How To Shorten Shoelaces (Without Cutting Them)

If your shoelaces are too long, you can use many methods to shorten shoelaces.

Some might suggest cutting your laces to the proper length, but that isn’t always the best idea.

The ends of most shoelaces have plastic caps, called aglets. The purpose of an aglet is to make lacing and tying shoes easier. Aglets also prevent shoelaces from fraying or unraveling.

If you cut your shoelaces, you will have to remove these aglets, making your shoelaces more susceptible to damage and harder to work with.

So if you can’t cut your shoelaces, but you still want to shorten them, what can you do?

This article will explore how to shorten shoelaces without cutting them.

Why You Should Shorten Your Shoelaces

There are many reasons why you should shorten your shoelaces.

The most straightforward reason is that it looks better not to have a knot with long ends dangling on either side of your shoe. Long laces look sloppy and make you appear less put-together.

However, appearance is not the only concern regarding shortening shoelaces. Shoelace length can also have an impact on your health and safety.

If your shoelaces are too long, they pose a tripping hazard. While typically not very dangerous to one’s health, it only takes being in the wrong place at the wrong time once to be seriously injured.

The proper length is much less likely to get caught on something or stepped on.

If your shoes are so long that you cannot lace them to the proper tightness, you will not get the necessary arch support for healthy feet. This issue concerning arch support is crucial among those with diabetes or medical conditions that make foot health even more important.

Due to these considerations regarding appearance, health, and safety, you can see why it’s essential to ensure that your shoelaces are the correct length.

Ways To Lace Your Shoes To Shorten the Shoelaces

The way you lace your shoes can significantly impact the overall length of your shoelaces.

The more eyelets your shoes have, the more variance you can put into your lacing methods, and the more that you can affect the length of your shoelaces by altering your process.

You must use as much excess length as possible when lacing your shoes, but you don’t want to thread them so loosely that you aren’t getting proper arch support.

Here are a few lacing methods to consider!

1. Double Lacing Method

One of the simplest ways to lace a shoe to get rid of extra length is by double lacing.

When you pull your shoelace through the underside of an eyelet, instead of moving upwards to the next, you double-back and pull your shoelace through the already threaded eyelet.

When double lacing, it’s crucial that you line your double laced sections up neatly so that it only appears that you’ve laced your shoes once.

Unless your shoelaces are more than twice the correct length, you will probably not be able to double lace your entire shoe without running out of shoelaces.

However, because the uppermost shoelace hides the double lacing, it’s possible only to double lace half or a portion of a shoe so that your shoelaces are the proper length.

2. Diamond Lacing Method

Diamond lacing, also called lattice lacing, is more challenging to master than double lacing. Still, it does well to shorten laces while making your shoes look more decorative and eye-catching.

Diamond Lacing involves lacing your shoes in a series of diagonal lines, sometimes sending laces through the same eyelet multiple times to give a diamond pattern up the center of your shoe.

This thread pattern involves occasionally sending the shoelace through an eyelet you have already threaded. Due to this, it shortens shoelaces more than standard lacing, but not as much as complete double lacing. 

Diamond lacing is a good choice if standard lacing leaves your shoelaces too long, but your shoelaces aren’t quite long enough for complete double lacing.

Ways To Tie Your Shoes To Shorten the Shoelaces

If you don’t want to lace your shoes differently, or if you still have excess length after relacing your shoes, you can always use different knot methods to shorten shoelaces.

Here are a few knots to consider!

1. Hide the Knot

There are two ways to hide the knot.

The first and simplest method is to tuck excess length into your shoes without tying them. With this method, you can ensure that you correctly tighten your shoes and that you will not trip on your shoelaces, but it is not always the most comfortable.

The second way to hide the knot is to tie your shoe underneath the tongue and carefully hide any excess length inside the shoe by tucking the ends in the side or wrapping them under your foot.

This simple method looks sleek and ensures that your shoelaces don’t risk your health or safety.

2. Boat-shoe Knot

Another way that you can shorten your shoelaces is with a boat-shoe knot.

Start by making a small to medium-sized loop with one of your shoelaces, and wrap the remaining shoelace around the loop until you get to the end. 

Your loop should always be small enough that it doesn’t touch the ground. However, the larger the loop is, the more that this knot will shorten your shoelace.

When you have finished wrapping your shoelace around the loop and run out of slack, slide the aglet of your shoelace through the loop and pull the base of your shoelace to lock the loop in place around the aglet.

While you can tie this knot with flat shoelaces, a boat-shoe knot looks better with round laces.

Tying It All Together (Pun Intended)

It’s essential to keep your shoelaces at the proper length to have adequate arch support, and you aren’t at risk of tripping. Cutting your shoelaces can prove problematic, so knowing alternate methods on how to shorten shoelaces comes in handy.

By properly lacing and tying your shoes, you can shorten your shoelaces without worrying about damaging the laces. Now all you need to do is to learn how to prevent shoe tongues from sliding.

Or, you can check out the best shoelace alternatives.

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