Fix Clicking and Clapping Sound of Dress Shoes – Superb Solutions

Fancy party, all dressed in an exquisite outfit, tripping the light fantastic with my shiny dress shoes. Suddenly, the clicking and clapping sound came from my shoes, turning all the heads in my direction with raised brows – obviously embarrassing.

The only thing I thought then was to get out of this place with one goal. Is there any way of fixing clicking and clapping sound of dress shoes?

Dress shoes make click-clack noises for several reasons – the sole’s material, the shoe’s fitting, heel, etc. But you can solve the issue by using 7 effective things. You can stick duct tape, shoe goo, cork pads, rubber grip pads, heel cushion insert, rubber sole, or furniture felt pad in your heel.

However, this is not all. Continue reading this article to find out the reasons behind the click-clap noises of dress shoes and ways to fix it.

Fixing Clicking And Clapping Sound Of Dress Shoes

We all have faced that firsthand embarrassment at least once in our life due to our dress shoes making clicking and clapping noises. However, before you try to solve the issue, it’s better to know what is causing the issues. It will give you a better understanding of solving the problem completely.

Reason For Clicking And Clapping Sound Of Dress Shoes

Reason For Clicking And Clapping Sound Of Dress Shoes

Why are my shoes making a clicking sound? Well, the embarrassing click-clack sound in the shoes usually occurs for 3 reasons. These include-

1) Sole

The primary reasoning behind this noise made by your dress shoe is the material used in the shoe’s sole. Most dress shoes that make this noise have a synthetic plastic leather sole. When this leather hits a certain type of floor, it makes a loud noise.

To be more specific, it’s the heel that makes this sound, not the entire sole. When the shoe is new, the soles are hard and polished. Not having enough textures leads to the shoes making noises.

2) Your Walking Gait

Whether or not your dress shoe makes the loud clicking noise largely depends on your walking pace. It means that we usually put our heels first, then the rest of the feet when we walk.

So, if you are someone who hits their feet a bit too hard while walking, it may be why your dress shoe makes clicking and clapping noises.

Furthermore, if you walk in strides or your length per step is larger, there will be a more propulsive force and vertical impulse per step, which could create such noises.

To add to it, overpronating when walking could be another reason for which your dress shoes make clicking noises.

3) Fitting Of Your Dress Shoe

One of the most common reasons for dress shoes making clicking and clapping noise is your shoe being oversized.

Dress shoes are normally tighter when bought, as they get loose when broken into. However, most people don’t either know that or cannot wait, so they buy larger sized shoes.

As the shoes are bigger than your feet, your foot will not have the required grip with the heel leading to the heel collar slipping against your foot every time you walk.

7 Solutions To Fixing Clicking And Clapping Sound Of Dress Shoes

fixing clicking and clapping sound of dress shoes

Now that you know what may cause the clicking and clapping sound let’s figure out how to fix it.

1) Use Duct Tape

Using duct tape on your heel is the fastest fixing to dress shoes’ clicking and clapping sound. They usually dampen and reduce the clicking and clapping sounds.

However, there’s a catch!

Duct tapes are usually made of two materials-  polyethylene and thick rubber. Both help dampen the noise.

However, we don’t recommend using polyethylene tape because it makes your shoe slippery. Instead, use duct tape made of rubber as it creates friction and grip, resulting in no chances of you slipping.

2) Shoe Goo Or Gorilla

Using shoe goo or gorilla is a simple yet efficient way to stop the clicking and clapping noise. Shoe goo/gorilla are the strong adhesives that repair a shoe. These adhesives give a rubber like texture when they dry and fix the click-clap sounds.

These glues can withstand very high heat and cold temperatures and are waterproof.

In order to apply this glue, first, clean the entire outsole of your shoe. Then gently apply the glue but make sure it is not too close to the edge of your shoe.

3) Cork Pads

Corks are materials that are made out of buoyant material made from tree bark tissue. Due to its buoyancy, it absorbs the sound waves that are created when your dress shoe heels hit the ground and fix it.

However, the only issue with using cork pads is that it is not too good in a wet environment. As it is a type of wood, when it gets wet, its noise dampening capabilities are reduced, and it loses its gripping ability.

