We all like to be relaxed at home. To be settled in our most comfortable clothes, but what that chilled out ensemble be without slippers. They are an integral part of our lives. They are the epitome of comfort and make everyone who wears them relax in the softest, warmest way.
It might seem like a fairly straight-forward process, but when you want to buy some slippers, then there are some things you need to know. Not all slippers are created equally.
The feet are one of the most neglected parts of our bodies. Once we cover them with socks or shoes, the only time they come to mind is when we’ve walked too far, or those shoes are causing problems. That is the perfect time to break out the slippers and wrap them in some high-quality, foot-hugging bliss!
Here we’re going to look at the 7 most important aspects to bear in mind when buying slippers. It’s not just about how they look or whether they’ll get you through the week, you’ve got to think longer term. Whether you’re purchasing them for yourself, your family, friends or co-workers, we’ve got you (and your feet) covered.
- Size IS Important
Regardless of what you might have heard over the years, size IS important. Obviously, we are only talking about slippers here. When buying slippers, it’s crucial to order the right size. It sounds like an obvious statement to make, but in these days of online shopping, being able to get your feet measured correctly is becoming a lost art. It’s important not to just rely on what size you think you, or the recipient, are. Sizes can change over time, but when it comes to feet, it’s not just the length, but the width too. You need to take things like higher insteps, arches and wider feet generally into account.
If you’re ordering slippers online, then it’s always a good idea to check the size you need before you buy. You can usually do this by using the size chart they supply on the site. If that’s not possible, then you’ll have to do it manually.
To get the right size, measure the foot from the back of the heel to the end of the hallux, that’s the technical name for the big toe. This is easy if the slippers are for you, but a fun challenge if you want them for other people, especially if you want them to be a surprise.
If you can’t get or don’t know their size, or even if the feet aren’t a standard fit, then think about buying them either slightly bigger, with adjustable backs or even open-backed slippers (sometimes called slip-ons). These offer more flexibility when the size isn’t readily available. The material the slippers are made from can even help with sizing. Speaking of which…
The material the slippers are made from is also an important factor. Things like natural leather offer more movement in terms of sizing, as do materials like Lycra and fabrics that incorporate elasticated bands. Where you can, choose natural materials as they are more breathable, which is safer for the skin. It also helps to protect from fungal infections and dermatological problems.
Of course, when it comes to the material of your chosen slipper, it needs to be robust enough to last. Good slippers should last years, even with constant use. Good quality materials will give you long-lasting slippers.
- To Wash or Not To Wash, That is the Question
Let’s face it; the feet aren’t the sweetest smelling part of the body at the best of times. Even with regular washing, being confined inside shoes every day will often bring out some odours that won’t win any perfumery prizes. When it comes to slippers, they are not immune. When buying slippers think about whether they are washable (at least occasionally) to bring them back to their best.
Even though it’s good for skin, leather shouldn’t be washed in a washing machine, but they can be cleaned regularly (even dry-cleaners can clean leather slippers). Leather can also be treated so that sweat can’t be absorbed into the material, so they stay fresher for longer.
- Support Your Feet
Slippers should be comfortable, otherwise what would be the point of them, but it’s not just about what the inside is made of or whether they fit properly. Those things are important, of course, but they need to be able to support you too. Good support is an important factor in any piece of footwear.
When buying slippers, it’s easy to go for the softest, warmest pair you can find, but you need to think beyond that. If the slippers are too soft, then they won’t support your feet at all. This can cause problems in the future, so prevention now is far better than treatment then.
You should always try and pick a slipper that provides good arch support. It may not be like wearing a fluffy cloud, but over time, you will get used to them, and it will be so much better for you in the long-run.
Slippers aren’t just a cosmetic choice. Choosing typically harder, more sturdy, slippers with arch support would be definitely the best solution if you suffer from a sort of medical or orthopaedic problems. It’s important to say that they won’t necessarily be as comfortable or soft as the cloud, but can ease the pain.
On the other hand, you could choose memory foam slippers which are soft and comfortable and mould well to the shape of feet. They don’t promote as much healthy posture as their shape is determined by the shape of the feet. A good compromise is to choose the arch support that comes with slightly more solid slippers. You can get them with a memory foam insole that is comfortable and can, in the long-term prevent, foot problems.
- I Know You Got Sole
Far too many people solely look at the top of the slipper when choosing one. They only care about what they’ll look like when you’re wearing it and neglect the underside. The sole of the slipper needs to be work in two important ways. Unless you travel a lot and take your slippers with you and are conscious of the space they take up in your luggage, slipper soles should be both absorbent and provide a good grip.
The thicker the sole is, the more absorbent it tends to be. You might not think it’s important, but when you’re taking out the rubbish in the rain, you’ll thank us later!
Having slippers with a good grip is vital, especially if you’re buying them for older people or those with balance problems. The better the grip, the less likely they will have accidents in them or slip on wet flooring in the home. I order to prevent slips, trips and falls, the choice of sole you pick is often determined by the kind of flooring you, or the recipient, have in their home. Rubber soles are usually heavier, but they counteract this by having the best grip on all surfaces. The soles that are made of felt do have a good grip on carpets, but on laminated flooring or tiled surfaces, they can be more susceptible to grip loss. If you’re unsure, look for EVA (Ethylene-vinyl Acetate), PU (Polyurethane) or TPR (thermoplastic rubbers) insoles which have a fairly good grip on all surfaces.
If you’re one of the thousands of people who give slippers as a present, then choosing the right one, as we’ve seen, is important. If you’re gifting them, then they don’t want to receive them in a cheap plastic bag. If you’re giving slippers as a gift, then the way they are presented needs to be looked at.
You want to see their face light up when they open the wrapping paper, and a cheap, clear plastic bag isn’t going to inspire anyone. Make sure your slippers come with a stylish box so that they are presented in the best possible way. Don’t forget, if you’re buying for young children, the box might be the highlight of the day for them!
- Return to Sender
It’s fair to say that you don’t want the slippers you’ve spent so long choosing to need to be returned, but if it happens, then you need to make sure the store’s return policy allows for it.
Whether it’s because the slippers didn’t fit or they just didn’t meet your (or their) expectations, then don’t be afraid to return them for an exchange. If you’re very organised and buy them well in advance, it’s worth making sure you’ll still be covered by the time you get round to giving them as gifts.
So there you have it, the 7 things you need to bear in mind when looking to buy slippers. We hope you found it useful, and you’ll be glad to know that you don’t have to go far to find slippers that will meet all of your needs. We have some in our store right now. Take a look at our range and you’ll be sure to find something for that special someone that will last longer and feel better than you thought it could.
We look forward to seeing you there.