Best Shoes for Bunions & Hallux Valgus Reviewed

When you are trying to find shoes that don’t irritate your bunions, you know it can be a challenge. Although purely functional shoes have their place, it’s nice to have a variety of options to choose from. Shoes that squeeze your toes can aggravate your bunions. Shoes made with rigid upper materials can rub on your bunions and make them worse. Wearing heels that are over 2” high and shoes can also contribute to making your bunions grow bigger. Whether you are looking for a no-heeled shoe or a low-heeled shoe, try to find a pair that have good support. These tips can help prevent you from getting sore feet during your daily activities.

Last Updated: June 9, 2018
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By Himmatpreet Kaur:

The recent update shows you some of the best shoes you can find if you struggle with bunions. After looking through reviews and recommendations, the list has shoes from sandals to athletic shoes and meet the criteria that most people find don't irritate those sore bumps on your feet.

Featured Recommendations

Keen Whisper
  • Keen Whisper
  • 5 out of 5
    Our rating
  • EVA midsole
  • Price: See Here
Teva Tirra
  • Teva Tirra
  • 4.9 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Heel 1.5 inches
  • Price: See Here
Vionic Tide II
  • Vionic Tide II
  • 4.8 out of 5
    Our rating
  • Soft woven toe post
  • Price: See Here

Look for shoes with a lower heel, plenty of room in the toe box, and have good support throughout the shoe. A shoe with a leather or textile upper that stretches will give your toes the room they need without pinching. Even with these guidelines, there are shoes out there that have personality and pizzazz.

 

10 Best Shoes for Bunions

 

1. Keen Whisper

This show is made for outdoor recreation but has features that most say are comfortable for their bunions. It has a rounded toe with a rubber toe cap for protection, and a wider toe box that Keen is known for. The durable, EVA footbed molds to the shape of your foot to give you a comfortable fit. The polyester upper stretches to conform and move with your foot.
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Comfortable Fit
The Whisper has a cushioned footbed to absorb shock, and is built to give you great arch support. The bungee style lacing system lets you adjust the fit as needed for your foot.

Lots of Colors
When you are looking for a fun, outdoor shoe, the Keen Whisper has bright colors and neutrals to choose from. Some also have patterns and detailing to give you even more choices.

Cost and Value
The durability of the Whisper makes this a good value for the price. If you are looking for a sporty shoe with comfort and a good fit, give this shoe a try.
Pros
  • Comfortable footbed
  • Stretchy upper
  • Protective rubber toe cap
  • Odor control properties
  • Lots of color choices
Cons
  • Works for most with bunions

2. Teva Tirra

This athletic outdoor shoe is a favorite for comfort and style. With a heel of 1.5 “, the Tirra is not too tall but still gives you a little height boost. The adjustable velcro straps give you the freedom to adjust the fit for your needs. They have grippy lugs for outdoor traction, so when you are looking for a comfy outdoor shoe.
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Versatile Comfort
Take this footwear on your next walk or casual event and keep your feet super comfortable. The Tirra has a cushioned footbed to absorb shock when you walk. And the rubber sole adds to your comfort with every step.

Stand-up Support
The Teva Tirra sandals have cushy arch support and a molded midsole for the support you need. Plus the three adjustable straps let you adjust the fit around your ankle and across the top of your foot.

Cost and Value
This shoe is in the low to medium range for this list. The Tirra is a great value for the price when you are looking for comfort, support and a good selection of colors.
Pros
  • Comfortable style
  • Firm sole
  • Excellent traction 
  • Fast drying stretchable upper
Cons
  • Some say top strap rubs

3. Vionic Tide II

This great shoe for bunions has style and comfort rolled into one. The EVA midsole to reduces stress on your knees, ankles, and feet. To reduce friction against your skin, the toe most is made of a woven material and the strap has a foam lining. This low-heeled sandal gives you all day comfort with Orthaheel technology to form to your foot.
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Versatility
These flip-flops come in several stylish colors and a few fun patterns too. Wear them with shorts or cropped pants. The Tide II sandal is even dressy enough to wear with casual skirts and dresses.

Comfortable Support
The Tide II has a comfortable footbed and heel cups to cradle your feet while you walk. These heel cups also support and stabilize your foot to help give you a natural stride.

