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Video:How to Use a Shoe Stretcher

with Abby Feldman

If your shoes are just a little bit too tight, you're going to have to stretch them. Here's a quick guide on how to stretch shoes using a shoe stretcher.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Use a Shoe Stretcher

Hi there, Abby here with About.com, and today, we are going to help you ease the pain of pinching shoes using a shoe stretcher.

When You Would Need to Stretch Shoes

Shoes are some of the most important items you own, and if you're on your feet for most of the day, they should be one of the comfiest. Best case scenario, the shoes you buy fit perfectly, but more often than not, they are a little too narrow, pinch at the toe or cause slight pain in problem areas. This is when a shoe stretcher becomes the best friend you never knew you had! Shoe stretchers are a must for every closet because often, shoes can shrink, feet can swell and foot imperfections such as bunions or corns can make shoes that once fit perfectly a little painful.

Only Certain Shoes Can Be Stretched

Shoe stretchers usually come as a single that can stretch both the right and left shoes, and can be bought in "two way" models that help to expand both the width and length of the shoe. Many shoe stretchers come with holes built into them in which you can insert plugs to stretch out problem areas. But just remember: there is a different stretcher for each style of shoe - so make sure you're buying the right one for the job. Shoe stretchers really only work well for shoes made from natural materials such as leather and suede. Artificial material such as vinyl doesn't give and, therefore, its shape cannot be altered.

How to Stretch Shoes

So, you've got your problem shoe and the shoe stretcher that's going to solve the problem. Let's get started. Every shoe stretcher is different; so make sure you read the instructions before starting. It's likely you'll need to apply a spray to saturate the material prior to stretching to make the process easier. After applying the spray, insert the shoe stretcher into the shoe. Once inside, start turning the knob and begin stretching the shoe. The longer you leave the stretcher in for, the more the shoe will stretch. Try and leave it in for at least twenty-four to forty-eight hours. If you have any questions or doubts about stretching your shoes, make sure you visit your local shoe repairer. They'll be able to tell you about the shoe's make-up and if you don't feel comfortable altering it yourself – can stretch your shoes for you. Hopefully these tips will ensure you'll never be uncomfortable on your feet again!

For more helpful hints on all things shoes, visit us as at www.About.com. Thanks for watching!
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