Best baby shoes

Clothing & Shoes

Baby shoes and socks are designed with “wiggle-proof” technology to keep them from slipping off.

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Which baby shoes are best?

It’s hard to resist squealing in delight when you see a tiny pair of baby-sized Converse at the mall. Baby-sized accessories and clothing are unquestionably adorable but another expense for new parents. Babies grow quickly and nothing they wear lasts for long, so purchasing a pair of shoes takes thoughtful consideration. 

Timberland’s Crib Booties and Cap Set protects your baby’s feet with style. These cute leather booties keep your baby’s feet warm and cozy with their plush inner lining. They have rubber soles that keep your baby balanced as they learn to walk and explore the world beyond their home.

What to know before you buy baby shoes

When to buy shoes

Healthy babies double their weight within the first six months of life and outgrow their clothing and shoes quickly. Luckily, your baby doesn’t do much walking in these early months and only needs booties or slippers to keep their feet warm. 

Most babies learn to walk at around 9 months old, and once they venture into the outside world, they need shoes to protect their feet. Shoes help them stay balanced and injury-free as they step over unfamiliar terrain. 

When to wear shoes

Going barefoot promotes healthy development and improves strength and balance but is not advised for all environments. Shoe protection outweighs the pros of going barefoot in many situations. In warm and moist areas, bacteria, viruses and fungi are present and can harm your baby if their feet are unprotected. On hot days when the sun is shining and the ground is scalding hot, burn injuries are possible. Even if the days are cool and dry, outdoor areas could have other hidden dangers such as nails, stones and sticks. 

A barefoot baby is fine at home but while you’re out in the world, they need a good pair of shoes.

Styles

Baby shoes come in many styles, just as adult ones do. There are sneakers, booties, slippers and sandals.

  • Sneakers are a standard, reliable option. They often have Velcro and/or lacing that makes the shoe adjustable and comfortable; they also can have faux laces but really be slip-ons.
  • Booties refer to two styles of shoe, depending on the retailer. One style is fashioned after adult boots and is made from leather or suede. These shoes are adjustable and hardy enough for outdoor use. The other style is comparable to a baby-sized slipper. It is best for keeping your baby’s feet warm when indoors or bundled up in their crib but should not be worn outside.
  • Sandals are more fashionable than protective. Most sandals are good only for indoor use, although there are kid-sized Crocs fit for indoor and outdoor play.

What to look for in quality baby shoes

Adjustable

Since babies and infants grow fast, consider buying adjustable shoes. Shoes with laces, Velcro and soft materials will have the flexibility to accommodate growing baby feet for longer. Miniature boots and sneakers are the most versatile baby shoes and have these adjustable features.

Soles

Baby shoes’ soles should keep your baby on its feet. Look for non-slip polyurethane and rubber soles that ensure your baby won’t struggle to stay upright. Any shoe without this feature is missing a vital component, for even baby slippers and socks have dotted grip soles.

Washable

Baby shoes made with certain soft fabrics are washable. Young children tend to track through mud and grime, making convenient wash instructions important. . 

No special features

Many baby shoes advertise additional features, such as arch support, padded inserts and reinforced soles. All of these are unnecessary for quality baby shoes, and they inhibit natural growth and development.

How much you can expect to spend on baby shoes

A pair of baby shoes costs $20-$50.

Baby shoes FAQ

Are shoes bad for baby feet?

A. Baby shoes hinder natural development, but not wearing them is more dangerous. Without shoes, your child’s bare feet are exposed to sharp objects, hot surfaces and germs. However, ill-fitting shoes cause more than discomfort in young children’s feet. If not correctly fitted, shoes cause poor posture, nerve damage and arthritis later in life. 

How do you know if baby shoes fit?

A. Correctly sized baby shoes don’t slip off or squish your baby’s feet. Their toes should be ⅖ to ⅘ of an inch, or 1-2 centimeters, from the edge of the shoe.

Will shoes help your baby learn to walk?

A. No. Shoes are for protection and fashion and do not aid development.

What are the best baby shoes to buy?

Top baby shoes

Timberland Crib Booties And Cap Set

Timberland Crib Booties And Cap Set

What you need to know: This is a matching brown and white bootie and cap set.

What you’ll love: These boots have a padded collar, terry cloth lining and a leather exterior for maximum comfort. The soles are rubber and slip-resistant.

What you should consider: They have to be wiped clean and are not machine washable.

Where to buy: Sold by Macy’s

Top baby shoes for the money

Carter’s Baby Duck Boot Crib Shoes

Carter’s Baby Duck Boot Crib Shoes

What you need to know: These booties have a white fluffy lining and pink laces.

What you’ll love: These duck-style (rubber lower section and waterproof upper section) boots have adjustable elastic laces and a polyurethane slip-resistant sole. They’re lined with polyester for comfort and fit babies up to 1 year old.

What you should consider: They are difficult to put on.

Where to buy: Sold by Kohl’s

Worth checking out

Converse Unisex-Child Chuck Taylor All Star Cribster Sneaker

Converse Unisex-Child Chuck Taylor All Star Cribster Sneaker

What you need to know: These are slip-on cotton Converse shoes with soft inner lining.

What you’ll love: These easily dressed shoes have a canvas exterior and soft synthetic insoles and foam cushioning. The bottom is rubber and slip-resistant and they are machine washable if placed in a laundry wash bag. They come in five colors.

What you should consider: The faux laces are not adjustable.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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Gwen Swanson writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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