What is the Difference Between Medium and Wide Width Shoes?

Walking around in shoes that don’t fit properly can cause a number of different issues from blisters to calluses or even bunions in extreme cases. Have you been wondering whether a wide fit meaning shoes that are specifically designed to give more room to your toes and foot, maybe the best option for you?


There are two simple components to shoe sizing: length and width. Everyone is familiar with shoe length sizes, but shoe widths are indicated by letters or by simply indicating wide or medium. There is a difference between wide shoes and medium width shoes and understanding that difference is essential to choosing a shoe that fits as best as possible. Keep reading to find out the difference between regular and wide shoes and hot to measure your foot width.


Difference Between Medium Width Shoes and Wide Width Shoes

The difference between medium width shoes and wide width shoes may be small, but it is very important. If you have wide width feet and you are fitting them in a pair of medium width shoes, you are likely smushing your toes against the side or the front of the shoes, which can cause irritation, blisters, corns, or calluses.


The difference between a medium width shoe and a wide width shoe is very small, about 1/8 of an inch. But this 1/8 inch can make all the difference in the world when it comes to comfort. With wide width shoes, the entire shoe is wider, but especially in the area just before the toes. This extra space will help give feet and toes enough room to prevent them from overlapping or rubbing against the inside of the shoes.


The most common mistake people with wide widths make is ordering a longer shoe size, because shoes may feel too tight around the width area. If you try a shoe on in the medium width, and the shoe feels too tight around the widest part of the foot, then opt for a wide width in the same size, instead of sizing up.


How To Measure Your Foot Width

To determine your correct shoe size and width, you can always get your feet measured at a shoe store. Otherwise, you can use the Brannock foot-measuring device. If you don’t have access to a Brannock device, you can always follow these instructions to manually measure your foot at home.


Shoe Widths: Men’s & Women’s

The lettering system is different for men and women. A women’s medium width shoe will typically be marked as a letter B, whereas the letter D is used for a wide shoe. The letter D for a man is medium while it is wide for a woman. Like men’s shoes, not every shoe will be identical. A medium width shoe for one company may fit, but another company may require a wide for the same fit. A man’s medium width shoe is designated either as a C or D. A man’s wide shoe carries the letters E or EE. It’s important to keep in mind that size D or medium width shoes can vary slightly by brand.


Always Try It On

Having your foot width professionally measured is certainly helpful to give you an exact idea of how wide your foot is. But no matter how sure you are of your shoe size and width, medium and wide widths will always be different for each shoe manufacturer. That being said, the only way to know if a new shoe is medium or wide is to try it on and walk around. Having the proper shoes with a wide fit meaning no discomfort while walking, will allow you to enjoy your day to its fullest. Check out our variety of shoes that come in wide and narrow fits.


VANELi is a proud leader in the specialty shoe size industry offering a wide selection of beautiful and trendy shoe styles available in narrow, slim, medium, and wide widths. Check out our selection of casual shoes, athleisure shoes, flats, dress shoes, and sandals.