Lifestyle Mirror

How to Buy the Right Ballet Shoes for Your Toddler

The sound of pitter-pattering little feet on the dance studio floor is enough to make any parent swoon at the idea of signing their little one up for ballet. 

That being said, toddlers generally have an attention span at best of about 4 minutes. So when it comes to getting the perfect ballet shoes for toddlers you need to have a game plan ready!

Don’t worry though, we have put together the perfect guide for buying your tiny dancer the right shoes so you can get the task done quickly and get them dancing in no time.

Let’s get started!

Where to Buy Shoes

First and foremost let’s talk about where to buy the shoes. You can opt to make your child’s shoes if you choose, but keep in mind there is no need to be a superhero here! There are plenty of options for purchasing ballet shoes with ease.

Here is a list of places to consider when purchasing:

  • Second hand or thrift stores
  • Online
  • Department store
  • Buying from the teacher or studio
  • Dancewear stores

There are pros and cons for each purchasing option, just choose the right store for your schedule and needs. 

The Material 

There are three main materials that are used when constructing ballet shoes. Let’s go over the materials and what to expect from each one. 


We love leather! Ballet shoes made with leather are perfect for little feet as it gives them support from its durability. Leather shoes will last longer and overtime form fit to the wearer’s feet.

All of that being said, keep in mind that leather is more expensive upfront. Leather can also be a little bit more difficult to clean but there are leather paints available to mask the appearance of scuff marks and dirt.


Canvas is a great alternative for a budget-friendly shoe. They are less expensive upfront and they can be washed with ease.

Keep in mind however that canvas shoes break down much quicker than leather and are not as durable.


Satin ballet shoes are more frequently used for pointe rather than flat ballet. They are like the shiny new toy of shoes.

They look beautiful and are great for photos but they get dirty very easily and are not the most durable. 


When measuring to get the perfect fit there are a couple of different ways to get the size.

If you have a toddler that is on the patient side you can try to have them sit still while you take the measurement. Easy said than done right? 

Another more fun method is the footprint measurement. Paint the bottom of your toddler’s feet with washable paint and have them walk on paper. After it dries you can take the measurement and go from there.

If all else fails you can also trace their feet and take the measurement that way.

The Fit

The fit should be snug but not too tight. Check the following things to ensure a proper fit:

  • Can they wiggle their toes
  • Are all toes flat and not scrunched
  • No gaps between heel and back of the shoe

You want to be sure that the fit is correct. Wearing ill-fitting shoes as a child can lead to issues later in life.

The Extras

In most cases, your toddler’s shoe will come with a double or single elastic across the top. Using elastic is much easier with toddlers than lacing up ribbons. 

However, if you like the look of the ribbons and your toddler is patient enough you can sew on ribbons or buy a shoe with ribbons to start. 

Buying Ballet Shoes for Toddlers 

When you consider all of your needs and take into account your toddler’s personality you will be able to decide what is the best route for you.

Buying ballet shoes for toddlers doesn’t have to be hard with these tips in mind!

Have fun with your little one and make the experience one that you will never forget. 

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