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The 20 Best Sandals for Bunions, According to a Podiatrist

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Of all the foot pains a person can have, bunions are an especially painful one to work with. These bony protrusions often occur “when the big toe joint loses its natural position, and over time, deviates laterally,” says Dr. Mark Mendeszoon, a podiatrist and owner of Achilles Running Shop in Pennsylvania. Meaning, the tip of the big toe ends up pulling toward the smaller toes, forcing the joint at the base of the big toe to stick out.

What’s to blame for this condition? Alongside biomechanics — how you walk and where the pressure goes — and good old genetics, those stylish yet unsupportive shoes you love could be one of the main culprits. Shoes that are overly tight in the toe box and/or that put your foot at a suboptimal angle (like super pointy pumps, for example), can cause or exacerbate bunions.

In severe cases, some people may opt for surgery, where a doctor would remove swollen and painful tissue and realign the bone, according the Mayo Clinic. But, there are some non-invasive ways of alleviating bunion pain, like wearing more comfortable shoes and sandals that won’t irritate the painful protrusions. Before your next footwear purchase, there are a few things you need to know to look for in the best shoes for bunions.

Top Sandals for Bunions

What to look for in the best sandals for bunions

  • A solid fit: By their nature, sandals have less meat to them and generally have to work much harder to provide the kind of support that something like a sneaker can. Sandals are fine to wear periodically, says Mendeszoon, but make sure they fit your foot well both in length and width. This gives your foot room to spread out and keep your toes from cramping up together.
  • Flexible fabrics: Materials with some give, like soft leather or stretchy fabric, won’t put excess pressure on bunions. Soft interior materials also help reduce irritation. Additionally, Mendeszoon recommends looking at cork materials, which mold to your foot over time.
  • A supportive footbed: As with any other comfortable shoe you’d buy, look for sandals with supportive footbeds that help minimize fatigue, stress and strain on the whole foot and won’t dig into areas of pain, Dr. Mendeszoon says. If you also suffer from specific foot conditions like flat feet, wide feet, high arches or hammertoes, finding options with soft, supportive footbeds is especially important (although Mendeszoon suggests that people with multiple foot issues, in particular, should avoid wearing sandals all the time). As a rule of thumb, hiking sandals are usually great warm-weather options, as they’re built to provide lasting, durable support.

In terms of aesthetics, the words “bunions” and “orthopedic sandals” don’t exactly scream New York Fashion Week, but you don’t have to settle for clunky, unstylish shoes just to work around your feet. In fact, luckily for you, functional footwear is a whole high-fashion trend unto itself. Cute sandals of all kinds (even wedge sandals) that leave enough room for toes and support feet are a very real possibility. Start with our list of the 19 best sandals for bunions to find your perfect pair.

Oofos Ooahh Slides

Best Slides for Bunions

  • Size Range: 5-16
  • Materials: Foam
  • Colors Available: Black, navy, green, slate, blue,

Oofos Ooahh Slide sandal is an uber-comfy slide has the American Podiatric Medical Association’s stamp of approval for encouraging foot health. The super-soft texture is meant to be supportive but also provide much-needed relief from pressure placed on your feet and joints, which is important when you have bunions. If you work from home often, switch to wearing these every few hours instead of going barefoot to provide some easy foot recovery.

What reviewers say: “I have neuropathy, flat footed with serious bunions. My feet gave been in constant pain for at least 6 years now. These sandals have made a remarkable difference. After a day of wearing these I have very little pain. This is a miracle for me. These sandals are incredibly supportive and hug my feet in all the right places. The spasms in my feet and calves has also subsided.” 

Oofos Slide
CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon


Birkenstock Gizeh Birko-Flor Sandals

Best Thong-Style Sandal for Bunions

  • Size Range: 4-11.5 in regular and wide widths
  • Materials: Acrylic and polyamide felt, cork, and suede
  • Colors Available: Black, gold, pearl, silver, white, brown, navy
  • Extra Details: Arch support

This thong-style Birkenstock Gizeh sandal won’t irritate your bunions, and features suede-lined, contoured footbeds with arch support that only get more comfortable as you wear them. The footbed is also crafted from 100% renewable and sustainable cork, so buying these is a good choice for the planet as well as your feet. Other highlights include durable, shock-absorbing EVA outsoles, a deep heel cup to help distribute body weight more evenly and an adjustable buckle to fine-tune the fit. Birkenstock shoes are consistently recommended by foot health experts because of their wide, supportive base that won’t crush toes.

