Shoe measurement systems. How to find out your shoe size?


Let’s be honest, how often can you walk into a shoe store and tell if your size is 36, 39 or maybe 41? No, most often you say several sizes at once, with the hope that one of them will fit exactly. Very few people know their true shoe size. People may know their size from a particular manufacturer, but this does not mean that the same size from another manufacturer will suit them. There is no unified world system, there are local ones. The fact is that unification in different countries went differently, and we still have several traditions for measuring shoes. The most common:

  • Metric. It is based on the actual size of the foot in centimeters. Such a system is common in Russia and CIS countries. The interval between adjacent dimensions is 0.5 cm.
  • Mondopoint (foot length). Same as metric. Introduced since 1991 as an international standard. Dimensions are written in mm, the interval between sizes is 5 mm. It happens that the fullness of the foot as a percentage of the length of the foot is also indicated through a fraction. For example, 250/95 (250 mm foot length, filling 250×95% = 237.5 mm).
  • European or shtihmassovaya. Based on the French system. It measures the length of the shoe insole in stitches (or «paris point») (1 stitch = 2/3 cm or 6.67 mm). In addition, the insole is considered together with a decorative allowance. And this indicator differs from manufacturer to centimeter.
  • English. Based on «barleycorn», a value equal to 1/3 inch (8.5 mm). The length is measured by the insole. The size zero is considered to be the average size of a newborn baby’s foot of 4 inches (12 «barley grains»). Further numbering goes through 1/3 inch. For adults, the smallest size is 25 «pips»
  • American. Similar to English. The length of the insole is measured. The difference between the sizes is 1/3 inch. But for children, women and men, a separate numbering of sizes has been introduced. For children, 11.67 is taken as zero, for men — 24, for women — 22.5.

There are also Japanese, Korean, Australian systems, but they are all somehow similar to the main ones. And on top of that, the European stichmass size is already considered with a functional allowance, and the Russian stichmass size without an allowance (the functional allowance is approximately 10 mm, but this depends on the style and shape of the toe). Shoe size comparison table:

Some manufacturers indicate the size in several measurement systems at once if they export to the international market. For an approximate measurement, you can use the scheme:

* in figure 1, the pencil is held under the heel, you can circle the foot perpendicular to the floor and subtract 5 mm. The length is measured from the most convex point of the toes and drawn through the center of the heel.

Correspondence tables can be easily found on the Internet. But you can also use the conversion calculator for various systems of shoe and clothing sizes.

And for those who want to delve into the domestic measurement system, you can read GOST 11373-88 Footwear. Dimensions


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