Q & A: What Are These Holes in My Pointe Shoes?

By on February 8, 2017

 

Your Questions Answered: Pointe Shoe HolesI recently found an old pair of pointe shoes in my closet and noticed that there were a bunch of tiny holes through the tops and the sides of my shoes. I looked inside only to find a large family of weevils, also known as pointe shoe bugs. Eew!

Weevils are little bugs who love to eat the glue inside of old shoes. It doesn’t matter how well you hide your shoes, if there are weevils in your building they will find your pointe shoes! If they find your shoes, they will eat the glue and weaken the shoes by creating tiny tunnels throughout. These holes cause your pointe shoes to die quicker, and can even ruin them completely!

Weevils also lay eggs inside your shoes, so they’ll keep coming back – UNLESS – you freeze them in an airtight container or ziploc bag, killing the bugs. After that first freeze, make sure you re-freeze them every three weeks, over a three to four month period, so that you kill the remaining larva and prevent new eggs from hatching.

But the best way to prevent your shoes from attracting weevils is proper storage. It is important to seal each pair separately in a ziploc bag or keep them in the original sealable bag. Once a pair is taken out of the bag, the glue dries very quickly – and dry glue attracts weevils. When weevils infest one pair there is a greater chance they can ruin an entire batch of shoes. Storing your pointe shoes properly is key!

Your Questions Answered: Pointe Shoe HolesA final tip, when purchasing pointe shoes make sure you buy new shoes that are less than five years old. Don’t buy too many in bulk if you’re not going to wear them within a year or two. Older shoes have drier glue and are more likely to be a weevil-magnet!

I hope that you never experience weevils in your shoes! But,if you do, you’ll know how to take care of them once and for all!

About Shannon Marie Rugani

After dancing with the San Francisco Ballet for eleven years, Shannon Marie Rugani is currently making her Broadway debut as an original ensemble member in An American In Paris and is the understudy for Lise Dassin. Shannon is a native California girl hailing from South Lake Tahoe, California and has been in love with ballet since she was six years old.

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