How to Prevent Toe Holes in Shoes? [Easy Steps 2024]

Written By Mahia

How annoying it is when you get a pair of expensive, good running shoes, and suddenly you notice a developing hole in your fascinating shoes’ toe box.

Does this look familiar to you? I’m someone who’s been suffering much from this problem for a long time.

Finally, I discovered some easy tricks and materials which you may use to prevent the toe holes.

Doing some authentic research and several experiments, I found a number of amazing stuff and techniques which may guide you to the right way to prevent the holes magically!

Now, my dear friends! In this article, I’m gonna show you those low-cost and effective solutions, therefore, to avert the holes issues from the bottom.

Keep reading to know every detail and enjoy the journey of my experiences about the prevention of this unwanted problem!


Why do your toes poke holes in your shoes?

Toe holes are a common problem for runners, as usual.

When your expensive runner shoes get holes for the first time, I know how frustrating feeling that can be. I was just in your place and facing the same problem for a decade.

As running shoes are made from some breathable materials, the chance of getting holes in toe room is compulsory.

But don’t worry, I have found some practical ways or some instruments which can save you from these bullshit problems.

Alright, first of all, I’m gonna share the probable reasons for getting holes in your toe bar of the shoe. thereby you can take some effective precautions to prevent the holes on your toe bar.

Here are the reasons that might cause toe holes in your shoes:

Narrow toe cup

If the toe room of your favorite running shoes isn’t enough to move your nails comfortably, then the mesh or the fabric upper will get the holes. During the movement of your nails and toe joints, it pokes fluently the uppers.

So, creating a hole continuously without providing much pressure is a natural thing to happen.

Sizing Defaults

Another vital reason can be sizing! Their inappropriate shapes can wear a hole whether your feet are small or barefoot. In that case, sizing is an important matter if you are a person with barefoot or unorganized toes; sizing will cost you the holes.

Material lackings

The material of your footwear plays a great role in achieving holes on the toe bar. Unless your running shoes don’t have the durable and rigid upper material, then they will make holes in your shoes just after using them for a few days.

Weather effects

Your running shoe must have to be weather friendly. Hence they hold the whole pressure on your body, their capability and upper will provide you the best support. If they won’t be sustainable enough for the weather, then the possibility of getting holes will grow more.

Toenails growth

The length of your toenails can affect the upper of your footwear. However, toenail growth is faster than any other part of your body. And it hits the upper in a sharp and gentle way.

You need to keep short nails to avoid these holes.

Non-adjustable toe gourd

The shape and size of your toe gourd can be the main reason for toe holes. If the guard doesn’t match your toe flexibility, it might start to poke the upper.

And after using it for some days, you will feel the prevention of the toe guard.

Check out our separate post: Yeezy 350 Tight On Toes.

How do you prevent toe holes in shoes?

There are a huge number of approaches and methods that will help you to prevent holes in your shoe. However, which procedure will work effectively with your shoes, depends on their situation and types.

The forms of your feet and the use trends are the most critical factors in preventing holes in your footwear. But I found some effective solutions which will help you to figure out the problem.

Here are the tricks to escape before getting holes:

Use hole preventer inserts

Most running shoes come with synthetic layers of fabric. And designed to avoid outsider holes. But they are not enough to prevent the inside holes.

So you can use different types of hole preventer inserts which will help you to prevent the holes. You can use armor, big toe hole preventer or many other types of preventers, whichever are available on the market.

These armors and hole preventers are made from ballistic fabric. which is a soft material to support your running steps along with the prevention of holes.


You must be so surprised by how shoe armor or hole preventer inserts avoid holes. Well, I am here to make you understand it all step by step.

First of all, from where can you collect them?

You can collect or purchase them from any online shop like amazon or any other online footwear outlets. The price range will be affordable, and you may find various kinds of preventers there.

Now you will find the instructions here, which I’m mentioning for you so that you can find easy and understandable facts in a glimpse.