Cost and Value
This shoe is on the low end of the price range for this top 10 list. The Vionic Tide II is a good value for the money when you need cushioning support and some variety in your shoe wardrobe.
Pros
  • Footbed hugs your foot for comfort and support
  • Versatile for casual and semi-casual wear
  • Lots of colors
  • Comfortable toe post and upper strap
Cons
  • Runs large - many order a ½ size down

4. Saucony ProGrid Integrity ST2

4. Saucony ProGrid Integrity ST2
This athletic shoe is big on comfort with lots of cozy features, including a stretchy forefoot and extra room in the front of the shoe. This gives your toes some extra room to move as you walk. The ProGrid Integrity is known for its cushioning and comfort to let you enjoy your walk or keep you going during daily activities.
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Cushioning Comfort
The extra space in the front keeps your toes from being constricted as you walk. And the padded collar and tongue add to the comfortable fit of the ProGrid Integrity. A molded, compressed midsole provides responsive return while you are on your feet.

Lightweight
The compressed midsole of the ProGrid Integrity is made of lightweight EVA material to avoid extra weight. Plus the durable sole does not have a stability lip, so that also reduces the weight of this shoe.

Cost and Value
The ProGrid Integrity ST2 is on the lower end of the price range for this review. With all of the comfort features plus its lightweight properties, this shoe is a good value for the price.
Pros
  • Proprietary heel ProGrid for support
  • Comfortable for walking
  • Roomy toe box
  • Removable insert
  • Comfy sockliner
Cons
  • Limited colors
  • Limited narrow sizes

5. Brooks Addiction

5. Brooks Addiction
This athletic shoe gives you a MoGo midsole for extra cushioning and a springy energy return when you walk. The Addition also has HydroFlow® technology in the midsole for additional shock absorption in the heel and forefoot. Plus the leather upper stretches to break-in to your foot and provides flexibility as you walk. Be aware that the Addition does have a rollbar at the inner arch to control pronation.
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Flexible Shock Absorption
The extra cushioning features in the Addiction keep your feet comfortable when you are on them whether you are walking or working. The S-257™ Cushsole gives you cushy but flexible support so you can keep going.

Comfy Support
The supple upper hugs your foot to give you support where it is needed, but still has plenty of room in the toe box. The roll bar at the inner arch help control any promotion issues and provides additional support.

Cost and Value
This shoe is on the higher end of the price range for this review. If you are looking for extra support and cushioning to absorb shock during your walk or daily activities, these may be the shoes for you.
Pros
  • Removable sockliner
  • Excellent traction and skid control
  • Durable leather
  • Sturdy balance features
  • Works with orthodics
Cons
  • Few color choices

6. Alegria Classic Clog

6. Alegria Classic Clog
This casual clog comes in fun colors and prints to jazz up your shoe collection. The roomy, square toe box gives you plenty of room for your toes to spread out. The buckle on this Alegria Clog lets you adjust the fit across the top of your foot for comfort.
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Comfortable Ergonomic Footbed
Alegria’s patented footbed is made of memory foam, soft cork, and polyurethane and has a leather lining to top it off. This design combined with a rocker outsole hugs your foot to reduce stress on your back, legs, and hips.

Fun Patterns and Colors
In addition to the classic blacks and browns, this Classic Clog offers many different colors, patterns, and embossings for a little variety in your shoe wardrobe. And the dressy buckle adds a little more interest to this clog.

Cost and Value
This clog is one of the higher priced shoes on this top 10 list. When you need something very comfortable and durable along with some color and pattern choices, this clog is a good value.
Pros
  • Ergonomically designed footbed
  • Roomy toe box
  • Lots of colors and patterns
  • Rocker outsole 
  • Supports custom orthotics
Cons
  • Some mention a squeak when walking

7. Birkenstock Florida

7. Birkenstock Florida
This 3-strap sandal comes in many colors and finishes. With a wider toe box and a leather upper, this sandal gives your toes plenty of room. A raised toe bar helps your foot naturally grip as you walk for stability. The suede-lined, cork footbed will take the shape of your foot for custom support and comfort.
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Custom Comfort
Birkenstock is known for their contoured footbed that is created for your comfort. The soft footbed is made of suede, form, jute, and cork. Jute allows moisture wicking and keeps your feet dry, and over time, the cork forms to the shape of your foot so you get a custom footbed.

