Vans Slip-Ons are cool and widely popular. However, they are notorious for scraping the back of the ankles which cause painful heel blisters, especially when they are new.
So how do you prevent heel blisters from wearing Vans shoes?
The easiest way to prevent heel blisters from Vans is to cover your heels with band-aids. Not only do band-aids protect your heels from scraping, but they also hinder Vans shoes from sliding up and down. You can also wear thick socks for extra protection.
That said, there are also special products called heel liners which are designed to protect your heels from scraping the back of the shoes. In this post, we will share with you everything you need to know on how to prevent heel blisters from Vans.
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So why do you get blisters, especially in the heels, from wearing Vans?
Wearing Vans shoes that are too big or too small, especially Vans Slip-Ons, can cause friction between the heels and the back of the shoes. With continuous rubbing, the back of the shoes can scrape the upper layer of the skin, causing fluid build-up and blisters.
After testing several Vans models, we have found that the Vans Slip-Ons cause more heel blisters than the others. Because they are “slipped” onto your feet without laces, they are prone to rub against your heels, causing scratches and blisters.
Moreover, Vans are made with tough materials, like canvas and suede, which may not be the most friendly to your feet. They need some time to become more comfortable.
So before applying the tips we will share below, be sure to buy the right-sized Vans.
Generally, most Vans are true to size. The Vans Slip-Ons, on the other hand, tend to run smaller but they loosen quickly and will fit nicely sooner than later.
How to Stop Vans From Rubbing Your Heels?
We’ve found four methods to help avoid your Vans from scraping the back of your ankles.
The four methods on how to prevent heel blisters from Vans are: wearing ergonomic heel liners, wearing a thick pair of socks that are high enough to cover the heels, covering your heels with Band-Aids, and applying petroleum jelly.
Here are the four methods explored in greater detail:
1. Add a Comfortable Pair of Heel Liners
After trying out different methods, we found that the best way to prevent heel blisters from Vans shoes is to wear heel liners. Heel liners are soft, ergonomic pads with double-sided tapes which cushion the back of your ankles to prevent slipping and rubbing.
Not only are heel liners designed to protect your heels from pain, blisters, and rubbing, but they also help keep your heels in place inside your shoes.
They work very well on Vans, especially the Slip-Ons, which are known to slip up and down.
However, be careful when buying products online, as some only fit women’s shoes, especially high heels. You need to find heel liners that are suitable for both men and women.
We found these heel liners on Amazon which are not only easy to apply, but they fit most running shoes, sneakers, dress shoes, leather boots, including Vans Slip-Ons.
2. Wear Long and Thick Socks
According to My Foot Dr., blisters and rubbing can happen when your socks don’t give enough cushioning between your feet and the shoes.
While they may look great, some “fashion socks” don’t offer enough protection for your feet, especially in the Achilles tendon area.
Moreover, wearing a thick pair of socks not only protects the back of your ankles from blisters but also helps stretch out the shoes so your feet won’t suffer in the future.
In fact, Vans recommends wearing socks with thick material to stretch out the shoes.
So to prevent heel blisters, find the thickest pair of socks you can find.
If you feel like your socks aren’t thick enough, you can always wear two pairs of socks and double them up, creating an extra layer of protection. Once your feet are well-protected by the socks, you can wear your new Vans shoes with better peace of mind.
If you are wearing Slip-On Vans, simply wear them as usual. But if you’re wearing laced Vans, do not tie them too tightly. Just lace them normally so they fit your feet as they should.
The goal is to stretch the shoes slightly to create a more personal fit for you.
3. Cover Your Heels With Band-Aids
But what if you want to wear your Slip-On Vans with no-show socks?
If you don’t feel like buying heel liners, or you want to wear Slip-On Vans with no-show socks, then you should protect your heels by covering them with Band-Aids.
Band-Aids work just like heel liners do, however, they are easier to find and can be used when you need quick protection from your sneakers.
You can quickly apply Band-Aids which are easily found everywhere. But if you want extra protection for your heels, you may want to consider special heel-protecting Band-Aids.
Nowadays, there are Band-Aids made specifically to fight blisters, like the KT Tape Blister Prevention Tape. It is ultra-light and thin enough so it easily conforms to your skin and minimizes blister-causing friction. The rounded-edge design stays on the skin for up to two days.
Because it is designed with athletes in mind, the KT Tape is hypoallergenic, latex-free, and natural rubber-free. This means that the tape contains fewer potential substances that can trigger allergic reactions. Oh, and it’s affordable too!
KT Blister Prevention Tape (buy on Amazon):
The thing we like the most about KT Tape is that it’s precut to 3.5-inch strips. So if you experience pain in a different area, like the bottom of your toes, for example, you can easily apply it to the area of discomfort and find relief in no time at all.
4. Apply Petroleum Jelly
The last tip on how to prevent your Vans from rubbing your heels is to use petroleum jelly.
First, locate the area where the shoes are most likely to make contact with your heels. Take a small amount of petroleum jelly (a good ol’ Vaseline will do) and dab it on key spots, like the back of your heel and at the ankle line, before putting on your shoes.
Vaseline petroleum jelly (buy on Amazon):
A little bit of petroleum jelly works wonders in reducing heel-rubbing from your shoes.
Low-tops Vans usually rub the most at the heel and ankle line. Mid- and high-top Vans are less prone to heel rubbing because they provide a little more cushioning.
Once you’ve applied some petroleum jelly, you can wear socks to add more protection to the back of your feet. Hopefully, all the methods above can buy you some time before you truly break into your Vans shoes. After all, you need some time to break into them.
And there you have it, our tips on how to prevent heel blisters from Vans shoes.
Heel liners and Band-Aids work well to protect a specific area on the back of the ankles, while thick socks provide cushioning between your feet and the shoes. Additionally, petroleum jelly moisturizes the skin of your heels and helps avoid blisters.
By applying the simple tips we have shared above, you can rock a pair of Slip-On Vans without having to cringe painfully and walk barefoot shamefully afterward.