Do ankle straps shorten legs?

Shoes with ankle straps are quite popular, and they have been since their first appearance in the 1950s. Although many sandals have ankle straps, they do not qualify for being an ankle strap shoe based on how the world of fashion views it. An ankle strap shoe must have some heel; usually, it’s a high heel with ankle straps, but it may also be a platform heel or even a kitten heel.

Do shoes with ankle straps shorten legs? Yes, they make your legs shorter due to the forward push of the strap towards the front, which results in a cramped look for some people but for properly understanding how this happens, we need to know how an ankle strap shoe functions.

Ankle straps are mainly used to lock the shoe with our feet, so it does not slip off. As mostly this add-on is used with a heel, it needs to be more or less properly fit, and to some extent, tightly fit.

Shoes with ankle straps are very versatile because they are available in almost all available forms of design and color. As the seasonal trend demands, they are made of leather, nude suede in some cases or with patent leathers, and simple black. The size of the heel also varies with the trend of the season, going from high heels, which often make the wearer sprain an ankle if not careful, to ones that are comfortably tall for anyone.

Do ankle straps shorten legs

Do shoes with ankle straps shorten legs?

It depends on the type of ankle strap the shoe uses. Many factors influence the possibility of whether ankle straps would make your legs shorter or not, like the thickness, shape of the strap, and how thick or thin your calves and ankles are in comparison.

Some argue that shoes with ankle straps do not make legs look shorter rather make them look longer. In theory, their logic seems well thought out, while in real scenarios, most people find certain types of ankle straps only help make their legs look shorter rather than longer. 

Though for some people, no shoes with ankle straps pose any problem in making their legs less attractive, others envy such ankle strapogenic feet these few gifted individuals possess. For these people, the clear answer to,Do shoes with ankle straps shorten legs?Is a no. 

In most cases, shoes with ankle straps only contribute so much to making your legs shorter, while most of it is about choosing the right pair for you. Not everyone’s feet would be best suited for every kind of ankle strap available.

Let us look at a few ankle straps that make your legs look shorter..

  • Ankle straps that go across your instep horizontally are a prime example of shoes with ankle straps that make your legs shorter.
  • Ankle straps designed to fit your legs like anklets(a sort of cramp sock worn while recovering from an ankle sprain or ankle injury) can also stick up your leg too tightly towards the front, making it look shorter and broader.
  • Pump, peep toe, scarpin, and stiletto are examples of ankle strap heels that have a sharp incline and are not suited for legs that are muscular or puffy, as they would only amplify the thickness and make your legs look much short.

Should you avoid wearing shoes with ankle straps?

Well, of course not; there are always workarounds for stuff like these, and given how alluring it is to wear shoes with ankle straps to parties when it’s one of the hottest footwear available. Everyone should be able to pull off matching outfits whenever they want to, and slight inconveniences like the caveats of an ankle strap shoe should not be stopping them. 

Ways to Make an Ankle Strap for Your Shoes

Workarounds to avoid making legs shorter

Here are a few things you might want to keep in mind if you are someone with broad feet or thick calf whenever you want to wear an ankle strap shoe while going out –

  • Avoid wearing ankle straps that go horizontally across your instep; these are the worst ones to make your legs look puffy.
  • Choose an ankle strap that goes around the front of your ankle and grips your ankle towards the top heel and not towards the front.
  • Size is a big factor too. You shouldn’t be wearing any ankle strap shoe that is slightly narrower than your feet, as it will only make it look cramped and short.
  • You should also avoid shoes with ankle straps that are too thin for your ankles, as they might cause more discomfort than stability.
  • Try wearing ankle straps with a lower incline, as they will have a lesser push towards the front and be easy on your feet.
  • Try wearing wedge-heel ankle straps while avoiding scarpins or stilettos, as wedge heels will provide you better support, whereas thinner heels will only make your legs shorter to the eye.

While most of the above are also applicable to normal feet, you might also want to be informed on a note for someone with normal to thinner feet or calf, the options are a bit wider, and things to avoid are a bit less. Here’s a few worth noting down-

  1. Peep toes and cone heels are quite a no-no if you have feet thinner than normal; these only make your feet look scuffed in the heels.
  2. While avoiding things that are more suited for wider feet does the trick, getting a pair of those with proper top heel support is also noteworthy if you want to wear them anyways.

Leaving out the type specifics, here are a few notable outfit suggestions for anyone wanting to wear ankle strap heels without making their legs shorter –

  • Nude ankle straps with short dresses are an excellent way to rock the high heel look without making legs shorter. And the nuder color of the ankle strap just makes it that much less distracting and maintains the proper look of your legs.
  • Ever do you want to rock ankle straps with comfy outfits? Try out joggers with black ankle straps, and they will just mix so well with the joggers; it would seamlessly balance the ankle strap and not make your legs seem short.
  • Tight jeans are also a good pair up for shoes with ankle straps; since the tight jeans are meant to make your legs look longer and eye-catching, it would balance out the effect of an ankle strap heel on you.

Other than these, any type of outfit that makes your legs seem longer is very much welcome, with shoes with ankle straps. Full skirt with printed design, short denim jeans, vertical striped jumpsuits, etc., are great examples for some of the outfits that match well with shoes with ankle straps in balancing them out.

While the high and mighty heels, which everyone loves, might be alluring to wear, flat ankle strap footwear is also available with just as attractive designs.

Despite the caveats to wearing an ankle strap shoe, there is no denying that shoes with ankle straps are one of the most attractive footwear currently available. 

Ankle straps provide the final touch of excellence for many people in achieving the perfect look. 


Shoes with ankle straps do make your legs shorter. But this can be avoided by choosing the right type of ankle strap that suits your leg proportions properly and doesn’t make it look scuffed, along with matching an outfit that can balance the look of the shoe with ankle straps.

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