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Best Dress Shoes for Arthritic Feet in 2022

Arthritis can cause pain that makes it difficult to find comfortable and supportive shoes.

If you’re looking for sneakers, you’ll find it’s easier to get shoes with appropriate support and shock-absorption. However, finding the best dress shoes for arthritic feet can be much more challenging.

Dress shoes are often flat and not supportive at all, which can cause more strain on your feet. However, we’ve found dress shoes that offer much better arch support and cushioning – and can help reduce arthritic pain.

The OrthoFeet Gramercy is our top choice for men. These shoes have added depth which allows you to use custom orthotics and a mild rocker sole that reduces foot fatigue. There is also a heat-moldable heel counter, which keeps the heel stable.

Browse through this list of men’s and women’s footwear to find your next pair of dress shoes that will keep you comfortable and pain-free!

Top 3 Best and Favorites

 

OrthoFeet Gramercy

 

  • Non-binding leather upper
  • Lightweight EVA midsole
  • Mild rocker sole
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SoftWalk Sonoma

 

  • Spacious, rounded toe box
  • Antimicrobial lining
  • Cushioned heel
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Rockport Total Motion DresSport Cap Toe Oxford

 

  • Stylish, everyday shoe
  • Removable cushioned footbed
  • Built-in arch support
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Men’s Dress Shoes for Arthritic Feet

We’ll start with men’s shoes first. Keep scrolling if you are looking for women’s shoes instead.

Best Overall

1. OrthoFeet Gramercy

The OrthoFeet Gramercy dress shoes are classy and professional-looking. They come in black and brown to suit any outfit.

They also come in extended widths so men with wide feet can still wear them comfortably.

What We Like

The OrthoFeet Gramercy is a professional-looking dress shoe ideal for the office or upscale functions.

It has a soft, non-binding leather upper that looks good and is highly durable. A traditional lacing system allows you to tighten them for a perfect fit.

They come with anatomically-designed orthotic insoles for optimal foot alignment and health.

The insoles feature excellent arch support and a heat-moldable heel counter, providing more than adequate support. It also helps keep them aligned, reducing joint pain.

If you need more support, the shoe comes with an extra arch booster which can be added underneath the insole. There’s also extra cushioning in the heel for shock absorption.

The platform is wide and stable, and the shoe also has extra depth in the upper. You can remove the orthotic or two spacers—1/16-inch and ⅛-inch—to make space for your own orthotic devices or AFOs.

A light layer of EVA foam helps reduce the shock of impact. The Ergonomic Stride rocker sole helps reduce foot strain and smooth the heel-to-toe transition.

A wide toe box offers enough space for bunions and hammertoes, while a seam-free lining provides a comfortable step-in feeling.

Why We Like It

These orthopedic shoes come in sizes and widths to suit every foot. They’re also highly customizable so you can add orthotics or make extra room, if needed.

With their spacious toe box and seamless inner lining, they offer all you need to keep your feet comfortable and looking smart.

PROS:

  • Non-binding leather upper with extra-depth
  • Lightweight EVA midsole cushioning
  • Heat-moldable heel counter for a snug fit
  • Mild rocker sole helps guide your foot

CONS:

  • The sole and stitching of these shoes may not be very durable

Top Value

2. Rockport Total Motion DresSport Cap Toe Oxford

The Rockport Total Motion DresSport Cap Toe Oxford shoe has a classic style. It’s available in both black and brown, so you can match any work outfit appropriately.

What We Like

This dress shoe has a traditional style and laces for a secure fit. It comes in regular and wide sizes, so there’s a size to fit every foot.

A cap-toe design adds an element of stylish design to this shoe, and hand-stitching detailing gives it a classic look.

The footbed is well-cushioned and removable, so you can add a custom orthotic if you need extra support. It does have built-in arch support and a molded TPU stability plate that both provide excellent support for the foot.

An EVA heel cup with truTECH technology helps to increase shock absorption, reducing pain that may increase when walking.

A moisture-wicking and breathable lining make this shoe comfortable to step into out of the box.

