Finding the right size of shoes will be a challenge if you don’t know what the letter sizes mean. You might see different letters and abbreviations such as “M”, “BM”, “B(m)”, “D”, “D(m)”, and other lettering. What does “M” mean in shoe size? Also, what do “B” and “D” mean?
M stands for “medium” width for a women’s shoe. B sometimes is used instead of M and also means a women’s shoe has a medium width. D means a men’s shoe as a medium width.
Read on to learn more about M in shoe size, also B, D, and all the other abbreviations you see related to shoe sizes.
What Does “M” Mean in Shoe Size? Also “BM” and “DM”?
The letter “M” on a women’s shoe means the shoe has a medium-sized width. The width won’t be too narrow or too wide. BM means the same thing for a women’s shoe. D or DM means a men’s shoe has a medium width.
In the United States, shoe size does not only mean the length of your feet. It also means your foot width. If you happen to see the letters B, D and M indicated on shoe tags, these letters talk about the shoe width.
In most cases, people only know their foot length because generally, that’s all you need to know to ensure that the pair of shoes you are buying will undoubtedly fit you. However, if you want to experience ultimate comfort, it is necessary to buy a pair of shoes with the correct width.
So, what does B M mean in shoe size? What does D M mean in shoe size? Or what do D and M mean in shoe size? To answer these, you have to be familiar with all the other abbreviations used concerning shoe sizes.
Different Shoe Width Categories
There are several width categories available in the United States. They are as follows:
The narrowest is categorized as AAA, while the widest is categorized as EEE.
1. A Shoe Width
A person who wears a pair of A-width shoes is someone who has narrow feet. This is common among women and rare among men. Typically, the reason is that women have smaller feet than men.
The measurement of A-width footwear ranges between 3.4 and 3.9 inches across the bottom of the foot’s ball. This typically depends on your shoe size.
2. AA and AAA Shoe Width
By now, you already know that A means narrow in women and extremely narrow in men. This further means that AA is narrower and AAA is more so. An AAAA shoe width does exist too, but apparently, it is not a common one.
Suffice it to say that the more A you see on the shoe tag, the narrower the shoe is. And for every A that you see on the tag, it means that the shoe width decreases by .25 inches each time.
3. B Shoe Width
If a woman wears a pair of B-width shoes, it means that she has medium-sized feet. Similar to A-width shoes, a B shoe width is not common among men as this width is extremely narrow for them.
Commonly, a B shoe width ranges between 3.6 and 4.1 inches across the bottom of the foot’s ball. Your exact shoe width highly depends on the exact size of your feet.
Have you ever experienced buying a pair of women’s shoes but could not seem to find the width size on the tag? This means that you are looking at a pair of shoes with a standard shoe width, which is B width.
What does B(M) mean in shoe size? What does B M mean in shoe size? “B M” or “B(M)” on a shoe means medium or average width for women. So you will only see the letter B size on women’s shoes, not men’s shoes. A “B” width means the shoe width is neither narrow nor wide.
4. C Shoe Width
For men, a pair of shoes with a C width means a narrow pair of footwear. However, a C-width pair of women’s shoes is already considered wide.
Since most men have wide feet, a C-width pair of shoes is not a common shoe width for the male population. This shoe width is also not that common among women. The reason is that, in most cases, women whose shoe size is bigger than the standard size prefer to get the D-width ones.
5. D Shoe Width
Both men and women have D-width shoe sizes. However, D in men’s footwear means medium, whereas D in women’s footwear means wide.
Its measurement ranges from 3 to 5 inches across the bottom of the foot’s ball. It all depends on the size of your shoes. For example, a size 10D in men’s footwear is 4 inches across the bottom of the foot’s ball. However, it is 4.5 inches across for men’s footwear in size 14D.
What does D(M) mean in shoe size? What does B M mean in shoe size? “B M” or “B(M)” on a shoe means medium or average width for women. So you will only see the letter B size on women’s shoes, not men’s shoes. A “B” width means the shoe width is neither narrow nor wide.
6. E Shoe Width
Men’s shoe sizes are always bigger than women’s. So, in the case of the E category, it means wide for men. However, it means extra wide for women.
The measurement, of course, depends on the size of the foot. Its measurement is also across the bottom of the foot’s ball, ranging between 3.2 and 5.2 inches. A 10E men’s footwear measures 4.2 inches across, whereas a 14E men’s footwear measures 4.7 inches.
7. EE Shoe Width
Footwear with EE measurement means extra wide for both genders. But, of course, a pair of EE-width shoes for men is wider than that for women.
In the past, there weren’t a lot of women buying shoes with EE width, which is why production was very limited. However, for the past 10 years, there has been a noticeable increase in shoe production for this width. This can be due to the increase in the number of transgender individuals across the globe.
