How to: Measure your Insole

Dieppa Restrepo
If you have ever agonised about buying shoes online, let me save you some inconvenience.

After deliberating which size you are, but before you hit purchase, email the website and see if they can provide you with a measurement for the insole of the sizes in question.

Using an accurate insole measurement is the only way to make sure that a pair of shoes will absolutely fit.

I have tried several times to buy shoes online. The results were usually pretty disastrous, until I learned this simple trick. Would you believe that my foot is 22cm, but I wear a 24cm insole? I wouldn’t have thought this was right, but it turns out your feet need that much wriggle room.

Here’s how to measure your insole:

  • Find your favourite, best fitting pair of shoes.
  • Find a soft, flexible tape measure (or, if you don’t have a tape measure, a piece of ribbon or string.)
  • Take the right shoe (your right foot is usually bigger) and push the beginning of the tape measure (marked with a ‘0’) way down with your fingers until the point marked with a ‘0’ is sitting in the middle of the inside bottom of the shoe, as close to the toe as possible.
  • Hold the beginning of the tape there at the point where the inside bottom meets the toe, and walk your fingers along the tape measure pushing it flat against the inside bottom of the shoe.
  • Keep walking the tape up the middle of the shoe the entire length of the insole, until it hits the place at the back of the inside bottom of the shoe where it meets the heel.
  • Take note of the number in the corner where the back of the insole and the heel meet.
  • Hold a finger on that number, and (just in case the beginning of the tape measure has slipped up a little as you stretch it out) push the other end of the tape all the way in to the toe and hold it where the bottom inside of the shoe hits the toe. Hold that point with the fingers of your other hand.
  • Pull the tape out of the shoe while still marking both points with your fingers.
  • The distance of length between your fingers is your insole measurement (mine is 25 cm and I’m usually a size 7.5/38).
  • Compare this measurement to the insole measurement for the shoes you want to buy.

The last time I used this trick it was to buy a pair of Dieppa Restrepo oxfords.  The Dieppa Restrepo size 7 are a 25cm insole and the size 8 are a 26cm insole and this trick helped me make 100% sure I chose the right size.

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