Why We Like It

These professional-looking shoes are affordable and more supportive than your regular dress shoes. They are durable and comfortable enough to wear every day.

PROS:

  • Stylish, everyday shoe
  • Removable cushioned footbed
  • Built-in arch support
  • Breathable, moisture-wicking lining

CONS:

  • Some may find the toe box to be slightly narrow

Best Waterproof Leather

3. Dunham 8000 Service Plain Toe Oxford

If you live in a rainy area or often spend time on your feet in slippery and wet places, you should consider a waterproof and non-slip shoe.

Enter the Dunham 8000 Service Plain Toe Oxford. It’s a leather shoe that repels water and keeps you safe on your feet in slippery conditions.

What We Like

This shoe is made of premium leather that’s both soft and supple as well as waterproof. The uppers are seam-sealed to prevent water from getting in.

Not only is the upper resistant to rain and puddles, but the rubber outsole is slip-resistant rated ASTM F2913-11. This means it will keep you safe in wet, dry, and oily conditions.

There’s a comfortable, cushioned footbed that absorbs shock and eases pain in the feet. Underneath the footbed, you’ll also find a stability RBar which helps to keep the foot aligned and comfortable.

A wide toe box and padded collar and tongue increase the shoe’s comfort and offer space for bunions and hammer toes.

The shoes also come in wide and extra-wide widths, perfect for almost all foot sizes and shapes.

Why We Like It

This shoe is highly durable and waterproof, so it’s ideal for those who spend a lot of time on their feet in wet conditions. Not only is it great for keeping your feet dry, but it’s also supportive and comfortable for arthritic feet.

PROS:

  • Seam-sealed, waterproof leather uppers
  • Comfortable, cushioned footbed
  • Slip-resistant rubber outsoles
  • Available in wide widths

CONS:

  • The ankle collar may be too high for some and rub against the ankle bone

Top Slip-On

4. APEX Lexington Strap Loafer

If you prefer slip-on shoes, we recommend the Apex Lexington Strap Loafer. Even though it has no laces, it still looks professional and smart.

Like most of the shoes on this list, it comes in both black and brown, so you’ll look good no matter what colors you’re wearing.

What We Like

The Apex Lexington Strap Loafer is a sleek slip-on shoe with a good mix of a smart and a casual look.

It has a full-grain leather upper with a Velcro strap on the vamp, opening wide to accommodate your foot easily.

Once your foot is securely in the shoe, a soft leather lining keeps them comfortable and wicks away moisture, allowing your feet to stay dry, cool, and free from hotspots.

A firm heel counter and padded collar help keep a stable and comfortable fit on the foot as you walk.

A roomy toe box and removable footbed with ¼-inch extra depth in the shoe allow for you to place a custom orthotic in this shoe with the ideal support for your foot.

The polyurethane outsole helps absorb shock as you take each step and has a light tread on it to provide some traction on slippery surfaces.

Why We Like It

This shoe has an easy slip-on design that hugs the foot. Although it’s not adjustable, it opens easily to allow the foot inside and has a comfy fit.

PROS:

  • Smart, sleek design
  • Adjustable Velcro strap lets your foot easily slip in
  • Removable cushioned insole
  • Lightweight, polyurethane outsole absorbs shock

CONS:

  • This shoe may not be adjustable enough for some people

Best Non-Slip

5. Dansko Wyatt

Men who need non-slip shoes to keep them safe on slippery ground will appreciate the Dansko Wyatt.

It’s a rugged but stylish shoe that comes in black and brown, and it has the distinction of being awarded an APMA Seal of Acceptance for promoting good foot health.

What We Like

The Dansko Wyatt features a non-slip polyurethane outsole with two different traction patterns on it to give you the best footing on several types of surfaces.

As well as being slip-resistant in both dry and wet conditions, the leather upper is water-resistant, so you can wear these shoes in any weather conditions confidently.

The PU outsole also adds to the shock absorption properties of the shoe, as does the molded EVA footbed. This can be removed if you wish to add a custom insert for better support.

