When you step out to strut your stuff, it’s always a good idea to put your best foot forward. But what if that foot is firmly planted in a favorite pair of heels that has started to look a little worn? Splits, chips, scuffs, scrapes and rips are common high heel problems that can all be fixed at home. Whether a furry friend has used your heels as a chew toy, or you're the victim of simple wear and tear, there are a number of steps you can take to put a spring back in your step and give an old pair of heels a loving little face lift.
5 Ways to Make High Heels Look Newer
1. Replace the Heel Tip
Because of pressure that the heel endures, a lost or chipped heel tip is a common issue. A replacement kit can be found at a shoe repair shop, online or at your local craft store. First, glue any split or torn fabric back to the heel with adhesive applied with a sponge or small nail brush. If damage is extensive, camouflage with a matching color acrylic paint. Second, either glue or hammer the tip into place. Lastly, file the heel tip to fit the shape of your shoe, but not too much that you weaken it. One way to prevent the need for this type of fix by wearing high heel protectors, especially when walking outdoors and on rough surfaces.
2. Fix a Broken Ankle Strap
Don’t let this common problem slow you down. A sketchy heel strap, or blown out flip-flop or sandal is actually a very easy fix! A number of shoe adhesives are available at drug stores or even superglue would work in a pinch. First, remove any dirt or dust with a dry cloth, surfaces must be dry for the glue to set. Second, remove any stray thread or torn fabric. Apply glue and let sit for at least two minutes. Third, press pieces gently together and use a clamp to hold, a clothespin or paperclip will do. Let dry for 24 hours.
3. Walk This Way
When heels don’t fit properly they will show signs of age sooner. Luckily, there are a number of products that do double duty to help your feet and your fabulous heels! If an ankle rubs the back of the shoe, apply a band aid to create a barrier, or gel pads are re-usable. Foot inserts are available to take pressure off the ball of the foot, and arch supports help support the foot and back. The better fitting heel will instantly look newer.
4. Condition, Condition, Condition
For any heel material, there is a way to clean and a way to pre-treat. A favorite shoe store or online site features a number of products to spiff up your heels. Each season, take out your collection of shoes and give each a clean. Then, depending on the circumstances, waterproof, de-salt, brush and buff each pair to perfection. Each pair will look renewed and this will prolong the life of the shoe.
5. Scratch & Color Fixes
When conditioning alone doesn't fix scratches, tears and scrapes, additional repair might be necessary. This is difficult with fabric shoes, but can be done with other materials as long as it isn't too deep or wide. First, prep the shoe by buffing out each scrape with leather oil. Then, use a color matching shoe polish to disguise the blemish.
Old age isn’t a good reason to retire a pair of heels, and expensive high heels are particularly worthy of the effort to keep them looking new. Renew your shoes with these handy tips and tricks and old becomes new again. It’s like getting new shoes without spending much money, and that makes everyone feel fabulous!