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How To Keep Shoe Shape | Yogi Footwear

How To Keep Shoe Shape

Shoes can alter shape over time and become less comfortable, stylish and long-lasting. Read Yogi Footwear’s guide on how to keep shoe shape so your footwear stays looking awesome for many years to come.

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The way you store your shoes is vital for ensuring they keep their shape and last longer.

Shoe Trees

No, they’re not where shoes grow... shoe trees are supports that are inserted into the shoe when you’re not wearing it. If you’re worried about your shoes losing shape, a shoe tree is essential.

They help to absorb and reduce moisture in the shoe too, preventing it from damaging the material.

There are various types of shoe trees available.

Without a heel

The most basic shoe trees are a simple insert with a piece of wood designed to help stretch out the shoe and absorb moisture. They aren’t quite as effective as more expensive options, but are perfect for your standard pair of shoes.

Top tip: Choose a rough wood shoe tree over a polished/varnished version as they are better at removing moisture.

With ventilation & a heel

More expensive shoe trees contain ventilation slots near the toe to help moisture dissipate and have more wood to better control odour and promote shoe shape. They often also have a better fit.

Lasted shoe trees

Some shoes might come with lasting shoe trees, which are specially crafted to match the shape of the shoe precisely. This is the very best way to keep your shoe shape, but comes at a price! It’s worth it for the most expensive shoes, but a standard shoe tree will suffice for your everyday footwear.

How To Use A Shoe Tree

Shoe trees help to dry the moisture out of your shoes. The best way to use them is to insert them into your shoes within an hour or two after you take them off. Leave them in for 24 hours. After that, you can remove them even if you don’t wear the shoes again immediately, but they don’t do any harm if you keep them in the shoes.

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Shoe Racks

A big pile of shoes is no way to keep them in top condition. It can be tempting to throw the shoes in a box when you get in, tired from the day, but this will damage the shoe shape over time and can shorten the lifespan of the shoes more generally.

Instead of throwing the shoes into a box, place them on a shoe rack where they aren’t being crushed by other shoes. This will help them to keep their shape and generally stay in good condition.

Shoe boxes

If you’re really dedicated to your treads, you could keep them in their original shoe box on a shoe rack. This will help to protect them further and ensure they keep their shape. It will prevent any moisture in the air damaging them too.

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The other ways you treat your shoes are just as important as the way you store them, especially when it comes to keeping your shoes’ shape.

Swap shoes around

We don’t mean wearing odd shoes, but changing which pair you wear every day is a good system to ensure that shoes have a chance to recover from each day’s wear. Sweat and moisture in the shoe contribute to damaging and changing the shoe’s shape. By swapping which pair you wear, you give each time to dry out and recover their shape before being worn again.


A shoehorn is the strange tongue-like tool that you’ll most likely only have seen at your grandmother’s. However, it may seem old fashioned, but using a shoehorn is a really effective way to put on your shoe without damaging it or affecting its shape.

Pushing into your shoe is likely to crush the back and damage the material, causing it to break and lose shape over time. This can mean the shoe becomes uncomfortable and eventually looks damaged.

How to use a shoehorn

  1. If you are using a long shoehorn, you will need to stay standing, otherwise sit down on a chair. 
  2. Put the shoehorn into the shoe so the scoop is upwards, ready for your heel to slide into it.
  3. Slip your foot into the shoe.
  4. Once your foot is completely into the shoe remove the shoehorn and repeat with the other foot!
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Taking Your Shoes Off

In the same way that you don’t want to force your feet into the shoes, to keep shoe shape you need to take them off properly too. Standing on the heel, or simply pulling really hard, can damage the material, make the shoe uncomfortable and cause it to lose shape.

Unlace, don’t pull

Unlacing your shoes can feel like a lot of effort at the end of a long day, but it’s an important way to ensure you don’t damage their shape. When you get into the habit of unlacing rather than pulling at the heel, you won’t even think about it, but your shoes will thank you!

Loosen them properly so your foot easily slides out without the need to pull too hard.

Keep them dry

Moisture is one of the biggest culprits when it comes to losing shoe shape. It can also cause your shoes to smell and ultimately become unwearable!

Try to keep your shoes dry, especially shoes that are made from more vulnerable materials such as suede. If it looks like rain, consider swapping to more durable and tough shoes while you’re outside, even if you take your nice shoes in a separate bag to swap into when you arrive.

Of course, there will always be times when you’re caught short in the rain. When this happens, do what you can to limit how wet your shoes get - such as hopping onto a bus or sheltering until the rain passes.

When you get home, leave your shoes to dry somewhere that’s warm but not hot. Be sure to let them dry out completely before you wear them again.

Other things can help to reduce the impact of moisture on shoe shape, such as shoe trees.

Keep your shoe shape by following our tips and your shoes will look fantastic for a long time to come! Remember that you should also keep your shoes clean to maximise their lifespan. If you’re ready for a new pair of moccasins, loafers, sandals or boots, then explore Yogi Footwear!

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