If you’re looking for the perfect fall boot that you can wear no matter what you’re doing (apple picking, walking your dog, or grabbing a pumpkin spice latte at your local coffee shop), comfort is key, especially if you don’t wear them. I have broken yet. And that means no blisters.
HuffPost spoke with two podiatrists to find out what qualities in a boot cause blisters and how to prevent them. This is what you need to know.
Blisters are caused by movement
Wearing fall boots that are too wide or too tight is practically a one-way ticket to Blister Town.
“One of the most likely causes of fall boot blisters is improper fit. Movement can cause blisters,” said Dr. Saylee Tulpule, podiatrist at Mid-Atlantic Foot and Ankle Specialists. To avoid this, he recommends trying on in the store (where you can walk around in them before buying) and making sure your boots are snug enough (if they have laces).
Most blisters are caused by moisture and friction where the boot or sock rubs against the foot, according to Dr. Wenjay Sung, a podiatrist at USC Arcadia Hospital.
“Blisters are small pockets of fluid that form in the outer layers of the skin,” he said. To prevent them, wear well-fitting boots and keep sweat at bay with synthetic or wool socks. You can go the extra mile to ensure a good fit by seeing a podiatrist to find out your foot type (such as flat feet, high arch, or straight).
“Not all boots are the same, and of course not all feet are the same,” Sung said.
Your socks can make a big difference
You may be surprised to learn that podiatrists are not fans of cotton socks.
“As podiatrists, we recommend avoiding cotton socks, as these can trap moisture and cause friction blisters,” Tulpule said. She recommends using moisture-wicking materials like wool or synthetic fibers like nylon and X-Static. If your feet are prone to sweat, she recommends using absorbent powders.
“Socks can prevent or cause foot blisters, depending on numerous factors,” Sung said. “Eliminating sheer forces against the foot and skin or controlling perspiration are ways that socks can prevent blisters.”
Choosing thicker socks can also help cushion your feet and prevent blisters from forming. Sung noted that you can find socks on the market with higher density or padding along pressure points to decrease friction in blister-prone areas.
Take the time to break in those fall boots
An easy way to minimize blistering from fall boots is to gently break them in. It can be tempting to wear your new boots everywhere from the moment you receive them, but having a little patience will lessen your chances of getting painful blisters. Tulpule recommends wearing new boots for 30 minutes at a time over the course of a week to gradually get them used to it.
Buying a new pair of boots or socks for fall? Here are some options approved by the podiatrists we spoke with.
HuffPost may receive a portion of purchases made through links on this page. Each item is independently selected by the HuffPost buying team. Prices and availability are subject to change.
Sorel Hi-Line Heel Chelsea Boots for Women
An upgraded version of a classic Chelsea boot, these Sorel boots offer modern style without sacrificing comfort (thanks to the platform design and chunky heel). The lightweight outsole offers solid traction, and a heel pull tab helps you slip these boots on quickly and easily. The Sorel brand is one that Tulpule recommends to its customers.
Dr. Martens 1460 Unisex Slip-Resistant Duty Boots
“Dr. Martens are stable when it comes to slip-resistant soles for fall boots, and because of their durable design and appearance, they provide the perfect balance of comfort and ease of use with little risk of blisters,” said Sung. These boots have Signature design elements like yellow welt stitching and a scripted heel loop, plus comfort-enhancing features like moisture-wicking sock liners and strategically placed memory foam pods.
Frye Carson Leather Trim Ankle Boots
This best-selling style from Frye, a Tulpule-recommended brand, is made from soft, full-grain leather and has a supple leather lining for a smooth, comfortable fit, plus a piping detail on the side for western flair. subtle. The company notes that there is no need to train this pair, but we probably would to be safe.
Timberland Women’s 6” Premium Lug Waterproof Boots
Modern and functional, these waterproof boots have a cushioning midsole for comfort. The cone design of the soles makes the boots more supportive and lighter, and the Timberland brand comes recommended by Tulpule.
Women’s Pack of 4 Color Block Merino Wool Socks
Constructed of moisture-wicking, non-itchy Merino wool blended with polyester and spandex, these socks were designed to keep feet comfortable, cool, and most importantly, dry. They also have a cushioned footbed for additional outsole support and Bombas’ exclusive Honeycomb support system that cradles your arches.