One of the most monumental parenting moments is when your little one takes their first wobbly steps. These wobbly steps can be a little scary though! Once they start walking, it really is game on. From there on out you will be chasing them around, making sure the floors aren’t slippery and catching your breath whenever they make eye contact with any kind of step. There is one thing you will still have control of for a while though, shoes!
There are a couple of different important things to consider when picking the best toddler shoe for walking; foot type, the stage they are in, and for many of you the different weather conditions your little one will be out and about in.
Best Toddler Shoes for Walking (and hopefully less tripping)
Best Toddler Shoe Based on Type of Foot
It’s really important that your little one’s first shoes fit them well for proper development, so we will start off our shoe suggestions by picking some shoes based on the type of foot your toddler has. Whether they’ve got a wide foot, a narrow foot, or a flat foot we promise there is a comfortable fit for them out there.
For the Wide Toddler Foot:
Finding a good fit for wide feet is a lifelong struggle, but Sperry shoes always come to the rescue. These little boat shoes are a great option for your toddler and pretty darn cute to top it off. They will be easy to get on and off and offer all the cushion and flexibility your little walker needs.
This sandal is a great option if your little gal has a wide foot. They come in both Wide and Extra Wide. It’s the perfect, pretty first sandal by one of the most well-trusted brands for toddler shoes. This shoe even has rounded edges, which helps to prevent any stumbles.
These shoes are both absolutely adorable and super easy to get on and off your little one. I have always loved these shoes for my little boys with some tiny jeans on. They look so adorable! Plus, they are perfect for a chubby little foot because the velcro straps make them easily adjustable.
For the Narrow Foot:
On the other end of the spectrum, ASICS is a great shoe brand for little ones with narrow feet. They will fit just right, keeping their foot from ever slipping out. Plus you can remove the sock liner to put in a medical orthotic if needed. The elastic laces and the velcro strap make this pair easy to get on and secure.
For Toddlers with Flat Feet:
This little shoe is absolutely adorable, but it is also super flexible and lightweight. It is very easy to slide onto wide feet or feet that still have that baby chub. These shoes are made using sustainable practices and materials, which is always a nice bonus.
If your toddler has flat feet you actually should not be too worried, as this usually self-corrects around age 6. In the meantime finding a good shoe that helps them build confidence in their walking skills is super important! These Nikes are so light that it’s almost like walking around barefoot, which is essential for kids with flat feet. Even though the majority of the shoe is mesh, there is extra material right around the toes preventing them from ever stubbing their toes on hard objects. Check Current Prices Here!
Best Shoes for Different Walking Stages
The very first shoe your baby wears compared to what they’re wearing by the time they start their first wobbly run are going to differ quite a bit. There are toddler shoes built for specific stages that will give your child the support and comfort they need.
Best Toddler Shoe for the New Walker
When your baby first begins to walk, it is actually best for them to be barefoot. However, this is not always a possibility so finding a soft very flexible shoe is essential at this stage. Both options listed below fit this description perfectly.
Best Toddler Shoe for Walking Outside
Once your toddler really gets the hang of walking, they are on the go all the time. They aren’t going to be quite as content in your arms or in the stroller anymore. While you still want something lightweight and very flexible, you might want a thicker sole to keep their feet safe. My personal favorite is the Saucony brand. The shoes are flexible and they have a good grip to prevent slips.
Rookie Mom Squad’s Karissa and her little guy tested out Ten Little Shoes and they say that this is one pair of shoes every toddler should have! Check out her full review here.
The “I Got This” Walker:
By this stage, your toddler has gained quite a bit of independence. The 2 options below are both easy to get on and support all the action your kiddo needs them to.
Choosing Toddler Shoes Based on the Weather
The kids in our family spread across sunny Southern California have it pretty easy when learning to walk, but this isn’t the case for most babies across the country. Don’t worry though, there are still shoes for toddlers that are learning to walk on rainy days or through snowy backyards.
Butler Rockhopper 3 in 1 Short Boot– This shoe is seriously awesome, and every parent who lives somewhere with changing seasons should know about it. It is an overshoe that can fit over your toddler’s favorite pair of shoes to keep them protected from the elements! The biggest bonus of all; you can throw these shoes right in the dishwasher to clean them off which is perfect for muddy or slushy days.
Ultimate Outdoor Summer:
Leather Outdoor Sport Sandals– In the summer, your toddler will need a breathable lightweight shoe for all their favorite outdoor activities. We love this leather sandal for just those reasons. Just make sure to use the sizing guide the provide for the perfect fit.
Teva Kids’ Hurricane Sandal– There are no better shoes for outdoor adventures than Tevas. These have a comfy foam footbed and their hook & loop closure makes it easy to get the fit just right. Tevas also make for great water shoes if hiking near water or exploring the tide pools.
Femizee Girls Genuine Leather Closed Toe Princess Shoe– We couldn’t finish the list without a pretty sandal for your little girl. The flower on top makes them perfect for special occasions. These are made of soft genuine leather and are flexible as well as slip-resistant.
Rainy Day Necessity:
Hunter Kids Davidson Boots– Hunter Boots are one of the most popular brands of rain boots around and they’ve been in business since 1856. They make sizes for the whole family, including your newly walking toddler. They are made of 100% rubber and are sure to keep little feet dry.
Freshly Picked Chelsea Boot Sneakers– We absolutely love Freshly Picked shoes! The quality of these boots is amazing. Not to mention, they are so easy to put on and take off. They were Rookie Mom Squad Tested by Sally and she says not only does she find them adorable, but her daughter loves them too- which is a definite plus in her book!
Snowy Day Essential:
Sperry Kids Saltwater Boot– Not only are these tiny duck boots pretty much the cutest thing ever, but they’re a great snow boot for your toddler. They will keep their feet dry and give them some traction on slippery ground. They have a zipper making them easy to get on and off.
There you are, our complete list of the best toddler shoes for your little ones at all stages of walking. Toddlerhood is such a fun stage of parenting so soak up all the moments and the wobbly steps you can. We will update these shoes often as new styles become available.
Do you have a favorite pair of shoes for your toddler? Let us know and we will check it out and possibly add it to our list!
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Frequently Asked Questions about Toddler Shoes
Yes and no. Converse are very stylish and adorable. However, they are not good for super long days of walking.
According to the American Orthopedic Foot and Ankle Society, you do not need arch support for toddlers. Most toddlers are flat-footed and have not developed arches.