Sole Footbeds (or cooking footwear when your shoes get stolen)

I live in London. London has a relatively high crime rate. Not in a scary way, just in an average capital city type of way. Get distracted and take your eye off your bag, well it might get nicked. Even if all that's in it is your sweaty PE kit and running shoes. Isn't that right Emma?

Emma is my flatmate. We've been friends for a decade, share an extensive collection of gin (some exotic, others from Lidl) and there's a ham in our living room called Jonathan. Because I value our friendship I won't tell you exactly what was distracting her when her bag was stolen, but I will tell you that it's pretty distressing to have your running shoes stolen.

It's also expensive to have your running shoes stolen. Kit you can replace pretty economically (hello Decathlon, H&M and Forever21, all great sources of affordable, functional and attractive kit), but shoes are another proposition. Based on nothing scientific running shoes average at between £80 and £120 a pair. Even if you shop around it can be hard to find a pair on the type of budget you tend to have if you're not expecting to have your shoes stolen. 

Emma loved her Brooks shoes. She'd scored them in TKMaxx (when I say running shoes are expensive there are exceptions. Emma attracts the exceptions. And is an exceptionally thrifty shopper) and worn them in perfectly. So, yeah it was pretty devastating to loose them.

Oh and there was a custom orthotic involved. And those aren't at all expensive to replace. (they totally are).

Sadly Emma and I are not the same shoe size. Otherwise a pair would have been donated from my extensive stash of running shoes (maybe 10 pairs...), so we had to think a bit more creatively. Thankfully TKMaxx came up trumps again (twice, that's serious luck) and a pair of passable (super pink) shoes were found, but that left the problem of the orthotic. 

I've been a big fan of SOLE's socks for a long time. They're just so nice, soft and cool and snug fitting without squashing your toes. I wear them most of the time and my only gripe is that I wish they came in a few more colours. But even then I'll deal with black and white. I'd heard awhile back that SOLE also made footbeds that you could 'cook' and mould to your foot for a custom fit. I was intrigued by the novelty of sticking footbeds in the oven alone. Thankfully SOLE have my number and sent me a pair to satisfy my curiosity but for various logistical reasons (having a crap oven) I hadn't used them. 

And that is how Emma and I came to find ourselves 'cooking' footbeds on a Friday night.

We are rock and roll.

The process of cooking the insoles was really simple. Pop them in the oven at the specified temperature until the indicator changes colour, pop them in your shoes and stand still for a few minutes so they mould. Easy. And also quite funny if the person being fitted is rocking their PJ's gangsta style. 

The next day Em headed out to try out the insoles and I gather was pretty impressed. Apparently they're great if you have high arches, offering just the right level of support, although aren't so great for flat feet as a little more cushioning is nice (did I not mention the girl has somewhat wonky feet? It makes her the ideal tester for these types of product!). The footbeds have been kept in one shoe and left out of the other, offering a truly custom fit!

*Sole sent me some footbeds to try out, it wasn't really intended that they'd be donated to Emma, but needs must. As always all opinions are my own (well except the ones that are Emma's)*