Shoe horns serve several important functions: They protect your footwear, shorten the time required for shoe removal, and limit unnecessary bending and straining. For older adults, this last function is particularly important—various mobility issues can make putting on footwear a pain in the neck (or back).
We researched some of the most popular shoe horns, including extra-long options that allow seniors to slip their shoes on and off easily. Here’s a look at some of the best shoe horns on the market and the features that set them apart. If you’re having trouble making a decision, we’ve also written a brief buying guide at the end of this list with some essential tips.
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The Best Extra Long Shoe Horns
Shacke 24-inch Extra Long-Handled Shoe Horn
This simple shoe horn from Shacke is long enough for taller users, but its full-palm grip makes it surprisingly easy to use. The lightweight plastic body curves slightly, limiting the need to bend or twist to angle it into a shoe, and a loop in the handle allows for easy storage. It’s available in four colors, all of which look sleek and attractive.
The only significant drawback is the material; while manufacturer Shacke claims that the synthetic plastic is durable enough for long-term use, plastic shoe horns generally aren’t as dependable as steel or aluminum products. Still, if you’re looking for an extremely long shoe horn that will simplify an essential everyday task, this has some nice features that set it apart from the competition.
- Made from lightweight plastic
- Large palm grip allows for easy use
- 24-inch size limits the need to bend or lean
- Slight tilt from handle to body for better ergonomics
- Available in black, white, baby blue, or dark grey
- Brand: Shacke
- Model: 24in-sh-black
- Size/Weight: 24 inches, 0.25 pounds
- Exceptionally long shoe horn at a great price
- Palm grip has hole for hanging when not in use
- Sleek, attractive design with several color options
- Might be too long for some individuals
- Metal shoe horns offer better durability
- Handle is slightly large and awkward
Comfy Clothiers 18-inch Long-Handled Stainless Steel Shoe Horn
Comfy Clothiers’ 18-inch shoe horn (which is actually 16.5 inches long, since it curves slightly) is significantly heavier than similar products, but that’s a good thing. It’s made from 100 percent stainless steel for guaranteed durability.
The subtle curve makes the head easy to angle into a shoe, and a hole towards the top of the handle allows for easy storage. The handle isn’t particularly comfortable, but most users won’t have any issues using it for its intended purpose.
- Made from 100 percent stainless steel
- 18 inches long (16.5 inches, accounting for curved design)
- Available as blank steel or with “Dad” or “Grandpa” printing
- Manufacturer offers a 100 percent money-back guarantee
- 2 millimeters thick
- Brand: Comfy Clothiers
- Model: B01C3BYJM8 (Amazon Serial Number)
- Size/Weight: 16.5 inches, 0.45 pounds
- Durable stainless steel keeps its shape without bending
- Hole in handle allows for easy storage
- Long enough to use from a standing or seated position
- Handle is slightly awkward
- Heavier than some other shoe horns
- Not as long as some other options
Eachway Extra-Long Shoe Horn Kit
This plastic-handled shoe horn breaks down into three parts, which makes it a great option for traveling or different applications. Use the smallest piece on its own, or continue to add components for longer and longer options. This is a great feature when wanting to use from both a sitting and standing position.
The rubber handle is comfortable, and the smooth, rounded plastic mouth won’t damage footwear.
Some users will still prefer metal over ABS plastic, and while this is a well-made product, we wouldn’t use too much force when using it. With that said, the attractive price tag and novel portability/adjustability features make Eachway’s shoehorn a great deal.
- Detachable, adjustable shoe horn kit
- Rubber handle and ABS plastic body
- Rounded edges won’t damage shoes
- Wide mouth for easier use
- Loop on handle for hanging
- Brand: Eachway
- Model: B07TSNHWBX (Amazon Serial Number)
- Size/Weight: 29.9 inches, 0.4 pounds
- Breaks down into three pieces for added portability
- Easy to assemble and disassemble
- Four different size options
- Plastic generally isn’t as dependable as stainless steel
- Adjustable length will be unnecessary for some users
- No curved handle or other ergonomic features
Shacke 15-inch Stainless Steel Shoe Horn With Paracord Handle
The paracord handle of this 15-inch shoe horn helps older adults maintain a firm grip, and several color options allow for some degree of customization. The sturdy stainless steel won’t bend or break, and a wide, curved mouth makes this an exceptionally easy product to use.
