Babies’ feet are a mass of cartilage, making them adorably soft and squishy ¬ not to mention delicate. In fact, did you know that babies are born with only 22 partially developed bones in their feet? As they develop, their feet will grow four more bones, so by adulthood, your little one will have a total of 26 fully developed bones!
How to look after your baby’s feet
When your baby is still a tiny newborn, the best way to care for their feet is by keeping them nice and clean with their toenails neatly trimmed. But as your little one begins to grow you’ll probably be faced with lots of questions along your journey of parenthood – and that’s where we can help! Read on to find answers to commonly asked questions, including when babies find their feet and how to measure your little one’s feet for shoes.
When and why do babies grab their feet?
It’s only a matter of time before a baby discovers their squishy little feet, and when they do, they’ll get up to all sorts of mischief with them. Babies are super bendy, so don’t be surprised if they manage to get their feet right up to their mouth! In fact, toe tasting is actually quite soothing for a baby, which makes their feet munching all the more adorable.
This cute milestone generally happens when your little one is between four and eight months old—but like all milestones, some babies like to take their time, and that’s totally fine! Often, babies can feel their feet before they can see them, so even if they aren’t yet at the foot-grabbing stage, they’ve essentially already ‘found their feet’.
How quickly do babies’ feet grow?
We all know how fast our little ones grow; it seems like one minute they’re a tiny newborn, then in the blink of an eye, they’re eating solid foods and taking their first steps! Not only do our babies grow quickly in milestones, but they also have a very speedy growth in shoe size, too.
For around the first 3 years of their life, you should expect your baby’s feet to grow around 2mm a month. Between the ages of three and five, the growth will slow to 1mm a month. Once your little one is not so little any more, their feet will grow at a much slower rate. In fact, between the ages of five and twelve, foot growth slows further to approximately 8mm to 10mm a year.
Should a baby's feet always be covered?
While tiny shoes and socks can look adorable, generally speaking, your baby’s feet don’t have to always be covered. For all of those cuddle-filled days spent at home, feet coverings aren’t a necessity while your baby is still in the newborn stages. Besides, babies soon learn how to pull their socks off—and once that happens, it’s game over!
But with that being said, if you’re out and about—particularly in colder weather—you might want to keep your baby’s feet nice and snug. Baby shoes are perfect for the job, since they’re soft and cosy, not to mention adorable!
Best shoes for babies
As your little one grows and becomes more mobile, crawler shoes are a good idea, since they protect the tiny toes of your little explorer. We have a variety of styles in our collection to suit every need, from soft and comfortable trainers to adorable sandals.
How to measure baby feet for shoes
Since babies’ feet are so soft, it’s super important that their shoes fit comfortably to help their feet develop healthily and happily. Bring your little one into a Clarks store to meet one of our friendly shoe-fitting experts, or measure your children’s feet at home with virtually no fuss using one of our foot gauges.
Simply kneel in front of your child, slip their foot into the gauge and make a note of the measurements you can see. Job done! Take a look at our measure and fit guide for more at-home measuring tips.
Babies’ feet deserve all the love and care, from the newborn stage and beyond. Our collection of baby shoes come in a gorgeous selection of colours and styles and are available in whole and half sizes as well as different widths for that perfect fit.