If you leap out of bed, only to want to leap back in again because of a stabbing pain in your heels, then you may well be suffering from Plantar Fasciitis. In this article, you will find the best Plantar Fasciitis shoes for women to stay stylish AND pain-free.
Read on to find out what to look out for if choosing shoes for plantar fasciitis, along with some of the best options in stores now for plantar fasciitis sandals, flats, heels, sneakers and boots.
The good news is that beauty, or fashion, as the saying goes, does not have to be painful!
There are plenty of Plantar Fasciitis shoes available which offer support without looking ugly.
No one will ever know that you’re wearing heel or arch support shoes.
What is Plantar Fasciitis?
First of all, what is plantar fasciitis, and could you be suffering from this condition? A common foot pain problem among runners, plantar fasciitis also affects many of us as we hit middle age because our feet naturally start to widen and flatten, putting extra pressure on the ligaments in the foot.
Your feet are also places where you start to lose some padding (if only we could remove some ‘padding’ from elsewhere and put it in our heels!) so your heel bone isn’t as well protected as it was when you were younger.
Do you need plantar fasciitis shoes?
While plantar fasciitis shoes won’t cure the condition, they can help to avoid further damage, so it’s definitely worth investing in a pair to safeguard your long-term foot health.
How to choose the best shoes for heel pain
Podiatrists have even coined the term shoe-icide when they talk about wearing ultra high heels.
Stilettos are a big no-no if you suffer from Plantar Fasciitis as they raise your foot arch to an unnatural angle.
But, flats are equally problematic.
They offer no support for your arches so your Plantar Fascia (the tissues in your foot), can’t distribute your weight and movement properly.
What to look out for when choosing shoes for plantar fasciitis
There really is no one-size-fits-all because everyone’s feet are unique.
However, these are some things to look for when searching for comfortable shoes if you suffer from plantar fasciitis.
- good arch support
- A heel with a broad base, rather than narrow heels, to absorb movement. Take a look at these comfortable heels
- removable insoles so you can use them if they work for you and take them out if they don’t
- a deep heel cup to keep your heel in the correct position
- cushioned footbeds to offer comfort and keep your foot where it should be
- heels of no more than two to three inches (no stilettos!)
- A shoe which offers a rocking motion to reduce heel stress. Fitflop shoes are a classic example which rock to absorb stress. Plus they now come in many more styles than flip flops.
Gabbi (above) wears an on-trend pair of platform sandals.
If you like her style and need plantar fasciitis support, you can get a similar pair of sandals from L’Amour des Pieds.
Shoes for heel pain – What to wear to get Plantar Fasciitis support
Okay, so you can’t wear high heels and you can’t wear flats! So what can you wear if you need Plantar Fasciitis footwear?
Shoes which offer good arch support are vital.
While everyone’s foot shape is different and you may have to try a few before you find your favorite brand, there are now lots of arch support shoes which look trendy.
Below you’ll find my favorite shoes for Plantar Fasciitis.
But, don’t forget to tell me what your favorite shoes and brands are in the comments.
I also wanted to mention that we have a separate article on arch support shoes as well, which includes a complete roundup of all brands that offer arch support shoes.
Good shoes for plantar fasciitis
There are so many stylish arch support shoes available nowadays and they really don’t look any different to ‘normal’ shoes.
It’s often advisable to start to look at comfort shoes even before you suffer any foot pain, as a preventative measure.
You will find that same plantar fasciitis shoes your friend swears by simply won’t work for you so you may have to try a few before finding the brand which best suits your feet.
Sandals for plantar fasciitis
Just because you suffer from Plantar Fasciitis, that doesn’t mean you need to miss out on the latest sandal trends, either for evening wear or for warmer weather (depending on where you are in the world).
Thankfully, arch support shoes are a lot hipper these days and comfort sandals incorporate the latest trends including chunky soles, metallics and gladiator styles.
1. Black wedges for plantar faciitis
Wedges are always an on-trend option for summer. These black wedges from Vionic are a timeless option you can wear year after year.
You may find they’re a good option if you have plantar fasciitis as they have a podiatrist-designed footbed.
2. Snakeprint sandals
Talking about timeless trends, a reptile or animal print is always a good choice. These Comfortiva sandals have a pillow-top footbed and arch support.
3. Fitflop slingbacks
FitFlops are a good brand to take a look at. Because they provide a rocking motion, this can help to reduce the pressure on your heel.
