Shoe Sizes D Vs E: Shoe Size Wide Vs Medium

Do you need shoe widths explained? That is why you are here.

Specifically, you are looking for information on shoe sizes D vs E.

If you look at our title, you will see that this is a comparison between wide and medium. The reason is that D is medium narrow for men and E is medium wide for men, or wide.

When buying shoes, most people just check the length and they neglect checking the width size. When their footwear is delivered, they find that it runs too wide or too narrow.

If that happens, most people prefer to break in the shoes by stretching them. However, that would not be necessary if they had ordered the right width size.

In the US, width size is indicated by letters.The higher up the letter is in the alphabet, the wider the footwear is. For example, B is wider than A, E is wider than D and so on. At the same time, two letters indicate extra wide or narrow.

When ordering a pair of work boots online, most people are confused by width sizes D and E. Are they the same? Apparently not, as you will see in the upcoming sections.

What does D mean in shoe size?

It depends on who is asking.

Manufacturers use different letters for classifying the same width size for women and men.

There is a good reason for this. You see, men have more muscle mass. Therefore, they not only have longer legs, but they also have wider feet.

On the other hand, women are blessed with smaller, narrower and daintier feet. However, men with small frames can wear shoes under the women’s size rating, especially the wider ones.

Women with large frames can also wear some men’s widths.

D width for women

For women, D means wide. Therefore, it is only fitting for women with wide feet. If you have standard or narrow feet, size D would be too big for you.

Image of shoe size width

When you look for information regarding footwear widths, you will find that D is the most popular. The reason for this is that it means medium wide for men and wide for women.

A huge percentage of the population falls within that category. Perhaps that is also the reason why most people do not worry about the width size because they assume footwear comes in standard width.

If D is wide for women’s footwear, what then is their standard width? This is B. B is their medium width, meaning that their foot size is neither wide nor narrow. A is for narrow width while AA is narrower width. The numbers can even run to AAAA for children’s shoes.

D width for men

For men, D is the standard width, you know, not too wide and not too narrow, just right. In fact, this is the most popular footwear width for men.

We might also mention that for men, the D width can also depend on the length size. Of course, the longer the shoe length is, the wider it will be. Therefore, a shoe number 10D can have a width of 4.5 inches while number 8D can be 4 inches wide. As you can see, both of them have D width.

Lastly, for men, D means medium width. Therefore, after D comes the “wide” rating, which is E.

How wide is shoe width D?

First, footwear width is measured at your foot’s widest point. This is the ball area of your foot. The heel would be too narrow and so would the arch area. Since it is measured in inches, you can measure your width easily.

You can step on a piece of paper and mark the outermost part of your ball of foot area on the inner and outer edges of your foot.

The ball of foot area is the meaty part that comes after the toes. It is located between the toes and the arch (lifted area in the middle of your foot).

Remove your leg and measure with a tape measure. For an adult, this will be anywhere between 3 and 5 inches.

What does E fit mean in shoe sizes?

Since this article was on shoe sizes D vs E, you now know how wide this size is. You have also seen how different this size is for both men and women.

Now, we can move on to size E for both men and women.

First, if you wear E for width, you have medium wide feet if you are a man. Women rarely wear sizes E for width unless you are a large framed woman. If you need to wear a boot rated E for width and you are a woman, your feet are extra wide.

Usually, the standard wide size for men starts at 2E. To clear some confusion here, some men can wear size E for wide, while for many men, wide is EE or 2E.

Measuring a shoe rated as E for width across, you will find the width to run anywhere from 3.2 inches to 5.2 inches. If it is on the lower side, that means it is medium wide and it measures 4 to 5.2 inches, it is wide.

Longer shoes, say, about 10E can run at 5.2 wide. However, 8E can be 4 inches wide or thereabouts.

What does D and 2E mean in shoe sizes?

A common question that most buyers ask is: how much wider is 2E than D? Since the two sizes are three widths apart, the difference is easy to notice even from the first glance.

For women, the US shoe manufacturers might not have size 2E, but for men, this is wide or extra wide, hence the two Es.

What is the difference between E and EE shoe width?

The difference between E and EE width sizes is that E is wide for men and extra wide for women. EE is extra wide for men. While we are not sure whether there is EE width for women’s footwear, well, it would be something like EEEE or 4E for women. 2E is abbreviated as W as wide for men and extra wide is abbreviated as WW.


When buying a pair of boots, the lettering for width can be a bit confusing. However, for women, sizes run from B, D, E and EE. For men, the sizes run from D, E, EE and EEEE. These are just the widths. To clear the confusion between shoe sizes D vs E, if a woman’s foot is D, just assume the corresponding width for men is E and so on.