I have shoes which go over the ankles and require to untie the laces to get out of the shoes. Often the laces then slip through the holes which requires to redo more than just the knot when getting into the shoes again. Is there a way to prevent the laces from escaping?

3 Answers 3


One can put a small knot at the ends of the laces. One can still tie the laces as usual but since the knot is a bit thicker than the rest of the laces, they cannot slip through the holes anymore.

lace with tie at the end



I have recently adopted corset lacing, which is a continuous lacing method, for my two year old daughter's shoes to stop unlacing when putting shoes on a struggling toddler. I use a standard reef knot instead of the method described. There are two benefits to using a simple reef knot, (1) the result looks very much like a standard bow, (2) it can't get caught or pulled and untie, which is critical in my situation. The drawback (bonus for me) is it's not a slipping knot and requires slightly more doing to untie.


As has been suggested, your laces are essentially too short. There are a couple fundamental options, (1) longer laces, (2) a lacing technique that results in longer ends.

In my opinion, Ian's Shoelace Site is the go to site for tips and tricks to help with shoelaces. Ian literally has "Tips for Everyone."

Speaking directly to your issue Ian provides says this:

While the obvious solution for excessively short shoelaces is to replace them with ones of the correct length, here's some great emergency measures, especially if one lace end has broken at short notice and there's no ready replacement.

In his comparison of lacing techniques there are currently nine methods he suggests to "Lengthen" lace ends significantly, assuming replacing your laces isn't a option.

Replacing your laces with longer ones is probably a better solution and provides information about shoelace lengths saying this:

The rhetorical question: "How long is a piece of string?" is a serious question when it comes to shoelaces. Too long and the ends can drag or get stepped on. Too short and it can be difficult to tie a knot.

Your concern about longer laces being too long is absolutely legitimate and you'll find methods for shortening your laces by changing your lacing technique in Ian's veritable treasure trove of tips and techniques about shoelaces. Ian also provides links to other shoelace sites in case you don't find what you need at his site. His YouTube channel, Professor Shoelace, is also a great related source.

It turns out that lacing your shoes can be complicated and personal and I think trying to provide a single definitive answer would be folly; I hope you'll be able to find a solution that really works for you now.


The laces aren't long enough- the reason the lace slips through the top holes is because you need more room to get your feet in and out, and the laces aren't long enough to give you sufficient room. Usually, high tops come with extra long laces fitted, which enables you to slacken them and take them off without their coming out of the holes, but maybe you need more room or they weren't supplied originally. Not a hack, but buy longer laces...

  • I have the problem with the original laces. When I slacken them far enough to get out, there are only 1~2cm left, which is enough to slip away. Longer laces would do the trick, I assume, but wouldn't I then have rather long laces hanging around from the knot when wearing them?
    – pseyfert
    Mar 31, 2016 at 19:05
  • @pseyfert I always like to tuck my laces into my shoes so I prevents from getting dirty/getting hooked onto objects. It works especially well if you have flat laces so you don't feel them which seems to be the case with your shoes in question.
    – Xylius
    Jul 3, 2016 at 7:20

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