Shoe Comfort

Finding the Most Comfortable Insole

September 27, 2022

Insoles are often overlooked and underappreciated in footwear. But they’re also an easy way to improve the comfort and durability of your shoes. Let’s cover the best ways to find the most comfortable insoles for any shoe you’re working on.

Success Strategy #1: Determine the “Good/Better/Best” insoles for each shoe category. One insole won’t work for every shoe you make. Different shoe constructions, different activities, and different price points necessitate different insoles for optimal customer comfort. For instance, one insole may cushion great in a slip lasted shoe but won’t be comfortable in a board lasted shoe. The insole your customers love in a basketball shoe won’t be as comfortable in a running shoe. Instead of a “one size cushions all” brands that test with Heeluxe have found great success with a Good/Better/Best model. This enables you to provide customers with the best experience without having too many choices for your product development team.

Success Strategy #2: Material Matters. The foam type, hardness, and thickness will all change the comfort of your insoles. When you’re figuring out your Good/Better/Best insoles there are limitless possibilities of insoles to consider. Testing the insoles on a fast impact test allows you to quickly evaluate the options and figure out which ones have the best cushioning and energy return. QUICK TIP FROM THE LAB: most brands send us a variety of insoles and they all test the same! For Good/Better/Best to really work for your customers, we need to see big differences in the cushioning and energy return of your insoles.

Success Strategy #3: Confirm your Comfort with Human Testing. After narrowing down the insoles you’re considering for your footwear line, the next step is testing the insoles on Humans to determine the cushioning, arch support, and perceived comfort of the insoles. All of these are measured in Heeluxe’s Comfort test. To get the most value out of a Comfort test, your new insoles should be tested in two styles of shoes that you anticipate using them in. These shoes should have different midsoles or last constructions.

In 3 weeks or less you can complete these 3 strategies and identify the most comfortable insoles for your customers. In addition, you can save money and time by providing your product developers with a few quality insole choices. When you’re ready to chat about insoles, or you’d like to compare your insole performance to Heeluxe’s growing database, please contact us