Blundstones have a worldwide reputation for being rugged, durable, and exceptionally comfortable. But with all wearer’s feet being uniquely shaped, there’s no way boots can immediately be a perfect fit, even if the size is right.
So, the question many ask is whether they should buy the size that fits easily immediately or should your Blundstones feel a little tight initially – do Blundstones stretch out over time?
Because in almost all the ranges and styles, the uppers are made of leather, Blundstones do stretch, but only to a limited extent. Blundstone themselves say that their shoes will stretch slightly across the instep with use, increasing their width, but won’t stretch in length on their own.
Check out the current price of Blundstones here.
Because Blundstones last so long and are used by many for work, hikes, and other demanding activities, buyers want to know that their boots are not only durable but that they will fit well for all of that time.
So various questions need to be asked – how much do they stretch naturally, how long does it take, can they be deliberately stretched to fit, and if so, how? Let’s find the answers!
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Over the years I’ve owned multiple pairs of Blundstones. I usually go for the Chelsea boot style as I like the look the best. Currently I’m breaking in some new 500s and they are going great. Here’s how they look on me:
I find my Blundstones tend to stretch out after a few weeks of wear. I’d say I notice a different around the 3 to 4 week mark with regular wear, as the leather softens and contours to my foot shape.
Take a look at the current price of my classic boots here, if you like their style.
You may also like: Blundstone Sizing Guide (Inc. Size Charts)
Do Blundstones Stretch – All You Need To Know
Having established that Blundstones do stretch, it’s interesting to investigate how and why they do, whether this can be controlled, and whether it benefits the wearer.
The Natural Stretching Of Blundstones
If you have narrow feet, Blundstone Originals may be your first choice for comfort, as they are slightly narrower than Blundstone Classics. They have no inner lining, and the uppers will stretch once you have worn them for a while to fit the contours of your feet.
The Classics are designed to be slightly wider and have a leather lining that provides additional warmth and a more cushioned sole.
They are also sold with a spare insole which can be used for a more flexible fit. For those with a wider foot, the Classic may prove more comfortable initially but will also stretch after a while, so the wearer may find it becomes too wide.
This stretching of the leather upper will take about two to three weeks of wearing, but it will take care of the tightness commonly felt with new Blundstones across the instep and over the top of the foot.
While the width of the boot may stretch by up to one-eighth of an inch, the length will not stretch naturally, so ideally, there should be a bit of give at the heel and about a quarter to half an inch between the end of the foot and the reinforced toe cap.
You may also like: Are Blundstones Waterproof? (My Experience & Style Breakdown)
When Should I Stretch My Blundstones?
Getting your Blundstones to fit perfectly might require some stretching techniques, but it is best to let them stretch naturally before taking this step. The first decision is what size to buy.
Choose The Right Size Blundstone To Avoid Stretching
Blundstones are known to have a true-to-size fit, so the basic rule of thumb (or, as Blundstone themselves call it, “rule of toe”!) is for men and children to select one size smaller than their American size and women to go three sizes smaller than their American size.
So, for example, if you’re a size 10 in the US, you’ll find an Australian size 9 Blundstone will fit best in the men’s range, and an Australian size 7 for women.
|MEN US SIZE||WOMEN US SIZE||AUSTRALIAN SIZE|
Remember that all Blundstone styles have unisex sizing, so there are no separate men’s and women’s sizes. Also, bear in mind that the half-sizes are not longer than the full size but slightly wider to cater for wider feet.
If you’re buying a Dress boot instead of a Classic or Original, they have a slightly longer fit, and you may find it better to go a half-size down.
Buying Your Blundstones Online
While trying on a pair of boots is the best way to find the right fit, many people buy online, so the table above is a helpful guideline. Another tip to finding your best-fitting Blundstones is to physically measure your feet:
- Stand on a piece of paper and measure your one foot to the end of your longest toe.
- Now do the same for the other foot and choose the longest of the two measurements (you’ll be surprised by how much your feet differ!)
- Consult the size chart on their website to establish the best size fit.
It is possible to book a virtual meeting with a consultant to discuss the correct size for your feet.
Do You Need To Stretch Your Blundstones? Try Them On First
So, you’ve selected the style and size of your new Blundstones, ordered them online, and they’ve arrived. Now is the time to find out if you’ve bought the right boot for your feet and whether they need to be stretched.
