Bunion-Friendly Footwear 6a00e54ee19bb788340147e1102dad970b-800wi1

Published on December 15th, 2010 | by Kirsten Borrink

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5 Best Non-Orthopedic Shoes for Bunions

Bunions. Hallux Valgas. Big toe bumps. Whether yours are caused by an inherited faulty mechanical structure of the foot, inflammatory disease or years of wearing too-high or too-tight footwear, do NOT, I repeat do NOT choose surgery as your first option. I almost did.

Five years ago, I visited the orthopedic doc complaining of painful bunions caused by rheumatoid arthritis. Not once did he ask about the type of shoes I was wearing. He quickly scheduled me for a bunionectomy. At the time I had a three year old son and wasn't sure how I'd manage taking care of him while hobbling around on crutches or in a walking cast. I read that the long road to recovery didn't always end with successful results. I decided to invest in footwear with proper support and room for my toes/bunions. Thankfully, I haven't needed surgery as wearing the right shoes has made all the difference.

Here are seven of my favorite non-orthopedic shoes with good support and roomy toe boxes to accommodate bunions, hopefully you'll find a pair that works for you:

Arcopedico

1. Arcopedico L14: Lytech® upper stretches and forms to foot making room for bunions and hammertoes. Removable footbed allows for custom orthotic.  The L14 is vegan and completely washable too! $89 @ Zappos, free shipping both ways, $89 at PlanetShoes.com, free shipping and returns.  Check out the whole Arcopedico line here. 

Keen toyah mj
2.  Keen Toyah Mary Jane: One of the more supportive Keen styles with plenty of toe room and removable footbed to accommodate orthotic. Great for wide feet. $85 @ Zappos, free shipping both ways. Available in a tie-up oxford version at Amazon for $95 with free shipping and returns. 

Klogs carolina

3. Klogs Carolina:  The Klogs Carolina features a roomy and high toe box to accommodate bunions and hammertoes. The footbed provides excellent arch support, but is completely removable should you need to wear orthotics. $109.95 @ Zappos, free shipping both ways. Available in more colors at Amazon from $80-109, free shipping and returns. 

Alegria paloma
4. Alegria Paloma: My personal favorite. The rocker sole alleviates pressure on forefoot (including bunions) through stride. The anatomical footbed is removable to accommodate an orthotic and the toe box is plenty roomy. Best for medium to wide feet. Available in many fun colors and patterns. $119.95 at OnlineShoes.com, free shipping and exchanges. Also available at Zappos for 119.95 with free shipping both ways. 

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5. Dansko Pro XP: Similar to your Dansko Pros, but better. Same support but with a cushioned, removable footbed and lightweight rocker sole. Certified slip-resistant outsole. $139.95 at The Walking Company, free shipping and free returns to store. $149.95 at Zappos, free shipping both ways.

Do you have bunions? Have you found a shoe that works for you? Leave us a comment and let other readers know!


About the Author

Kirsten Borrink

Blogger, Wife, Mom, Dog-Lover, Coffee Drinker, Owl Watcher.



13 Responses to 5 Best Non-Orthopedic Shoes for Bunions

  1. I suspect I must have bunions (even though I can’t see them) because of the big trouble I have wearing shoes, so I really need this advice. Thank you. I like the looks of some of these. Btw I have Born Lovely flats and they seem wider than average in the toe area. I’m able to wear them several hours at a stretch without pain. Haven’t tried all day yet.

  2. Jeannine Runyan says:

    This website has been a godsend for my feet. I have severe bunions & 2 podiatrists and 1 orthopedic surgeon have all given me the same advice (surgery). But all said I could put it off as long as orthotics kept me out of pain. 10 years later, the pain returned and as a 40 year old mom to two small kids, a zumba, and yoga instructor, its hard to find time to take off to at least get my left foot fixed. My bunions have caused crippling plantar fasciitis in my left foot.

    I got new orthotics and sucked it up after finding this site to get new shoes. I got Naot Kiera (big love) to wear as a casual every day shoe. Its so comfy I don’t even need my orthotic. The Walking company hooked me up with Asics Gel Kayono 16 for teaching Zumba, and per your suggestion I tried on the Merrel Siren sport and love all the colors & fit. I am also the proud owner of a pair of Alegria Feliz in the patent grey snake. SO comfy.

    I think that’s enough shoes for one month, lest my hubby disown me, but my feet are happier and I still feel cute.

    I will say I tried on the Arcopedico L14 and the insole does not come out to accomodate an orthotic. I tried in the store.