However, the shoe does feature a 2/4 tuck board and an internal shank for extra stability. A spacious toe box allows hammer toes or bunions to stay comfortable and reduces chafing.

Why We Like It

These dress shoes look smart enough to wear to work, to a function, or any other occasion where a dress shoe is necessary. But their non-slip properties mean you can wear them safely on almost any surface, wet or dry.

PROS:

  • Smart-casual oxford shoe
  • Soft, water-resistant leather uppers
  • Triple density, removable footbed enhances comfort
  • Long-lasting non-slip rubber outsole

CONS:

  • These shoes are pretty heavy

Women’s Dress Shoes for Arthritic Feet

We’ve found a good selection and styles of dress shoes for the ladies to help with arthritis pain.

Best Flat

6. SoftWalk Sonoma

Women who like to wear flats will appreciate the SoftWalk Sonoma. It’s available in various colors and designs to suit many different outfits.

It’s also incredibly light, at just 6 ounces, and provides more support than most other flat shoes.

What We Like

A contoured footbed molds to your feet as you wear these shoes, hugging the arch and offering support. It also has an antimicrobial lining for increased foot health and hygiene.

Although these shoes are low-profile, they have a removable footbed that allows you to add thin orthotics if you need more support than what the footbed provides.

A solid heel cup and a heel counter help keep the foot supported, and it’s also well padded for comfort.

The toe box is rounded and spacious enough to accommodate bunions or hammer toes if necessary. There’s also a sticky, patterned outsole that helps increase shock absorption and keep you safe on slick surfaces.

Why We Like It

It’s not only stylish enough to wear to work, but it’s more supportive and comfortable than most flat pumps.

PROS:

  • Spacious, rounded toe box
  • Contoured footbed molds to the shape of your feet
  • Antimicrobial lining keeps your feet dry and healthy
  • Cushioned heel

CONS:

  • The shoe has a snug fit and you may need to order a size up for a more comfortable fit

Top Mary Jane

7. APEX Lisa

Women who prefer a Mary Jane style shoe should consider the Apex Lisa. It comes in black and brown and has a single strap over the top of the foot.

It’s also HCPCS A5500 coded, which means it’s certified as a suitable shoe for people with diabetes to wear safely and comfortably.

What We Like

This shoe is designed as a therapeutic shoe and provides both comfort and support to arthritic feet while looking pretty.

It has a full-grain leather upper which is soft and durable. A single hook-and-loop strap allows for adjustability to suit your foot.

A heel counter helps to keep the foot safely and securely in place, which prevents any twisting or moving that could aggravate arthritis pain.

The padded heel counter adds comfort, and the inner lining is seam-free and moisture-wicking to keep your feet dry and reduce hot spots.

The upper is deep for plenty of room. And you can make more space for custom orthotics by removing the 2 cushioned inserts.

As well as the ability to add more depth to the shoe, there’s a spacious toe box that allows room for painful or swollen toes and bunions or other related foot conditions.

The outsole is made of injected EVA, and helps to absorb shock. It’s long-lasting and is also SATRA-certified as being slip-resistant, so it will keep you safe on your feet on both wet and dry surfaces.

Why We Like It

This shoe is stylish and durable, and it’s a therapeutic shoe with multiple features that will help keep your feet safe and supported.

PROS:

  • Supportive leather upper
  • Adjustable hook-and-loop closure
  • Padded heel counter gently holds your foot in place
  • Durable, injected-EVA outsole

CONS:

  • The shoe runs slightly small so you may need to order a half-size up

Best With Low Heel

8. Trotters Monarch

If you like low heel dress shoes, we recommend the Trotters Monarch. It’s sleek-looking and available in multiple colors and designs to suit every woman.

The heel is low and thick, dispersing body weight well and not high enough to place excessive pressure on the forefoot.

What We Like

The heel of this shoe is 1 ⅛-inch in height, which is low enough to avoid forefoot pain but high enough to feel like you’re wearing a pretty pair of heels.

