ST. CROIX INSIGHTS

Women can never have enough shoes

BY BRETT ANDERSON/ST.CROIX ADVISORS, LLC

When was the last time you checked out someone’s shoes? What can someone’s shoes tell you? Is she fashionable, sensible, outgoing or fun? And for some it might be a status symbol. So is it true women can never have enough shoes?

I did some online research to determine how many shoes women should own. According to fashion.allwomentalk.com, seven types are needed – classic pumps, ballet flats, riding boots, summer wedges, sandals, statement pair (a snazzy red fits that bill in my opinion) and Oxfords. I couldn’t tell you why, but sneakers were not on the list. Sneakers are common sense in my humble option, so I’d them to the list and also include hiking boots. So now I’m up to nine.

Looking at a few different surveys online, it seems around 20 pairs of shoes is the norm for women to own with some women owning over 300. So if you are going to invest a considerable amount of money into shoes, two factors must be factored – fit and cost.

Anytime is the right time for new shoes, right? Not if you don’t want to pay full-price and I suspect most people don’t want to. So when do you purchase?
• Sandals – Buy in March. Seems crazy, but that’s what I’ve found.
• Designer boots – Buy these at the end of seasons. Really you are preplanning for next year. Now that’s smart.
• Sneakers – Buy these in November and January.

Any shoe in general is best purchased in May, with the end of Spring and the thought of going back to school in the Fall.

Shoe retailer DSW mails coupons to my home for 20 percent off, however with the markup on these days, 20 percent is still like paying full price. Don’t be afraid to shop the clearance racks and even ask for a greater discount. You’d be surprised sometimes they’ll give you a discount, you just have to ask. Just the other day I asked the cashier for a coupon and he gave me 30 percent off. I went back the next day purchased the same item with a different cashier, rang up full price, asked again, and got a 25 percent discount. Either way, I’m money ahead just by asking. By the way, you can ask even when purchasing items online depending upon the retailer. Although you are probably out of luck with Amazon.

Price is important but when it comes to shoes, size and fit matter more. Between standing and walking, day in and day out, it’s natural that our feet will swell. Even the time of day you try shoes on will impact the fit and feel. Probably the best time to confirm the fit of your new shoes is early in the morning.

Just because a shoe is “expensive” doesn’t mean it will offer you the proper fit and feel. I suspect arch support is most important factor and most shoes do not offer such support. When looking at women’s shoes, sometimes there isn’t much to them. You know Payless Shoe’s slogan is “You Could Pay More But Why?” This is why. Fit should be primary over fashion. This will save you a ton of money from purchasing shoes you’ll never wear.

When was the last time you met with someone who knows how to properly fit shoes? Here are two resources on how to purchase shoes.

Norstrom’s website to help us how to fit and care for our shoes:

• Schuler Shoes has free foot evaluations by board-certificate podiatrists. I’ve done this and it’s worth it to get the right fit.

Feet, they do help in our day-to-day lives. Yet, we probably take them for granted. Shoes are an investment. So why not buy them right the first time so you have the best twenty for fit, fashion and price.

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