Do Sperry Canvas Shoes Stretch? (Read This First)

When a brand repeatedly proves itself worthy, you’ll likely continue patronizing them even as they move into a different venture. And that’s true about Sperrys, a renowned shoe manufacturer. 

They’re famous for their boat shoes which are lightweight and comfortable, but they’re stretchable, making customers not stay true to their foot size. 

Now that they’ve moved to produce Canvas shoes and more footwear, it’s likely to wonder if these canvas shoes stretch as boat shoes.

Because of the material difference, Sperry Canvas shoes stretch less than boat shoes. The boat shoes are leather, while the canvas is made of textile or canvas upper materials. And in case you may not know, leather stretches naturally due to its flexibility, unlike canvas. And many users agree that canvas shoes run true to size.

Sperrys are a famous shoe company, but if you want to go beyond the boat shoes, you’ll need more information to buy the right one. 

And if you want to buy Sperry canvas shoes precisely, here’s an article detailing their stretchability. You’ll also learn how tight or loose they should be on your feet.

Are Sperry Canvas Shoes Stretchable?

Do Sperry Canvas Shoes Stretch

Many customer reviews propose that Sperry canvas shoes are true-to-size, while others say they run too tight/big. 

But since these canvas shoes don’t consist of leather, they are unlikely to stretch as canvas materials aren’t naturally flexible and don’t stretch much. 

Also, unlike Sperry boat shoes that come in sizes, the canvas shoe comes in medium and wide ranges for both genders. 

So choose one that fits accordingly depending on your foot size, either narrow or wide.  

The different materials used in the Sperry boat and canvas, leather, and canvas material share differences that make them unique. 

And that also influences their value and why customers prefer one over the other, as you’ll see in the table below.

Canvas Material Leather 
It’s duck/woven fabricIt’s tanned animal skin
It is stiff, sturdy, and thickFlexible, naturally pliable, and prone to expansion
It’s highly durableIt’s less durable
LightweightHeavier compared to Canvas
Suitable for warmer seasonsSuitable for all seasons
Care and maintenance are easy as it requires only washing and drying.It requires a maintenance kit with appropriate tools and leather creams to retain its shine.

How Do You Stretch Canvas Sperrys? 

Since these canvas Sperrys are unlikely to stretch since they’re sturdy and stiff, trying them yourself is a better solution. 

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And I’ll explain some practical ways to stretch your Sperry canvas shoes and make them fit your foot. 

#1. Use a Stretcher

Using an artificial stretcher that looks similar to a human foot is one of the best methods to stretch stiff canvas shoes. 

They’re made of thick materials that expand your shoes, such as metal or wood. 

And many of them have handles or screws that hold them in place, while the upper region looks like an actual foot.

Purchasing these shoe stretchers is an excellent way to reduce tightness and expand dimensions such as width and length. 

If you don’t know how to use these stretchers, following these instructions or tips is vital so you do it right.

#2. Apply Heat to the Shoe

Heating shoes are another effective way to stretch canvas material. And for this, you’ll need a blow dryer, spray bottle, water, and socks. 

First, wear your socks and put on your shoes, then moisten them with water from a spray bottle. 

Afterward, blow it all around to warm it and wiggle your toes. You could also choose to walk around in it. 

This method relaxes the shoe and helps it expand more. Try it out afterward to confirm whether it’s widened to your satisfaction. If it has yet to widen as you wish, repeat the process.

#3. Freeze Your Shoes

Following the principle of water expansion, using your freezer is another excellent way of stretching your canvas shoes effortlessly. 

To do this, fill Ziploc bags with water, ensure there are no holes water could leak from, and fit them into your shoe. 

Do this with the other pair, put them in your freezer, and leave them overnight. Take it out the next day and test it to know if it widened. 

If you feel they’re still not loose enough, freeze them again.

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Note: Using stretchers on canvas shoes can prove difficult as they’re much stiffer. 

Hence, it’s best to use stretching liquid as the ingredients help to soften the canvas material and make it more flexible to the shoe stretcher.

How Tight Should New Sperry Canvas Shoes Be? 

Sperry Canvas should be tight enough to fit your foot but not so much as to discomfort you. 

Since Sperry canvas shoes are less pliable than leather boat shoes, the ball of your foot should conveniently fit the canvas shoe’s wide part. 

And the heel should have some room for heel slippage as this prevents blisters and discomfort, especially when walking. 

Remember that Sperry Canvas shoes are different from boat shoes, and the table above highlights their differences, with their flexibility being a primary difference. 

Hence, don’t size down, thinking they could expand later on and fit. Below are some tips to remember when shopping for some Sperry canvas shoes to guide you.

#1. Measurement

Foot measurement for buying shoes goes beyond calculating the length and width of your foot. 

These measurements might work, but they don’t involve everything that matters, like your arch length. Ensure to include them. 

Also, don’t rely on previous measurements because you have not noticed significant changes in your foot. 

It’s best to take fresh measurements whenever you need one. And a good tip to follow is to measure your leg during the afternoon as your foot expands during the day.

Further, only stand while measuring your foot. Standing enables your foot spread out more and ensures the measurement is accurate. 

Let someone else take this measurement for you. Lastly, have your foot tracing with you and place the Sperry canvas on it. 

This option will only work if you’re shopping from Sperry’s outlet store, as you can see the shoes in person before buying. Click here to locate Sperry outlet stores in your location.

#2. Walk Around in the Shoes

After trying the shoes on, avoid standing in a place or sitting down with them. 

Walking around with it is best to see if the width fits and if some areas are too tight on your toes or heels.

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#3. Select a Shoe with Space in the Toes and Heels

Although the shoes should fit you well, consider leaving space in the toe and heel region so your feet can still breathe. 

Have half an inch at the toe region and eight of an inch at the heel side. Also, wear your usual socks with the shoes you intend to buy and confirm if it’s too tight on you or fits perfectly.

#4. Fit Shoes to the Larger Foot

60% of adults have a foot that is wider and longer than the other. If you do, it’s best to measure that foot, fit the shoe, and insert a shoe pad in the other. 

It’s better than choosing shoes that don’t fit and trying to expand them.

How Do You Make Sperry Looser? 

When you’ve broken them, you’ll feel more comfortable in Sperrys or Top-siders, which are a bit looser. 

And this could happen if you wear them often on deck or walk around with but if not, here’s how to do it.

#1. Wet-Weathering Your Sperrys

Pour warm water into a spacious container but not to the brim. Consider it similar to a relaxing soak in your bathtub, but you’ll put only your legs into the container this time. 

Next, add sea salt/table salt to the water, whichever you have available. 

Proceed to stand comfortably in them with your shoes on and lace them so tightly that they fit snugly on your feet. The tighter you make them, the looser they’ll get. 

Don’t take your legs out until your shoe is entirely wet, and it may take longer than canvas since leather shoes are naturally water-resistant.

Note: If you don’t like this option, you can alternate by soaking your Sperrys in similar water for 24 hours maximum. 

Then take them out and slip them on while they’re still wet. Dab the Sperrys until they stop dripping water, and wear them around until the remaining wetness dries off.

#2. Prioritize Your Comfort

Ensure to buy these Sperrys in the correct size. Buying a pair that fits your feet is vital as most Sperrys are true-to-size. 

You can also follow the shopping tips mentioned above when purchasing a pair. 

However, the difference is that leather Sperrys are best bought in sizes half smaller than your original measurement since they stretch.

If you wish to buy shoes that offer a custom fit and are usually more true-to-size, canvas shoes are ideal.

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