Don’t forget to bring the socks you would normally wear nor the orthopaedic or custom footbed you might use. The better the sock, the better the comfort and fit from the boots. Many manufacturers of technical socks make different models for different activities and climates.
Trim your toe nails.
As the foot can swell as much as a size during the day, and of course will swell also during your outdoor activity, it’s more convenient to try the boots on during the afternoon/evening than in the morning.
Don’t be hung up on your size. Depending on manufacturer, last, insole etc. there might be many variations in the same size. Bestard offers a vide range of lasts, sizes and half-sizes, so be patient and try on as many boots as you need until you are sure to have found a boot that fits, fulfilling the criteria of length, upper fit, heel, toe room and perfection of the fit..
If you are unsure between two similar, but slightly differently fitting models, trust your first impression!
LENGTH OF THE BOOT
The length of the boot is a very important factor. The boot should not be too long, as your foot will move inside, causing blisters. Nor should it be too short, as this will jam your toes when descending deep slopes. Although its difficult to give an exact length, the inside of the boot should be at least 1,0 cm longer than your foot. For shoes, aproximately 0,5-0,8 cm would normally be enough.
To check the length, you should be able to slip one finger (not more and not less!) between your heel and boot when you are standing up with the boot unlaced and your toes pressed towards and touching the front. Once the boot has been laced up, your feet will move back of the boot and the vital gap will be available at the toes.
The fit across the top of your arch is together with the Length the single most important factor. If the lacing system here doesn't hold your foot in place, the boot will not be stable on your foot will move while you walk.
You can test this by lacing the boot to your foot and placing the palm of your hand over the upper to feel the fit of the upper against your foot. If a boot fits correctly the upper should be a firm fit across the foot without being tight nor baggy. If the boot is too wide or too long the lace eyelets will also be touching another. If the boot is too short or too narrow, your foot will feel restricted and the lacing will appear to be stretched to the limit.
Your heel should fit snugly in the back part of the boot, the heel cup: it should preferably not move from side to side at all, and if possible not more than 5 mm up from the footbed. Too much movement of the heel will normally cause blisters and sore feet.
You can test this by putting the shoe on properly, stubbing the toe of the boot against the ground to move your foot forward inside the boot. Once the toes are touching the front, stand up on your toes and check how much you heel moves inside
the boot. In some shops you will find specially designed "bridges" for testing boots. Stand on it, and in order to force your toes forward, stand up on your toes and heck heel movement.
There should always be room for the toes, both enough space on the sides, as well as between the end of boot and the toes as mentioned above ("Length of the boot"). Not enough space will jam your toes when descending steep slopes.
You can test this by putting on the shoes with the laces tied, kick the toes against the ground or jump up and down couple of times facing down the sloop of a testing "bridge" to feel if the toes are hitting the end of the boot. There should still be toe-wiggling space, even when your foot has moved forward in the boot.
PERFECTIONING THE FIT
To get the perfect fit, you might also try different thickness of socks, different footbeds or volume adjusters or combinations of both. As most people have one foot bigger than the other, you may find that different combination of socks, footbeds and/or volume adjusters is needed inside each boot.