This post is sponsored by Bombas
I just finished my fourth soccer season on the adult co-ed league here in Cville. I’m excited to play indoor this coming winter!! (A nice change from the steamy 100* days of summer season…!)
When I first joined my team back in fall of 2013, I picked up a pair of used boys cleats for $10 at Play It Again Sports. I didn’t know how much I’d like playing or how long I’d stick with it so I didn’t want to spend much. Turns out, I LOVED it!! There really is no workout I’ve done that compares to a 90 minute full-field soccer game. I wore those used cleats for two seasons – until they started peeling apart. I decided to start this summer with a brand new pair.
That new pair of cleats caused me HORRIBLE blisters. I tried breaking in the shoes multiple ways – leaving them in my hot car, jumping on them, etc. I’d get a bad blister during the second half of each game, spend the next 7 days limping around and wearing band-aids, and then wait for them to get ripped open again each Sunday. Band-aids would start on my heel and end up on my toes, leaving my blisters totally exposed! I tried athletic tape, which shifted all around, and mole skin with a hole cut out for my blister that did nothing. I even tried duct tape without much luck. It was a really frustrating and painful time.
I finally decided to eat my money and go in for another pair of cleats (luckily the salesman felt bad for me and gave me a discount on my second pair!) I came out of Total Soccer with a pair of Adidas Predators marketed as “women’s comfort.” They immediately felt more padded than my first pair so I was hopeful that my cleats were the problem.
We had a break between the summer and fall seasons, so I had quite a few weeks to let my heels completely recover. That first game in the new cleats I didn’t get a blister – only a little bit of rubbing. But I was pumped! The new cleats felt significantly better than my first pair of Diadoras.
The second game, however, broke everything open again. By the end of the game I could barely walk!!
I knew it was time to bring out all the stops, so I literally combined every tactic that I could think of and scoured the internet for blister solutions.
Two things saved my life: Second Skin blister kits and a second pair of good athletic socks. (Prior to my Blister Revolution I was wearing only my soccer socks.)
Here is the routine that enabled me to make it the rest of the fall season totally blister free!! Whether you’re a soccer player or just love to run, hike or walk, hopefully these tips will help you as they helped me.
1. I start by coating my foot with Run Goo. This is more for the part of my foot that is blister free already and keeping it that way!
2. Next comes 2nd Skin gel pads, which is ideal if you already have a blister that you’d like to protect. I used this a lot in the early days when my heels were still healing, but I didn’t need it towards the end of my season. Yay! I bought this 2nd Skin Blister kit that includes both the gel pads and the two layers below.
3. Also included in the 2nd Skin Blister kit are hot spot pads and adhesive knit pads. The hot spot pads provide a cushion between the blister and the shoe and the adhesive knit goes overtop to prevent movement and allow your sock to slide over the padding easily. Mole skin is another great product, but I liked these adhesive knit sheets better (and as I discovered, mole skin doesn’t work if you already have a blister). FYI if you don’t want to buy the whole kit, you can just buy the adhesive knit, which is all I needed by the end of the season. I tried to go without anything and my blister started to come back, so I definitely need to wear the adhesive knit forever.
4. Next I put on a layer of prewrap to make tape application comfortable and non slip. I love this rainbow pack. I also wear these as hair bands as a nod to my high school soccer days!
5. Then comes the athletic tape. This ensured that everything underneath stayed in place. I had tried just athletic tape alone before and it moved all over the place. I think the pre wrap is essential. I used to pull off my whole shoe at halftime just to re-do all of my tape. It was a huge pain! But I learned how to criss-cross the tape around the back and the pre-wrap helped it stay put.
6. I didn’t think about adding a second layer of socks for a while. I thought it would make my shoes too tight and thus, the blisters would rub even more. I tried once with a really thin pair I had and they didn’t do anything. But a friend recommended I try two layers of socks and get some really nice athletic socks, and I think that was my lifesaver. The socks can slide back and forth instead of your foot and the shoe creating friction together. The extra padding and moisture wicking went a long way. The Bombas below are great for this!
7. My last layer was my soccer socks – they are thin and knee high.
And then the shoes went on!
I can’t say enough good things about how much this routine saved me. It was an investment in both time and money, but I went from not being able to walk at the end of each game (one time my sock was STUCK to my blister and I had to pull it off skin and all!) to having beautiful heels again.
I think the two things that made the most difference were the proper layers of protection from the Second Skin and the extra layer of proper athletic socks.
That’s where the Bombas come in! These socks….are the bomb!
Bombas are athletic-leisure socks, re-engineered to look better, feel better, and perform better, with a mission to help those in need. Bombas spent two years on research and development prior to launch, to come up with seven substantial improvements to the athletic sock, including a blister tab (huge for me sine I know that cushioning is so important!), a Y-stitched heel that creates a cup around your heel so your sock stays in place (movement = bad so this is good!), and long staple pima cotton that is warm in the winter, cool in the summer and naturally moisture wicking (moisture wick is key!)
They come in all kinds of colors and two styles – ankle and calf length – for men, women, and kids. I just love the bee logo! The bee symbolizes a honeycomb support system along the arch that they stole from bees : )
The best part about Bombas is that for every pair you buy, the company donates a pair to someone in need (think Toms for socks!). Bombas has donated over 150,000 socks to those in need since launching in Oct 2013. Another fun fact: you may have seen these socks on Shark Tank this fall!
They would make a great stocking stuffer or gift for all your athletic and runner friends, especially since I have a 20% off code to share to the first 100 readers on your first order of any size: KATHEATS. Head on over and check ‘em out!
This post was sponsored by Bombas.