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How to Shop

How to Shop

How To Shop

Always start with the right size and fit. If you're not sure of your current shoe size and/or width, a Clarks retail sales associate would be happy to measure your feet to determine your correct size. Request that the associate measure both feet, as one may be a different size from the other. To visit a store and have your feet measured, find the store location nearest you with the Clarks online store locator.


Once you know your shoe size, consider the following before selecting a new pair of shoes:

  • Activity/Intended Use - Do you have an active, on-the-go lifestyle or is your daily routine more sedentary in nature? Your daily activities will play a big role in how well your new pair of shoes suits you. For example, Clarks WAVEWALK shoes and active styles are ideal for walkers or those on their feet for the duration of the day. If you're unsure of the best style for your activity needs, ask a sales associate for specific recommendations.
  • Time of Day - Feet tend to swell throughout the course of the day. To ensure your new shoes are roomy enough for daily changes in feet and body chemistry, try on shoes in the afternoon or evening when your feet are at their largest.
  • Attire - Will you be wearing your new shoes with thick socks, thin tights, or barefoot? Choose hosiery that's indicative of your standard attire when trying on your shoes.

What to look for?

  • Upper - The upper refers to the top of the shoe, consisting of all parts that are stitched to the sole. Look for materials that are breathable and flexible, such as leather or mesh, that will allow air circulation and conform to the shape of your foot.
  • Heel - Referring to the part of the shoe that supports the foot's own heel, the shoe heel should be broad, sturdy, and solid for maximum comfort and support.
  • Heel counter - The rear portion of the shoe, above the sole, that holds the heel. Your foot should rest comfortably inside the heel counter.
  • Insole - Also known as a footbed, the insole rests inside the shoe to cushion the foot and absorb moisture. Padding/cushioning will vary by shoe; some shoes feature removable insoles.
  • Lining - The lining acts as a buffer between the foot and the shoe's interior seams. Many Clarks shoes contain leather liners, great for absorbing moisture. For optimum comfort, your shoe's liner should be light and nearly untraceable, without irritating materials or stitching.
shoe diagram
  • Closure - Closures are what fasten the shoe in place, such as laces, hook-and-loop, or straps. Adjustable closures will ensure the most comfortable fit, regardless of time of day or hosiery choice.
  • Midsole - Referring to the layer of material between the outsole and insole, the midsole functions to absorb shock and offer ease of movement. Look for shoes with lightweight midsoles that also provide adequate cushioning.
  • Outsole - The bottom of the shoe, typically constructed from rubber or polyurethane. The outsole should be sturdy yet flexible for comfort, support, and durability.
  • For additional shoe terms, see the Clarks USA Glossary of Terms.
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C & J Clark America Inc., 156 Oak Street, Newton Upper Falls, MA 02464