How to Shop Boots for Wide Calves

by Aly Walansky

Think swimsuit season is rough on the esteem? Just wait until you try to shimmy into your favorite boots and get a rude awakening. Boots can be hard for those of us with wider limbs.

Know how to measure

Be prepared before you buy. Measure your calf by grabbing a tape measure and finding the circumference of your calf at its widest point. You are going to want to do this on both legs because most of us have legs and feet that are not exactly the same width.
For your favorite boots, you’ll need to determine two measurements: shaft height and shaft circumference. Shaft height is the measurement from the middle of the arch to the top of the boot. The height of the boot’s shaft will determine your own calf circumference. (Science, you guys!) What I tend to do is take note of the shaft height on the description of boots I like, and then take out my tape measure and measure that height amount from the heel of my foot up to my calf. Next, go for calf circumference. If the difference is just a half-inch, that’s not a big deal. Boots stretch over time and a half-inch stretch can be increased after one or two wears. If you love a pair of boots and it’s that small of a difference, don’t be afraid to go for them.
Note that there’s no standard for wide (or not wide) calves — your legs may not fit some boots and may easily fit others. In some boots, I seem to need wider styles, but because the widest parts of my calves start lower than many others (I’m petite!), that often makes a difference.
Much like any other item of clothing or accessories, boots with some “give” are often our best friends. In the realm of wide-calved boots, lace-ups are a great bet — and a good way to keep your ankle stable. Here are some boot styles worth trying for your wider calves.

Shop Boots for Wide Calves

  • Media Credit:
    The Fashion Spot