Which infant shoes are best?

Newborns and young babies might not need shoes for walking in, but they’re undeniably cute. But which infant shoes should you buy? Are they just for show or are there any other important features to consider? 

Picking out the right shoes for your baby is important for their comfort and foot health. If you’re looking for adorably small versions of classic adult shoes, Vans Infant Slip-On Shoes are an excellent choice. 

What to know before you buy infant shoes

Style

Baby shoes are available in a wide range of styles from sneakers and moccasins to Mary Janes and T-bar shoes. Since the main purpose of shoes for babies is to look cute because they can’t yet walk, you should focus on choosing a style that you like. Many parents and caregivers like to choose tiny versions of shoes they like or own, so you’ll find a range of big shoe brands selling shoes for babies. 

Sole

Babies need soft-soled shoes that allow them to wiggle and flex their feet in the same way they’d be able to without shoes on. This is important for healthy foot development, especially in babies who wear shoes regularly. If you see shoes with rubber soles like you’d find on adult footwear, it’s best avoided.

While walking isn’t a concern for newborns, infant shoe sizes fit babies up to 12 months so early walkers will be toddling around in their infant shoes. Whether your baby is walking independently or with the help of a baby walker, they need soft-soled shoes to replicate the feeling of walking barefoot. That said, it’s better for new walkers to go without shoes where appropriate. 

Materials

Look for shoes made from soft, comfortable materials that won’t rub. Many shoes for infants are made from canvas or synthetic mesh materials. Anything that’s flexible, breathable and won’t rub the feet is a good choice. Avoid shoes made from leather or faux leather as they’re not flexible enough and much more likely to rub the feet. Some are lined with fleece or other soft materials to prevent chafing and keep little feet comfortable, but these are better for cold weather as they may overheat your baby’s feet on warm days. 

What to look for in quality infant shoes

Colors

Infant shoes come in a wide range of solid colors as well as prints and other designs. If you’re looking for solid-colored shoes, you’ll have a choice of neutral hues as well as brighter shades. Then there’s everything from Disney prints to stars to camouflage to dinosaurs. In short, there’s a wealth of options, whether you want something cute or sensible. 

Easy closure

Choose shoes that are as easy as possible to put on and take off. You’ll thank yourself later. Hook and loop closures are quick and easy, as are simple slip-ons. 

Grip

Your baby will be in infant size shoes until they’re approximately 12 months old. While having traction on the soles isn’t necessary until babies start walking, if you have an early walker on your hands, make sure their shoes are have good grip so they don’t slip over. Just remember, babies are safer and more comfortable walking barefooted indoors. 

How much you can expect to spend on infant shoes

Basic baby shoes cost around $10-$15, while those from popular brands can cost as much as $40-$60. 

Infant shoes FAQ

At what age do babies need shoes? 

A. Babies don’t really need shoes until they start walking, but it’s fine for you to occasionally put shoes on babies from birth. Most of the time, your baby should be in bare feet or in socks, because it’s better for their development. However, if you want to put shoes on your baby to keep their feet warm or simply look cute while you’re out of the house, it’s okay to do so. 

What size shoes do newborns wear? 

A. Newborns wear infant size one shoes, which are different from toddler size one or little kids size one shoes. Infant shoes come in sizes one to four, with infant size one fitting babies of approximately 0-3 months, infant size two fitting babies of approximately 3-6 months, infant size three fitting babies of approximately 6-9 months and infant size four fitting babies of approximately 9-12 months. 

What are the best infant shoes to buy?

Top infant shoes

Vans Infant Slip-On Shoes

Vans Infant Slip-On Shoes

What you need to know: Vans fans will love these mini versions of the classic checkered slip on.

What you’ll love: The shoes are soft with flexible soles so babies can move and stretch their feet comfortably. They’re extremely easy to put on, even if your baby never shops wriggling.  

What you should consider: They run slightly large, so double check the size before buying. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top infant shoes for the money

Gerber Baby Crib Shoes

Gerber Baby Crib Shoes

What you need to know: These affordable baby shoes are great for buyers who aren’t looking for big brands. 

What you’ll love: You can choose from a range of solid colors and cute designs. They’re soft and flexible, so comfortable for little ones to wear. They’re available in three sizes to fit babies from birth to 9 months.  

What you should consider: They’re not exceptionally durable, but babies grow out of them quickly, so they don’t need to be. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Cribster Baby Shoes

Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Cribster Baby Shoes

What you need to know: Iconic Chucks in infant size are a great choice for Converse fans. 

What you’ll love: They’re made from 100% cotton canvas, so they’re flexible and comfortable for babies, with a hidden hook and loop closure so they’re easy to get on and off. You can choose from five colors. 

What you should consider: Some reports of the Converse logo being printed on the inside of the shoe rather than the outside. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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Lauren Corona writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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