4. Leopard print sandals
These sandals from Aetrex are particularly on-trend this summer because of the asymmetric detailing. Take a look at the best spring and summer shoe trends for women over 40 for more inspiration.
5. Cage detail sandals
With an easy-breezy cage style which should keep your feet cool and stylish, these Earth sandals have a cushioned footbed and arch support.
6. Trendy lug-sole sandals
While many of the styles on the runways were far too ~clumpy~ for my taste, this Naot Verbena style strikes the right balance between being on-trend yet also being flattering and adding some edge to your looks.
Plantar fasciitis shoes: Flats
I know! I also said flats were also a no-no. But, these aren’t just any flats.
Below, you will find flats with arch support and cushioned insoles which will provide more support than a normal flip-flop or sandal, for example, making them a great option if you have plantar fasciitis.
Mules, loafers and ballet flats are on trend and look great with jeans or cropped pants.
If you do opt for flats, you will need to make sure they have great arch support and heel support.
For more style inspiration on how to wear your pair of loafers, see our article on the best loafers for women over 40.
1. Ballet flats
They have the American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) Seal of Acceptance and they have an elastic heel counter, which provides extra support at the back of the shoe.
2. D’Orsay flats
A pair of pointed flats can be a beautiful option for both daytime and evening. They’re also a great option if yo are looking at tips to look taller and slimmer (only if you want to, of course).
This Naturalizer Samantha style can usually be found year-after-year in a variety of colors so you can be sure they will remain on trend. Plus, they have good built-in heel support.
3. Animal print flats
A pair of animal print flats would look lovely with your skinny jeans for spring and summer. Vionic’s Minna pair have removable inserts so you can get the comfort-level right for you.
4. Pointed strappy flats
A contemporary style with a nod to the Mary Jane trend, yet with a pointed rather than round toe, these Naturalizer Hana flats come in a wide choice of colors so you should find a shade you like.
They have a contoured footbed with heel support.
Can you wear heels if you have plantar fasciitis?
Whether you have plantar fasciitis or not, you may find that a pair of shoes with a small heel works best for you.
As we are heading into the season where you may wish to wear a heel for summer events or on your vacation, here are two comfort heels options for you.
Also take a look at the best comfortable and stylish heels.
1. Classic black sandals
I can’t think of anything these black Earth Murano sandals won’t go with. Although, if you don’t want to opt for black, you could decide on the tan or snakeprint versions instead.
The wider heel base should make them comfortable to walk in, along with the energy-return footbed which will help to reduce the pressure on your feet.
2. Comfy kitten heels
A narrower heel can be harder to wear if you have plantar fasciitis. But if you do prefer a narrow heel, I would look at kitten heels rather than stilettos. The good news is they are skill bang on trend.
This Minnie style from Vionic has orthotic support.
Dress shoes for plantar fasciitis
Yes, I know I said you couldn’t wear heels and I’ve already given you some heel options. Now I’m giving you more!
What I really meant was not to wear those skyscraper heels of four inches or more if you suffer from plantar fasciitis.
There are plenty of comfortable options out there if you want to wear heels for a dinner party or, well, just because you want to.
You may find it more comfortable to choose a lower heel, like a kitten heel, or a block heel.
A block heel like both of these below will make sure that your weight is more evenly distributed so won’t put as much strain on your feet.
1. Heel-detail block heel
One of the many trends which stood out on the catwalks for 2020 was shoes with heel detailing, whether the heels were an unusual shape, or featured color or pattern like these Vionic Natalie pumps.
2. Two-tone pumps
A two-tone pump is an absolute classic, whether you opt for a flat ballet pump or a heeled option.
These Evolve Rainie pumps come in three color pathways and have an energy-return system to take the pressure off your feet.
Plantar fasciitis boot options
There are some fabulous shoe or ankle booties in stores now, which are ideal for transitional weather as spring gets closer.
Booties can be a great option if you need some ankle support as well as arch support.
They add casual chic to an outfit and look great paired with jeans, or with a summer dress for transitioning from winter to spring.
If you opt for paler colors such as taupe or grey, rather than black, you will instantly get a more spring-like vibe.
Or you can opt to add your black booties with black opaque tights to transform a summer dress into a piece you can wear during the spring months too.
Brenda (above) opts for black booties and layers her coats for a modern vibe.
Here is a similar pair of boots from Vionic.
A flat bootie will give your outfit more of a casual feel.
But, your feet will probably thank you if you choose a style with a one to two inch heel rather than opting for a completely flat boot.
