7 Easy Ways to Soften the Back of New Shoes

We all know the feeling of putting on a new pair of shoes for the first time but don’t forget about the back! Uncomfortable heels and rubbing can make any shoe feel unbearable. Luckily, there are easy ways to soften the back of your shoes and make them comfier than ever. Read on to find out how!

How to Soften the Back of New Shoes

Here we will discuss 7 different method you can use to soften the back of new shoes at home.

Soften the Back of New Shoes

1. Wear Thick Padded Socks

Wearing thick socks is a quick and effective way to soften back of new shoes. Slip on thick padded socks and wear the shoes, and you’ll notice an immediate difference in the stiffness of the back. The socks will also help reduce any friction from rubbing against your ankle, making your shoes more comfortable. To ensure maximum comfort, choose a pair of socks that are not too tight, as this can cause discomfort when wearing your shoes.

2. Use Zip Lock Bags to Freeze the Back Side of New Shoes

One way to soften the back of new shoes is to use zip lock bags. This method is simple, effective and can be done in a few easy steps.

To begin, you will need two ziplock bags and some clean water. Fill each bag with water about one quarter full, then carefully seal the bag. Place both bags inside the shoes, with the opening of the bag facing the heel of the shoe. Make sure that the bags are properly sealed to prevent any leaks.

After putting both bags in the shoes, put them in the freezer overnight. The water will expand as it freezes, stretching out the leather and softening the back of your shoes.

When you wake up in the morning, take your shoes out of the freezer and let them warm up for a few minutes before taking off the ziplock bags.

 You may need to use a hair dryer to help speed up this process if your shoes are still too stiff.

Once your shoes have thawed, check to see if they have softened enough for you. If not, you can repeat this process until you achieve desired results.

3. Put Paper Towels Inside New Shoes

When it comes to softening the back of new shoes, one method you can use is to put paper towels inside them. This is a simple and effective way to help your shoes break in faster. Here are a few tips for using this method:

First, take out the laces from your shoes and any other removable items such as insoles. Next, stuff the paper towels into the back of your shoes. Make sure to fill them up as much as possible and press down on the paper towels to make sure they reach every corner of the shoe. Once you’re done with that, put the laces back in and lace up your shoes.

Now that your shoes are full of paper towels, you can wear them around the house for a few hours at a time over the course of a few days to help break them in. If you want to speed up the process, you can use a hair dryer on low heat to warm up and soften the leather in your shoes before wearing them.

4. Use Rubbing Alcohol

Some other easy method for breaking in and soften the back of your new shoes is to use rubbing alcohol. You can use it alone or with the other methods we’ve already talked about.

Use a small amount of rubbing alcohol on a cotton pad and dab the heel of your shoe with this, then squeeze and press the back of the shoe firmly to work it into the leather. For a more intense stretching you can spray the rubbing alcohol directly onto the leather and use your hands to stretch it.

It is important to note that rubbing alcohol can be very drying for leather, so you should make sure to condition your shoes after using this method. You can also use a moisturizing cream or oil to prevent dryness and cracking.

5. Use a Boot Stretcher

If you want to stretch your new shoes, a boot stretcher is a great option. It is a tool specifically designed to make shoes more comfortable. To use it, insert the stretcher into the shoe and twist the handle until you feel it pushing against the leather.

Go slowly to avoid damaging the shoe. Once you feel resistance, stop and leave the stretcher in for several hours or overnight. This will help stretch the leather and soften the back of the shoe. To maximize stretching power, you can also spray a leather stretching solution on your shoes before using the stretcher.

6. Use Shoe Trees

Using shoe trees is a great way to help maintain your shoes’ shape and keep them looking new. Shoe trees are usually made of cedar and help absorb moisture, while simultaneously helping the leather to keep its shape.

When purchasing shoe trees, make sure to get ones that fit your shoes snugly. This will ensure that the tree will do its job properly. Place the shoe tree in your shoe after you have worn them, and leave them in overnight or for a few hours. This will help keep moisture out, as well as help keep the leather from creasing.

7. Apply a Leather Conditioner

To finish off the job of softening the back of your new shoes, you should apply a leather conditioner. Start by getting a quality leather conditioner made specifically for shoes. Make sure to read the instructions carefully before applying it.

Once you have applied the conditioner, use a cloth to rub it in. Make sure you are thorough and that all areas of the shoe are covered. Pay extra attention to the back of the shoe, which is where you will likely be experiencing the most discomfort.

Allow the leather conditioner to sit on the shoe for at least 15 minutes before wiping off any excess with a clean cloth. This will ensure that the leather is soft and supple.


If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to soften the back of a new pair of shoes, the best thing to do is to wear thick padded socks. This will help to break in the shoe and make it more comfortable.

It must be remembered that there are risks involved in using some methods such as those involving extreme temperatures or chemicals. Therefore, it is important to be aware of these risks and take necessary precautions before attempting any of the methods mentioned above.

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