  3. Hi Kirsten,
    You asked for it – you got it! Here’s some more recommendations for women’s dress shoe’s for bunions:
    1. Tsubo Women’s Cori Mary Jane
    2. Wolky’s Women Passion
    3. John Fluevog’s Mahalo T-Strap pump
    4. Croc’s Women’s Casey Wedge
    5. Croc’s Women’s Lydia Wedge
    6. Wolky T-Strap Women’s slip-on shoes
    7. FLY London Women’s Yaz Wedge.
    Happy Holidays!
    Dr. Cathleen A. McCarthy
    http://podiatryshoereview.blogspot.com

  4. Hi Dr!
    Thanks again for adding more options to my list. I love Fly London. Do you own a pair? I don’t yet, but love the new Yale wedge.
    Kirsten

  5. Jeannine,

    Thanks so much for your comment. I love the Naot Kiera and have heard great things about the Asics Gel Kayano. Interesting about the Arcopedico style–I believe Zappos says the insole is removable, glad you set me straight!

  6. valleycat1 says:

    I bought my first pair of Tom’s shoes early in December, and have now ordered a second pair. Most of the styles are very casual, though Toms does make some wedges. These are the first shoes I’ve had in a LONG time that I literally forget I have on. I suffer tailor’s bunions/bunionettes (on the small toe joints), & though these run narrow (women with wider feet buy the men’s versions), they do not irritate the joints at all. I travelled in the Toms (by air) at Christmas & wore them exclusively the entire week. They are well made & provide more support than I’d expected, though I did end up adding a heel/arch insert.

  7. Michelle says:

    I own a pair of naot sandals, not sure of the style but they are a bronze color. They are SOOO comfortable for my bunion!!

    Also, I have a pair of keen black slip ons that are a godsend!! I also have a pair of brown keen mary janes, and tan keen loafers. I have stuck with keen because I know they are comfy, and I am afraid to pay big bucks for shoes that hurt my feet. By the way…ALL of my keen shoes came from ebay for less than $40.00!!!

    For heels, I bought a pair of sensible brand black mary jane style with a heel. I can wear them for about 5 hours before they start to hurt…NOT BAD for an evening out!! However, I bought them at a Foot Solutions store, and the manager said that they are being discontinued, so I got them for about $60.00. The box price was $120.00.

    I am a teacher so I am STANDING on my feet ALL DAY, I am CONSTANTLY on the lookout for confortable shoes for my bunion…Thanks for this website!!

  8. Andes says:

    Thank you so much!!!!!!! This is exactky what I have been looking for. I have a horribly painful bunion with another starting on my other foot and really wasn’t sure what kind of shoes to look for. This is great

  9. Pingback: You Don't Have to Sacrifice Style for Comfort- 4 Hip Shoes for Bunion Sufferers

  10. stephanie says:

    I’ve had bunions since junior high. The only dress shoes I’ve found that are truly comfortable are:
    AHNU (brand) – Karma (shoe style). Though technically a yoga shoe, the leather ones rather than the suede ones look fairly dressy.

    I’ve always hesitated to buy shoes online, but after coming across this website I think I will try some of these shoes. Thanks to all the commenters!

  11. Jana martin says:

    I have hammer toes an bunions , can tell me what’s the best ,combination, dress shoe?
    Jana

  12. As far as my experience is concerned, Dansko and Carolina tops the list of my favorite shoes for bunions. They have wide toe box and they are most comfortable to use on a regular basis.

    I am not much aware about Arcopedico brand because I haven’t tried it yet.

    Hey Kirsten, I really liked your site and your recommendations. I just wanted to ask about this Arcopedico shoe. Does it have a good mid-foot strike and cushioning? Because I have read somewhere that the shoes for bunions must have these features to prevent unnecessary pressure on bunions.

    I would like to know more about the features of this brand.

    Thanks and Regards

    Vishal

  13. susan says:

    I have a huge bunion on left foot with hammer toe coming over the adjoining big toe in an anc it is so far gone. It does not hurt…astounding!!! This situation precludes me from any kind of “real” covered shoe. I have explored surgery but at 71 without pain and knowing the realities of success, I have held off.

    I cannot wear anything but wide Fit Flop sandals. They, over they years have been my savior as I can go in them all day. They make the sandals in evening styles.
    FitFlops are getting hard to find (come from England) and are priced from $50.00 on sale to over $100.00 for new fun styles. Recently when I ordered some replacements on Zappo’s I was shocked to find the manufacturer has made some styles more narrow, had to return. Try to find them in your area or tell Zappo’s you want the wider styles if they know there’s a difference.

    I play some tennis and wear a men’s triple E sneaker . It works!! I guess my feet are a combo of heredity, working on concrete in my store, flat feet and just bad luck. This may sound radical but I have met other older tennis players, one an MD, who have Hammer toes amputated and are better. What ever works….. (recovery is fast).

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    Kirsten Borrink has reviewed over 1,103 comfortable shoes since
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