How to Stretch Canvas Shoes?

Have you ever gotten yourself one of those beautiful trendy pair of canvas shoes that fit your feet like a cinderella’s sandal at the store but turned into a total torture machine when you wore them for a longer period? I believe the answer to that question is yes, which is why you are here. Who doesn’t love a squeaky clean fresh pair of canvas shoes? I surely do. But new shoes come with a problem.

Yes, they bite your feet off terribly, giving you sore feet and even blisters. Imagine trying to put up a brave face just to show off your new pair of impressive shoes while squirming in pain internally. That would be awful, I know. This is why I’m here to enlighten you, people, with simple easy techniques to remedy that problem. But before we get into further details, let me tell you exactly why that happens.

If your new canvas shoes are giving you sore feet, the only possible reason is that they are too tight on you. You may feel like they are a good fit but still get the aches. This is because your feet get confined in a smaller space of the new canvas shoes, giving your feet no room to stretch. So when you walk, your feet are unable to breathe and stretch properly, thus resulting in sore feet and painful blisters.

How to Stretch Canvas Shoes

Of course, what’s better is that you look for a better-suited design like for women, those amazing pairs of extra wide shoes are available in the market. Similarly, most of the top brands have brillant running shoes designed for wider feet, however, if you want to stick to your dear canvas pair there are plenty of ways in which you can stretch your shoes to fit your foot. I have personally experimented and chosen a few easiest ways to help you solve this problem once and for all.

1. Using Microwave

The easiest and quickest way to stretch your canvas shoes is with the help of a microwave. Put your new canvas shoes in the microwave and set the timer to 30 seconds. Don’t worry about your shoes getting damaged. Your shoes won’t be harmed if you set the timer to 30 seconds only and not longer.

Remember, only those canvas shoes can be put in the microwave that has no metallic embellishments on them. The heat in the microwave will soften the shoe material a little bit. So, wear them immediately as you take them out of the microwave and walk around for a few seconds. And so, the shoes will adjust to your size as they cool down.

2. Using a Hair Dryer

Another useful technique to stretch your canvas shoes is by using a normal hairdryer. This method is best for shoes with metallic embellishments. All you have to do is wear a double pair of thick socks before putting the shoes on. Then, switch on the hairdryer and aim it towards your shoes for twenty to thirty seconds.

Make sure that you hold the dryer a few inches away from your shoes so that the heat won’t burn your feet. The heat from the dryer shall soften the canvas shoes a little bit. Walk around in the shoes afterward. This will loosen the shoes. Now, try them on without wearing the socks to check the fit. If they still feel tight, repeat the whole process to ensure the best fit.

3. Using steam

You can also use the steaming method to stretch your shoes effectively. Put some tap water in a kettle and put it over the stove. Once the water starts boiling, hold your shoes above the kettle with the help of a hanger. Hold still for 5 to 6 seconds. Then immediately put the shoes on and walk around. The heat from the steam shall soften the fabric, thus making it more stretchable.

4. Using Ice Expansion Technique

Another one of the best ways to stretch canvas shoes is using the ice expansion technique. Take two zip lock bags and fill them both with normal tap water. Seal the bags properly and put them in the shoes. Then put the shoes directly in the freezer. Leave them overnight. As the water in the bags freezes, it will expand, thus pushing against the tight confines of the canvas shoes. This shall stretch the shoes as well.

In the morning, take the shoes out of the freezer and remove the frozen bags. Try the shoes on. You will notice a considerable difference. If the shoes are still tight on you, you can always repeat the process or try another one of the quick tips mentioned above.


Can you stretch out canvas shoes?

You can most definitely stretch out your overbearingly tight canvas shoes. There are several easy ways you can do it. It all depends on you which method you choose.

Do shoe stretchers work on canvas shoes?

Yes, shoe stretchers work perfectly on canvas shoes. It depends on you, which areas of the shoe you need to be stretched. For example, if you need the entire shoe to stretch, you can use a two-way shoe stretcher and if you need only a certain part of the shoe to be stretched, you must use a ball and ring stretcher.

Does canvas stretch when wet?

The answer is no. Canvas shrinks when it dries. So if you are trying to stretch your canvas shoes, then it is best to do so when they are completely dry. Wet canvas material dries back to its original size.

How should canvas shoes fit?

While selecting the perfect shoes for yourself, make sure that you try them on in the store and walk around in them just a little bit to ensure that your feet have plenty of room to be accommodated in the confines of the shoes. There must be enough space at the end of your longest toe, to enable a comfortable parade.

Is it safe to heat canvas shoes in the microwave to stretch?

Yes, it is perfectly safe to heat your canvas shoes in the microwave but using certain precautionary measures. For example, heat them no longer than 30 seconds otherwise the soles will start to melt. Also, there shouldn’t be any metal embellishments on the shoes.


Dont you worry if you werent able to get your hands on some of the most comfortable shoes for your travels. Now you know some of the best, easiest and quickest techniques to stretch your shoes at home and adjust them to your comfort. You can choose any one of them of your liking. But still, if you ask me, I would recommend that you use the hairdryer method. It is the safest and quickest since you can gauge how much the material stretches. So you won’t have to worry about your shoes getting too loose on you.

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