Shoe Size Conversion

downloadA shoe size conversion guide is very useful when buying shoes from overseas or buying shoes online. A shoe size is a unit of measure indicating the length. Different manufacturers may have different shoe sizes based on the country of selling the footwear.

Some systems take the width of foot into considerations while some regions can have different foot sizes and conversions for different genders. In addition to utilizing the Brannock device or modern optical scans, there are four main ways of determining the foot size for size conversion. These are

  1. Foot VS Shoe & Last
  2. Zero point
  3. Foot length only
  4. Foot length + width.
  5. Custom Designer Units

Most shoe shops will utilize the following shoe size chart for measurement. Whether you are buying sports shoes or are buying skechers. The shoe size converter is also effective when making purchases online for Kids shoes.

You will find the tables for shoe size conversion for men and women below. You can adjust the conversion tables to match for your infants as well.

Men’s Shoe Size Conversion


Women’s shoe size conversion.


The international convention recommended for measuring shoe sizes is Mondopoint. the international Standard ISO 9407:1991, “Shoe sizes—Mondopoint system of sizing and marking” is utilized for the same.

In additional to the international sizing standard, there are a few other types of measurement units exist. For an example

  • Barleycorn can be used as a measure to gauge shoe size.
  • Length of the last is also used as a measure of shoe size.
  • Metric measurements are used in certain countries.
  • Paris point is also used as a measure of size.

In the absence of one unique shoe sizing system – there are different systems throughout the world. There are a lot of websites offering tables of comparison which are simply incorrect.

There are at least five different types of sizing systems. The most common systems are:

  • The Paris point equates to 2 /3 centimeters. Commonly used in Europe there is 1/8 of an inch between half sizes.
  • Barleycorn comes from old English measurements equating to 1/3 inch. Half sizes are common and result in increments of 1/6 inch. Barleycorn is the basis for current U.S. as well as UK shoe sizes. The largest shoe size is twelve inches and next sizes are counted backwards using barleycorn units.
  • Metric measurements are in centimeters or millimeters. Increments are usually 0.5 cm that is a measurement between the step size of the Parisian and the barleycorn system. Metric system of measurement for shoes is used in Asia.

Most people wear the wrong foot size hence causing the swelling or feet pain owing to wrong shoes. According to David G Armstrong, professor of Surgery at the William M Scholl College of Podiatric Medicine in Chicago, 3/4 of all people wear wrong shoe sizes.

People more often get confused by US and UK shoe size comparison. If you have been buying your shoes online either from an Australian or a US shoe store then you may face the issue of shoe size conversions. European shoe size conversions are symmetrical across a range of countries so purchasing from European countries may have a single measure of unit applied for converting shoe sizing.There is no single international shoe sizing arrangement and you can find the appropriate country based shoe sizing measurement below.

US shoe size conversion

The shoe size conversion in US is a tad bit different because US uses 2 different scales. One is a FIA scale and one is the common scale. The common scale is widely used and is generally 1/2 size different then the FIA scale. In the common scale the Mens – > Womens size only differs bu 1&1/2 size.

For an example

US Mens 5 –> US Women 6-1/2 In common scale.

UK shoe size conversion

UK and ireland uses the commonly used length of the last system for shoe size conversion. It is measured in Barleycorn starting from the smallest common size. For a child hence the size zero may be applicable. The zero size is equal to the size of a hand. A normal conversion for barleycorn to metric is

4 in = 12 Barleycorns or 10.16 cm

There are 3 Barleycorns in each inch. The Barleycorn measurement is carried on from Anglo Saxon times.European shoe size conversion pretty much follow the same standards. The table above will provide measure for converting your non-European shoes to European shoe sizes. Australia and UK follow similar measurement for shoe sizes.

Australian shoe size conversion

Australia has adopted the UK shoe size conversion method.

The sizes in Australia and UK for the shoe size conversion are the same. You can refer to either UK or AUS table.

Asian shoe size conversion

Most of Asia has adopted the standard metric system for the measurement of shoe sizes. Foot length and girth are both taken into account.

There may also be large variations in terms of shoe sizing if you are right handed and left footed. People with these type of condition may require a different more specific custom measurement for their shoes.

Remember, if your foot size is half way between measurements select the larger foot size.

Interesting facts about Shoe Sizes

  1. The oldest shoes in the world  9,000-year-old sandals made of sagebrush and bark, were found at Fort Rock Cave in central Oregon in 1938.
  2. The world’s largest shoe size was 37AA worn by Robert Wadlow(Height 8 ft. 11 inches) back in 1940.
  3. Polydactylism, a condition where a person has more than 5 fingers can lead to not fitting in standard shoe sizes.
  4. “Elvis foot” is jargon for being extremely tired that your foot trembles on the rock (it is also known as “disco knee”).
  5. 1/3 of all the bones in the body are located in our feet. There are 26 of them, and each foot also has 33 joints, 19 muscles, 10 tendons and 107 ligaments.

Using the shoe size conversion table.

The information presented on this site is available for quick comparison and there may be inaccuracies as different brands may not follow the same conversion table. It is suggested that when buying shoes online, check the shoe size conversion guide offered on their website. One must also examine the return policy offered by the vendor in order to save oneself from purchasing the wrong size shoes.

Individual retailers or designers may design their shoe sizes in even subset sizes. You should check with the retailer for appropriate conversion for your shoe sizing.

If you are intrested in reading about shoes please visit our blog which contains more information.



An innovative patent has also been established to improve the shoe size measurements.

In accordance with one aspect of the present invention, an improved shoe-size indicating apparatus is provided wherein a radiant energy sensor, such as a photocell, preferably is mounted on a carrier movable along a path parallel to the longitudinal axis of a foot receiving well or platform, and a similar radiant energy sensor is preferably mounted on an associated carrier movable along a path parallel to the lateral axis of the foot well. The first sensor is made responsive to the length dimension of the foot being measured and the second sensor is made responsive to the width dimension. Radiant energy sources are aligned along the length and width dimensions of the foot well. (If the sensors are less costly than the energy sources, which is not now the case, the positions of the energy sensors and sources would be reversed.) The carriers move wipers along contacts which are positioned in relatively simple indicator circuits which indicate the correct shoe width and length classification for the foot involved. The carriers are driven by drive motor means to scan the length and width dimensions of the foot being measured and they operate the associated circuitry to indicate the proper shoe width and length classification. Each carrier is preferably stopped when the associated margin of the foot is reached.