What reviewers say: “I love/loved everything about these…they’re comfortable, mold to my feet and provide great support. However, they only lasted two summers before cracking on the sides and the sole is completely worn down. I’ve worn Birks for years. I have pairs that have lasted for years. None have have ever cracked on the sides like this pair. The quality has gone straight down the tubes. It’s upsetting because it use to be a great supportive shoe.”

Birkenstock Gizeh Birko-Flor
CREDIT: Courtesy of Zappos


Aerosoles Lucas Lug Platform Slide Sandal

Best Lug-soled Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 5-12
  • Materials: Leather and synthetics
  • Colors Available: Brown, gunmetal, black
  • Extra Details: Lug sole

Aerosoles Lucas Lug Platform Slide Sandal are a great option for those who want to get in on the chunky, lug-sole sandal trend but without sacrificing their feet. Aerosole’s signature support won’t feel flimsy in the slightest and the thick, single leather strap across the top looks great with wide-leg linen pants and sundresses.

Aerosoles
CREDIT: Courtesy of Nordstrom


Eileen Fisher Sport Platform Sandal

Best Sneaker-like Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 5-11
  • Materials: Leather and rubber
  • Colors Available: Light brown, platinum, black, gold, orange
  • Extra Details: Sneaker-inspired sole

Eileen Fisher Sport Platform Sandal have the secret in the soles, which are designed to feel like a sneaker — even though the rest of the shoe is clearly a sandal. The supportive footbed paired with the secure straps make for a shoe that looks cute and won’t irritate bunions. Those thick straps might look like design but they also make sure your foot stays in place as you move, preventing any rubbing or hitting on painful areas of your foot.

What reviewers say: “I purchased these for my Mexico trip coming up and I’m so excited! They are very comfortable with arch support and so cute!! Very nicely made and quality. Love the back zipper! They seem like they’ll do great walking for long periods of time. I’m a true size 7 and they fit true to size. I’d say size up if you’re in between sizes!”

Eileen Fisher
CREDIT: Courtesy of Nordstrom


FitFlop Eloise Espadrille Wedges Sandals

Best Espadrille Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 5-11
  • Materials: Leather and synthetic
  • Colors Available: Beige, black, tan
  • Extra Details: Ergonomically designed footbed

FitFlop Eloise Back-Strap Espadrille Wedges are some of the most stylish sandals we’ve seen that don’t skip a second of foot health or arch support details. Fitflop — one of Mendezsoon’s brands of choice — starts with a biomechanically correct footbed and then designs the shoe from there. These will save your feet and, more importantly, all of your very good summer outfits.

What reviewers say: “I had a bunion surgery and broke my toes this year. My doctor recommended this brand because I don’t want to live in my hokas when I go out. Wide enough and no blisters. I was doubtful but wore them I full day (over 12 hours) with no issues. Definitely worth a shot!” 

Fitflop Espadrilles
CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon


Teva Hurricane Drift Sandals

Best Outdoor Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 5-12
  • Materials: Vegan EVA
  • Colors Available: White, sand, birch, black, lavender, cyan blue, green, aloe, pink, red, lavender blue, rose tan, yellow, mango
  • Extra Details:

Teva’s adventure-ready Hurricane Drift sandal also leaves room for bunions and features hook-and-loop straps to stabilize and support your foot while walking on uneven terrain. Tevas are Mendeszoon-approved, and these are particularly great if you experience more rubbing or pressure in a heavy shoe. At seven ounces, they’re super lightweight and even designed to float should you decide to take them waterside. These come highly recommended by Amazon reviewers for being easy to wear and pack.

