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How to Pick the Right Second-hand Pageant Shoes

If you are competing on a budget, sometimes the best option is to buy secondhand shoes. But how do you make sure you have the right secondhand pageant shoes? Let us first start with places you can get secondhand pageant shoes.

Where to get secondhand pageant shoes in Nairobi

  • Bus Station
  • Tom Mboya street vendors- the stretch between Cooperative Bank and Tuskys Supermarket
  • Ngara, on the roundabout next to Fig Tree market
  • Odeon Street vendors
  • Street vendors in front of the Savanis Book shop

How to pick the right second-hand pageant shoes

Avoid buying shoes in very dark areas

If you are buying from hawkers at night, avoid areas that are too dark. You might think you have bought something worthwhile only to go home and find that you have bought old, worn-out faded shoes.

Demand to see both pairs at once

Sneaky vendors might hand you the shoe that looks good, you fit and its okay. You even agree on a price. The other shoe might be in a bad state and if you are not careful, you might only realize once you have paid or when you get home.

If they are wet, leave them

Sometimes street vendors deliberately wet shoes so they make appear darker than they really are and hide flaws. Once you get home and they are dry, you may realize that they are very faded and you cannot wear them on stage.

Make sure you try the shoes

Don’t buy shoes according to your shoe size, try the shoe and make sure it is neither too small nor too big. Small shoes will make you uncomfortable, mess up your knees and your catwalk.

Big shoes might come off onstage or look strange on the legs, you don’t want either of those. If you are buying from the street and it is crowded, and people are pushing and shoving, you might feel intimidated to try them on.

The vendor may also be hurrying you along, but if you cannot try the shoes, do not even bother to buy them. But make sure you fit them right there on the streets.

Try both shoes!

Just because one side fits does not mean the other one will automatically fit. One foot is usually bigger than the other, so make sure both sides fit perfectly.

Walk around in the shoes

Even if you are just walking two steps in them. Some shoes look so cute but when you wear them, they hurt the balls of your feet or pinch in different parts. It is important to know how they will feel.

Ensure they are stable

It is stability or nothing when it comes to pageant shoes. No matter how cute they are, if the heel of one side or both sides feel slanted and wobbly, return the shoes, say thanks and run along. I can never emphasize this part enough.

Unstable heels will immediately register on your catwalk. Sometimes it is not that your catwalk is bad, it is just that your heels are slanted. If they feel wobbly or bent, be gone. Try another day.

Don’t fall for flowery words

Those vendors are gifted speakers, sometimes they convince you to buy something that is obviously worn out, too small or big. Don’t fall for things like:

“They will expand when you wear them many times”

Be very assertive with your purchases


When you first ask the prices, the vendors may even tell you the pair of shoes you have picked cost Ksh 2500 -the price of a new pair. Bargain like hell. I have bargained the price of a pair of shoe from Ksh 1500 to Ksh 500 so when I tell you to bargain, I know exactly what I am talking about.

All the best!

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