How to Prevent Shoes From Rubbing the Ankle Bone

All running shoes look comfy, but new ones often rub your ankle bones.

Photo: Jupiterimages/ Images

Buying a pair of new shoes can leave you smiling all the way home, as you visualize potential outfits. You get the shoes home; they look fantastic and work perfectly with those outfits you imagined. Yes, they feel great, until you start walking. No matter how great your new shoes look, if they rub against your ankle bone after just a few minutes of walking, that bubble of new-shoe-happiness is sure to burst. Before you banish the shoes to that sad "I love them but they hurt my feet" pile at the back of your closet, try some simple techniques to stop them from rubbing against your ankle bones.

How to Prevent Chafing Around the Ankle Bone


Make a lubricant to apply to your ankles, by mixing roughly four parts petroleum jelly with one part moisturizing lotion. You only need a small amount, so just mix it in the palm of your hand with your fingers.


Apply a thick layer of the lubricant to the parts of your ankles where the shoes rub, usually under the ankle bone. Rub it into the skin a little, but not completely. There should be a visible layer of the lotion sitting on your skin.


Put the shoes on. The parts of the shoes that sit under your ankle bones should feel slippery when you walk. This means the lubricant is doing its job, cutting down on the friction between the shoes and your skin. It should prevent painful chaffing.


Wipe away the lubricant from the parts of the skin that are not touching the shoe with a baby wipe. This is just for appearances; shiny, greasy ankles is a hard look to pull off!

How to Soften the Leather Around the Ankle Bone


Soak a cotton ball in rubbing alcohol and squeeze it out. The cotton ball should be saturated, yet not dripping.


Rub the alcohol-soaked cotton ball on the part of the shoe that rubs against your ankle bones when you walk. Rub the alcohol into the leather, until it is visibly dampened. The rubbing alcohol will make the leather more pliable, enabling you to "mold" them to the shape of your feet.


Immediately put on two pairs of thick socks. Put the shoes on and wear them around for at least an hour. This should mold the ankle parts of the shoes around your ankles, as well as making the leather softer.


Repeat the rubbing alcohol application two or three times, if the results of the first application are not satisfactory. Do it no more than three times, or you risk permanently damaging the leather.

Things You'll Need


1.Petroleum jelly

3.Baby wipes

5.Thick socks

7.Cotton balls

2.Moisturizing lotion

4.Adhesive moleskin

6.Rubbing alcohol


Tips & Tricks


Try putting insoles into your shoes. The extra thickness inside the shoe may raise your ankle bones above the shoes' edges by just enough to stop them from rubbing.

If you're going to wear the shoes for more than an hour, make a little extra lubricant; take it out with you to reapply to your ankles when necessary. An empty lip balm jar is ideal.


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