Try the new boots on while wearing the socks or stockings that you usually wear with boots. You’ll be allowed to return footwear within 30 days of purchase as long as it’s undamaged, so stand on a carpet to avoid any scratches on the soles.
If you’ve bought Classic Blundstones, you may put in the extra insoles provided if the boot feels too large.
Or you can try wearing two pairs of socks with your Blundstones, like I show in the below image:
You can expect your boots to fit tightly over the instep the first time you wear them. As I’ve mentioned, there will be a certain amount of natural stretch in the width within the first two to three weeks.
If your feet start to tingle after a short while, though, they may be too tight a fit, you may need to exchange them for a half-size bigger, or you may choose to stretch them to fit better.
Methods Of Stretching Blundstones At Home
Stretching your Blundstones is not a way of making a too-small boot the right size – the purpose of stretching is to make a correctly-sized new shoe more comfortable, better suited to your foot shape, and more flexible.
All Blundstones must be “broken in,” even if they’re perfectly sized. About thirty days of constant wear will soften the leather, stretch it across the instep and allow the boots to mold themselves around your feet.
After this breaking-in period, if there are still uncomfortable areas, there are ways to stretch the boot, particularly in length, as the width should have already increased.
Using heat from a blow dryer is a simple yet effective way to stretch the boot by a relatively small amount. Keep the blow dryer at least six inches away from the leather to avoid damaging it, and heat up a portion of the boot you want to stretch.
Once it’s warm, wear a thick pair of socks (or two) and wear the boot for a time while it cools and adjusts to the shape of your foot. You can reheat the boot while wearing it and repeat the exercise until the boots feel comfortable.
Leather stretching spray can be applied to the boots as an alternative to heat. It’s specially formulated to soften the leather without damaging it. It allows it to stretch while you wear the boot with thick socks (as in 1. above).
As the leather dries, the boot will conform to the shape and size of your feet and retain those dimensions. The spray can also be used in conjunction with the other methods of stretching discussed here.
Using a boot stretcher is probably the most effective way of stretching your Blundstones but the most expensive unless you have access to a pair.
Depending on the design of the stretcher, it should fit into your boot and can be used to increase both the length and the width by applying constant pressure in whatever direction you choose.
Leaving the stretchers in place for about a day should result in the leather stretching permanently to provide more space in the required areas, but if you can leave them in for longer, they will be more likely to do the job.
Bending and Twisting the boots as if you’re wringing them out will soften the leather and stretch it, particularly around the ankle area of the boot. Do this gently, holding the heel in one hand and the toe of the boot in the other before twisting. Bending the boot will help make the leather in the instep more flexible and comfortable.
A shoetree is a great accessory, not to stretch your Blundstones but to help them retain their shape. When you’re not wearing your boots, even if it’s only overnight, keeping them on a shoetree will prevent the leather from shrinking back to its unstretched shape.
Leather conditioner and regular cleaning and maintenance of your Blundstones will also help maintain the boot’s shape and form. Stretching impacts the strength of the leather, so keeping it in top condition will help keep your boots looking and feeling great for a lot longer.
Will PVC Gumboots And Vegan Blundstones Also Stretch?
Except for the leather stretching spray, the methods discussed above to stretch leather Blundstones will also be effective with the vegan and PVC footwear manufactured by this brand.
With all the materials used in the wide range of boots on offer, the secret is to not try and stretch them too quickly. The boots will last you for years if properly looked after, so don’t try and rush the stretching process to save a day or two.
If In Doubt, Get A Professional To Stretch Your Blundstones
I’ve emphasized the importance of buying the right size and breaking in your Blundstones before attempting to stretch them further. If you have doubts about doing the job yourself, get a specialist cobbler to stretch your boots.
They will have the knowledge and expertise to do a really professional job, and your boots will be stretched without the risk of damage.
Blundstones do stretch in the course of being broken in, but only in the width of the uppers and not in length.
While finding the correct size from the start is the key to long-lasting comfort, your Blundstones can be stretched using several methods to fine-tune their fit around your unique feet. They’re fabulous footwear, and I hope I’ve helped make them even better for you!
Lorna is a footwear geek and the founder of Wearably Weird. She created a YouTube channel in 2021 for fellow footwear fanatics, dedicated to detail-rich footwear reviews and info. She has a fashion media qualification (awarded in 2011).