If you’re suffering from bunions on your feet, it’s easy to get discouraged and feel like you’ll never be able to be comfortable again. But, the right shoes can make a world of difference in helping you walk or exercise pain-free. It’s possible to find the best shoes for bunions, so that you can be happier and healthier in your life.
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What Are The Best Shoes For Bunions And Foot Pain?
What Is A Bunion?
In order to find a great pair of shoes, you’ll need to know what a bunion is. Bunions are a condition that happens when the big toe starts to tilt inward towards the smaller toes. This causes the big toe’s joint to become inflamed and to stick outwards. You can usually recognize a bunion because of the signature widened pad of the foot, particularly where the big toe joint is.
It can be difficult or impossible to completely cure a bunion, even through surgical means. So, it’s a good idea to get a pair of shoes that will help you to walk more comfortably, despite your bunions.
How Shoes Can Help With Bunions
Shoes make a big difference in the level of pain you may experience. Tight shoes are sometimes blamed as one of the potential causes of bunions, and they are very uncomfortable to wear when you have a bunion. The right shoes will make all kinds of activities more comfortable for you. A wide foot and a soft, but supportive foot bed can keep you moving with minimal pain. Stable, tight heel support is also important for comfort.
How To Choose The Best Shoes For Bunions
Here are the characteristics to look for in the best shoes for bunions:
There are shoes for all sorts of activities. Work shoes are different from athletic shoes or walking shoes. Before you can look at individual characteristics of a shoe, you have to find the right style of shoe to fit your needs. Shoes for bunions can be found in all types, as long as you look for the other important elements.
To keep comfortable, you’ll have to have uppers made from a flexible material that won’t sit tightly on your feet. Flexible uppers allow your toes to have the room they need, so that your bunion is not squeezed within the shoe. When little pressure is put on a bunion, it doesn’t hurt as badly as when more pressure is laid on it.
Uppers that are most flexible will be made from materials like soft leather, breathable mesh, suede, and other soft materials. You can sometimes use a shoe stretcher to make a regular pair accommodate your bunions, but it’s not recommended if you want a relaxed fit that will help you the most.
The toe area needs to be wide for you to fit your feet in comfortably. Unfortunately, bunions cause the pad of your foot to become wider, with the side of the bunion becoming very sensitive to rubbing. If you don’t consider this well enough, you won’t be able to fit your foot into the shoe well.
Arch support is one of the key elements to help relieve your feet. You need to place more of the pressure of walking on your arches and heels, so that the pad of your foot does not feel the full weight of walking or movement. This is going to make everything more comfortable for you in the long run.
You don’t necessarily have to choose shoes that have strong arch support right out. Orthopedic inserts can be placed inside of most shoes that will create more support for the arches. If you find a pair of shoes that works in every other way, but doesn’t have arch support, you can still consider them if you find a good pair of insoles.
As I just mentioned, heel support woks together with arch support to create a better walking environment for your feet. Bunions make it difficult if you place too much weight on the front of the feet, so it’s better to find shoes that hold your heels steady, making them more capable of holding your weight as you walk.
Top 10 Shoes For Bunions Reviews
These running shoes are specially designed to accommodate wider toes. They are made with a breathable mesh upper, a stabilizing heel, and plenty of arch support to keep you comfortable. Foam insoles line the inside, and the entire design helps to cradle your foot and hold it steady as you exercise.
- Good for moving on hard surfaces
- Comfortable to wear all day
- Strong tread to deal with slick surfaces
- Effective for all kinds of exercising
- Standard insole is a bit hard, not very comfortable
Lightweight and comfortable, these RYKA women’s walking shoes are a good fit for comfort and functionality. They have a reinforced toe area and a toe box made from breathable mesh materials that can flex to accommodate wider toes. It’s easy to get good support from the rest of the shoe, because the arches and heels will hold your foot against the padded tongue for optimal fit.
- Wide enough for a relaxed fit for your toes
- Great for exercising or movement on hard surfaces
- Comfortable even after hours of wear
- Not ideal for colder weather conditions
A stylish alternative for women with bunions, these Mary Jane style orthopedic shoes are great for looking dressy while staying comfortable. The seam-free interior helps avoid rubbing and discomfort as you move around, while the stretchable support fits your feet without being too tight. Inside, the insole uses a contoured orthotic sole with gel padding to help alleviate pains and keep you moving for longer each day.
