First, why can't I squeeze my calves into a narrow pair of boots?
Why won't they stretch? Do I have to send them back?
There are a few reasons why squeezing and stretching into small wellies won't work. It is tempting to try to make them fit your larger calves, especially if you have some adorable designer wellies that have just arrived in the mail and they are too narrow or tight for your leg. This is usually when ladies
But making them fit will be uncomfortable and unhealthy for your legs and feet. If they are way too narrow, they will get big wrinkles where you calves push them down. The part or the ruck or wrinkle that pushes in will rub on your ankles making them sore. That is if the welly will even stay on as they tend to be pushed off by your calves. And even if they do stay on you are not fooling anyone, people will notice those wrinkles, they are not sexy.
If they nearly fit it is even more tempting to try and just wear them anyway. But you won't be able to tuck jeans in or even wear socks. The feeling of pressure on your calves where it touches the boot all the time will get worse the longer you wear them and can be bad for your leg circulation, making your calf cramp.
The skin will get sweaty too as it can't breathe. Wellies are waterproof on the inside too, so a boot with a liner help, but the skin needs room to stay drier. If the foot part is too snug your feet will ache and be rubbed raw with blisters, especially with no socks. Not much fun for going out in!
Stretching doesn't work either because stressing the real rubber, if it's something like Hunter rain boots, will be more likely to allow UV to perish it. Usually real rubber will snap back to the original
Cheap rain boots made of plastic or vinyl don't stretch at all as they are so stiff in the first place. The top edges can be sharp and rub a sore area at the top of the boot if too small.
Sometimes you can stretch the neoprene wellies a little, but don't break the stitching around the top cuff. It is usually the tightest part and trying to stretch it may break the stitching.
Wide Fitting Wellies
So how do you know they will fit?
The only way you can be 100% sure is to try them on
- Measure your calves and feet - put your dimensions on a sticky note while you shop
- Read wide calf boot product descriptions carefully - to get a good idea of the boots
- Read product reviews to see if size adjustment is needed or any signs they will not fit at all
Read wide calf boot product descriptions carefully
So you spy some rain boots you like the look of,
Find out the following wellie dimensions from the sales listing.
- Foot length - sizing info is generic for the whole sales site usually
- Shaft height
- Circumference at the top of the boot
If you can't find these you have a few options. Most likely it's the calf opening size in the top of the boot shaft.
First, leave the boots if you are not in love with them! If you really want them, look for the same item on another site and read the description there. Sometimes the site with the cheapest price for the boots has less information in the listing. As long as you know it's the same model and style, the info should be accurate.
If you aren't getting any more info, you can try googling
Read the reviews on any sites they are for sale on. Pick a listing with as many reviews as you can for the best shot at this. It may mean choosing a different coloured boot in the same style. Look in the wide leg wellingtons reviews for any mention of buyer and boot's calf measurements. What size leg do they have and were the wide leg wellies wide enough? Or maybe they just measured the top and wrote it down in the review.
How to measure your calves when buying tall rubber rain boots
First, use a flexible measuring tape to measure the widest part of the calf in inche
Choose the larger of the 2 measurements as your calf size, unless you are under 5'3" tall then you should add another inch to the measurement. Being shorter, the widest part of your calf will be lower than on a the taller ladies that the manufactures model the calf taper and boots on.
Also if you are shorter or even if not, measure the height of the back of your knee from the ground, to make sure the shaft length of the boots are not too long. The Wellingtons will pinch and rub your knee if too long when you bend your leg, making it sore.
Now go shopping with confidence! Let me know how it goes in the comments!
One last thing when buying boots for wide calves.
Bear in mind, the larger your calves the less choice
One way of giving you more options is considering the shorter 3/4 wellies, the Hunter short boot are a wonderful option if you have you heart set on Hunters and the Huntress won't fit.