Birkenstocks Narrow vs. Regular: What’s the Difference?

If you have wide feet or a history of foot problems, you may be tempted to go straight for the extra-wide version of any shoe you love. After all, the thinking goes, if the shoe fits your foot comfortably, why put yourself through the hassle of getting the right fit? But if you’re going to invest in Birkenstocks that’ll endure the test of time and become a go-to staple in your wardrobe, it might be worth digging deeper into the question of “Birkenstocks narrow vs. regular.”

Men’s and women’s regular-width Birkenstocks are equivalent to American widths of D-EE and C-D, respectively. Men’s narrow-width Birkenstocks are equal to widths of B-C, while women’s are equivalent to widths of A-B. If a person is between sizes, it is best to go with the wider option.

Birkenstock Width Explained

If you have normal feet, regular-sized Birkenstocks will probably fit you best. If your feet are smaller, consider narrow-sized Birkenstocks. Let’s go into some details about each of these choices.

Are Birkenstocks True to Fit? 

Birkenstocks are offered in men’s, women’s, and children’s sizes. They fit true to size, with two width options (regular and narrow).

Though the European sizing system is used to measure Birkenstocks, it is not difficult to figure out what size you need. If you are buying a pair of Birkenstocks for a child whose feet are 6 inches long, you can purchase a size 6 or size 6.5 in US size (7 in UK/AU sizes and 24 in European size). See the illustration below for all equivalents.

Birkenstock US vs. UK vs. EU Sizing Chart

Feel free to check out our article for full details about how Birkenstocks should fit!

Birkenstock Fit Guide

Birkenstock sandals have gained popularity because they are comfortable, long-lasting, tested, and durable. But your experience with this footwear brand depends on how well your pair fits.

Birkenstock Fit Guide

If your sandal is too tight, it’ll press against your toe joints and might cause them to misalign. Sandals that are too loose can cause the same problem. Your foot tends to slide forward in an oversized sandal, making your toes grip the front edge while your heel moves from the heel cup to somewhere around the mid-footbed of the sandal. Either way, you can’t escape one thing: discomfort.

That’s why you need to wear the right size of shoes all day, every day.

How to Measure Your Foot? 

If there’s one wish that everyone wants to come true, it’s buying everything at a discount. Including Birkenstocks. But what if you got a discount on undersized or oversized Birks? To avoid tales that touch the heart, measure your foot before releasing those dollars. Here’s how:

Prepare all necessary materials

You will need: a thick sheet of cardboard, a ruler, and a pencil. You can also use a crayon instead of an ordinary pencil. This process requires no special tools and you can find all these materials in your garage or toolbox.

Granada Soft Footbed Birkenstocks

Put on thick socks

Wear thick socks while measuring your feet, as this will result in a more accurate measurement. But does it affect the size of your chosen Birkenstocks sandals? No, it doesn’t.

Draw an outline around your foot

Place your foot on the cardboard. Holding the pencil or crayon vertically, trace the outline of your foot. Ask someone around for help so you can complete this step with ease.

Zurich Birkenstocks

Make a dot where your longest toe and heel end. 

Use your ruler to measure the distance between your dots, and write down the length in centimeters.

Repeat the process with your other foot

So when you’re done, check out our shoe size chart on our website for more details. That’s it! If you need help, don’t hesitate to ask family or friends for assistance.

Arizona Birkenstocks (Unisex)

What Does the N or M Mean for Birkenstocks? 

During your adventures of browsing for the leather sandal, you find Birkenstocks. But as you scroll through the site, you observe that each Birkenstock model is labelled N and M. What does that even mean? N stands for “narrow” while M represents “medium.” Both letters are used to indicate the respective widths of Birkenstock sandals.

The N is ideal for petite feet and slender calves; the medium width accommodates regular and broader feet. If you’re unsure of your size, or overwhelmed by Birkenstock’s large selection, the company’s customer support will be happy to help you find the right fit.

Here are a few of the most popular styles of Birkenstock sandals:

Gizeh Birkenstocks

How Should My Toes Fit in My Birkenstock Sandals? 

You’ve measured your feet and know your size. You also understand that the right toe fit is worth your time and attention.

Boston Leather Birkenstock Clog

Now, how should your toes fit in your Birkenstock sandals? Good question! Your toes should not be too close to the front edge of the Birkenstock sandal. If they are too close, they may hurt and sometimes become sore.

Additionally, there should be ample space between the front edge of your Birk and your toes. Your great toe should have 1/8 to 1/2 inch of room, depending on personal preference. The former is advisable.

When buying Birkenstock sandals, get the right size. If they’re too tight or too loose, they could cause problems with your feet and joints.

How Should My Heel Fit With My Birkenstock Sandals? 

If you wear Birkenstock sandals, be sure your heel fits snugly in the heel cup. This will help prevent injury, keep your foot safe and comfortable, and make walking easier.

Like your toes, your heel should have enough room at the rear end of the sandal. Please don’t wear Birks whose heel cups are too small for your heels, no matter how much you love them.

Birkenstock Women’s Mayari Sandal


How Should the Straps Fit in My Birkenstock Sandals? 

As with the heels, your Birkenstock straps should fit well. You can tell that the straps aren’t too tight if there is at least 10 mm of space from the strap to your foot.

What Are the Other Things to Remember? 

But wait! There are a few more things to know:

When buying a pair of Birkenstock sandals, it’s essential to measure your feet, so you know your size. Sometimes, one foot is slightly larger than the other. In that case, go with the larger size. It’s easier to tighten shoes a little than it is to expand them.

The first time you put on a pair of Birkenstock clogs, they may feel stiff. Please don’t wear them for 8 hours on your first day with them. Break them in by wearing the shoes for a few hours at a time over several days. Once your feet are used to the sandals, you’ll love them!

Use the charts and illustrations in this article to help you choose which pair of Birkenstocks best suits you.


Now that you know the difference between regular and narrow Birkenstock sandals, why not choose which style you want?

But choosing the right size should be done when you’re calm, collected, and good-spirited. So don’t rush into the purchase.

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