Prepping for carnival does not stop with ordering the costume. Now you have to think about things, such as fishnets, bags, gems, hairstyles, makeup, and footwear. A common question I am asked is: Where do I find carnival shoes? Where do I find carnival boots? What shoes do you recommend?
In this blog, I will talk to you about the different types of shoes for carnival and list some of my recommendations.
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When it comes to a carnival shoe, nothing will beat comfort.
Sneakers are my absolute go-to carnival shoes. You can find them anywhere, but you can also find many style options. I don’t like to spend a lot of money on my carnival shoes, so I found some incredibly comfortable, budget-friendly styles with a wide range of color options!
Note: If you ever purchase a cheap shoe, I strongly recommend replacing the insoles. Be sure to take out the insoles they came with BEFORE you put the new ones in. Otherwise, you are setting yourself up for a poor fit.
I adore wedge sneakers for carnival. Alternatively, you can get wedge boots. I am 5’1’’ on a good day, so I would like all the height I can comfortably reach. Having short legs, wedge sneakers lengthen their appearance and lifts my butt a little bit.
If you decide to get a wedge sneaker, be mindful of the height of the wedge vs the drop stopping at the base of the balls of your feet. If the difference is more than 2 inches, you may not find them comfortable for wear over time.
Alternatively, boots are a versatile option for carnival. You can choose knee-high, ankle boots and booties, flats, heels, or wedges. I got a great pair of combat boots that I have worn for J’ouvert, and I even dressed up a red pair for Carnival Tuesday in Trinidad. If you sweat a lot, you may find that you might not prefer to wear knee-high lengths. Carnival kicks have been known for their high-quality, budget-friendly carnival boots. Be sure to check them out.
I am not a fan of heels for carnival, but do you, boo-boo!
I have worn a pair of platform heels on the road. Platform heels won’t be as stressful as a pair of stilettos, but bear in mind the wear on your feet will be accumulative. Take note of the height difference at the top of the heel (where your heel sits) and where the base of the shoe (where the balls of your feet sit). The greater the difference, the more stress on your foot.
We all know that heels do wonders for the legs and butt, but they’re not meant to be worn ALL DAY LONG. Heels will push your toes toward the toe box, which can lead to some tender toes. Additionally, weak ankles should not subscribe to wearing heels on the road. The terrain may not always be flat, and you may encounter potholes or cracks in the road.
Where to buy carnival shoes
Check out a few online stores from which I shop. I highly recommend them, so click the names to head to the website.
- Aldo Shoes
- Carnival Kicks
- Carnivalista (Use CODE: AWM2022 for 10% off your order)
- Dolls Kill
- Nasty Gal
- Road Runner Sports
- Steve Madden
- Watch out for sneakers that have soles with absolutely no bend.
- All (cheap) sneakers and shoes need to have their insoles replaced. Be sure to take out the sole it came with before you replace it with the new one.
- Avoid shoes that have very stiff toe boxes (waffle).
- Break in your carnival shoe as much as you can. I wear them when I take my dogs for walks, and will even start wearing them when I get on treadmill walks at home. This is a good opportunity to see if you think you might want better insoles than the ones they came with.
- Consider shoe horns. Some shoes are made narrow. If you size up, the carnival shoe may be too large. Put shoe horns inside to stretch out the toe box.
- Pad your hot spots. If you know there are certain areas of your feet/toes that might blister, you can get some corn pads to wear.
- If you are going to wear any hosiery, put your socks on BEFORE your stockings. Especially fishnets. Fishnets over time will dig into your toes and reduce circulation.
I hope this blog helps you with selecting your carnival shoe! What style do you think you would like to wear? What tips or tricks do you have to share with others? Comment below!