4) Rubber Grip Pads

Rubber grip pads work similarly to cork pads, as the name may suggest. These are self-adhesives that you can attach to the bottom of your shoe to reduce the noise created by the heel.

These grips are perfect for people whose shoe’s heels cant be changed. They are durable, provide high grip, reduce noises, and can be adjusted.

5) Heel Cushion Insert

Losing fitting is one of the prime causes for the clicking clapping noise caused by dress shoes. Heel cushion inserts solve that exact issue. They reduce the excessive space your shoe has and provides stability.

Using this, you can make the shoe fit perfectly to your size and make sure the shoe is not loosely hanging from your heel. Because the more loose they are, the more click and clap noises they make.

6) Rubber Soles

Dress shoes typically have a hard leather sole which causes all this noise when walking. Switching the leather sole with a rubber sole is a simple yet efficient way to fix the clicking clapping noise issue. Furthermore, rubber soles provide a brilliant grip and are moisture resistant.

However, there are some limitations, such as only men’s shoes can be resoled. Secondly, only stitched sole can be changed; if your dress shoe has glued sole, removing it may cause damage.

7) Furniture Felt Pads

You for sure have seen these below the legs of your table or sofas. Felt pads are made to protect tiles and floors from damage caused by the weight of the table or sofa, but you can also use them to reduce the noise made by your dress shoes.

The reasoning is the same as rubber, but it may not be as durable as rubber though. We recommend not using this trick if you are going outdoor. Use furniture felt pads only if you are going to wear dress shoes indoors.

How To Fix Squeaky Sound of Dress Shoes

Most people hate it when dress shoes cause the annoying squeaky sound. This sound may occur for several reasons, like a loose heel or wet surfaces. However, there are some ways to make sure your dress shoe does not make such noises no matter what.

  • First of all, check to see if your shoe’s heels are loose or not.
  • If they are loose, put a few drops of super glue and hold it tight for a minute.
  • Then let it rest for at least a day to make sure your dress shoe does not squeak again.

Another possible fix is removing the sole and applying talcum powder to the shoe. The powder absorbs all the moisture that could cause a squeaking sound.

One last solution is to spray conditioning oil on your shoe and rub it with a clean piece of cloth. This is to stop the shoe from drying out and squeaking.

How To Roughen Up Dress Shoe Sole

How To Roughen Up Dress Shoe Sole

Dress shoe soles over time, get less slippery, and gain a stronger grip. This process is called roughening up. The more time you wear the shoe, the faster it roughens up.

However, there are some methods if you want a faster way to roughen up a new dress shoe so that you don’t slip and fall.

Method 1: Sandpaper Saves

Get yourself a piece of sandpaper and rub it on the soles to roughen them up. If you can not get sandpaper, you can use bricks or rough pavements.

Method 2: A Scissor Cut

You can use a scissor to cut two x shapes into your sole. One of the cuts has to be on the toe area and the other on the heel. These cuts will reduce the slipperiness of your shoe a lot.

Method 3: Adhesive Pads Protect

You can also apply nonslip adhesive pads to the soles of your shoe. These pads contain a rough surface that provides excellent grip when you walk.

Method 4: Hairspray Helps

Another brilliant method to boost the roughening up the process of your dress shoe is spraying a light coating of hairspray on your shoe. However, be careful not to spray too much as they tend to get sticky.


  • How do I make my dress shoes not click?

You can try taping the heel of your shoe with rubber duct tape. The tape absorbs the noise resulting in your shoe not clicking. Follow one of the many steps mentioned above to get rid of the click-clap sound from your dress shoe. 

  • Why do my shoes make a noise when I walk?

One of the reasons for this could be moisture being trapped in your shoe, and everyone you walk, it rubs and creates annoying squeaky noise.

Take Away

The clicking and clapping sound of dress shoes in a meet-n-greet is undoubtedly embarrassing. It occurs mainly on shoes with poor quality soles or hard heels.

However, there are ways of fixing clicking and clapping sound of a dress shoe. You can use pads, shoe goo, rubber soles, etc in your heel to reduce the noise. 

But remember, it is not always the heel that causes these noises; sometimes, it’s the fitting of your shoe. So make sure the dress shoe fits you perfectly.

Most importantly, buy dress shoes with high-quality soles, preferably made out of rubber.

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