European Vs. US Shoe Size – Find Out The Differences!

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We must admit; buying things online is pretty convenient. But when it comes to clothing and wearables, the sizes can throw us off. 

While in physical stores, you can try them out and determine whether the product offers a good fit or not, it is impossible to carry out the same thing while shopping online.

That being said, the market is full of shoes that come from the EU. And It will be pretty hard for an American to get the one that will provide the right fit if you do not have in-depth knowledge regarding European vs. US Shoe Size.

However, as you have stumbled upon this article, there is nothing more that you should be worried about. 

We will explain the measurement chart, which will certainly offer you insight regarding how the EU chart compares against the USA chart. So, without further ado, let us get right into it.

European Shoe Sizes Explained

First, let us explain why different parts of the world use various charts to state the size of the shoes. 

And the answer to that would be that we earthlings do not follow the same unit. Some use the imperial scale, which would be us, while others use SI and other scales.

The shoe charts talking of which are based on the scales as well. As there is a difference in terms of other units, there is a difference in the numbers in the chart as well. But what do these numbers mean?

The smallest size that the EU has is 35, while the US has 4. And gradually the numbers climb up for both the charts. The largest one for the EU is 49, while the large one that the US has is 15. Now, each of the numbers resembles a length.

For example, the EU 39 is linked with the overall length being 9.25 inches to 9.5 inches. But what does this length measurement tell you? Well, it is measured from the very tip of the toe to the heel. And it is certainly possible to find out the exact size of your feet by keeping this measurement in your mind.

How To Measure Your Feet For EU Shoes?

Now that you have a good understanding of the EU size chart let us determine the exact number that will be perfect for your feet. And the process goes something like this:

Step 1: Measure Your Feet

First and foremost, you would need to measure your feet. Get yourself a piece of paper, a measuring tape or scale, and a pencil. Make sure that the paper is large enough to accommodate your entire feet.

Place your feet down on top of the paper. Try to vertically align one of your feet because that is going to make the whole process easy. Once you placed the foot down, take the pencil and draw an outline of your feet. 

While outlining, try to keep the pencil as close to the skin as possible, or else the margin of error will widen. And you would need to trace the entire foot. Do not leave the toes or any of the fingers.

Then, take the scale or measurement tape and start measuring. Place the scale or the tape to the tip of the toe and align it with 0. 

We would recommend using a centimeter-scale or inches scale. Meter ones will require you to convert the number afterward. Measure till the end of the heel.

Ensure that the scale or the tape is vertically aligned and is not slanted. However, you might not have a centimeter or inches scale. 

In that case, opt for the available one and then convert the number. A simple google search will allow you to convert the measurement that you have to inches to centimeters.

Step 2: Compare the Measurement with the EU Chart

Once you have got the measurement, it would be time to compare it against the chart. Now, where will you find an EU shoe chart? Google to the rescue! Just type “EU shoe size chart” and click on images. You will be greeted with loads of charts. 

Even though there will be many charts, do not use the ones that do not state the inches that correspond to each of the numbers. Those will not cut it for the task we have at hand.

That being said, you will notice that the chart will start from 35. Some of the charts might even begin from 39. 

Also, unlike the Chinese sizes, the chart will have different numbers for men and women. Nonetheless, the size 39 should correspond to 9.25 to 9.5 inches in length. In centimeters, it would be from 23.5 to 24.1.

Likewise, there should be measurement beside each of the numbers. You would have to search for the range that your size falls in and select the exact number that is beside the range.

How To Convert US Size To EU Size?

The process of finding out the exact EU size can become a lot easier if you already know the US size of your feet. 

And there is an easier way to find that out as well. It is hiding in your shoe cupboard. Please take one of the pairs out and find out their origin. If it states that it is made in the USA, look for the size number.

The size number might be on the bottom of the shoe or inside. Usually, it will be inside a circle. Note that number down. 

Now, if you are a woman, you would need to add 31 to the US size. For instance, if the shoe states that it is 9, adding 31 would result in 40, which is the Euro measurement of the shoe.

On the other hand, if the shoe is for men, you would need to add 33. For example, if the shoe size that you are wearing at the moment is 11, adding 33 would give you 44. And that exactly is what your shoes are in the EU chart.

What Will Happen If I Choose A Shoe That Is Small?

Buying smaller shoes is a pretty common thing. However, all the pairs widen up a bit over time, which is a plus point. But the widening process will take a lot of time, and you would have to wear the shoe like it is for that specific amount of time.

On that note, if the shoe is smaller than your feet, first, you would feel quite uncomfortable while wearing them. And if you wear it for a good amount of time, you might end up having blisters on the skin. 

For that reason, it is always a good idea to double-check the shoe size and measure your feet before making a purchase.

Ways To Widen Up Shoes Fast

There are a couple of ways that you can follow to widen up a narrow shoe, and they are as follows:

Shoe Stretchers

This tool will be a no-brainer to purchase if you have somehow ended up having a shoe that is a bit narrow. These tools are generally for the leather shoes, but it does work with the pairs of different materials.

All you need to do is put this tool inside, adjust the knob and leave the shoes in the cupboard for a while. 

After a couple of days, the material is going to break in, and you will end up having a shoe that has widened up a bit. But do note that it will not be possible to shrink the pair after widening them up.

Expose the Pair to Heat

Heat can work like a charm in terms of making the shoe materials break in. But there is a caveat. The heat can also fade the color of the shoe. So, follow this process only if you do not mind wearing something that has faded outlooks.

That being said, this process will require you to leave the shoe out in the sun. Leave it out in a place where there is sunlight. The sunlight will do a proper job of increasing the overall temperature and making the material break in.

What Will Happen If I Buy A Shoe That Is Larger Than My Foot?

Well, unlike the narrower pairs, it will not be possible to modify the size of the larger shoes. You would have to stick with it and roll with how it is. 

Wearing a large shoe will also cause blisters because there will be too much gap, and the skin will have too much friction.

But there is a way to circumvent it. And that would be to wear thick socks. The thickness of the socks will lower the amount of gap and eventually will tone down the friction.

Also, you can try stuffing the toe area with some tissue or paper. That will also do a proper job of lowering the gap.

Final Words

Now that you have a proper understanding of the topic of European vs. US Shoe Size, we hope that you will not struggle with purchasing an EU shoe. 

That being said, when it comes to the differences, there is really not that much. The numbers are just different, which is because of the measuring systems.

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