Slippery Shoes? How to make shoes less slippery – even how to make shoes non-slip! – is what today's post on shoe-tease.com is all about. Most of the solutions below can be used on heels, boots and all kind of shoes.
When you go shopping for shoes, I bet you look at the most important things, first. The style. The color. The fit.
But do you ever look at the sole of the shoe (Louboutins notwithstanding!) to determine if they'll be slippery or not? Probably not!
But have you ever lost your balance, slipped or fallen? Or almost fallen, because of slippery shoes? Or specifically: slippery shoe bottoms and/or heels?
To help you on your non-slip shoes journey, we're going to run down a list of top tips & trick not only on how to make shoes less slippery.
Some solutions can even teach you how to make shoes non-slip (or at least, virtually non-slip!). Especially important now that some of us are entering winter season with all that rain, ice and snow. Yikes!
Slippery shoes and boots are the bane of every shoe addict and will literally keep you…down. What's the point of buying shoes that make you constantly slip? Or make you scared to even walk in?
Luckily, there are lots of ways on how to make your shoes non-slip so you don't have to swerve and slide in your favorite new and old shoes!
These slippery shoes solutions include different ways on how to add traction to shoes. Whether adding something onto the slippery outsole, or altering the outsoles in such a way as to make heels less slippery.
Because traction = non-slippery shoes. And that, friends, is a good thing 🙂
I also wrote a separate post with products & hacks on how to keep heels from slipping out of shoes, if that's your current shoe-slipping problem!
How to Make Shoes Less Slippery & Non-Slip
1. Use Adhesive Bandages
A less permanent way on how to put traction on shoes: adhesive bandages. By placing bandages adhesive side down on the soles of your shoes, the rough surface on the band-aid will help grip the floor, so your feet stay on it!
This is why we tell readers to always keep a few bandages in your handbag: not only does it allow to create a more grippy outsole, but these will help prevent blisters & make heels more comfortable too!
Don't have any bandages, double sided tape may also help. It certain helps prevent heels from slipping out of shoes, like this shoe heel tape does!
2. Try Non-Slip Shoe Sole Grips
Shoe grips for bottom of shoes are a great – and more permanent – slippery heels hack.
Much like the adhesive bandages trick, you stick these non-slip soles to the bottom of your shoes to add traction for when you walk. Great solution for both new and worn outsoles!
Walmart sells a bunch of great anti-slip shoe grips for bottom of shoes. Boottique's sole savers are great for the outsoles of your heels too. And not only do they create sole traction, but they also protect them from wear and tear.
They're often made of rubber or have some grit to them that'll keep your soles safe.
And most importantly, it doesn't involve permanently damaging them. It's truly the best way on how to make heels less slippery!
3. Wear Your Shoes
Simple and often very effective! New shoes – especially dress shoes with leather, pleather or other smooth outsoles – tend to be great at slipping on many a slick surface.
That's why it's a good ideas to wear your shoes on a rough surface prior to ‘real life' wear. Why?
Because walking (or even skipping and hopping!) on textured surfaces, such as asphalt, cobblestones, or any surface that is gritty enough, will scratch and wear your outsoles.
Doing so will add grooves and grip to that perfectly smooth outsole surface, which should do the trick to make shoes non-slip enough for easier walking.
Note that the outsole wear on older shoes can also make your shoes slippery.
Although this trick will also work on old shoes, I would use a tack-on method first, such as using grip pads as outlined in the previous hack – just to be safe on those old soles!
4. Scuff the Outsoles with Sandpaper
Looking for a stronger or more controlled non-slip shoes hack than the one above? Scuffing your shoe outsoles with sandpaper.
Now this one of the more permanent solutions on this how to make shoes less slippery list of hacks. So be sure that you don't want to return your shoes before trying this!
Grab some 100-ish grit sandpaper at your local hardware store to scuff the outsoles of your shoes. The grit of the paper will scuff your shoes enough to give them a rough surface.
That will ensure the outsoles of your shoes stick to the ground instead of sliding on it. Especially important when you're breaking in high heels. Use caution with older shoes, as you could wear your soles thin enough to do some damage.
FYI: This is also a great solution for squeaky shoes, as it helps put a stop to that annoying new shoe outsole squeak!
5. Use Hairspray (Yes, Really!)
No traction shoe spray lying around? Another temporary and cheap fix slippery heels hack: hairspray.
Spray a little (or a lot) of hairspray onto the soles of your shoes until it feels sticky. Usually about a 10-15 second spray hold, then wait for the soles to dry.
The stickiness will help your soles stick to the floor much better. This is a great fix if you're in a bind & need a simple non-slippery shoes hack fast.