What reviewers say: “I’ve been wanting Teva’s forever and thought I would give this simple style a shot. I absolutely love them! I have more of a narrow foot and am between a 6-7 in shoes. I ordered a 6 and they fit perfectly! Definitely will order more colors and styles in the future!” 

CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon


Vionic Cindy Sandals

Best Podiatrist-Designed Sandal for Bunions

  • Size Range: 5-12
  • Materials: Leather and cork
  • Colors Available: Black and tan
  • Extra Details: Footbed designed by podiatrists

Vionic’s Cindy sandal features a soft leather construction that seamlessly conforms to the shape of your bunion. It also includes a podiatrist-designed footbed that promotes stability and even weight distribution to prevent any pressure on your big toe. As an added bonus, the brand allows a 30-day wear test, so you can try these out for a month to be sure they’re comfortable before you commit to owning them.

What reviewers say: “Got these sandals a couple of days ago. Love them! I have a bunion and my big toe wants to turn over. These not only give me the arch support but keeps my toe in place. They are also cute…Bonus!”

vionic cindy sandal
CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon


Dansko Racquel Sandals

Best Sandals for Bunions and Standing All Day

  • Size Range: 5.5-12
  • Materials: EVA, rubber, recycled webbing
  • Colors Available: Black, blue, herringbone, yellow, sky multi
  • Extra Details: Extra support in Dansko Natural Arch technology

The Dansko Racquel sandal is built for ultimate comfort. The adjustable straps around both the top of the foot and the ankle sit softly around your bunions rather than irritate them. Dankso is one of North Carolina-based podiatrist Jane Anderson’s favorite brands for work shoes, especially to wear at jobs that require you to stand all day, thanks to the label’s stabilizing arch technology that keeps your foot in a supported, neutral position.

What reviewers say: “If you have heel pain, issues with walking due to poor knees and/or heels. This is the shoe for you. For me the only shoes I buy are Dankso. Basically “ortho” shoes that are cute.”

CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon


Cole Haan Mojave Slide Sandal

  • Size Range: 5-11
  • Materials: Leather and rubber
  • Colors Available: Black and ivory

Cole Haan Mojave Slide Sandal is a simple, easy purchase for a summer slide that doesn’t destroy your feet. They might be a little pricier than you’re used to seeing for a slide, but you can rest assured it is worth it for the quality. Cheaper shoes have tougher constructions and lesser quality materials that don’t support and bend with the foot the way these do.

What reviewers say: “Great sandals – comfy and stylish. They run a tad big. I usually wear a 9, but the 8.5 fit better. These will be a summer staple, definitely recommend.” 

Cole Haan Mojave
CREDIT: Courtesy of Nordstrom


Aetrex Jess Sandals

Best Sandals for Bunions With Arch Support

  • Size Range: 35W-42W
  • Materials: Leather, synthetic leather, microfiber and foam
  • Colors Available: Smoke
  • Extra Details: Built-in orthotic arch support

This strappy Aetrex Jess sandal is designed with an orthotic system built right into the foundation of the shoe. The expertly-designed arch support stabilizes and aligns feet in a way that helps alleviate pain from bunions and other foot ailments, too, like plantar fasciitis and arch pain. The memory foam footbed has just the right amount of softness and molds to your foot for lasting ease of wear. The straps are adjustable, making them great for working around bunions that are acting up.

What reviewers say: “I have very bad feet and walking around all day is just miserable for me with most shoes. I went on vacation and spent 3 full days walking and my feet didn’t hurt at all. I will be ordering more of these shoes.”

CREDIT: Courtesy of Aetrex


Naot Verbena Sandals

Best Dress Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 4-11
  • Materials: Cork, latex and suede
  • Colors Available: Black, beige, olive, maple brown, slate, navy, brown
  • Extra Details: Slip-resistant

These Noat Verbena sandals are designed with a soft suede upper, adjustable leather ankle straps and breathable cork footbed with arch support that can be removed to accommodate custom orthotics. They’re offered in a variety of colorways to choose from and lend a subtle boost of height, too. A little bit of height puts your foot in a supported position and can help relieve pressure put on pain points while you walk.