Measuring across the bottom of the foot’s ball, shoes with EE width range between 3.4 and 5.4 inches. Again, it all depends on your shoe size.
8. EEE Shoe Width
After explaining the EE shoe width, you surely have an idea by now how an EEE shoe width measures. Typically, this is not a common shoe width for both men and women. And, in most cases, these are made-to-order.
9. M Shoe Width
What does the “M” mean in shoe size? M stands for medium width for women’s shoes. It means the shoes are not too narrow or too wide, but medium or average width.
In case you are wondering what b(m) means in shoe size, this is a common abbreviation in women’s shoes. It means that it is the average shoe width for women. As mentioned earlier, B means a medium shoe width, whereas M apparently means medium.
If you happen to see the abbreviation d(m) on a shoe tag, then you are probably checking out a pair of men’s shoes. So what does d(m) mean in shoe size? It means the average shoe width for men.
As mentioned above, D is the average size of men’s footwear. M is indicated to help distinguish that the footwear has a medium width. It further confirms that it does not mean wide width for women’s footwear.
So what does M mean in shoe size? M on a shoe means the width of the shoe is medium width. M is the industry standard letter women’s shoes with a medium width.
10. W Shoe Width
What do M and W mean in shoe size? M and W are the common abbreviations for medium and wide, respectively. If you happen to be checking out a pair of shoes that does not indicate the width, it means that you are holding a pair of M width shoes — or footwear with medium width.
If you are in a shoe store checking out a pair of footwear with “W” on its shoe tag, then that means the shoes have wide width. Shoe manufacturers indicate M and W as these are commonly known abbreviations. They do this to minimize or eliminate confusion among consumers, especially if they are selling worldwide or outside the United States.
When the Shoe Fits
In general, shoe buyers do not know their shoe width. Because most of the time, if not all, we all rely on the length of our feet.
When we try to fit a pair of shoes that matches our shoe length, the chances are that we will buy them without checking out the width. It may feel tight on our feet, but we often shrug it off and tell ourselves that it feels tight only because it is brand new. And that it will not feel that way after a week of wearing them.
Unfortunately, that has been a common belief of most shoe buyers. We do not realize that we will surely experience the ultimate shoe comfort if we first consider our shoe width. Wearing shoes with the correct length and width will help us prevent foot injuries.
Ask for Assistance
If you want to know your shoe width, seek assistance from a shoe professional. That way, you can have your foot measured with accuracy. There are also scales available at shoe stores, which also provide an accurate measurement.
Measure the Size of Your Feet
It is also best that you always have your foot size measured first every time you buy a pair of shoes. Just because your shoe width today is B does not necessarily mean you are a B forever. Remember that your feet can swell over time due to different factors.
Other Factors to Consider
One factor may be weight gain because as you gain extra pounds, your feet get bigger as well. Another factor is when you stop wearing closed shoes. An example of this is if you used to wear closed shoes every day due to work. The chances are that your shoe size would be the same for as long as you continue to wear them for long hours daily.
Then, let’s say you decided to retire, which made you stop wearing them every day. Instead, you started wearing slides or flip-flops. In a matter of months, you will notice your feet have grown wider and even longer. In which case, your old pairs of shoes will surely not fit you anymore.
Shoe Sizes and Manufacturers
Why do you think that every time we are at a shoe store, we always try the footwear on to check if they fit? We do this all the time, even if we already have a clear idea of our shoe size. Why can’t we simply ask for a pair of shoes with the correct size and then buy them without trying them on?
Of course, we try them on to check if the footwear looks good on our feet. Then, of course, we have to confirm that they fit us perfectly even if we already know our shoe size. In which case, this is a good practice, especially because shoe sizes may also differ. And this all depends on shoe manufacturers.
Remember that each shoe company has its own model foot when they manufacture and designate shoe sizes. The difference may be very minimal, but there is a difference, nonetheless. And if you are a person who is prone to foot injuries, it is highly advisable always to wear shoes that fit you perfectly.
Conclusion – What Does B, D, and M Mean in Shoe Size?
Shoe sizes B, D, and M indicate the width of the shoe. B means medium or average width size for women, while it means narrow for men. D means wide width for women, while it means medium or average width size for men. M means medium width size.
So, if you happen to see BM on a shoe tag, this refers to a pair of shoes that generally fits women. The reason is that B and M both mean medium for women. Suffice it to say that if you see DM on a shoe tag, this pertains to footwear that fits men in general. This is because D and M both mean medium for men.
Wearing a pair of either too wide or too narrow shoes will most likely make you experience discomfort. This is definitely not advisable, especially if your daily physical activities involve a lot of walking — or even running if you are an athlete. Besides, if you want the real value for your money, you have to make sure that you are buying and wearing a pair of shoes that will provide ultimate comfort.