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How to Fix the Toe of a Shoe With a Rubber Sole

author image Melissa J. Bell
A writer with a Bachelor of Science in English and secondary education, but also an interest in all things beautiful, Melissa J. Bell has handed out beauty and fashion advice since she could talk -- and for the last six years, write for online publications like Daily Glow and SheBudgets.
How to Fix the Toe of a Shoe With a Rubber Sole
Total sole replacement is necessary only if holes have appeared. Photo Credit Medioimages/Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images

A well-worn pair of rubber-soled shoes, no matter how durable when new, can start to break down over time. A common problem for shoes that see excessive wear, like hiking boots or everyday sneakers, is a sole that peels away from the shoe's toe. Exposure to heat, applied force or just basic wear and tear can weaken the glue bond and cause a loose, flopping toe. Create a new bond between the "upper," or top portion of the shoe, and the sole, to restore its original function.

Step 1

Wipe all dirt and residue from the shoe with a damp paper towel. Clean all dirt out of the gap between the sole and the upper. Let the shoe dry completely.

Step 2

Stuff the toe of the shoe with newspaper to make the shape hold.

Step 3

Pull back the edge of the sole. Apply shoe contact cement inside the gap, on the top and bottom. Let the cement partially dry, so that the texture is tacky.

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Step 4

Press the sole against the upper. Wipe away any excess cement that squeezes out of the gap with a damp paper towel.

Step 5

Place the shoe into a table clamp to help hold the sole and upper together. Let the cement dry for two days.

Step 6

Pour a urethane or silicone liquid seam sealer, typically used in outdoor gear repair, into an irrigation syringe. Apply a thin line of sealer along the seam between the sole and upper. Let it dry for one day.

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