The Born style below could appeal if you have a natural or bohemian style as they have an earthy kind of style complete with a subtle tassel. They also have a cushioned footbed with arch support, but no one would ever know you had chosen your boots for comfort rather than style.
Best walking shoes for plantar fasciitis
While embarking on a long walk or a hike may seem like the stuff of nightmares if you suffer from the heel pain that comes with plantar fasciitis, if you opt for specially-designed walking shoes which provide the support you need, you will find that your feet are aligned correctly and you can walk in comfort.
You could either opt for athletic shoes, or special walking shoes.
You may also like to take a look at this article on the best sneakers for plantar fasciitis.
1.Waterproof comfort shoes
These Jambu sandals could be a great choice if you will be sightseeing this summer, particularly if you might be hiking through streams on a trek, for example.
They have memory-foam cushioning and a non-slip sole.
2. Walking sandals
If you’re thinking you may do some sight-seeing, but you aren’t going for a full-on hike, how about this Beverly style from Naot, which should see you through from day to night.
They would look just as good worn with shorts or cropped pants as they would with a dress.
Best sneakers for plantar fasciitis
Sneakers are always a good option for comfort, whether you have plantar fasciitis or not. Plus, they’re still very on trend.
You may find that like Eleni (above), you like to have a style of shoes which offers some stylish heel support. She has opted for sneakers with a little bit of a wedge at the heel.
Check out this similar pair of wedge sneakers from Geox.
1.Classic white sneakers
A pair of white sneakers is always a good addition to any closet, and is a good pair of shoes to think about if you are putting together a capsule closet.
This pair by FitFlop benefit from the fact they have a rocking motion, which reduces the pressure on your heel while walking.
2. Gold sneakers
If you want a pair of sneakers which go with everything, metallics are another good option. While silver has been on-trend for many years, and is still definitely a stylish option, gold was seen most on the spring and summer 2020 runways.
These Naturalizer sneakers have a contoured footbed which includes heel support.
Tennis shoes for plantar fasciitis
Another option to stay comfortable while walking or running errands is to opt for a casual tennis shoe style.
Anita (above) gets the balance between casual and formal just right with her sneakers, which look similar to the ones below.
Black and white sneakers
A bold black-and-white combination is particularly on trend for summer this year. Plus, the great thing about these neutrals is they will go with everything else in your closet.
This Vionic Honey style comes with an arch-supporting footbed.
Of course, it may be that you prefer more aerobic exercise rather than a walk. In that case, you will want to look for running shoes which offer the right support.
This pair by North Face have a whole raft of support measures in place and are a good option if you tend to run on different terrains.
Slippers for plantar fasciitis
You may find that walking barefoot hurts your feet if you have plantar fasciitis.
But you obviously won’t want to wear your plantar fasciitis shoes 24/7, when you are at home. That’s where a pair of comfort slippers could come in handy.
These two options are both by Vionic and have good reviews for their comfort levels straight out-of-the-box.
Shoe brands for plantar fasciitis
There are so many brands which have realized that women need shoes which are both comfy AND stylish.
These are some of my favorites. What are yours? Don’t forget to let me know in the comments below, so together we can make this a great resource for women with plantar fasciitis.
Plantar Fasciitis Insoles
If you have shoes you love, but which don’t offer the support you need, there’s no need to bin them, or give them away.
There are plenty of insoles on the market but not all offer the same level of support.
Look for plantar fasciitis inserts which offer good support in the arch, as this helps to take the strain from the heel.
Proper heel support is also vital, and a deep heel cup will provide stability and keep the bones of your foot properly aligned.
Plantar Fasciitis Inserts
Just as choosing the shoe brand which is best for your feet can need a bit of trial and error, not all Plantar Fasciitis inserts fit in the same way.
Rather than switching insoles between shoes, many people opt to buy several pairs of inserts and leave them in their favorite shoes.
Plantar Fasciitis Orthotics
Plantar fasciitis orthotics are designed to relieve the pain you may feel from this condition.
You can wear them all day or just when you feel you need them.
- Best Shoes With Arch Support – Comfortable Walking Shoes To Walk In All Day!
- The Best Sneakers For Plantar Fasciitis That Are Comfortable AND On-Trend
- The Best Wide Calf Boots For Winter And Fall
Do you suffer from Plantar Fasciitis? What are the best plantar fasciitis shoes you have worn? Which shoe brands and styles do you find gives you comfort from heel pain? Let us know!
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Feature image by Gabbi
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