Everything you need to know about stretching suede footwear will be covered in this article.
Knowing whether suede leather stretches at all is important before buying a suede jacket, shoe, bag, etc. Does suede stretch? Suede leather is not as stretchy as other types of leather, but it can slightly stretch with use over time.
Luxury apparel and shoes are frequently made from suede, which is a delicate and soft material. Suede shoes are prone to stretches because of the delicate nature of the material, which is sensitive to moisture and can easily hold dirt.
It is best to use a shoe stretcher, or stretching spray, or try to wear the suede item while gently stretching it. Let’s practice stretching suede.
Does Suede Stretch?
The answer is definitely, as suede is a kind of leather with a velvety surface and a napped finish that gives it a plush and soft feel.
Suede can be stretched to some extent, just like any other type of leather, but it is less flexible and more likely to tear if overstretched.
Since suede is more delicate and has a napped finish than other types of leather, stretching suede is also more challenging.
Some fabrics are stretchable, but some are not. Therefore, we put the information together in our Stretch Fabric 101 to help you figure out whether your fabric or clothes is stretchy.
Does Faux Suede Stretch?
Designed to resemble natural suede, which is created from the underside of animal hides, faux suede is a synthetic fabric. Typically, a polyester and nylon blend is used to create faux suede, though microfiber or polyurethane are also occasionally used.
Faux suede can stretch to some extent, although it may not stretch as much as natural suede or other fabrics.
The particular type of faux suede and the way it is made will determine how stretchable it is. Depending on the fibers and how they are knitted or woven together, some types of faux suede may be more stretchy than others.
How Much Do Suede Shoes Stretch?
You can easily make shoes a half-size larger because suede is one of the best-stretching fabrics for shoes. If the shoe fits perfectly, you should still buy a half-size smaller because they may loosen up and feel too big when you walk.
Additionally, the smaller half-size shouldn’t feel uncomfortable or constrictive on your feet. It should instead feel tight and secure.
Why Do Suede Shoes Stretch?
The way suede responds to pressure is similar to how a natural memory form would. This characteristic is the reason why suede shoes are both adored and despised by many people. Suspended items are a great alternative to leather goods because suede is softer and more flexible than leather.
Since suede is a shape-sensitive material, wearing suede shoes frequently can cause them to mold to the shape of your feet. If you keep wearing them, they eventually stretch to about a whole size.
As you use suede more frequently, your feet enlarge, which is the main reason why suede stretches with use. For instance, if you walk in suede trainers for a while, the suede material will continue to stretch to make room for your swollen feet.
The shoes will stay stretched out after being stretched out if nothing is done to help it regain its shape. Since there is pressure on it when you re-wear it, it will continue to stretch.
A gradual process, the stretching is initially barely perceptible. But when stretched to its maximum, the shape and size difference is very noticeable. You can even compare measurements taken when your suede shoes were brand-new and after a few wears to see if they have grown larger over time.
One of the main causes of suede shoe stretch is water. Because suede is not waterproof, you must use a waterproof spray or wax to keep suede from becoming wet because it is a good moisture absorbent. Without a waterproof covering, suede shoes are easily permeable to moisture from the environment, foot sweat, and even unintentional water spills.
It is also frequently used to stretch or shrink suede shoes because suede is delicate to moisture.
Can You Stretch Suede Shoes?
Yes, you can, and one way to do this is to purchase a stretching spray specifically designed for suede. Use only this kind of fabric stretch spray; others won’t work as well and may produce subpar results.
Like sewing machines and fabrics, not all suede shoes are created equal, so they may stretch to a size or so larger. Depending on the type of suede used and how the shoe was made, you might get more stretch than that.
There may also be suede footwear that does not stretch at all. The method of shoe manufacturing is to blame for that aspect. When looking at suede shoes, be sure to inquire from the salesperson if the suede material and the construction will permit some stretching.
Related: How to Clean Suede Birkenstocks?
How to Stretch Suede Shoes?
Shoe stretching is much simpler than shoe shrinking. Suede naturally stretches with use and pressure, as was previously mentioned. So, if your suede shoes are too tight or they have shrunk due to moisture, you can use the following methods:
Utilizing a suede leather stretch spray is the first technique to use when stretching out suede. Typically, these sprays are applied to either or both the inside and outside of the shoes.
Put on some thick socks and walk around in the shoes for a few hours right after spraying.
Even though sitting with the shoes on will cause the suede to expand around your foot, walking is the best thing to do at this time to flex the shoes. You can repeat this procedure if the shoes haven’t stretched out enough after a few hours.
However, if spraying and wearing the shoes twice does not provide the stretch you need, you will likely need to try using a shoe stretcher.
You Might Also Like: How to Stretch Leather Boots?
When you need to stretch suede shoes and boots more than a half size up, a shoe stretcher is useful.
Spray the shoe with stretch spray once more before inserting the stretcher. After that, place the stretcher inside the shoe and turn the handle to make it expand to fit the entire length of the shoe.
Once the stretcher is snug, turn it another three to four times to exert pressure on the suede; you should feel resistance from the shoe as you turn, but not like you’re going to rip through it.
After the stretcher is in place, let it remain there for 24 to 48 hours before letting go of it and taking it out of the shoe. To determine how the shoe’s stretched fit will feel on your foot, try it on. You can repeat this procedure, beginning with adding more stretch spray, if it is still not sufficiently stretched out.
Wear It With Socks
The easiest method of breaking in suede boots may very well be to wear thick socks. Simply put on your thickest socks, lace up your shoes, and take a few hours to walk around your house or neighborhood.
If you have to run errands right away, put your shoes and socks on, but if you’re busy, get in the car and proceed as usual. You can actually break in most leather shoes using this technique.
How Long Does It Take for Suede to Stretch?
The thickness and fabric quality, the item’s fit, the amount of wear it receives or how frequently it is worn, and the humidity and temperature of the environment in which it is worn will all affect how long suede takes to stretch. Other variables to consider include the environment’s humidity and temperature.
In general, suede stretches more quickly with repeated use in hot, muggy weather. Additionally, if it is worn for a long time, it might stretch out more quickly.
Try wearing a suede item for brief periods of time, then use a suede stretcher or stretching spray to further help the suede item stretch.
Suede may not significantly stretch, but it can stretch with use over time. Try wearing thick socks or using a shoe stretcher to help stretch out suede shoes or other items of clothing if you’re trying to break them in.
Nevertheless, bear in mind that not all suede items may respond to this, and it’s crucial to avoid overstretching the fabric because it can become deformed or harmed.
Final Words: Does Suede Stretch?
When you first buy and try on a pair of suede shoes, they are infamous for being quite tight. Suède shoes do stretch, though. Yes, whether on purpose or not, they will sag with time.
Your suede shoes might benefit from professional shoe repair if you’re still having trouble stretching them. They have specialized equipment and methods that can frequently assist in stretching shoes that are challenging to stretch at home.
Will Hairdryer Damage My Suede Shoes?
Yes, it is likely to harm the material if suede shoes are shrunk or stretched using a hairdryer. Even though the damage isn’t severe, it will ruin the suede’s texture and make it appear clumpy and rough.
Do Suede Boots Stretch?
Absolutely, especially if you wear them frequently, suede boots will stretch out over time. Additionally, suede boots tend to stretch even more than suede shoes do because people often wear thicker socks with them.
Can Suede Get Wet?
Yes, suede shoes can get wet and still be wearable. You need to take care of them right away to avoid damage. It is best to stay away from wearing suede shoes altogether if it is forecast to rain or you know your shoes might get wet.