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6 Stylish Sandals for Hallux Rigidus | Reader Request

Hi, I’m looking for something that possibly doesn’t exist. By the end of last summer, my foot was killing me, and I finally took it to the doctor. It was diagnosed with Hallux Rigidus. I’ve swapped out my dress shoes over the winter for those with strong arch support, roomy toe boxes. When the weather gets warm, I like to get pedicures and usually switch to peep toe shoes that are flat or with a slight heel for work. (I’m 5’11”, so I don’t like much heel.) I can’t wear any of these shoes anymore because they have no arch support, and some rub across the top of my big toe joint. I’ve looked around a bit, but can’t seem to find what I’m looking for. Dressy-ish, low-heeled to flat, open- or peep- toe shoes/sandals.

Sandals are ok, but I’m usually trying to cover up a side bunion on the other foot. Platform sandals might be OK if the heel height isn’t much higher than the toes which isn’t more than 1/2″. Do you have any ideas?

Dear reader,

Hallux Rigidus (big toe stiffness and pain) only worsens with flexible forefoot shoes, as you know. I’d like to tell you to stay in closed-toe footwear with a special insole to limit the motion of the big toe joint, but you’re asking me for sandal recommendations. I completely understand–just because you have a bum big toe, doesn’t mean you’ve given up on stylish, season-appropriate footwear. Let me recommend sandals with a sturdy forefoot, good support and straps that will cover your bunion (see the last pick for an orthotic-friendly choice).

hallux rigidus sandals

Alegria Verona

The Alegria Verona tops the list of our favorite hallux rigidus sandals. Take it from Zappos customer Judith:

The first time I wore these I stood for 7 hours straight tending bar. I have arthritis in my big toe (hallux rigidus) and these sandals were so comfortable, I felt no pain. They are cute and can be dressed up or worn with casual outfits. 

The Alegria Verona features a supportive cork/latex/memory foam footbed, three adjustable straps and a mild rocker outsole to take pressure off the forefoot through the gait cycle. Find the Verona in euro sizes 35-42 (5-11.5) for $109.95 from Zappos. Find a deal on the Alegria Verona at Amazon.

Hallux Rigidus Sandals - vionic brielle

Vionic Brielle

Vionic Brielle

Vionic’s new flatform sandals with adjustable hook and loop straps hold promise for hallux rigidus sufferers. The Brielle sandal hugs the arches, cushions the soles and adjusts over the forefoot and around the back of the heel. A one-inch platform keeps the forefoot from over-flexing through the stride. Find the Vionic Brielle and other Vionic flatforms in sizes 5-11 for $119.95 from VionicShoes.com, and Zappos.

Skechers Parallel – Love Song

A member of our Facebook community recommends the Parallel line of platform wedges by Skechers. She states that the rise from toe to heel isn’t overly pitched, and the rigid sole protects the tender big toe joint. The Parallel line includes stylish wedges sandals and ankle booties. The affordable price point adds to their draw! Find the Skechers Parallel line in sizes 5-11 for $40-60 from Zappos and Amazon.

Hallux Rigidus Sandals - Taos Trulie

Taos Trulie

Taos Trulie

Another great recommendation from the Barking Dog Shoes Facebook community! The Taos Trulie comes recommended by Joanna who says this about her favorite hallux rigidus sandals:

I’ve worn them for 4 summers now–they make my feet feel so good, and the arch support is great. Good for walking a lot. Adjustable front strap misses the big toe joint.

Happy Zappos customer AMD also recommends the Taos Trulie for relief from hallux rigidus:

I bought these because I have arthritis in my big toe and finding comfortable sandals is a chore. Knowing I would have to spend more money to manage this issue, I reluctantly purchased my first pair four years ago. I am happy to report that I am in love with these sandals and have been able to wear these as my main summertime shoe without issue. Recently, I purchased other styles of sandals in other brands to replace these as they are now looking well-loved but I found that I had to pull my Trulies back out of my closet to get my arthritis pain to settle down again. I will be buying these until they no longer stock them. I will note that I did have the Velcro replaced at a shoe repair store after my second season because I wasn’t ready to part with them and the rest of the shoe was in wearable condition. It was worth it!

Find the Taos Trulie in euro sizes 36-43 (5.5-12) medium and wide widths (in some sizes) for $160 from TaosFootwear.com, and Zappos.

