We’ve all felt the nagging discomfort of a pair of shoes that rub, and I think we can all agree — a pain in the foot is a real pain in the neck. But there are a couple of things you can do to help prevent your shoes from irritating the back of your ankles, from investing in new socks that cushion your feet to experimenting with different shoe sizes that don’t cause irritation. Read on for some great ideas on how to prevent the dreaded ankle rub.
why do some shoes rub worse than others?
The question “why do my ankles hurt?” is almost always brought on by unwanted friction against shoes, and things like ill-fitting sizes and inappropriate materials are often the culprit. From shoes or socks that are one size too small to brand-new boots that haven’t been properly broken in yet, there are a lot of reasons why your footwear may be rubbing worse than other pairs in your closet.
what can happen if you don’t address the issue?
Not only do ill-fitting shoes have a major impact on the health of your feet but potentially the health of your legs, knees, hips, back and neck as well. From short-term side effects, such as blisters and discomfort, to lifelong limitations and chronic pain conditions, your feet are what carry you through life, and it’s important to limit your discomforts before they limit you.
what can you do to address the issue?
When it comes to issues with your feet, one of the easiest and most affordable solutions is exploring different types of socks. Length, fit, style and material are all major factors when it comes to sock choice, and it’s important to consider them carefully.
- material: The material you choose for your socks is critical when trying to solve ankle rub. Your socks are the barrier between your raw skin rubbing against the durable but unforgiving shoe you wear. Depending on the season and purpose of the sock, the blend you select may be different, but you should be looking for something that is breathable, light, soft, able to wick away moisture and snug (but not tight) fitting.
- length and/or style: From completely hidden no-shows to fun crew socks that are anything but, there are so many options when it comes to sock styles! Making sure you’re wearing the right sock for the shoe will go a long way in terms of preventing ankle burn, but it’s important to keep in mind that too much or too little sock will only hurt your ankle if it’s already sore.
- specialty features and designs: Work socks and luxury socks have two major things in common. They’re both made from specialized materials, and they’re both worth every penny! These types of socks are designed mindfully in order to maximize comfort, durability and airflow which might be just the thing that you need! If you don’t wear work boots daily, consider luxury socks made of light and soft materials like bamboo for consistent comfort. Bamboo socks blended with synthetic fibers, like nylon, are soft and well-fitting, but too much nylon isn’t good. The perfect blend will produce durable, well-fitting, moisture-wicking and quick-drying socks.
Everyone’s feet are different. From different sizes and arches to different sensitivity levels and pain thresholds, custom insoles are designed to fill whatever need your shoe is not.
For some, finding the perfect shoe is a great day of shopping, but for others, trying to find the perfect (or even just an acceptable) set of shoes can be a lifetime of confusion and pain. From knowing your perfect size and not straying from it to not over-tightening your laces, it’s important you aren’t wearing incorrectly sized footwear, wearing your shoes wrong or wearing the wrong pair for the season or terrain.
If this is unavoidable because you’re someone who’s required to wear somewhat uncomfortable footwear for work, make sure to take them off as soon as you’re done with the day and slip into some fun and cozy socks!
taking the first step…
Between the right socks, the right footwear and possibly even the right insoles that you didn’t even know you needed, you should feel a difference in your feet and ankles almost immediately. Sore ankles may bring you down, but it can be as simple as a good pair of shoes and socks that can help you get back up! If you need help finding the right pair of socks for you or even as a gift for a friend, feel free to reach out to us sock fairies as we’re always happy to help!