- Fashionable look for professional workplaces or dressy events
- Supportive, yet very comfortable materials
- No rubbing or pressure on your toes
- Fit comfortably even after hours of working on your feet
- Shoes might make your feet look larger than they are
- Small holes may grow quickly and ruin the shoe
Although not designed for high fashion, these are some of the most comfortable shoes you’re going to get for bunions. The neoprene materials on the uppers are soft and very flexible, but they hold you well and keep you supported. Solid rubber bottoms keep the tread sturdy and help you avoid slipping or losing traction.
- Great for all kinds of foot pain conditions, not just bunions
- Durable in many daily situations
- Extremely comfortable shoes, but still supportive
- Traction is not as good as it could be
Made from comfortable, durable lycra, these shoes have a lot of depth and are ideal for those with toe problems of all sorts. The single Velcro strap makes it easy to get in and out without any discomfort or rubbing. These shoes are great for bunions, because they are designed to provide therapeutic relief and strong support for the entire foot, without being too tight on the toes.
- Washable shoes are easy to clean
- Adjustable strap lets you change the shape to fit your foot perfectly
- Can accommodate an AFO brace
- Lightweight feel for comfortable walking
These attractive men’s shoes can be used in many different situations, from casual wear to work. Uppers are made from beautiful, soft leather that will be comfortable for your feet, even with bunions and other foot problems. Walking, standing, and regular movement won’t give spurs of pain or discomfort. A gel-padded heel support is included with the shoe, but is removable to customize to your needs.
- Great for wearing in many different situations
- Comfortable for movement on hard or soft surfaces
- Arch support works well without hurting your feet
- Taller toe box accommodates bunions
- May need insoles to help add more support
This is an ideal shoe for great support, because the inside is contoured to fit comfortably and the gel padded heel keeps your foot steady as you walk. You will feel the light weight design as you walk, and can enjoy the feel of a comfortable stride. With a mix of good support and an attractive, casual appearance, this is a good pair of shoes for everyday use.
- Great tread for most weather conditions
- Removable insoles allow for your own orthotics to be added
- Lace-up or use the Velcro quick release
- Lightweight, comfortable feeling as you’re wearing the shoes
- No break-in period for comfort
- Leather is not high quality and may deteriorate if you wear these shoes often
- Shoes fit larger than your true size
These shoes are made from an attractive lycra material that is both washable and stretchable for the perfect fit. There is a deep toe bed to help you fit your foot pad in the shoes, no matter if you have bunions or other foot issues. Insoles are removable and can be replaced with orthotic insoles of your own.
- Light and comfortable to walk in
- Attractive for casual wear
- Wide toe bed for a relaxed fit
- Quick to put on and remove again
- No extra arch support is included in the shoe
Made from a combination of breathable synthetic materials, these walking shoes are a good fit for men in need of a pair of light exercise shoes. Your foot will be cradled and well supported, so you can keep the pace no matter where you’re headed. The heels and arch support are strong enough that your toes do not have any pressure, making this a comfortable pair of shoes when you have bunions or other conditions.
- Good quality construction and strong materials
- No tight straps or seams to rub inside the shoe
- You can wear these shoes all day without discomfort or foot fatigue
- Faux lace-up appearance with a quick release Velcro strap
- Snug fit on the top of your foot
- Does not fit true to their size
A good pair of casual shoes, these are made from a mix of soft synthetic uppers, solid rubber soles, and removable insoles. There is a small platform on the heel to help support your foot and make you more comfortable. The materials used in the toe box area are very flexible and will shape to your foot without rubbing or causing and stress.
- Compatible with a washing machine and dryer
- Slip resistant tread for wet weather conditions
- No feeling of pressure when you wear these shoes
- Comfortable for hours of wear at a time
- Shoes do not fit swollen feet well enough
From the shoes I have reviewed here, I would recommend the RYKA Women's Dash Walking Shoe and the Orthofeet 420 Men's Comfort Diabetic Therapeutic Extra Depth Shoe as the best shoes for bunions. Both of these pairs are comfortable for movement all day, and are well set up to accommodate bunions and other foot pain conditions.
It can be difficult to find a great pair of shoes to work with your bunions, but they are out there! With a little bit of searching, you could be walking tall in a great pair of comfortable shoes.