What reviewers say: “These sandals fit my foot perfectly and were comfortable from the start–no break in period required. Yeah!! I have been wearing them for a month and the footbed feels like I’m walking on a cloud and is already taking the shape of my foot. The padded ankle strap feels so cushy. I’m ordering another pair in a different color today!”

Naot Verbena Sandal
CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon


Chacos Z1 Classic Sandals

Best Hiking Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 5-12 with wide options
  • Materials: Jacquard webbing, rubber, 
  • Colors Available: Black, moss, tie dye, lavender, clay, navy, brown, red, green, blue, and more

Chacos’ Z1 sport sandal is another favorite for the outdoor-inclined and go-to brand of Mendeszoon. It’s probably no surprise that cheap flip-flops aren’t the best bet for promoting proper foot ailment, but these are a solid replacement. Chacos are known for staying on, offering the kind of security that’s ideal for a foot in pain. The jacquard webbing straps wrap around the foot and ankle for sneaker-like support without any of the rubbing.

What reviewers say: “I have wide feet and I was pleasantly surprised to see that these came in a wide! I have another pair of wide Chacos but the straps go around my toe and sometimes it feels uncomfortable and is harder to slip in an out of. These don’t have the toe loop and it makes them easier to put on and take off. This is an original footbed, meaning there will be a break in period, if you don’t want to have to break in your Chacos, buy one with the cloud footbed. I got the tie dye and I couldn’t be happier with them!”

CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon


Everlane Sport Sandals

Best Everyday Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 5-11
  • Materials: Rubber and polyester
  • Colors Available: Brown, black, sand
  • Extra Details: Made from 100% recycled materials

Everlane’s sport sandal has just the right amount of stability and room for bunions without feeling clunky. The cushioned insole is not as high-tech as some versions found in other styles, but that also means this shoe has a sleeker design to it. The velcro straps can be adjusted around any fluctuating foot pain. Plus, the entire shoe, save the hardware, is made from recycled materials.

What reviewers say: “This is my first sport sandal purchase. I wasn’t sure this was my style but I have tried them on with so many things in my closet and they look really great. l fell for these because they are not platform and the sole is low and solid. I don’t feel like I will roll my ankle. The strap placement is flattering on my foot. Extremely comfortable. The footbed is suede or suede like and soft. Get your true size as recommended. Excited to wear these!” 

CREDIT: Courtesy of Everlane


Birkenstock Arizona Sandals

Best Cork Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 4-12.5 with wide options
  • Materials: Leather, cork and suede
  • Colors Available: Black, brown, navy, blue, tan, khaki, iron

We’d be remiss if we didn’t include the ultra-comfy Birkenstock Arizona sandal on our list. Podiatrists, including Mendeszoon, love the moldable cork footbed in Birkenstocks. This shoe specifically has a wide, supportive base for proper toe and foot alignment. Shoes are often made too narrow, but Birkenstock slides are soft but supportive and don’t push up against any painful points.

What reviewers say: “Most comfortable sandals ever! I got the suede and they are the softest of the styles. I have a pair of the other kind and they are nowhere near as comfortable. The regular width size is way to wide for me. I have the buckle on the last hole tightened all the way and they are still too wide. so unless you have really fat feet…get the narrow size.”

CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon


Nisolo Go-To Flatform Sandals

Best Summer Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 5-11
  • Materials: Leather and EVA
  • Colors Available: Almond, brandy, black, bone, black and bone, rose and bone, rose
  • Extra Details: Cushioned insole

The flatform on these Nisolo sandals is the same height all around (one inch), which helps to evenly distribute weight and reduce pressure on the forefoot. The silhouette also feature a wide, open toe and soft, supportive footbed with an adjustable heel strap to help reduce pressure on your feet. It’s made with an airy EVA midsole and shock-absorbing, memory foam insole for the most lightweight kind of support you can get. Plus, the leather upper is water-resistant — ideal for keeping on hand poolside during the summertime.

What reviewers say: “Very comfy sandal!!! Fit true to size and good width.”

