Can Boots be Fitted with Different Heels?

Don't give up on boots because the heels aren't what you want

Woman wearing tall boots
Swell Media / UpperCut Images / Getty Images

Have you ever passed up a terrific pair of boots that would have been perfect if only the heel were higher, lower or made of a different material? Or have the heels of your favorite boots become nicked, worn, or simply don't suit the current style? The good news is that in many cases a skilled shoe repair professional can transform footwear to your specifications.

Going Shorter by Cutting Down a Boot Heel

In some cases, a heel that is too high can be cut down. That method works best if you're looking for a minor height adjustment of half an inch or so. Any more than that and your cobbler will most likely replace the entire heel block with a shorter version.

Switching to a Higher Boot Heel

Going lower or changing the heel type is easier. Whether you can switch to a higher heel depends on the boot's arch. The boot may not be built to be worn with a much higher heel. In this case, you would have to buy new boots that have the arch that that is appropriate. Discuss this with a shoe repair professional to see what height can be obtained with your boots and what your options are.

Replacing Heels on Your Boots

Are you happy with the heel height, but prefer a different silhouette? As fashions change or you prefer a different sort of heel, you can simply change them rather than buying new boots.

A stiletto-type heel, for example, can be replaced with a chunkier version, and vice versa. A thicker heel can be swapped for a slimmer one. Leather heels, which are dressier, can be changed to more casual stack heels, or you can swap in the other direction. You may be able to match the materials of the rest of the boot or to have complementary or contrasting materials.

Ask your shoe repair professional to show you the types of heels available and explain which would work best with your boots given the amount of wear you'll be putting on them.

Slip-Resistant Heels and Heel Savers

Your shoemaker can also replace plastic heels with slip-resistant rubber. A shoe repair professional can change heel tips from hard to non-skid rubber. Another option is to add heel savers to prolong the life of the heel. These are a good investment in safe walking and extending the life of your favorite boots.

Finding a Shoe Repair Professional

  • Find a Local Shoe Repair Shop: Many shoe repair shops are small, independently-owned businesses. Call the shop beforehand to tell them what kind of work you need to have done and discuss your options. If it isn't something they do, they may be able to refer you to a shop that can fulfill your request.
  • Shoe Service Institute of America: This professional group has a shoe repair shop locator to help you find nearby services that are members of their organization.

Watch Now: Jean Styles You Can Wear All Year Around