Hallux Rigidus Sandals - oofos

Oofos OOaah Luxe Slide

Oofos Oolala Slide

Made from proprietary OOfoam®, Oofos sandals absorb 37% more impact than other foams used in similar footwear. The thick foam outsole has a slight rocker motion to it, taking pressure off the forefoot through the stride. One of our Facebook community members said this about her Oofos:

“I have Hallux Limitus and these flip flops are fantastic. They have the bouncy house feel with a high enough arch that it takes pressure off your toes.”

We’re thrilled to see so many new colors and patterns from camo to animal print to metallics. Find Oofos flip-flops, slides, and clogs in whole sizes 5-11 (or men’s sizes up to 14) for $49.95-69.95 from Oofos, and Zappos.

Revere Rio

If you absolutely must wear a doctor-prescribed orthotic, consider the Revere brand of orthotic-friendly footwear, including sandals! The Rio style features a removable footbed and added depth to accommodate an orthotic or brace. Two adjustable straps provide a customized fit–and the wide width comes with two strap extenders. Zappos customer says this about her Revere Rio sandals:

I love that I can use my orthotics with this sandal. I need lots of arch support and, while the arch support may be just fine for some, I needed to add orthotics. The insole is designed to be lifted so that orthotics can be inserted below. Great design! They stay in place and are not visible except for the very back edge which is no problem for me.

Find the Revere Rio sandal in whole sizes 5-12, medium and wide widths for $139.95 from Zappos.

Honorable Mention: Birkenstock Arizona (conform to feet, don’t overly flex, adjustable straps), Birkenstock Gizeh (same support as Arizona, no strap over big toe, more feminine), Waldlaufer sandals with removable footbed, Josef Siebel Tonga (thick contoured cork footbed with moderate arch support, adjustable straps). See our recent review of Jambu’s new collection of orthotic-friendly, rocker sole sandals.

We’ve reviewed hundreds of comfortable sandals on BarkingDogShoes.com. Hopefully these new selections expand your horizon a bit more!


About the Author

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



9 Responses to 6 Stylish Sandals for Hallux Rigidus | Reader Request

  1. Michele says:

    Thank you for this! I was diagnosed with hallux limitus last fall and am still struggling with what to wear with shorts and skirts in warmer weather. There are several in this post that I like.

  2. Kirsten says:

    Hi Michele–I hope you find one that works. I haven’t tried all of them, I’m just going with what I know about the type of shoe that helps. Let me know!

  3. Elkind Debra says:

    Hi Michele,
    I can not overstate how wonderful the Wolky Jewel is for conditions like yours ( and mine!).
    The sole is totally rigid and the footbed cushiony. It will also accomodate an orthotic. The best part is that all the straps are adjustable, so you can really customize the fit and adjust for your problem areas. There are dozens of color offerings, so you can go conservative or have fun with patterns or bright colors for Summer. These are, by far, my go-to shoes for hours of comfort. Confession: I depend so much on these sandals for relief, I even wear them in winter!

  4. Valerie says:

    Thank you these great options. I always on the hunt for shoes that will give relief for hallux limitus, bunions, and RA. I survived last summer in Naot Kayla and just got my second pair. Alegria Kleo is my newest go-to. They actually look a little less orthodic in person because of the hardware. The options

  5. Kathleen says:

    I am pleased with my new Eddie Bauer Kara wedge sandals. I have “toe bumps” at the bases of my big toes (from hallux limitus +/ early bunions) and was concerned that the foot strap would bother them, but so far so good. I also like the feeling of wearing heels without actually wearing heeled shoes!

  6. Bridget says:

    I’ve been really happy with Romika Florida sandals, which this site tipped me off to. Just bought my 3rd pair.

  7. Kay says:

    What is good for both hallux rigidus and plantar fasciitis

  8. Julie says:

    Most of these shoes are no longer available. Can you refresh these recommendations. I have Hallux Limitus and also wear orthotics. I’d welcome recommendations as it gets warmer.

  9. Julie says:

    Also, do you have suggestions for peep-toe dress shoes or dress sandals that could be worn in a business formal setting? I wear orthotics & have hallux limitis and I’m trying to plan for times when I’ll get back to in-person settings. Thanks.

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