Pillows for Pointes Gellows Toe Pads
Product Type: Pointe Shoe Accessories
Brand: Pillows for Pointes
Style Name: Gellows Toe Pads
Style Number(s): GEL
Colors Available: One Color
Sizes Available: Small/Medium and Medium/Large.
- The only REVERSIBLE, SEAMLESS gel pad for the ballerina.
(patent #6810603B1) One side is gel and the other is a SEAMLESS Cool Max fabric.
Two sizes for a better fit. Can be cut to fit.
Manufacturer Website: http://pillowsforpointes.com/
These are my personal default toe pads and I’ve worn them for 20+ years now.
I really like that these pads “feel” squishier than what they actually are! There’s a lot of padding there for a good trade off in the bulk/thickness of the pad itself. I really like that they are washable and mostly durable (take note of the TLC care I’ve written about them below). I also like that one side has a sock and the other side gel. Why? Pure versatility and a whole ‘nother multitude of reasons including:
-Feet sweat. A lot. I like that if I put the CoolMax sock side against my skin – it can wick moisture away from my foot quickly.
-Blisters happen. But having gel on the opposite side means that I can flip the pad around to the gel side to having that against my skin (and it feels a bit better against the hot spot/blister since the gel has less friction than the sock side).
-I can wear the sock side out in the spring/summer when I don’t want to wear tights down over my feet (or if a costume called for footless tights).
These pads are middle of the road in terms of thickness for gel pads. There are plenty of pads both thicker and thinner than these. As a fitter – I like this because it always gives a good “middle” starting point for fitting shoes. Especially for beginners who don’t have enough “data” to decide what kind of padding to go with. Or for those who forgot their pads at home (gives the most amount of “wiggle” room). This pad is my second choice for those with longer second and third toes. I usually prefer a thicker pad (such as from the Eurotard line) for those feet just to help cushion the longer toes – but if those prove too bulky to properly do pointe work… then I move to this pad or one of its sister pads (such as the GelX or Super Gellows).
As a dancer – the only complaint I ever really had (especially when the pads are fresh and new) was an odd feeling of the gel “settling” around my foot in the first few minutes of wearing them. After that though – the pads gave lots of shock absorption, “cush”, and (I think) a little added spring to my step.
As a teacher – I like that there is lots of “cush” but not the bulk. In my opinion – that gives a student plenty of opportunity to feel the right “feels” but also reduce the level of discomfort. With a medium thickness pad – I find that students still have to work to get to pointe – but that we can either increase or decrease the pad thickness to get to the goal we’re developing. So it’s more of a mindset of using the pad as part of the solution and not as just an “accessory”.
TLC for these pads is extremely important to their longevity. Seriously. If you don’t wash/powder them regularly – they. will. tear. My tip when I wore these – keep them stored in a bag of cornstarch based baby powder and it doesn’t take much – a small squirt of powder goes a LONG way for a LONG time. I’d always keep a travel size of powder in my bag too – if you’re having issues with the pad sticking due to sweat, weather, or just haven’t washed them in a while (which we’ve all done), put some powder on both the pads AND your feet. It doesn’t take much at all. Also – on many marley floors, baby powder can make them slicker than spit…. so either put those pads on over your dance bag, or keep a small towel in your bag to put on the floor under your feet to put your pads on over.
Also – and this goes for almost all pointe work and toe pads TLC – keep those toe nails trimmed! Long or sharp toe nails is the bane of every toe pad out there. Long or sharp nails simply tear up pads quick. Plus having long/untrimmed nails in pointe shoes is not the best idea for pain, toe pad longevity, and a whole host of other issues. So do yourself a favor – keep those nails trimmed!
Oh and a pro tip? If you want a little TLC – I kept my spare pair of pads in the fridge or on an ice pack in my bag – just to swap out if I felt like I needed it. Sometimes that little hit of coolness is refreshing (and was delightful to swap pads out during a mid-rehearsal break).
Sizing Info: Small/Medium and Medium/Large. I’d recommend the small/medium for US street shoes under a 6.5/7 (unless you’ve got long toes) and the medium/large for 7/7.5 and larger. However – there’s some “play” in the sizing. The official recommendation is for pointe shoes sizing 4.5 and under for the S/M and 5 and up for the M/L. Since this is potentially confusing – I suggest using US street shoe sizing as a guide.
Material/Content: Silicone Gel and stretchy CoolMax sock material on the other side.
Intro Date: Unknown
Discontinue Date: –
*A note about prices – while the MSRP is listed – it is just that. Please remember that your local dance store also has to cover shipping costs, lights, rent, other utilities, and oh yeah – HUMANS! When you go into a local dance store – please realize that you are possibly paying a premium for their expertise, knowledge, and having (most) products there on hand. That’s not cheap. Please don’t go “window shopping” there only to save a few bucks. Especially on products under $100, it’s really not worth it. Support your local store. Please. When you do, you validate why we have physical stores and why we, as store owners, dedicate ourselves to providing you with products and knowledge we can stand behind.