If you were "blessed" with big feet then you know just how real the struggle to find shoes you actually like (and are even remotely trendy) really is.
Hi my name is Raleigh Burgan and I wear a size 10 shoe. My mom wears a size 11 and, after eavesdropping on a conversation at work, I found out a colleague of mine has size 12s. If you were wondering where the idea for this article came from, there you have it. And if you're like us and are in need for advice on navigating shoe shopping, keep reading. The below problems and solutions might just change your life. Seriously.
Problem #1: It's seemingly difficult to find great looking shoes—even remotely on trend—in a big size.
Solution #1: If they're not already sold out, you can find some real gems (up to a size 12) on jcrew.com, nike.com and nordstrom.com. They're usually true to size, which means no matter the style they'll fit the same way across the board, and even though you might find yourself spending a pretty penny on them, you know they were made well and therefore will last you many, many wears.
(Full Disclosure: The above sneakers and the below heels can be found at shoedazzle.com.)
Problem #2: Most of the time, stores (and online stores) have a limited selection for big-footed women. On top of that, once you find one you like it's likely they're already sold out. Who has the hookups?
Solution #2: Speak to the retailer (either in person, on the phone, via email, etc.) and ask them what day of the week new items get delivered. Also ask them when their older items get replenished, if ever. That information is gold.
Problem #3: We generally pay a lot more for our shoes because they're so rare. Dropping $200 on a pair of flats isn't unrealistic.
Solution #3: Find a brand you love and sign up for their email notifications. You'll be one of the first to know about sales and special events, which in the long run will save you some major dough.
Problem #4: Boots like Dr. Martens are so cute on anyone a size seven, but once you go anywhere over a nine you're looking at a brand new pair of clown shoes.
Solution #4: This one also has a lot to do with finding a go-to brand and sticking with them. Insider secret: I've found that Sam Edelman sandals and all Nike shoes make my feet look smaller than they really are. Docs might never be a great fit, but you'll definitely be able to find similar styles that work better for you.
Problem #5: Our sizes are never available when you walk in to normal stores, so by default you become your best friend's honorary shoe shopping boyfriend.
Solution #5: Outside of Target, Payless (they have up to size 13s) and Nordstrom, I don't know any stores that carry bigger sizes. In that case, it gives you a chance to work on your Snapchat game and take to social media about how you just paid next to nothing for a new pair of shoes. Meanwhile, your friend just dropped a ton on hers. Now you can go to a nice dinner afterwards, but she can't. Foot karma?
Problem #6: Finding the perfect shoe is hard. Big feet have many various personalities—and just because your feet are bigger, doesn't necessarily mean they're wider.
Solution #6: Again, find your brand. It's all about trial and error and knowing what fits you well. More and more companies are starting to jump on the bandwagon of bigger sizes, but until then it's about taking that time to really know a retailer.
Problem #7: Do you find you're always settling for basic styles because of their price? This is me always.
Solution #7: Invest your money in the classics you know will last and go for the cheaper brands when you're looking to buy something trendy. If you find crazy-cute sandals at Target for $25, go for it. You'll most likely trash them after the summer anyways.