Secure Support
Three straps on the Florida let you adjust the fit to give you snug control. The footbed has a raised toe bar to naturally grip as you walk. And the deep heel cup cradles your foot and provides extra cushioning and protection.

Cost and Value
On the higher end of the price range for this top 10, the Birkenstock Florida is known for durability. When you need something that will last and gives you a custom fit footbed, this sandal is a good value.
Pros
  • Soft, comfortable footbed
  • Adjustable straps
  • Shock absorbing sole
  • Roomy toe box
  • Can be re-soled
Cons
  • Break-in period required 

8. Hot Chocolate Mary Jane

8. Hot Chocolate Mary Jane
If you are looking for some really fun shoes, check out the Hot Chocolate line. They have a wide toe box and a low heel for just a little lift without being too high. The cushioned upper and fabric inner gives you a comfortable fit. And the higher shaft and strap keep these mary jane’s securely on your feet. Check out the whole product line for a variety of colors and designs.
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Snazzy Designs
For a comfortable shoe, this line has many colors and designs to brighten up your shoe wardrobe. You will find a few designs with a fresh look on traditional designs, but mostly you will see unique patterns and bright colors.

Casual Support
The low heel works with casual or semi-casual dress. And you get additional support with the ankle strap and higher sides.

Cost and Value
This shoe is in the medium price range for this top 10 review and most of the Hot Chocolate mary jane’s fall into the same price range. You may need to spend extra money on an insert for cushioning. If you find a design that works with several items in your wardrobe, this shoe is a good value.
Pros
  • Fun patterns and designs
  • Low heels
  • Roomy toe box
  • Supportive ankle strap
Cons
  • Some need an insert for extra cushioning

9. Mizuno Wave Rider 20

9. Mizuno Wave Rider 20
This sneaker is great for people with bunions. It has a U4icX Strobel lining for comfort and to avoid irritation and a fit that adjusts to your foot with an engineered mesh upper. You will also appreciate the Cloudwave technology that helps your running, the Dynamotion Fit that keeps the shoe moving with you and the removable insole.
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Dynamotion Fit
The upper in the Wave Rider 20 is made from 3 panels that are designed to fit snugly to your foot rather than forcing your foot to fit into the shoe. It will stay with you as you run as well, without creating unnecessary pressure on your bunions.

Cloudwave technology
Mizuno’s Cloudwave technology offers you a more cushioned, responsive and smoother ride while running that many other shoes. The midsole is cushioned and springs back to give your foot some return energy for every strike.

Cost and Value
This is one of the most expensive shoes on our list but well worth every penny to have a shoe you can run in that won’t aggravate or irritate your bunions. It is a high tech shoe as Mizuno shoes are, that will provide you with a great and durable experience.
Pros
  • Great traction
  • Cloudwave technology
  • Responsive midsole
  • U4icX Strobel lining
  • Dynamotion fit
  • Removable insole
Cons
  • Sizes run narrow

10. Orthofeet Springfield

10. Orthofeet Springfield
This shoe is specifically designed for bunion relief and orthotic support. It features a premium orthotic insole with great arch support and heel cushioning, and Easy Gait system and an extra deep design. Its Mary Jane style makes it look like a typical shoe rather than an orthotic as well and is appropriate for any venue.
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Non-binding design
The non-binding upper has a deep depth design and a wide toe box that takes the pressure off your bunions and hammer toes. It also has a seam-free lining which is padded for extra comfort and to eliminate pressure points.

Oh so much comfort
Every detail of this shoe was designed with your comfort in mind. From the arch support to the padded lining, the lightweight, air-cushioned sole to the width of the toe box. The entire shoe is designed to give you the comfort and painless fit that will help you move through your day.

Cost and Value
These shoes are in the upper range of prices. However, it is designed to relieve pressure and pain in your bunions and to otherwise provide extraordinary comfort and functionality. It is a durable shoe that will help relieve pain wherever it is in your foot.
Pros
  • Premium orthotic insole
  • Anatomical arch support
  • Lightweight sole
  • Wider toe box
  • Non-binding upper
  • Excellent cushion
Cons
  • Bulky look

When looking for the best shoes for bunions, the goal was to find different styles of shoes that give you a few options. Shoes that keep your feet comfortable whether you are working, walking, exercising or just out and about are what this list is all about. There are many styles of shoes out there that will not hurt your bunions. This list and criteria give you some options that are comfortable for most and a few things to consider as you are shopping for shoes that won’t bother you.

