you want to widen plastic sandals or any other sandals, here is the other method for you.

  • Take a plastic bag and fill it with plain water.
  • Then, put your tight sandals inside the bag.
  • Now, put that water-filled bag in the freezer.

The science in this method is simple. The ice will put adequate pressure on your sandals, and you’ll find them widen fairly quickly. This technique works great for sandals that are not readily flexible.

Soak The Sandals

Step#4: You can use a Shoe Stretcher

If you don’t want to use water or don’t like the freezer method, don’t give up. We have another way for you.

Try to invest in a shoe stretcher:

shoe stretcher

You can buy a shoe stretcher from any local shop or online but keep in mind that this tactic will take quite a fair amount of time.

Here is how to use a shoe stretcher to widen your sandals or shoes.

First, put the stretcher at the tightest part of your sandal on your foot. Now, keep the stretcher on that tight part for about 12 to 24 hours.

Further, please don’t apply too much pressure on your sandals and always keep an eye on them because too much pressure can damage your shoes or sandals.

This method works best for people who don’t know much about how to stretch sandal wide or they are not that expert in performing DIY tasks.

Lastly, this method is also effective if you want to stretch your slide sandals.

Step#5: Try to rub alcohol

If you don’t like any of the methods mentioned above due to any reason.

Here is something creative for you. You can also rub alcohol to widen up your shoes and sandals. The process is simple and straightforward.

Here is how you do that: take a little alcohol into any spray bottle Or you can dampen a soft cloth with alcohol. Once you have your tools ready, spray, or rub the alcohol on your tight sandals.

Note that: This method works the best for leather sandals as compared to plastic sandals and shoes. Once you’ve rubbed the alcohol on your sandals, it’s time to walk. Keep walking until you feel that the sandals are entirely dried.

After they have dried, you will feel that your uncomfortable sandals have become more comfortable to wear.

Step#6: Shoe stretch sprays and liquids

You will find many liquids and sprays that can stretch your new and tight sandals.

Usage is simple, Spray them on the areas that feel tight, and walk-in your sandals until you find them easily. You can also use them with shoe stretchers and get a custom stretch.

Shoe Stretch Sprays And Liquids

Step#7: Frozen zip-close bag method

Here comes the best stretching technique for non-leather sandals and shoes.

  • Fill a zip-close bag with water.
  • Place that bag inside your sandals. 
  • Try to place it near the tight areas.
  • Now place the bag in the freezer for one whole night.
  • The ice will form and expand, and it will stretch your sandals.

Step#8: Buy arch support

If you feel that arch support is required or find a lack of cushioning while walking, try to add an inner step in your sandal for added cushioning and much needed support.

You can buy the special insoles to get that extra softness for your sandals. Look for insoles that are specifically made for sandals and buy the one that can absorb the moisture as well.

shoe insoles for sandals

We hope that by now you know how to stretch leather sandals wider but wait, we have some other useful info below only for you.

So, keep scrolling down to master the art of stretching!

How to Stretch plastic sandals or shoes?

Sometimes, you’re unable to find a perfect fit for your feet, especially in synthetic materials such as plastic. In these sorts of materials, the stretching is a bit more complicated than those made up of leather.

Luckily, you can overcome this issue by using this simple method. So, let’s dive in and check out how to stretch the plastic sandals and other footwear:

Wet newspaper method to stretch non-leather sandals

In this stretching trick, you will need the newspaper balls. Ensure that the newspaper is not too big, neither are they too small. Then follow these steps:

  • After making the newspaper balls, wet them in water and take out the excess water.
  • Place them inside your plastic sandals or footwear.
  • After that, put the sandals in airy places, such as the balcony, so that the wet newspapers get dried.
  • When the paper ball gets dry, it will expand and thus force the plastic material to enlarge.

As a result, you will get stretched out wide plastic sandals and a much better fit. According to the users, your plastic sandals will get three to four-inch stretching after applying this trick.

How to make your sandals more comfortable to wear?

Now that you know all the details regarding how to stretch sandals wide, it’s time to focus on other essential aspects. So, keep these things in mind when shopping or adjusting your sandals. These things will make them more comfortable to wear:

Choose Your Sandal Type Wisely

You will have different types of sandals on the market and we will advise you to make your decision as per your specific needs and usage.

For instance, a fashion sandal is not suitable for walking or hiking purposes. Do some research work before making the purchase so that you can buy the right type of sandal for yourself.

Prevention Is the Best Cure

If possible, try the sandals before finalizing your choice. Try them on and walk while wearing them. Plus, try to get a pair that is on the big side.

Take Short Walks in Your New Sandals

Never wear your new sandals for a long time; instead, wear your new sandals for short walks. This will prevent overexposing your bare skin from needless friction, and it will shape your sandals according to your feet.

Wearing your new sandals for a full day will result in sore feet, and you might feel pain and discomfort in your feet.

Use Heel Grips

Finally, if you feel that your new sandals are slippery or too wide, consider using the heel grips.

This grip will give your heel a smooth and reliable cushion that will keep the friction away, and you can walk in your new sandals comfortably.

These heel grips are available in different colors, and you can easily buy the one as per your preferences.

Heel Grips

Your toes need stretching too

If you feel that your toes are bunched together in your new sandals, you will feel pain and discomfort.

In addition to stretching your sandals, you need to stretch out your toes back to their natural position. Here are some basic things that you can do for this purpose:

  • Hold your toes and try to pull them apart softly.
  • Try to separate your toes and gently shake them.
  • Wiggle them daily or twice a day.
  • Keep your toes in the sunlight daily for a couple of minutes.

YouTube video

Frequently ask questions

Are flat sandals bad for your feet?

Flat sandals provide no support to your feet. Lack of support to your feet may lead to plantar fasciitis and Achilles tendinitis. So, in this way, these are not that good for your feet.

How do you break in sandals fast?

Follow these steps to break in your sandals quickly:

First, wear thick socks

  • Now take your sandals and use a hairdryer on the sandals for up to one minute, until it becomes warm and soft.
  • Now, wear the sandal. Repeat the same process with the other sandal.
  • Lastly, wear both and take short walks in your home until you find your sandals comfortable and cool.

How do I know if my sandals are too small?

A simple rule is that the sandal’s sole should be equal to your entire foot. A sandal will be small for your feet if there is an overhang of the heel or toes. If you have a strappy sandal, you will find it difficult to strap up correctly, and you will feel some pain or discomfort.

There is a plastic spacer on my sandals between my toes. Do I remove the plastic?

There is no harm in removing the plastic spacer on your sandals between the toes only if it is not attached to your sandals with thread or anything alike.

How to stretch sandals wide that are not real leather?

If you have non-leather sandals, you can use a blow dryer on them for softening purposes, or try to use them as much as you can until you find them comfortable. Another way to do this is to follow the water bag and freezer method; mentioned above in detail.


We hope that now you know how to stretch sandals wide because the proper and comfortable fitting is vital for your feet and overall well-being.

So, don’t rush and always take your time when shopping. It will ensure that you get a proper fit for yourself. If you end up with sandals that are too tight, try the methods mentioned above, and you will surely feel the difference in tightness.

All these tactics are proven and included after proper research. I have personally tested a few of them and found them useful. Another thing worth mentioning here is that don’t return the sandals you purchased online if you find little compactness.

Instead, try experimenting with these techniques of sandal widening. In this way, you can save your precious time and effort.

About A.Zee

Hey, I'm A.Zee. There are two things in life that I'm passionate about, shoes and writing!

Combining both of my passions with my designing degree, I write for Shoe Knowledge to help readers pick the best shoes, have fun!