16 Shoe Hacks You Need to Know

Woman placing black ¾ insert into black high heel

Our Big List of Shoe Hacks Every Woman Must Know

Your flats are too big, you can’t get the stink out of your gym shoes, and if your flip flops break one more time you might just scream. If this sounds familiar, then you’ve got some shoe problems. Luckily, Foot Petals® has all the shoe hacks and fixes you need to give all your shoes the comfortable, long life of stylish wear they deserve.

Woman in high heels touching bare foot in pain

Quick Fixes for All Your Shoe Problems

All shoes have their own pros and cons whether it’s a luxurious statement heel with a tight toe box or chic white sneakers that stain too easily. Foot Petals discreet shoe cushions and products are the best way to fix common shoe problems from a lack of arch support to annoying blisters and cracked heels. Get the most out of every shoe you own by using these 16 easy shoe hacks by Foot Petals:

1. Deodorizers for Smelly Shoes

Shoes used for heavy physical activity or those stored for a long time can start to stink up your gym locker or closet. Some DIY shoe deodorizers you may have tried in the past include unused tea bags, scented dryer sheets, orange or lemon peels, and coffee filters with baking soda.

Need something portable and longer lasting? Foot Petals shoe deodorizers are a great hack for smelly shoes, blocking out odors and leaving behind a fresh, clean scent for up to three months. Plus, you can use them in your gym bag, locker, purse, or dresser drawer.

Woman placing shoe deodorizer in gray tennis shoe

2. Shoes Too Big or Too Wide

You might experience more movement in your shoes if they are too big or too wide. All this sliding around causes friction, blisters, and may even lead you to trip. You should always buy shoes that are the right size, however a little bit of extra room is a simple fix.

An easy hack for shoes that are too big or too wide is adding cushion to the empty spaces of the shoe. This could mean a well-cushioned heel liner, a ¾ insert for your arch, or ball of foot cushions to stop you from sliding.

Woman placing tan ¾ insert into high heels

3. Shoes Too Small or Too Tight

Feet tend to swell throughout the day, so you can avoid buying shoes that are too small by going shopping in the late afternoon. A good hack for how to loosen tight shoes is filling a resealable bag with water, setting it in the toe box of the shoe, and placing them in the freezer. The shoes will expand as the water freezes.

Another way to make shoes that are too small fit better is molding them to your feet. Put on a pair of thick socks, slip your feet inside the shoes, and use a hair dryer on medium heat to blow dry tight areas and loosen them out. Then, use spot cushions as needed to add cushion to trouble spots, reduce rubbing, and prevent blisters.

Woman placing spot cushion inside leopard print high heel

4. No-Slip Grips for Slippery Soles

Are your heels too slippery or has the traction on your booties worn thin? Foot Petals no-slip grips are the easiest slippery shoes hack, adding traction where you need it to prevent slipping and sliding. They have a discreet design that sticks right to the underside of your shoe. While old tricks like sandpapering your soles damage your shoes, our no-slip grips protect you and your outer soles.

Foot Petals no slip grip on the bottom of a beige heel

5. Shoe Cleaning Hacks: Sneakers, Suede & Leather

Cleaning your shoes about once a month can make them last longer and look better but tossing them in the washing machine can cause more harm than good. Instead, consider these shoe cleaning hacks for:

  • White Sneakers: For the easiest way to brighten your white sneakers or canvas shoes, check out these simple DIY tips for cleaning white shoes.
  • Suede Shoes: Suede can be the hardest to clean since the material is so delicate. The easiest way to clean suede boots is with a suede shoe brush, a clean pencil eraser, or even rubbing the stain with a piece of bread.
  • Leather Shoes: When cleaning winter boots made of leather, first find out what kind of leather they are since patent vs faux leather cleans up differently. Vinegar and water can easily clean up a leather boot while petroleum jelly or olive oil helps restore shine.

6. Protect from Staining with Shoe Spray

You’ve put so much work into cleaning your shoes, or picking them off the shelf, so protect them with Foot Petals shoe protector sprays. From suede and leather boots to sneakers and dress shoes, our arsenal of waterproofing shoe care sprays is everything you need to easily safeguard your favorite styles, providing instant protection with just a spritz.

Woman spraying suede bootie with shoe care spray

7. Blister Prevention

Stop blisters before they start with a blister preventer anti-friction balm. Great for breaking in new shoes, this blister prevention balm puts an invisible barrier between your foot and irritating parts of your shoe to reduce rubbing and stop blisters. It also works on your thighs and underarms to reduce chafing and provides relief from itchy fabrics.