 

Criteria Used to Evaluate the Best Shoes for Bunions

Bunions & Pain Prevention

While bunion prevention is the way to go, if you already have bunions, you are looking for ways to prevent pain in the forefoot.  When looking for shoes that will not hurt your bunions, look for

  • Wide toe boxes: Shoes that have a pointed toe or are too narrow at the toe will pinch your bunions. If the toe box is rounded or square, give the shoes a try. Toe boxes with a pointy or V-shaped toe box will likely pinch your toes and irritate your bunion.
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  • Low or no heel height: High heels make your foot slide to the front of the shoe. When this happens, your toes are squeezed together which aggravates your bunions. To keep this from happening, stick with shoes that are not more than 2 inches high.
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  • Padded insoles: Padded insoles provide cushion to your feet which helps to prevent pain.  Look for shoes that have either a good amount of cushion in the forefoot or have a molded insole that allows your toes to lay side by side without compression.
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  • Straps that avoid the edge of the toe: If a shoe has thin straps near on or your bunion, you are going to feet pressure and pain in that area.  Choose shoes with wider straps to avoid this problem.  Be careful though that your strappy sandals don’t push the toes together.

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Fit and Support

To ensure the right fit and support for bunions, look for the following:

  • Stretchy upper: To pamper your bunions, your shoes should have uppers made of stretchy material. Soft leather or fabric materials have some give and will stretch to form to your foot. Stay away from ‘man-made’ uppers that look like leather, because synthetics are less likely to stretch.
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  • Adjustable closures: Shoes that have adjustable straps or laces may help you tighten or loosen the fit as needed for your feet.
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  • Snug, not tight fit:  Shoes with supportive features are a must if you have bunions. When shopping for shoes, look for extra cushioning and features that keep your foot snug inside the shoe. When your feet slide inside your shoe, you risk rubbing and irritating your bunions.
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  • Solid heel boxes: What do your heels have to do with bunions?  The less your heel is able to move inside the shoe, the less the rest of your foot will move.  A flexible heel box means your foot is insecure and can rub against the sides and front of the shoe.
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  • Arch support: Arch support is important if you have bunions because your foot will be cradled in a more natural position that prevents your foot from “flattening” forward.

 

Color and Pattern Choices

Okay, this one doesn’t have anything to do with your bunions. But, it does help you feel like you have some choices. Foot health is important, but so is feeling good. And if a shoe can improve your mood and not be detrimental to your feet, it’s worth a second look.  

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

Q: What is a bunion?
A: A bunion is a painful, bony bump on the outside of your big toe. When your big toe starts to angle inward toward your second toe, it causes a bump. That bump can have redness or inflammation. They are often sore and painful. Some people also experience numbness or burning in the area.

Q: How can I treat my bunion?
A: There are several non-surgical and surgical treatments for bunions. Wearing shoes that don’t aggravate your bunions are a good start. Non-prescription bunion pads and ice can reduce irritation and reduce swelling. The best advice will come from your doctor about how to treat your bunions.

Q: Why do shoes that used to fit well and be comfortable not feel the same?
A: As you age, your feet grow and change shape. So a brand or style of shoe that used to feel great may no longer work for your foot shape.

Q: Can inserts help my bunions?
A: There are inserts that can help relieve the pain and pressure of bunions.  Using inserts and orthotics that properly support your feet can help to prevent bunions and help prevent them from worsening.  You should talk to your podiatrist about which inserts are right for you.

Q: My parents both have bunions.  Am I going to get them too?
A: We don’t know but we can tell you that bunions can run in families so the earlier you begin to take care of your feet, the better.  To help prevent bunions, were shoes that support your feet properly, exercise your feet by learning to pick up small objects with your toes, avoid shoes that cramp your feet and wear shoes with low or no heel.

Sources

  1. Health Essentials, 7 Ways to Ease Your Bunions Without Surgery,
  2. May Clinic, Bunions,


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