Use This Simple Lacing Method to Make Your Boots Fit Better

Use This Simple Lacing Method to Make Your Boots Fit Better
Because new boots shouldn't mean blisters.

Ah, fall. Perhaps the best time of year for men's style. The cooler weather allows us to take advantage of multiple layers, creating a smart, put-together look. It also means you may be gearing up for winter with some new boots. There's a stereotype that women get giddy over new high heels, but for me that feeling comes with a new pair of rugged, crafted boots. You can find many American-made options, they're hardy and built to last, and there's something about them that just makes you feel more rugged and masculine.

The problem is, it can be hard to find a pair of boots that just fit quite right. Since many are still simple designs, with the upper being almost entirely one layer of leather, they lack the foam and rubber that are present in athletic shoes that conform to your foot. Many of us find ourselves in-between half-sizes, or with one foot slightly different from the other, but even on perfectly fitted new boots the breaking-in period can be a painful one.

One common problem is the heel of your foot not staying in place. This slippage can cause blisters and other annoying problems that many guys just assume they have to put up with.

Well I'm happy to say, gents, there's a super-simple lacing technique that should stop all the slipping and provide a comfortable, snug fit with your beautiful new boots. Used for ages by climbers, runners, and shoe store salesmen, utilizing this “lock lacing” technique known as the Heel Lock can make a surprisingly dramatic difference in how your footwear fits.

(Love the style of these beautiful boots? They're the Thorogood 814-4200, made in America and a steal at $155. Read a detailed review in our Fall Boot series.)

lock lacing heel lock boot tie

tie heel lock lacing animation

Andrew is the founder and editor of Primer. He's a graduate of American University and currently lives in Los Angeles. Read more about Primer on our About page. On Instagram: @andrewsnavely and @primermagazine.