Woman using blister prevention balm on back of heel

8. Shoes Slipping Off the Heel

If you have a problem with closed back shoes like pumps, wedges, or flats falling off your heels as you walk, use back of heel cushions as your go-to shoes slipping off heel hack. These discreet heel liners help keep heels from slipping in and out of shoes. They add cushion, reduce blisters, and prevent ankle cuts or chafing. Choose back of heel cushions in black, tan or gel to match the inside of your shoes.

Woman placing tan back of heel cushion in black high heel

9. Ball of Foot Pain in High Heels

Different shoes cause different problems with your feet. High heels are notorious for causing ball of foot pain from pressure or sliding. Some high heel hacks suggest taping your middle and fourth toes together as a quick fix to minimize pressure, but even this can cause discomfort.

Instead, prevent sliding and relieve ball of foot pain in high heels with ball of foot cushions. Available in foam, gel, and even our ultra cushy air gel design, these cushions reduce stress and pressure on the forefoot, providing consistent weight and shock distribution to prevent and relieve pain. Find them for sandals, too.

Woman placing air gel ball of foot cushion inside tan heels

10. Quick Fix for Broken Flip Flops

The easiest DIY shoe repair hack is fixing a broken flip flop. It’s normal for the toe post in foam flip-flops to pop out after extensive wear. Instead of tossing them for yet another summer flip flop sale, attach a flat washer or bread tag where the end piece of the toe post meets the bottom of the shoe.

11. Easy Fix for a Broken Heel

The tip of your stilettos or heels can wear down over time, revealing pins or causing your shoes to wobble. A heel replacement cap can help take care of noise, unevenness, or pins that are poking out.

If the entire heel snaps off, some shoes can be repaired at home while others require a cobbler’s help. For heels without complicated dowels, nails, or pins, you can clean the area where the heel and shoe attach thoroughly then apply a strong shoe glue and leave to dry overnight.

12. No-Tie Shoelaces Hack

Hate tripping on untied laces or spending time retying them into the perfect bow? Instead, replace your shoelaces with a set of no-tie shoelaces. They’re easy to install, stretch well, and they’re trimmable so you can cut them to just the right length. You can also make your own no-tie shoelaces using a colorful elastic cord sewn to the tongue of your sneakers.

13. Soften Tight or Slippery Straps

Do your slingbacks keep falling off your heel? Need a quick fix for softer ankle straps? Strap cushions make the perfect addition to your recipe book of wardrobe hacks. These premium foam cushions adhere discreetly inside the strap to reduce rubbing, prevent blisters and unsightly marks plus improve comfort and fit. You can even use them on a digging purse strap, bra strap, or dress strap!

Woman placing strap cushion inside a sandal strap

14. Hack for Squeaky Shoes

There are a couple reasons why your shoes might sound extra squeaky. They’re either brand new and fresh out of the box so the rubber hasn’t been worn or there’s moisture trapped inside. A pair of no slip grips can help you stop squeaky bottom soles while sprinkling baby powder underneath the inner sole of your shoe helps absorb moisture and quiet the squeak.

15. Shoe Storage Hacks

Foot Petals has all your wardrobe organization hacks, from organizing miscellaneous closet items to building a minimalist wardrobe. As for your beloved shoe collection, here are a few smart shoe storage hacks you can try:

  • Use a wooden bin to store shoes underneath an entryway bench.
  • Turn an old apothecary cabinet into an organized shoe cubby in your hallway or mudroom.
  • Repurpose an old cardboard wine box with contact paper and use the compartments for shoes.
  • Store individual pairs inside an over-the-door shoe rack behind your closet to save space.
  • Hang gym sneakers that have back of heel tabs on a coat rack.
  • Maintain the shape of leather or suede shoes by stuffing them with newspaper.
  • Stack wooden crates horizontally or vertically to be used as shelving for shoes, booties, and boots.
  • Use a stylish storage ottoman as both seating for your closet or bedroom and shoe storage.

Shoe storage hacks, storing shoes behind door or under entryway bench

16. Use Nail Polish or Appliques

Give a tattered or bland pair of shoes new life by adding appliques, bows, shoe clips, rhinestones, and more. Nail polish can also be useful in covering scratches or giving new color to blank soles. Get the red bottoms look for less in a pair of black heels when you:

  1. Clean the bottom of each shoe with rubbing alcohol and leave to dry.
  2. Apply a white base coat to the bottom of each shoe and let dry.
  3. Finish the look with your favorite shade of red or other color polish.

Get the Perfect Fit with Foot Petals

Style that's comfortable never looked so easy with these shoe hacks for heels, slides, flats, sandals, boots, sneakers, and more. Visit our product finder for more tips on the perfect fit so you can feel confident in every shoe you wear.