CREDIT: Courtesy of Nisolo


Aerosoft Daffodil Sandals

  • Size Range: 5-10
  • Materials: Synthetic leather
  • Colors Available: Brown, green, black
  • Extra Details: Water-resistant material

Aerosost’s Daffodil sandal features a soft, synthetic leather upper that will wrap around your bunion comfortably and provide coverage. Orthotic arch support insoles and a deeper heel cup help aid in proper alignment for enhanced stability. What’s more, the pair is also water-resistant and quick-drying, so you can even wear these when it’s dewy outside without worrying about damaging them.

What reviewers say: “I have purchased this brand before- doesn’t disappoint . Well crafted and the sole is comfortable – no need to break in.” 

Aerosoft Daffodil Sandal 
CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon

 


Vionic Tide Post II Sandals

Best Flip-Flops for Bunions

  • Size Range: 5-12
  • Materials: Rubber, leather and cork
  • Colors Available: Cream, purple, black, orange, pink, gray, red, blush and more
  • Extra Details: Podiatrist-designed footbed and deep heel cup for extra support

Vionic’s Tide Post II sandal is a stellar flip-flop. Not only does it give painful bunions some space to breathe, but it also has arch support and a podiatrist-designed Motion Control footbed, which cups around your heel to prevent your foot from gripping with every step. What’s more, the footbed feels soft to the touch, going gentle on bunions and other foot pains.

What reviewers say: “This is my second pair of these in black. I also have two other colors. I live in Hawaii and ran into trouble with plantar fasciitis after walking around barefoot. Since then I have worn nothing but these except for fancy nights out when I wear a slightly fancy sandal. Hey, I live in Hawaii. I have actually been surprised how my very painful problems have gone away. Sizing of these run a bit large. If you usually wear size 7-1/2, size down to 7, for example. They also last a long time. I won’t wear anything else.”

Vionic Tide Post II Sandals
CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon


Bronax Pillow Slippers

Best Affordable Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 4-14.5, unisex fit
  • Materials: EVA
  • Colors Available: Black, brown, blue, green, pink, purple, white, yellow, orange, and more

Bronax Pillow slippers have been all over the Internet because of their cloud-like construction. Similar to a recovery slide, they have a super-soft construction that takes the pressure away from your joints and other pain points. These are really soft and malleable, which makes them a great shoe to have around on days when your bunions are especially painful. We also like them for wearing around the house.

What reviewers say: “Bought these shoes after seeing them all over Tik Tok and they really are great! The most comfortable shoes I own, it really is like walking on clouds! I usually wear a 8.5 and I got the 7.5-8.5 size and they fit perfectly. Highly recommend and way cheaper than the name brand!”

CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon


Vagabond Erin Sandals

Most Fashionable Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 6-12
  • Materials: Leather and rubber
  • Colors Available: Off-white and black

Vagabond’s Erin sandals are a secure foundation for hurting feet. They have a little bit of height to get your feet at a comfortable position, with a molded sole that keeps your foot secure and stabilized all day. They’re made with high-quality leather materials, which means they might take a minute to break in but mold to your feet as they do. They’re the kind of supportive shoes you’ll look forward to wearing out to dinner.

What reviewers say: “I bought these sandals to wear on an European vacation , lots of walking! They are extremely comfortable from the first day, did not need to be broken in.” 

CREDIT: Courtesy of Vagabond


Dr. Scholl’s Shoes Sheena Wedge Sandals

Best Wedge Sandals for Bunions

  • Size Range: 6-11
  • Materials: Leather and rubber
  • Colors Available: Oyster and black
  • Extra Details: Contoured insole

Dr. Scholl’s Shoes Sheena Wedge Sandal bring that Dr. Scholl’s energy into a slight heel that won’t put your foot at a dramatic (and painful) angle. The insole is contoured to fit your foot without forcing your foot to fit into it. The soles are flexible, too, which helps them move with you rather than against you.

What reviewers say: “Obsessed! I had plantar fascia surgery 16 weeks ago, and I am still having trouble wear ANY shoes. My husband and I are about to go on a cruise and I NEED nice/comfortable wedges. These are cute, and comfortable. I just placed an order or the same ones in a different color.”

Dr. Scholls wedges
CREDIT: Courtesy of Amazon

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