How To Stop Shoes From Squeaking
First impressions count. So it’s your first day at your new job or you’ve spent weeks preparing a presentation for a big client. You spend a considerable amount of time grooming that morning. Your hair is neat, your facial hair is in check and you’ve put on one of your better suits and shoes. It’s time to make your grand entrance and to your horror the only thing that is noticeable is the squeaky noises coming from your shoes.
There is nothing more irritating than squeaky noises and it’s usually bad enough when it’s just a little peep or two, but when you’re walking down the hall and every step you take is emitting an annoying squeak it can be embarrassing as well as aggravating. Before you put your best foot forward, check out these 10 tips to stop shoes squeaking.
1. Toss Out Old Shoes
Those shoes you bought for your cousin’s wedding last year may be super comfortable, but if you’ve been wearing them on a regular basis for months on end, there may be cracks in the sinner or outer soles causing them to squeak every time you take a step. Sure, they still look presentable on the outside but do you really want to be remembered as the guy with the squeaky step? It may be time to toss those old shoes out and invest in a new pair. Who knows, the store you originally bought them from may have the same pair, if you’re really that attached to them.
2. Take Them To A Cobbler
If your shoes are old but still look good and you really can’t bear to throw them out just yet, take them to a cobbler. Sometimes all an old pair of shoes needs is to have the bottom sole and the insole replaced. This is a particularly good option if you spent a considerable amount of money on your shoes and they happen to be made of good quality leather. A good cobbler won’t necessarily be cheap, but it to have your favorite shoes repaired and rendered squeak free, it’s still a cheaper option to getting another pair of similar quality and style. You can try and fix them yourself, but you may not fix the problem and you could end up damaging your shoes irreparably.
3. Keep Your Feet Dry
Your shoes may be perfectly fine until you’ve been in them all day. Then suddenly, just after your lunch break you notice the squeak. Chances are your feet have become sweaty causing a buildup of moisture in your shoes. This moisture can cause air pockets to form around your feet and these could be responsible for the noise every time you take a step. It could also be that you had to run to the office in the rain and this caused your shoes to be wet. You may not be able to do anything about this problem at the time, but when you get home you will need to remove your insoles and dry them and your shoes completely before wearing them again. If the problem is from sweaty feet, look at buying socks that wick moisture away from your feet and possibly breathable insoles. On rainy days, it may be wise to bring spare shoes and socks with you to work … just in case.
4. Put Some Baby Powder In Your Shoes
Before you put on your shoes in the morning, sprinkle a little baby powder in your shoes. The powder will absorb any excessive moisture from sweaty feet. You should also sprinkle baby powder in your shoes when you get home in the evening and leave the powder in there until morning. Not only will this also soak up the moisture that causes your shoes to squeak, it will also do away with nasty odors.
5. Make Sure Your Insert Fits
Some people have a medical necessity to have inserts in their shoes. These inserts could be generic or custom orthotics. Either way, they need to fit properly inside your shoes or they may be the cause of squeaky shoes. If you do purchase the generic ones from a store, you may need to cut the insert to fit snugly in your shoes. If your inserts are custom made, take your regular shoes with you when you are being measured for the inserts. Other types of inserts include the ones that absorb foot odor, or may be made from memory foam for those who are on their feet all day. Regardless of the types or reason for your inserts, just make sure they fit inside your shoes properly.
6. Wear In Your New Shoes
New shoes are often very squeaky until you break them in and certain types of rubber used for the soles are squeakier than others. The good news is that most new shoes do stop making squeaky noises after a few wears. If they don’t however, you may need to do something so the bottom of your rubber soles are not so smooth. Shuffle your feet over a rough surface like concrete or asphalt. That should do away with some of the squeaky smoothness of new rubber soles.
7. Give Your Shoes A Good Polish
The source of all squeaky shoes isn’t necessarily just in the soles. Sometimes the sound could be coming from the top of the shoes or the tongue. Some types of leather can be notorious for squeaking. Giving your shoes a good buffing with a polish or leather conditioner could solve this problem for you. Just make sure you go over your shoes with a soft cloth afterwards. If your shoes aren’t made of leather, check the manufacturer’s instructions on how to care for them. This is especially important if your shoes are made from suede. You definitely don’t want to use anything but products specifically made for use on suede.
8. Check Your Heels
Whether your shoes are old or new, there could be a problem with the heels of your shoes. A loose heel can cause an annoying amount of noise and it could also indicate that your entire sole is coming loose. Take off your shoes and take a good look at the bottom. If the soles of your shoes are in one complete piece, make sure it is properly secured to the rest of the shoe. The same applies to soles with a separately attached heel. Check that all parts are secure and if they aren’t try and glue them together again. If you’re not comfortable doing this yourself, you may need to take your shoes to a cobbler and have it done professionally.
9. Check For Defects
Sometimes, no matter what you do with your new shoes they still squeak. It may not be anything you’ve done, or not done. Check your new shoes for defects. Something could have gone wrong during the production of your shoes and this could be the cause of the squeakiness. If there is a defect you should return the shoes to the store you bought them in and ask for them to be exchanged for a new pair that are defect free. If there are no more of that shoe in stock you may be able to choose an alternative or request that the manufacturer fix the defect for you. However, you often get what you pay for so if your shoes were ridiculously cheap and of a lower quality you may need to save wearing them for occasions when you aren’t in the spotlight.
10. Add A Dab Of Rubber Cement
Sometimes the problem with squeaky shoes isn’t the actual shoes but the type of flooring you have in your home or office. If that is the case then you may not be the only one whose approach is being announced by noisy shoes. That may all be well and good, but if you still don’t like the prospect of that unnecessarily and annoying noise every time you walk down the halls, you can do one of two things. You can ask your office manager to suggest the cleaner change the detergent used to clean hard floors, or you can simply apply a thin layer of rubber cement to the front and heels of your shoes. Rubber cement is readily available in tubes but keep it to a thin layer. The last thing you need is a thick blob on the bottom of your shoes making walking uncomfortable.
Looking for the squeak in your shoes is also a good time to make sure your shoes are clean and polished so take out that shoe shine kit while you’re checking for the noise in your shoes. If you can’t get rid of the squeak, you will be drawing attention to your shoes every time you enter or leave the room. It’s bad enough to have squeaky shoes, but it will be inexcusable if your shoes also look dirty or as though they’ve seen better days.