This isn’t the longest shoe horn on the market, but that’s not a knock against it; it’s still long enough to minimize bending when used from a seated position, and it’s slightly less awkward to hold than some of the longer options.
- Paracord rope handle with loop for hanging
- Made with sturdy stainless steel
- Wide, curved mouth
- Variety of colored paracord options
- Brand: Shacke
- Model: B01MCXP7LL (Amazon Serial Number)
- Size/Weight: 15 inches, 0.4 pounds
- Comfortable handle provides a secure grip
- Not too long or short for most users
- Made to last with durable metal
- Some users will prefer a longer shoe horn
- Paracord rope loop could eventually fray
- Curved, but less ergonomic than other shoe horns
Vive Extra Long-Handled Metal Shoe Horn
Stainless steel construction and an extra-long blade make this shoe horn from Vive a great choice. On the other hand, it has a price tag to match its features. A full length of 31.5 inches allows users to put on their shoes while sitting or standing, with no bending required.
A genuine leather grip and the ergonomic curve make an elegant handle, and because this shoe horn is made from stainless steel, it maintains a thin, straight edge without a lot of added bulk. The manufacturer even throws in a lifetime guarantee.
- Extra-long shoe horn for use while sitting or standing
- Durable stainless steel construction
- Curved leather grip is comfortable and classy
- Manufacturer guarantees satisfaction for life
- Brand: Vive
- Model: LVA2011SLV
- Size/Weight: 31.5 inches, 0.85 pounds
- Virtually unbreakable and unbending
- Longer than most competitors
- Thin steel scoop slides easily into shoes
- Higher price than most
- At nearly a full pound, it’s heavier than plastic options
- Leather grip has a habit of sliding
Goodbrand Products 20-inch Shoe Horn With Loop
If you’re looking for a decent, low-cost shoe horn—and you prefer to sit while you put on your shoes—this cherry red number from Goodbrand Products is a fine choice. However, the “20-inch” claim is a bit misleading. That 20 inches includes both a hoop of cord at the base and the handle. The functional length of this thing is closer to 16 inches.
Due to this the product not by ideal for all, especially taller individuals or those with significant back pain.
- Thick plastic tapers to a thinner tip for comfort during use
- Smooth finish for comfort on the heel
- Rubber hanging loop for simple storage
- Bright red plastic will either delight or repel
- Manufacturer offers full refunds for dissatisfied customers
- Brand: Goodbrand Products
- Model: 602003996177
- Size/Weight: 20 inches, 0.25 pounds
- Lightweight construction, weighs only a quarter-pound
- Extremely affordable
- Manufacturer’s money-back guarantee
- Rubber hanging cord can come loose with pressure
- Shorter functional length than suggested
- Bright red color isn’t exactly discreet
Extra Long Shoe Horn Buying Guide
Carefully consider your options when purchasing a shoe horn, particularly if you’re buying for an older adult. Longer isn’t always better, particularly if the user has mobility challenges.
Here’s a closer look at some of the main factors that set shoe horns apart from one another.
This seems fairly straightforward, but think about whether the user will need to use the shoe horn from a standing or sitting position. Full-sized shoe horns can be awkward for some individuals, particularly older adults with back issues.
Longer shoe horns are also more likely to bend during use if made from plastic, particularly if they’re mishandled. For best results, insert the shoehorn into the heel of the shoe, then slowly slide your foot in. Lift up slightly on the shoehorn as you slide your foot in so that the shoe horn is completely removed when your foot is seated.
Shoe horns are typically made of plastic, wood, or metal. Modern plastic blends can be quite durable, but metal is still the standard—and if you’re regularly putting on boots or other heavy footwear, you’ll probably want to find a shoe horn made with stainless steel. On the other hand, if you’re looking for something lightweight, especially with a longer model, plastic may be the way to go.
Most extra-long shoe horns are curved slightly, which allows the user to slide them into a shoe from a standing position without awkwardly twisting their upper body. Some also have wide mouths to provide a better grip on the shoe heel; whether or not this is an appealing feature will depend on the user’s personal preferences.
Remember, no shoe horn can replace the need for a properly fitted shoe. If you’re purchasing for an older adult, make sure that their shoes aren’t excessively tight. If you notice swelling or other signs of podiatric issues, contact a physician.
Ultimately, shoe horns are useful devices for people of all ages, and for seniors, they’re downright indispensable. By doing a bit of research prior to making your purchase, you can find a high-quality product that will provide years of dependable comfort.