However, this solution doesn't last very long and & needs to be re-applied after each wear.
This is also a great shoe slipping off of heel hack, if heel slippage is your issue. Simply spray the insole to let your heel stick to the inside of the shoe, preventing it from popping out!
6. Try Traction Spray for Shoes
A great product for winter shoe gals out there: shoe adhesive spray. AKA anti-slip coating for shoes. It works much like hairspray, but it lasts longer.
You'll never have to worry about slipping on ice or slippery surfaces after spraying these on!
There are many more non-slip spray for shoes that I've listed in my separate post – one for every outsole material including leather and rubber soles.
As with all products, make sure to follow the instructions!
7. Tack on Puff Paint to Slippery Outsoles
An easier (and colorful!) way that works is using puff paint? As a fun how to make shoes non-slip hack, of course!
This trick works because puff paint naturally dries down into a grippy, bumpy surface to create traction between the outsole & the ground.
Those bumps almost act as grooves that help you walk more steadily.
And you can have fun with this trick by using whatever color you want! How about a heart under your soles on your wedding shoes?
This could actually be fun, folks, so get your puffy paint groove on with these fab colors:
8. Use Ice Grips to Make Shoes Non-Slip
The best way to never slip and fall in winter weather again? Ice grips, aka ice and snow grips.
While it doesn't work for all shoe types (ex. heels) it's a good way to transform any rugged or fashion boot into a winter boot.
Unless, they're already boots with grips – yes these do exist. You simply attach the grips to the bottoms of your shoes and voilà: instant ice age-ready shoes!
Top ice grips to make shoes less slippery:
9. Use Salt, Sand or Glue
This is another permanent slippery shoes fix that's perfect for winter boots. You will need a crushed mixture of salt (or sand!) over super glue that has been thinly applied onto the soles and/or heels beforehand.
This will create a rough surface to add traction as you walk. The grit will help you travel on foot through anything winter can throw at you with ease.
Looking for appropriate superglue? Learn all about the different kinds over at my post all about shoe glue!
10. Go to a Cobbler to Fix Slippery Shoes
If you don't want to hack your shoes, why not get someone to do it for you? A cobbler is a shoe care professional that help you with many shoe solutions.
I highly advise using a professional if your slippery shoes are particularly old and worn.
They may need to be re-soled before you engage in any DIY slippery shoes solution that might permanently damage your shoes – and we don't want that!
11. Shop for Non-Slip Heels & Shoes
Seems obvs, but sometimes it ain't. As we said before, thinking of the slippage factor of your heels isn't the first thing on our mind when we buy shoes!
Of course, there are brands that make non-slippery shoes. You want to look for shoes with textured soles, grippy tread soles and non-slip materials.
All of these provide texture that helps provide grip when you walk. The traction department's technology is pretty impressive, from those used on heels to those on winter boots.
And it's highly likely that if the shoes have anti-slip technology, you'll see it advertised on the box!
And it works on all floor surfaces, meaning you don't have to worry about taking a slip or tumble anywhere.
Luckily for you, these are some of the most comfortable shoes you can also buy.
I've shared a list below with some of the best — and stylish — slippery-resistant shoes for every occasion below:
Shop Less and Non-Slippery Shoes:
Final Thoughts about How to Make Shoes Non-Slip
Smooth soles are not your friend if you're looking for non-slippery shoes. No texture means slips are bound to happen.
Especially on hardwood floors. And slick tiles, oh gawd! So if you're attending an event indoors, make sure that your shoes' soles are not smooth.
Hopefully, you now know how to make shoes less slippery indoors and out. Or at least have been introduced to a few retailers that make cute non-slippery shoes!
So why not make sure to protect the top of your shoes from dirt, rain and moisture with some waterproof spray for shoes?
Looking for more shoe care hacks? Check out all my post talking about shoe care tips, here.
Let me know what you think of our hacks to make shoes non-slip, in the comments below!
Attempting to make your shoes less slippery yourself may cause irreparable damage to your beloved heels & boots. ShoeTease and its partners are not liable for any damages to persons or property arising from any of the advice given in this post. Please Follow advice at your own risk. It’s always safer to take your footwear to a professional specializing in how to put traction on shoes or any other shoe repair. Highly recommended for your pricey Choos & Blahniks and any other shoe that you love!
Cristina is the chief editor, fashion & shoe expert here at ShoeTease. As a seasoned stylist and women's fashion & shoe designer, she boasts over 20 years of experience in the fashion industry. She loves crafting effortless outfits for ladies both online and off and believes that styling advice should be accessible to everyone. Whether you're a styling pro or just starting out, Cristina's here to guide you on your fashion journey! Learn more.