I Will Never Buy Kids Shoes The Old Way Ever Again

by Karen Tietjen
Originally Published: 
A mom and a daughter playing with blocks on the floor
Ten Little

Buying your kid a pair of shoes should be easy, right? Wrong! If you’re a parent and you’re reading this, I’m sure you can relate. We all love the convenience of online shopping, but when it comes to fitting your kiddo’s constantly-growing feet, it feels like a crapshoot. Should you grab the size they’re already wearing or size up so there’s room to grow? And between tantrums, short attention spans, and mask-wearing meltdowns, shopping in an actual store to try shoes on seems like more hassle than it’s worth.

Then, there’s the matter of pleasing your child and their discerning tastes. A tot in the “me do” stage will want a shoe they can put on themselves, and even older kids will want a pair they can just slip on and go. That said, you’ll want them in something that’s snug and secure to prevent accidental trips and falls. And Heaven help us if you get a pair adorned with safari animals after they’ve suddenly decided they’re now obsessed with all things outer space.

Ten Little

I had finally accepted that my only choice was to mass-purchase (then mass-return) multiple pairs of shoes in hopes of finding a single pair that worked for my little guy when I discovered Ten Little while on my shoe search. Suddenly (miraculously), the task of kids shoe shopping went from a monumental chore to a quick and easy task.

There are so many reasons I love Ten Little — yes, as in ten little toes — from the shoe buying process to their quality, customizable selection of kids shoes. Here’s what makes them so different from the rest …

Ten Little

1. They take the mystery out of finding your kid’s shoe size.

No more guesswork! Head to Ten Little’s Fit Finder Quiz and find your kid’s exact shoe size in a few different ways. If you have a pair at home that fits perfectly, you can input the brand and size (for instance, Nike size 5) to find the Ten Little equivalent. No idea what size they are? No worries! You can measure their foot, use the printable Fit Finder, or request a free Fit Finder pamphlet in the mail. (For the last two, just have your child stand on foot outlines and order the corresponding shoe size.) Easy peasy!

And turns out, good fit isn’t just about size — poorly-fitting shoes can actually hinder the development of your child’s growing feet. These kicks are designed with the help of medical advisors to ensure that they’re comfy and healthy for those ten little toes!

Ten Little

2. Their shoes are made with the best materials for kids and the earth.

You can see and feel when shoes are cheaply-made. Lots of kids’ brands get away with it because parents don’t want to spend top dollar on footwear their little ones will soon outgrow. (Trust me, I get it!) Not only is Ten Little affordable, they’re the ONE pair of shoes I choose to invest in for my kid rather than buying two or three lower-quality pairs that’ll pinch his feet or fall apart. In fact, these hold up no matter how hard he plays, plus the classic designs are so versatile, he can wear them with everything in his wardrobe.

Ten Little shoes are made with premium vegan leather so they’re easy to wipe clean. They’re also lined with breathable cotton and finished with a durable natural rubber sole. Not only are the materials sustainable and kid-safe, every time you size up, each pair comes with a prepaid shipping label so when my son eventually outgrows them, I can send them back to be donated; Ten Little is partnered with nonprofit, Soles4Souls, which provides opportunities to those living in poverty.

Ten Little

3. Kids love ‘em!

I like that Ten Little’s style is streamlined and simple, but my son loves that they come with STICKERS! (Turns out, they’re the key to a kid’s heart.) Each pair comes with a sheet of weatherproof decals that can be used to customize his kicks with everything from ABCs to dinos to farm animals. You can also buy extra sheets for more decorating fun on backpacks, water bottles, helmets — just about anything!

Further, these shoes have adjustable velcro straps, meaning my son can put them on all by himself — that means a happy kiddo and a happy mama!

Ten Little

4. Ten Little was founded by two moms.

Need I say more? No wonder this shoe company is so smart …

Ten Little

5. They recently launched Play, offering high-quality, sustainable, open-ended kids’ toys.

As if I couldn’t love this brand enough? Say goodbye to toy shopping woes with Ten Little’s new Play essentials that just launched. Believers in learning through open-ended play, Ten Little’s online shop sources products from top kids’ brands that have been curated and tested by experts to ensure they are safe, non-toxic, and that they support brain and body development at every step. Plus, their platform makes it easy for you to shop according to your child’s unique stage of development. You only have to take the quiz once to create your child’s personalized shop and view a curated assortment of puzzles and building toys. Ten Little understands that every child is unique and that growth most certainly isn’t linear, so their shop grows with your child as they reach new milestones and as their preferences evolve. Plus, Ten Little offers expert insights, play tips, and free DIY activities for every stage. Excuse the pun, but this is honestly a game-changer.

Now that I’ve found a kids’ shoe brand that works for our family, I won’t have to switch anytime soon. Their sizes range from 4-13, so my son will be wearing Ten Little for the next several years. Even better, I’ll always know what size he is, thanks to the super simple Fit Finder guide and the brand’s Fit Guarantee. Shoe shopping a hassle? Not anymore!

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