Finally, women shoe sizing explained!

finding the shoes that fit, trying on shoes


It is very important to understand that finding the right size shoe for your foot does not always translate into the perfect fit since there are many parameters that factor into the correct fit. Shoe sizes are determined by the length and width of the foot. Other shoe fitting factors include the instep or the arch, but considering the fact that length and width are how shoe sizes are defined universally, for now let’s focus on length and width sizing.

When you pick your shoe size, the manufacturer has largely determined that size based on the length of your feet. Shoemakers who sell shoes in other countries outside the U.S. use size conversion charts to determine the correct size in other countries, but again – only the length and even that is wrong in many instances!

For example, when you convert U.S. shoe sizes to European sizes, the European shoe size translates into a half size longer. If you are a size 7 in the U.S. for most shoe brands it will translate to a 37.5 in Europe, not 37. But when you buy the shoe, in most cases it will show an equal conversion, totally ignoring that extra half size of.

Demystifying shoe width sizing

Of course, getting the length right is hugely important but so is the width. When you go to the department store such as Nordstrom or Macy’s to shop for shoes, to determine your shoes size, the sales person uses a mechanical ruler, called Brannock device. This ruler was literally invented 100 years ago. And because it is a flat device, it can measure only the “flat” width of your foot. And based on that measurement, your foot width is determined. That is also incorrect. To get the width right, you have to measure the circumference of the widest part of the foot known as the “ball.”

And then there is a lot of confusion in the shoe industry how to determine if the foot measurement falls into narrow, medium or wide category. There is a lot of contradicting data out there and it is very confusing for consumer when they are trying to determine what size shoe to purchase.

At Kira Bani, in developing our FIT-ANY technology, we collected a ton of information both by measuring women’s feet and researching popular shoe designs by a variety of different brands. What we have come up with we believe is the most accurate shoe sizing tool based on length and width measurements for women.

The table covers women US shoe sizes from size 4 to 13 and three widths: narrow, medium, and wide. The width is measured as a circumference of the widest part of the foot, not as a flat width.

table of women shoe size conversion length and width

How to measure your feet right way

There is an easy way to measure your foot by hand. You’ll need a pencil. measurement tape and a legal size sheet of white paper. It is also a good idea to have someone to help you do this correctly, but it is possible also do it by yourself. Here are important things to remember when measuring your feet:

how to measure foot length and width or ball circumference

  • Trace your feet or have your assistant trace each of your feet in one unbroken line with the pencil while you’re standing on the sheet of paper.
  • Use the ruler to measure the length of your foot from the longest toe (usually the big toe, but depends on the foot) to the back of your heel. Write down the measurement.
  • To measure the width, sit down and cross your leg resting your ankle on your knee. Wrap the measuring tape tight but gently around the ball of your foot– write down the measurement.
  • Measure both feet- the size will be determined by the size of your biggest foot. For most people, feet are slightly differ in size and in some cases can differ by ½ a size or even a whole size.

You can also find your size on our site using Kira Bani powered by FIT-ANY technology! Kira Bani shoes come in variety of sizes and widths and are designed for ultimate fit and comfort experience.


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