Unfortunately pointe shoes can’t last forever, but we’ve come up with a few tips to help you get the most out of each pair of your shoes!
Dry your pointe shoes thoroughly
Letting your pointe shoes dry after class is one of the most important things you can do to look after your shoes! Since pointe shoes are made from natural materials, your sweat will cause them to breakdown over time. Tossing your shoes in your dance bag and leaving them there overnight is major no-no as it will lock the moisture in. The best thing you can do is carry your shoes out of class and hang them up once your home, just make sure they’re safely out of reach from your dog – they make great chew toys!
Apply pointe shoe hardener
Using a pointe shoe hardener is an easy solution once you’re pointe shoes have been broken in. Jet Glue is instant bonding glue made especially to reinforce natural materials and creates a barrier that resists further absorption of moisture, helping to prolong the life of your pointe shoes. While Jet Glue is not a permanent solution to make shoes new again, it’s a great tool to use to get a few more classes in before getting your new pair.
Rotate pairs of pointe shoes
The idea of buying two pairs of pointe shoes every time you come in for a fitting may seem expensive, but it can help a dancer save money in the long run when you’re doing a fair bit of pointe work. If you take more than one pointe class per week, your shoes may not have sufficient time to dry between classes. This is when having two or more pairs of shoes could be the solution! Pointe shoes generally last 10-20 hours and wearing shoes that haven’t had at least 24-36 hours to dry between uses causes them to break down even faster. Rotating between a few pairs will help extend the life of each pair and will reduce the need to purchases another pair as quickly.
Breaking them in properly
Remember, new pointe shoes should be “broken in” very carefully. The techniques professionals use are often extreme – slamming them against a wall, crushing the block in a door or bending the arch in half. Remember most professionals only need their shoes to last for one performance! It’s so much better to let your feet do the work, wearing your shoes in class and letting them mould to your feet will soften them where they need it. You don’t want to have to explain to your parents or your teacher that your new shoes are “dead” because you used water to soften them and slammed them in a door.