Let’s dive into the 11 steps:

  1. The first step to purchasing the inserts, you can buy the inserts in any online outlet from which you prefer best. Before buying, check out the measurement of your toe box and order that.
  2. After purchasing your desirable one, take an outlook that might fit your shoe or not. I hope you can do it on your own.
  3.  Take your shoe and lace up that with patients. Once you lace up, your shoe might give you enough space for the entrance.
  4.  Cut off the toe burst protector with a scissor carefully. though in most cases, you don’t need to cut the protectors as they build with the best way of burst protector.
  5.  Remove the insole of your shoe gently and keep it outside of the footwear. Now we are entering the most important job of setting up the armor.
  6.  Peel off the additional back of the shoe armor and hold it like you are going to set it up in the toe box.
  7.  Adhere the armor to the bottom of your insole. Make sure that you set it up well otherwise, it will come up before the attachment of shoes.
  8.  Remove the adhesive backing side of the shoe armor deliberately. Don’t pull so roughly, or it will lift out with the whole armor from the insole.
  9.  Insert the insole with shoe armor in your shoe. You must be thinking that you are done. But one more job left, which is the most important task to do.
  10.  Use your hand to adhere the shoe armor on the front of your shoe accurately. Assure the setup properly because these steps will ensure your whole fitness of toe room along with preventing the holes.
  11.  Reinstall the laces and look into the inside of the shoe. Give a quick trial to ensure your comfort.

See, it’s too easy to set up the armor or hole-prevent inserts in your shoe and to get rid of the problem of surviving for years.

You may also like to read: Do Composite Toe Boots Get Cold.

How do you fix toe holes in running shoes?

The much-fixing approach can be for your worn-out shoes to take them to a footwear expert. First of all, try to avoid the toe holes if it’s too late to take the prevention, you may fix them with cobblers. It will cost you half of the new one to buy.

As a footwear pro, I can suggest you to use one technique to fix your toe holes at home.

Let’s get into the steps:

  • Purchase an adhesive sealant from any hardware shop.
  • Then take duct tape and cut it by your size.
  • Attach it to the whole area gently with sealant.
  • Rub it with your hands.
  • Check out the fitness.

Some practical ways to avoid toe holes?

As I faced the problem of the same toe holes for many days, I decided to find out some easy and professional tricks.

You will be amazed to know what I experimented with to prevent the toe holes. Sometimes I failed to take the right initiative, but after researching some effective methods (which are really helpful to do) I got the ultimate success.

Now you can trust me to make your problem easier as I am being pro to solve this problem.

Here are some pro tips for you:

1.   Use Moleskine

You can use moleskins to reduce the chances of getting holes in your shoes. Don’t be creeped out about these moleskins. These are not the real skin of moles. It’s made from thin and heavy cotton fabric.

Its one side is really smooth and soft, the other side has a paperback to protect the adhesive side until you attach it to something.

Again it’s too thin to give a shot on your toe cup. Moreover, it’s made from soft cotton fabric, which will give you the best breathability.

And the attachment will be super easy as you can cut them with regular scissors according to your size.

Here are the easy steps you can use to make the attachment of moleskins:

  • Purchase moleskin from any online stores.
  • Get a scissor and cut it to a fitted size to cover the hole area.
  • Lacing up your shoe to make the shoe open enough to enter your hand.
  • Pull up the paperback side of the moleskin.
  • Hold it a bit with your thumb though it’s harder to get your thumb in the toe box.
  • Patch it in the whole area of your toe box consciously.

Now it’s done perfectly without having so much unnecessary pressure. Whatever it’s effective and easy to do. Well, if you try this, let me know how your experience is.

2.   Use deeper tow box and proper size shoes

As I mentioned before, you can use different tricks or procedures to avoid the toe holes. One of them can be, using a deeper toe box and choosing the proper size of your desirable shoes.

Running shoes include various kinds of deeper tow boxes that provide you the best comfort in the toe room of your shoe.

If you have the width of feet, you need a generous depth toe box in your shoe because it won’t hurt your feet and will reduce the chances of getting holes in your toe box.


It is the same as choosing proper size footwear. If you can’t find the proper size for you, it will bring about holes and uncomfort in your shoes.

I tried pretty small or big sizes many times, but it didn’t work for me. In the end, when I found the perfect size for mine, it rescued me a bit from the shitty hole problems.

So I guess the deeper toe box and proper sizing of your choosing footwear can save you from toe holes.

3.   Choose quality sock

Try to choose better quality socks that have a quality pad in the toe area. Even a thick cushion and padded socks can prevent your toes from coming into contact with the toe box. So it will reduce the possibility of getting holes in your toe box.

Follow our guide on How Much Weight Can Composite Toe Take.

4.   Trim your toenails

To avoid the chances of getting holes, you must trim your nails and keep them shorter because the sharpness of your nail can affect the toe box in your shoe.


You can keep your nail in comfortable length and straight lines. This will help to prevent hitting your shoe, which will be able to create friction.

