How To Make Heels Less Slippery [8 Awesome Tricks!]

From scouring the racks to finding the perfect fit, shoe shopping can result in a match made in heaven! Unfortunately, sometimes when you wear the heels out for the first time, you're surprised to find that they are extremely slippery! which is no fun. Slippery shoes can be dangerous, particularly during the colder months of the year. But how can you avoid this? Our expert research uncovers the top tips and tricks for a safer and more stylish shoe game.

Almost every woman who wears heels has come across a slippery pair at some point in her life. The good news is that modern inventions have made it easier to rid your heels of slippery soles. Here are some of the best ways to increase the grip on your heels:

  • Walk on rough surfaces
  • Sand them
  • Apply non-slip outsoles
  • Apply glue, salt, or sand
  • Use a nail file
  • Buy grip pads
  • Apply traction spray
  • Use hair holding spray

You don't have to spend a ton of money to make your heels less slippery. In fact, most of these methods can be implemented for under $10. Continue reading to learn about the best ways to make your heels less slippery.

Young woman adjusting her high heel shoes on the pavement, How To Make Heels Less Slippery [8 Awesome Tricks!]

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How To Increase The Grip On Your Heels

Walk On Rough Surfaces

One of the best and quickest ways to take the slipperiness out of your heels is to wear them over rough surfaces. A lot of the time the heels are just too smooth because they haven't been worn yet. As a result, wearing them over smooth surfaces such as tile, vinyl, or polished wood flooring can make them feel slippery because there is no traction between the bottom of the heel and the surface of the floor.

Walking on rough surfaces can help reduce the smoothness on the bottom. Once the heels get more grip, the abrasions and small crevices on them make stronger contact with the floor. Here are a few surfaces to walk on to scuff up your heels:

  • Outdoor concrete and gravel
  • Natural stones
  • Rocky or pebbled-driveways
  • Metal grates or walkways

Sand Them

Finding it difficult to locate a surface to scuff up the bottom of your heels? No worries. You can also sand the bottom of the heel using sandpaper. The best types of sandpaper to use to scuff up the bottom of your heels are 50-grit or 80-grit. These types of sandpaper are the roughest and can quickly help you establish a rougher texture on your heels.

To use the sandpaper, you will simply take one of the sheets and rub it on the bottom of the sole of the heel until the surface no longer feels smooth to the touch.

Click here to see this sandpaper on Amazon.

Apply Non-Slip Outsoles

If you are looking for a less involved method to reduce the slippery bottom on your heels, you can also purchase non-slip outsoles. These outsoles stick to the bottom of your shoes to add an extra layer of grip to help you confidently walk over any type of surface. Most of these non-slip outsoles are made from rubber, which has natural anti-slip properties. They are fairly inexpensive, typically ranging anywhere from $8 to $15.

Click here to see these outsoles on Amazon.

Apply Glue, Salt, Or Sand

One permanent fix that you can use on your slippery heels is to apply a small amount of glue to the bottom of your heel, followed by salt or sand. The glue will help with the sand or salt to adhere to the shoe, which creates an abrasive surface, keeping you from sleeping all over the place. It's best to use super glue to avoid a huge mess and ensure that the salt bonds well.

Click here to see this super glue on Amazon.

Use A Nail File

A nail file is also another way that you can create a stronger grip on the bottom of your heel. This can be done with a metal file, emery board, or filing a block. Apply the file to the bottom of the heel, paying most attention to the sole of the heel, as it makes the most contact when you walk.

Run your fingers across the sole to determine when you have reached your ideal level of abrasiveness. You may even want to do a test walk to try them out. All of these files can usually be found online or in beauty stores for under $20.

Click here to see this metal nail file on Amazon.

Buy Grip Pads

Sometimes older shoes will begin to lose traction as their soles become worn and smoother. A grip pad may be an ideal solution in this particular scenario. Grip pads are usually made from rubber or silicone and are placed on the bottom of shoes.

They contain sticky adhesive on one side and a textured surface on the other side. The textured side helps to keep your feet firmly planted on the ground as you step across smooth surfaces. The type of texture will vary from brand to brand and they can typically be purchased for around $10 per set.

Click here to see these grip pads on Amazon.

Apply Traction Spray

You can also buy traction spray for your slippery heels. Traction spray is an adhesive coating that you can spray on the bottom of your heels to make them more abrasive. They are also known as "grip sprays" or "anti-slip sprays."

They can typically be purchased online or at department stores for around $10 to $15. The only downside to traction spray is that they may wear off over time, requiring a new coat to maintain the shoe's gripping abilities.

Click here to see this traction spray on Amazon.

Use Hair Holding Spray

If you are in a pinch and need a quick solution to reduce the slip on your heels, you can also use holding spray. The effectiveness of the spray will depend on the brand that you purchased as well as its "hold level" (i.e. light, medium, heavy).

To apply, cover the top and sides of your shoe with a tile or old t-shirt. Next, shake up the hair spray can and then spray the bottom of the shoe, paying extra attention to the sole. Next, let the spray dry for about 10 minutes and apply a second coat. Also, keep in mind that this may not be as effective as other methods.

What Qualifies As Non-Slip Shoes?

Black high heeled shoes on wooden floor, non-slip shoes

Three main qualities of a shoe will make them qualify as non-slip shoes, the outsole design, material, and tread pattern.

Outsole Design

The outsole is the most important part of the shoe that's related to stability and traction. The surface area of the outsole of heels is smaller than flats, which is a huge reason why they may not grip the floor as well as other types of shoes.


The soles of non-slip shoes can be made of a variety of materials. These materials are usually soft and very pliable, as hard and stiff materials will have less grip on smooth floor surfaces. Some of the most popular non-slip materials include neoprene, rubber, polyurethane, and nitrile.

Tread Pattern

The tread pattern can also have a significant effect on how well a shoe grips the floor. Shoes that have multi-patterned treads allow the highest amount of traction and work best to prevent slips and falls.

How Can You Make Heels More Comfortable?

One of the best ways to make heels more comfortable is to ensure that you are wearing the proper size for your feet. You can also purchase gel pads which can soften the sole of the shoe, as it makes the most contact with the floor.

Click here to see these gel pads on Amazon.

Why Are New Shoes Slippery?

The new, smooth surface causes new shoes to be slippery, particularly when walking over smooth flooring. This is most associated with shoes that have a leather sole, and will typically go away with regular wear.

Does Traction Spray Work?

Yes. Traction spray can be a good way to improve the grip on your shoes. The adhesive agents in the spray give the soles of your shoes a firmer grip, which helps to prevent slips and falls. Here are a couple of sprays to consider:

Mueller Stickum Spray

This aerosol adhesive spray improves grip, even when it becomes wet. All you have to do is hold the can upright and spray the bottom of the shoes.

Click here to see this spray on Amazon.

Bare Ground Shoe Grip Adhesive

The Bare Ground adhesive can be applied to both leather and rubber shoe soles. It has a specially-designed novel to limit waste and can improve traction and grip whether you are walking on icy or extremely smooth surfaces.

Buy this spray on Amazon!

Wrapping Things Up

Hopefully, this post has introduced you to several ways that you can make your heels less slippery. Wearing the heels over abrasive surfaces, applying non-slip outsoles, and sanding the heels can help to give them more grip. But before you go, be sure to check out our other posts:

What Socks To Wear With Chelsea Boots?

What Evening Shoes Go With A Black Dress?

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