Aye, there's the rub.
June 28, 2007 9:11 PM   Subscribe

Shoe issues-- My Earth shoes are ripping my feet apart.

I have these shoes. I love them but the backs of the shoe keep biting into my upper heel. The problem appears to be the back edge; specifically not the heel cup but the very back lip. I've worn them 4 times and all 4 times I get a blister on my upper heel. I have tried moleskin to no luck. I would rather not have to rid myself of these shoes as they were a bit pricey and I like the style quite a bit. Any suggestions?
posted by oflinkey to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (13 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
bandaid the back of your heel until you loosen the leather and they become comfortable.
posted by Stynxno at 9:13 PM on June 28, 2007

There are quasi-invisible socks that work pretty well for this. My coworker was wearing some today with flats and I had to look hard to notice them. I don't know where you can get them, but hopefully someone could post a link now that I've mentioned it.
posted by rhoticity at 9:19 PM on June 28, 2007

when you say you've tried moleskin...did you just put a piece in the heel part? or did you cut a hole out of it (where you're blister would be-free from suffering)? I found the donut-holes are best.
posted by hazel at 9:21 PM on June 28, 2007

I get this problem a lot as well, probably because of the way I walk.

You can try to bring them to a cobbler to get softened around the edges since they appear to be made out of leather.

Or keep wearing them but only when wearing a large piece of moleskin or other protection on your foot, like wrapping around the hell. Remove when the moleskin starts to slip or lose stickiness, or you start to get blisters. If the shoes hurt and skin turns red, take them off!

Your shoes may take a while to break in. Certainly more than 4 wears. Band-aids, in my experience, are too weak for protection.

Additionally, you can try these products:
Heel liners to give a bit of cushion
Blister stick to reduce friction
Anti-chafing gel also to reduce friction

Good luck!
posted by kathryn at 9:36 PM on June 28, 2007

kathryn beat me. Dr. Scholl's heel liners. I usually end up putting them in most of my shoes. There are a few different brands but I've found the Dr. Scholl's to be the best. Just be sure you don't get the gel ones, those are terrible. Get the gray, soft, sorta spongy ones.
posted by doift at 9:42 PM on June 28, 2007

Rhoticity's comment made me wonder if you wear socks with them. I had the same shoes in plum, and normally would not wear socks with mary janes, but couldn't stand the squeaky sounds my feet made without them so I started wearing thin, dark socks with chevrons or argyle patterns, etc. and ended up really liking having the patterns displayed in the shoe's window. No heel pain, though, so to take it back to your actual question, try pretty socks!
posted by PY at 10:55 PM on June 28, 2007

I would try steaming the heel pocket to soften the leather then pounding it with a wooden spoon to flare it out a bit.
posted by hortense at 1:27 AM on June 29, 2007

Shoe repair places have at least one machine to work or stretch that area of the shoe.
posted by BrotherCaine at 1:45 AM on June 29, 2007

I have the same model (though the vegan version). I had the same problem for the first two weeks or so. I used a bandaid until my feet got used to them. They are great now.
posted by davar at 2:22 AM on June 29, 2007

I could not find them on gap.com, but "Notsocks" are a life saver for me when I wear Mary Janes. They only cover the part of your foot that is in the shoe. You can find them at all Gap stores.
posted by nursegracer at 5:34 AM on June 29, 2007

You say you had no luck with moleskin. Is that because it rubbed off?

A few moleskin tricks from a tenderfoot:

Use a bigger piece of moleskin than you think you need, extended well past the affected area.

Use the thinner moleskin, not the more padded, which (in my experience) rubs off more readily.

Trim the edges of the piece into rounded corners; pointy corners rub against the inside of the shoe, resulting in the whole patch gradually rolling sticky-side-up and off.

Put a small piece of tissue or paper towel or sterile gauze over the broken skin before applying moleskin.

The two best tips I can offer:

Wipe down the skin to be covered with rubbing alcohol and let it dry before applying moleskin.

Apply moleskin several minutes before you put on shoes; smooth it down firmly and let the adhesive "set" on your skin for a bit.

When I do this, my moleskin patches will stay on 'til I peel 'em off at the end of the day. In a hurry the other day, I skipped these last two, and before I had walked five blocks, my moleskin patch had curled off my foot.
posted by Elsa at 6:43 AM on June 29, 2007 [1 favorite]

Oh, one more: buy moleskin rolls, not the sheets, to get the longest continuous area from which to cut a fresh patch. Every time you cut a piece, trim the pre-existing edge so it's a fresh cut all the way around. If even a scrap of that old edge got rolled off the backing and the adhesive got dry or dusty, it provides a vulnerable spot on the edge of your patch where it may rub and roll, rub and roll against the inside of your shoe, resulting in Total Moleskin Failure.
posted by Elsa at 8:03 AM on June 29, 2007

BTW, those shoes have an annoyingly poor design: the velcro straps lose their stickiness with use. So watch out, cos the day will come when you will step right out of your shoes! I gotta get over to the cobbler and have proper buckles put on.
posted by Scram at 8:17 AM on June 29, 2007

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