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Comfortable Shoes for Spring from Favorite Brands

Fashion sneakers, peep-toe booties, ghillie-laces, the color rose, perfs and cutouts–that’s the spring shoe scene in a nutshell. Can problem feet enjoy spring’s trends while keeping comfy? That’s our aim with this feature. We’ve culled a collection of new or updated styles from favorite brands known for quality and comfort. Whether you need a removable footbed, roomy toe box, a wide or narrow fit, we’ve got a shoe for you!

Keen Elsa Sneaker

Were you a fan of the Keen Coronado before it was discontinued? We hope you’ll be equally as pleased with the updated Keen Elsa sneaker. From what we read, the reviews are positive for cushioning, wide toe box, and removable footbed–and it’s vegan if that’s a priority for you. They don’t fit exactly like the Coronados and may seem a bit narrower through the midfoot. As one reviewer stated, she expects them to relax over time as they’re made of canvas. Available in whole sizes 5-11 (even a 10.5) from, Zappos, Amazon. A slip-on version is available too! Find a Keen retailer near you.

Dansko Charlie

If you like the look of the Geox Nebula but need a wider toe box, enhanced arch support or a removable footbed to accommodate an orthotic, the new Dansko Charlie is your shoe! The reviews are coming in five stars for comfort and support for this new addition to the Dansko family. The perforated leather upper is both on-trend and functional as it allows feet to breathe…just don’t wear them in a rainstorm. Available at Zappos, The Walking Company, Amazon, and Nordstrom. Find a Dansko retailer near you.

Rockport Cobb Hill Gabby

Rockport Cobb Hill Gabby

You can be completely with-it this spring in your ghillie-laced shoes, but they’re so much more than a fashion statement. Ghillie laces are a true blue friend to hard-to-fit-feet. Loosen them around a wider forefoot, annoying bunion or high instep. Tighten them for a narrow foot or ankle. You’ll enjoy reading through the many reviews at Zappos from happy customers who haven’t worn heels in years due to age or surgeries, until the Rockport Cobb Hill Gabby. The cushioned footbed with moderate arch support adds to the overall comfort of this 1 1/2″ heeled sandal. Available in medium and wide widths in whole and half sizes 6-10, 11, 12 from Zappos,, Amazon, Nordstrom and Shoebuy.

Naot Yarrow

Do you like the ghillie-lace look, but need to wear your own orthotic? Consider Naot’s new Yarrow sandal with a removable  cork-latex footbed. The enclosed heel will keep the orthotic secure. Although, Naot is known for excellent arch and heel support, so your feet may like the shoe just as it is without having to replace the insole. The Yarrow features a 1 1/2″ heel with a 3/4″ platform (we think this would be a good choice for feet that suffer from plantar fasciitis). Available in European sizes 35-42 at Zappos, Nordstrom, and Shoebuy.

Earth Intrepid peep-toe bootie

Earth Intrepid

Never say never. Yes, you too can wear the peep-toe bootie trend with confidence. The Earth Intrepid promises to get noticed and not because it’s from a comfort brand, rather, in spite of that fact! The manageable 2″ heel with 3/8″ platform will keep you steady and secure. The multi-density cushioning with moderate arch support adds to the pleasant walking experience. The perforated upper and side cut-outs enhance air flow. Available in whole and half sizes 5-10, 11, 12; medium and wide widths from Zappos, Nordstrom, Amazon,, and The Walking Company.

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13 Responses to Comfortable Shoes for Spring from Favorite Brands

  1. Marla says:

    I have semi-wide feet and have arthritis in my big toe joint. I was a big fan of the Keen Coronado and was excited when the Elsa came out – I can attest that it is narrower in the mid foot than the Coronado and unfortunately put pressure right on my poor sore joint. It’s super cute and I was really disappointed. I’ve tried so many shoes in a quest to find something Chuck Taylor-ish to wear with skirts and dresses with no luck. Maybe I’ll give the Dansko Charlie a try! Great suggestions in this post, I love the Naot’s!

  2. Nina Wikstrom Aguilar says:

    Kristen, this past October I broke my left ankle; in February I broke my right ankle. Bone density test and lab work (calcium, Vit.D, etc) all came back normal. I have had rheumatoid arthritis for 43 years, only took steroids for 2 years back in the 80’s. Both breaks, plus a femur fracture 3 years ago, happened at home, inside. My docs seem puzzled but agree with my suggestion that I wear ankle boots. Any ideas? I’m confused and unsure what to do. Thanks, Nina Aguilar

    • Brenda says:

      Doctors told me that my AFOs (ankle foot orthotics) would protect my ankles but I was wearing them when I lost my balance and fell (inside), breaking my fifth metatarsal. Orthotics offer the best protection; boots none at all. I have osteopenia (a condition that could lead to osteoporosis) but have increased bone mass 3 percent in the past 2 years with medication and calcium. Exercise would be even more helpful, but at 62 I have a neurological disorder and must use walkers or scooters to move around.

  3. Briana says:

    I have to say I love that you do this for us.. and I love it when there are comments or testers who send out reviews that you share. Please keep doing this. It has been just a help to me since I found you. Have “short” feet, HIGH arch, narrow heel, WIDE across the ball of the foot and RA in the left foot. I can always find some shoe that you have recommended to wear so much faster now since I don’t have to try on EVERY shoe in the store. The options are narrowed down for me already. Please keep doing this.

    • Kirsten Borrink says:

      Thank you, Briana. Your thoughtful words mean a lot. I’m sorry to hear about your RA and know how it can wreak havoc on foot joints you didn’t even know you had! We will continue to plug along here at BDS to help you and other readers find new stylish brands and styles for your “barking dogs.”

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