This is why your shoes are a different size in each shop

wearing wrong shoe size
(Image credit: Rex Features (Shutterstock))

Ever wondered why you can fit in those pretty size 3 New Look heels, but have to go up to a size 5 in River Island sandals (which is a pain if you’re shopping online, let’s be honest)?

Let us reassure you, you don’t have weirdly shaped feet, nor have they ballooned in the last 24 hours. It’s all down to how the shoes are made.

A journalist at The Mirror conducted an investigation on the high street to find out why exactly it’s so damn hard to find shoes that fit.

She headed to eight different stores, including M&S, H&M, New Look and River Island and found that her shoe size, normally a 5, varied from 4 to 6 across board.

Why? Because the majority of shoes are now made in Asia, whereas a few years go, they were made in Britain, using standard size moulds.

Matthew Fitzpatrick, consultant podiatrist from The College of Podiatry, told The Mirror: ‘In the past there were fewer retailers selling shoes were the majority were built around the traditional sized moulds.

‘But as demand for cheap fashion has increased, each company cuts it its own individual moulds explaining why there is such a variation on the high street.’

Add to that the fact that you’re probably wearing the wrong shoe size, and it all gets very confusing indeed.

The easiest way to find a shoe that fits is basically to go to a store and get it measured, school kid style. Because no beautiful heel is worth the bunions.

Penny Goldstone

Penny Goldstone is the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire, covering everything from catwalk trends to royal fashion and the latest high street and Instagram must-haves.

Penny grew up in France and studied languages and law at the Sorbonne Nouvelle University in Paris before moving to the UK for her MA in multimedia journalism at Bournemouth University. She moved to the UK permanently and has never looked back (though she does go back regularly to stock up on cheese and wine).

Although she's always loved fashion - she used to create scrapbooks of her favourite trends and looks, including Sienna Miller and Kate Moss' boho phase - her first job was at, sourcing the best deals for everything from restaurants to designer sales.

However she quit after two years to follow her true passion, fashion journalism, and after many years of internships and freelance stints at magazines including Red, Cosmopolitan, Stylist and Good Housekeeping, landed her dream job as the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire UK.

Her favourite part of the job is discovering new brands and meeting designers, and travelling the world to attend events and fashion shows. Seeing her first Chanel runway IRL at Paris Fashion Week was a true pinch-me moment.