Pointe Shoe Preparation and Care
Preparing your pointe shoes is a personal part of your pointe practice. Through a dancer’s training and evolution, each dancer will find the best ways to enhance the performance of their own shoe. Below are some tips on the absolute essentials of pointe preparation and care.
Sewing Ribbons & Elastics
Humidity and dampness are a pointe shoe’s worst enemies so a dancer should always remove any protection or padding from inside their pointe shoes immediately after wear.
Once the padding is removed, store your shoes and toe pads in a Mesh Pointe Shoe Bag to allow them to properly dry out. Do not stuff the shoes inside one another, this will not allow the shoes to dry out properly and can misshapen the box.
Once home, remove the shoes and padding from the bag and lay flat on a dresser or other similar surface to dry. Avoid bathrooms and basements as dampness and humidity will prevent the drying process. You can insert the BLOCH Odor Eliminator into each shoe to absorb the moisture from the toe box. Taking these steps will prevent moisture remaining in the box of the shoe which can lead to the premature softening of the paste and the shoe drying out in a distorted manner.
Pointe shoes are only intended to last a number of hours. This can vary depending on several factors; how often they are worn and for how long, the season, weather and climate, plus what type of pointe work you are focusing on. Following the steps outlined above, you can extend the life of your pointe shoe and get the most out of every pair. If you are unsure if it is time for a new shoe, check out our article on How to Know When You Need a New Pair of Pointe Shoes, here.
Tips to Extend the Life of Your Pointe Shoe
- If a dancer tends to roll or if one foot is more flexible or stronger than the other, rotating the pair of shoes from one foot to the other can help them to wear more evenly.
- Pointe shoes can take up to two days to fully dry. If you are a more advanced student or professional dancer dancing multiple days a week, it is advisable to alternate multiple pairs of shoes enabling one pair to dry out completely between wears.
Harden & Strengthen Your Pointe Shoes
Pointe Shoe Glue can be used to strengthen the parts of your shoe that soften quickest. To maximize the life of your pointe shoes, apply a thin layer of our BLOCH Pointe Shoe Glue to the toe box and/or the shank where needed.
Bloch does not advise the following:
To retain integrity and promote longevity of your pointe shoes, the following practices are not advised.
Breaking or Bending your shoes manually
Allowing your own feet to break the shoe in naturally is a great way to build strength and technique.
If you are not precise with where the shoe is bent in the shank, the shoe may no longer retain the integrity of its design and could become dangerous to wear.
Use of sticking plaster
The use of sticking plaster over the platform can cause moisture to be retained in the box and cause the platform to soften.
Use of calamine lotion
Using calamine lotion to take the sheen from satin can cause the block/box to collapse prematurely due to the moisture of the lotion.