Difference Between 2E and 4E: Learn Shoe width measuring

When it comes to shoe measurement, we mostly think about the length of the shoe. However, there is another factor which is width. In order to get the most comfortable fitted shoe, both the length and width have to be accurate. Otherwise, discomfort or pain can occur after wearing them for a little while.

Difference Between 2E and 4E

About 2E and 4E

These letters present the width of the shoes. They can be anything among B, D, 2E, and 4E. These letters describe whether a shoe is narrow or wide. These letters can be found in both men’s and women’s shoes. 

Having options for width is incredibly essential, especially for those who have wider feet. If a person with wide feet wears narrow shoes, they will be uncomfortable all day long. The shoes will feel tight and cause pain. On the other hand, if someone with narrow feet wears wide shoes, they will seem loose even if the length is right. Moreover, they can face problems walking properly and comfortably and end up getting aches or cramps. 

Shoe Width Sizes

Similar to length, shoes come with different options for width as well. However, the options are fewer compared to length for obvious reasons. Commonly there are 4 sizes available when it comes to options for width. 

Moreover, the measurement varies based on gender. Women’s feet are less wider compared to men’s for biological factors. Hence, the width options vary from men to women. Men’s shoes are on the wider side of the spectrum, whereas women’s are on the narrower side.

Nonetheless, we have shared the size chart based on the width of both men’s and women’s shoes so that you can get a better idea about shoe width and find out your perfect shoe size.

Men’s Shoes

Shoe’s DenotationShoe’s WIdth
D/M/AMedium or Average

Women’s Shoes

Shoe’s DenotationShoe’s Width
AAAA/4A/SS/ESSuper Slim or Extra Narrow
B/M/AMedium or Average
EE/2E/WW/EW/XWExtra Wide

We can see there is a difference between men’s and women’s shoe sizes. So you might like to read out guide on Can women wear men’s shoes. Check out it to learn the answer.

How to Measure Shoe Width

You can easily find out your shoe width at home. All you need is a piece of paper, a pen or marker, and a measuring tape. 

Firstly, stand comfortably and relax your foot on a piece of paper. Then outline your foot on the paper using a pen, pencil, or marker. Once your outline is ready, measure the widest part of your foot using a measuring tape. 

You can use the measurement to find out the width of your feet. Also, keep in mind that the sides of the shoes or soles can take up some space, so add about half an inch to the measurement you have got. The final measurement is what your width should be. You can use the below charts of shoe sizes to find out your perfect fit.

Men’s Shoe Size and Width

US SizeNarrow (B)Average (D)Wide (E)
63 5⁄16″3 1⁄2″3 11⁄16″
6.53 5⁄16″3 5⁄8″3 3⁄4″
73 3⁄8″3 5⁄8″3 3⁄4″
7.53 3⁄8″3 11⁄16″3 15⁄16″
83 1⁄2″3 3⁄4″3 15⁄16″
8.53 5⁄8″3 3⁄4″4″
93 5⁄8″3 15⁄16″4 1⁄8″
9.53 11⁄16″3 15⁄16″4 1⁄8″
103 3⁄4″4″4 3⁄16″
10.53 3⁄4″4 1⁄8″4 5⁄16″
113 15⁄16″4 1⁄8″4 5⁄16″
11.53 15⁄16″4 3⁄16″4 3⁄8″
124″4 5⁄16″4 3⁄8″
12.54 1⁄8″4 5⁄16″4 1⁄2″
134 1⁄8″4 5⁄16″4 5⁄8″

Women’s Shoe Size and Width

US SIzeNarrow (A)Average (B)Wide (D)Extra Wide (E)
52 13/16″3 3/16″3 9/16″3 15/16″
5.52 7/8″3 1/4″3 5/8″4″
62 15/16″3 5/16″3 11/16″4 1/16″
6.53″3 3/8″3 3/4″4 1/8″
73 1/16″3 7/16″3 13/16″4 3/16″
7.53 1/8″3 1/2″3 7/8″4 1/4″
83 3/16″3 9/16″3 15/16″4 5/16″
8.53 1/4″3 5/8″4″4 3/8″
93 3/8″3 11/16″4 1/16″4 7/16″
9.53 3/8″3 3/4″4 1/8″4 1/2″
103 7/16″3 3/4″4 3/16″4 9/16″
10.53 1/2″3 7/8″4 1/4″4 5/8″
113 9/16″3 15/16″4 5/16″4 11/16″
123 11/16″4 1/16″4 7/16″4 13/16″

Frequently Asked Questions about Shoe Width

Many questions arise in mind while purchasing shoes, especially online. There might be some return or refund policies, but everyone wants to avoid that hassle and get it right the first time. 

We searched through the internet and got the questions people have regarding shoes’ width or sizes and answered all of them. Hopefully, any question you have in mind will be answered in the next section.

What is the Difference between 2E and 4E in Shoes?

2E and 4E both are denotations of the width of shoes, especially men’s. These represent the width of the shoes. 2E means wide, whereas 4E means extra-wide. Apart from the length, the width sizing is also important. Some require narrow shoes, and some require wide shoes. For those with wide shoes, 2E or 4E could be the best options. 

In respect of women’s shoes, 2E could be available in most cases. For women’s shoes, 2E is the widest and stands for extra wide shoes. Keep in mind that men’s 2E and women’s 2E do not measure the same. 

What Does 4E Mean in Shoes?

In short, 4E means extra wide. 4E is mostly available in men’s shoes. If a shoe says 4E on the sizing, then it means it is an extra-wide shoe. These shoes are suitable for people with wide feet. 6E could also be available in some brands or styles.

What Does 2E Mean in Men’s Shoes?

In men’s shoes, 2E means wide shoes. Wide shoes can be around 1 cm wider than average or medium shoes. You can easily find 2E in men’s shoes. 2E can be found in women’s shoes as well. However, they are not the same. Men’s 2E is wider than women’s 2E.

Does Shoe Width Vary from Brand to Brand?

There was a time when width variation in shoes was not much available. However, these days brands are all about inclusivity and comfort. And to establish that brands are providing width options as well, especially in sports or walking shoes. 

Nowadays, you can find width options in many reputed brands. However, the sizing can vary from brand to brand and style to style.

How do I know if I need 4E shoes?

If you already own a shoe that is sized 2E and it feels tight, then maybe you need to size up and g for 4E. Also, you can measure the width of your feet and match the width of the shoe that you are willing to purchase. If your measurement matches the 4E size of the shoe, then you will need 4E sized shoes.

How do I know if I need wide-width shoes?

If the forefoot area of your shoes feels tight, then you probably need a wide shoe. Depending on how tight the shoe fits, you can go for one or more sizes up while choosing new shoes. 

In another way, you can check your existing shoe’s width and get one with a wider size. You can find the width sizing chart above. 

In Conclusion

It is hard to definitely say the difference between 2E and 4E sizes. It not only depends on whether it is a men’s shoe or a women’s, but it also depends on the length. With length, the width of someone’s feet can vary. 

However, outlining your feet and measuring them is possibly the best way to measure your feet. if you can do that correctly and choose the corresponding shoe size, I’m sure you will not be disappointed with your new shoe purchase.

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