5.   Use duct tape

When you notice the growing holes, you can use duct tape to prevent the hole.

To use it properly, make sure that the duct tape has no folds or creases so that you can patch them carefully. Not only does the duct tape saves your skin from irritation, but it also makes the best attachment while running.

You also patch the tape around that particular area, which is specifically prone to developing the holes.

In the case of choosing patches, you can use the best patch  Engo Blister patches to prevent the holes. These are specially designed to adhere to the edge of your shoe, and it’s thinner than a hill grip. So they won’t get any irritation on your skin.

6.   Lacing technique

Another hole prevention trick is a different lacing technique. Depending on where your shoe is attempting to get the holes, you may use various types of lacing tricks.

If your running shoes have holes in the collar, then you must try the heel lock lacing system. This will avoid slippage to reduce heel friction.

On the other hand, to reduce the toe pressure, you may use cross-over lacing techniques. This may lead your foot and toes to a natural range of motion.

Also, this could help you to over-expand your big foot and prevent your feet from coming into contact with the upper of your shoes.

7.   Running shoes with the reinforced toe cap!

To prevent the holes and reduce the pressure on your toe box, you may use the running shoe’s reinforced toe box. Reinforced caps are basically made from a material like steel.

The toe box is a common part of any footwear to cover and protect the toes. It comes in different types and various shapes. They should come in wide and large as their purpose is to ensure the most comfort for your feet.

A reinforced toe cap protects the unwanted falling objects and compressions. Usually, it’s combined with the midsole plate to prevent holes and punctures from below. They are light and comfortable and reduce the hard feelings of your upper to avoid the holes.

Who Suffered much from toe holes in their shoes?

I think you know how pathetic it is when your favorite pair of footwear gets holes. Trust me, it hurts! If your toenails are too long, it puts pressure on the mesh of your toe box.

Again if your feet don’t fit properly, then your big feet may not be under the protective gourd of your shoe while running. So it will affect the upper toe box of your shoe.

There are examples like when the size and shapes of your big toe don’t match your mesh of shoe or cover the front upper area to adequately the ultimate pressure of your toe or big foot against the upper.

Holes may expand when the hallux joint of your big toe doesn’t frequently move through the range of movement.

While your big foot pulls back-dorsiflexed at this point, they get the preparation of coming into the ground, and your big toe isn’t affected at all. Also skips the irritation of the skin.

How Much space do you need in your toe room?

The easiest way to tell if the shoe is too big or small, take a look at your shoe-toe cup. If there is enough space to comfort your toe, then it’s perfect for moving your toes. Usually, there should be a wide quantity of space from the longest toe to the end of the shoe.

This space measurement can be ¾” or ½ “ from the longest toe to the end of the footwear. If your toe doesn’t get enough space, it will get rubbed and make friction on the upper.  So it’s important to check the space both for the toe and the end of the shoe.

The toe space also depends on the shape of your feet. Your toe room space flexes with the shape of your toes. If you got a big or different shape of feet, your measurement of toe room space will be individual type.

Whatever the shape and the proportion will be, there must be a proper surface in your toe room. You can Buy a half size bigger than your actual size to prevent the holes as it won’t hit the upper of your shoe.

Which Is It Better? To Prevent Or To Fix?

Running shoes are designed harder to sustain and muchly breathable than any other shoes. They generally perform 300 to 500 miles while running. But if they develop holes after running 200 miles, it’s really frustrating.

By taking preventive measures before getting holes, you can save your running shoe life And increase the lifespan time of your running shoe.

If you want to know my opinion, I will go for prevention.

Whatever, you can fix them as well, but It’s better to get prevention rather than fixing the holes.

Also read, What is A Soft-Toe Work Boot.

Ending Line

Toe holes are the most irritating and widespread problems for your loving footwear.

When you get a developing hole just after using some days in your newly bought shoes, It will make your day worthless!

Well, my job was to save you from this unwelcomed problem; I think I did it perfectly!

Right now, you can find The easiest solutions to prevent the holes in the toe box of your loveable shoes.

If you apply these methods and it works out, don’t forget to share your experiences in the comment section!

About The Author
Since childhood, Mahia is a shoe freak. And this is what lead her to do more research and gather knowledge about shoes.Mahia has always wanted to share her skill and knowledge about footwear with a mass audience, which ended her up in this amazing workplace.When Mahia is not writing, you can almost always find her in the kitchen experimenting with different recipes to upgrade her catering menu.

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