How to Fix “Slippery Shoes"

How to Fix “Slippery Shoes"

‘Slip and slide’ isn’t exactly a saying you want to associate with your favorite pair of shoes! But who hasn’t had that awkward wobble or two in a pair of brand new soles (or worn out ones for that matter). 

Slippery shoes are a common issue, it is also an inconvenient and potentially dangerous one that can cause avoidable accidents. Because I always want you to feel confident and happy in your shoes (being Rana Cheikha or other), I will share some practical and easy tips to fix those slippery shoes and ensure you feel equally safe and stable as you do stylish when stepping out in your favorite soles.

Let’s begin by understanding the cause of slippery shoes.

  1. The material:
    The composition of the shoe sole plays a crucial role in its slipperiness whereby the material will contribute to the amount of slipperiness. Smooth or glossy materials like leather or certain synthetic compounds often lack the necessary traction. This makes them prone to slips and slides, especially on slick surfaces, when compared to their rubber counterparts.
  1. Wear and tear:
    Over time, the friction-inducing elements of a shoe's sole weaken due to regular use, resulting in worn-out treads or smooth patches. As a result, the shoe loses its ability to grip surfaces effectively, increasing the risk of slipping accidents.
    I will also note, though, that further down in this reading you will see that one does need to wear-in new shoe a few times to gain natural scuffs on the sole that will help eliminate slipperiness – this refers to the beginning of your shoe’s life.
  1. Environmental factors:
    External conditions such as wet or oily surfaces, icy pavements, or polished floors significantly impact shoe grip as well. Each surface type presents unique challenges, with some offering less traction than others. It is important to keep these in mind when you select the shoes you will wear in a specific environment.

Not to fret though! There are a few easy and practical solution to fix slippery shoes, so let’s get straight to them.

  1. Scuffing the sole:
    Simply scuffing the sole of your shoes is the easiest and most straightforward technique to improve traction. This involves roughening the smooth surface of the sole to increase grip, and can be done using any kind of abrasive materials. You just need to focus on the areas where the sole makes contact with the ground and rub the sole in a back-and-forth motion until the desired level of roughness is achieved. You can use materials such as sandpaper, a wire brush or even a nail file to do this.
  2. Using non-slip products:
    Another easy solution is to simply use non-slip adhesive products such as grip pads. These are applied to the sole of the shoe to enhance traction. They come in various shapes and sizes or in a roll for you to size, and are designed to provide extra grip on slippery surfaces.
    I recommend: the Holibanna Anti-Slip rubber Stickers, or the Happyyami Shoe Slip-Resistant Stickers that comes in a roll (both paid links)

  1. Applying traction spray:
    Traction sprays are specially formulated products that create a textured surface on the sole to improve grip. You simply spray the product onto the sole and allow it to dry before wearing the shoes.

  2. Wear and breaking-in:
    Simply wearing your shoes to break them in will automatically help with slippery soles. Within the first few wears, your shoes will not only get more comfortable, but the soles will also soften and texture will be added, improving grip. This natural method allows the shoes to adapt to your foot's movements and enhance traction with each wear.
  1. Seeking professional help:
    Seeking professional help to combat slippery soles is quite common. This can be done for a pair of new shoes, or severely worn-out soles (which, as we discussed at the beginning of the blog, is also a common culprit to slippery soles) to restore traction and prolong the shoe's lifespan.

We've explored various solutions to fix slippery shoes, from using non-slip products and DIY scuffing remedies to seeking professional services. You can start out with the simplest, like scuffing the soles, and work your way up to seeking professional help if you still feel that your shoes need more grip.

Whatever method you use, there is always a solution to have you stride in confidence, and free of any slippery situations. Give it a try, let me know which worked best for you and, as always, feel free to reach out for additional guidance, or see the rest of our blogs from The Shoe Advisor!

Signing-off: The Shoe Advisor 
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