Paired with a sleek and stylish upper, this is a great-looking shoe for work or dressy occasions. You can wear them with both skirts and pants.

It’s very comfortable, featuring a tricot upper with antimicrobial properties and a foam-lined upper to reduce chafing risk.

The shoe comes with a comfortable, cushioned footbed with built-in arch support. It can be removed and replaced with a custom insert if you wish.

The sole is rubberized to walk confidently on slippery or wet surfaces. It also comes in three different widths so you can find the right size for your foot.

Why We Like It

This shoe has a fashionable low heel and comes in wider sizes so every woman can find the right size.

PROS:

  • Block heel with 1 1/8 inch height
  • Leather-lined upper with antimicrobial microfiber lining
  • Cushioned footbed with arch support
  • Available in 3 widths

CONS:

  • Some may feel that the shoe looks old-fashioned

Most Comfortable

9. Dansko Franny

The Dansko Franny is not only a pretty and unusual-looking shoe, but it’s also extremely comfortable.

They come in regular and wide sizes, so there’s something for every woman. Its supportive features help reduce your arthritis pain.

What We Like

This shoe has a unique upper design with a modern look. A soft leather flap covers the top of the shoe, allowing for some adjustability with a Velcro strap. Decorative stitching across the shoe adds a pretty flair.

The upper is made of leather, soft on the skin and has textile linings for in-shoe comfort. A heel of 1 ½ inch adds some femininity without placing the foot under too much strain and worsening arthritis pain.

A molded EVA footbed contours to the foot and provides support thanks to Dansko’s Natural Arch Technology. The integrated tuckboard and built-in shank offer even more support.

The footbed is able to be removed if you need to add an orthotic for more support. There’s a rubber outsole with a light treat pattern to help you keep your footing on many different surfaces.

Why We Like It

Not only is the Dansko Franny a stylish shoe for smart occasions, but it’s also extremely comfortable and supportive, reducing arthritis pain while looking good.

PROS:

  • Tuckboard and shank for support
  • Dansko Natural Arch technology
  • Heel height of 1 ½ inches
  • Removable, molded EVA footbed

CONS:

  • These shoes have a snug fit so you may have to order a half-size up if you want a looser fit

Best Boots

10. revere Shoes Damascus Bootie

These boots are ideal for cooler weather. With a warm lining and a mid-ankle length, they’re great to wear with pants or a skirt.

You can find them in a few neutral colors, plus some with a unique leather and animal print combination.

What We Like

Not only are these boots ideal for cold weather, but they’re supportive and comfortable enough to keep your feet pain-free.

A slight wedge heel adds some style and also cushions the heel. With the dual-style upper and asymmetrical zipper, your shoes will be eye-catching at any event.

The footbed is shock-absorbing and cushioned, with good built-in arch support. However, if the arch support isn’t adequate for your foot, you can remove the footbed and add your own custom insert. It also works for braces and AFOs.

There’s extra padding in the forefoot—Forefoot Cushion Zone—which increases the comfort of this shoe.

A slip-resistant outsole also helps reduce shock from impact and keeps you stable on any surface.

These boots come with a custom filler pack, which offers a variety of filler pieces that you can place in your shoes if they’re slightly too large.

Why We Like It

These boots are supportive and good-looking, with a bit of exciting flair. They come in various colors and will keep the feet warm and comfortable in cooler weather.

PROS:

  • Great everyday mid-ankle boot
  • Smooth leather and animal skin print
  • Removable footbed with built-in arch support
  • Slip-resistant outsole

CONS:

  • No plain designs

Buyers Guide – Dress Shoes for Arthritic Feet

Roomy Toe Box

People with arthritis in the feet need a spacious toe box to accommodate other foot conditions that may occur due to arthritis, such as bunions or hammer toes.

Support

To support your foot, the shoe’s base should be wide and stiff enough to prevent twisting as you walk.

You should also make sure to get a shoe with enough arch support for your arch and extra stability features if you overpronate.

A stable heel counter and a deep heel cup will also add to the supportiveness of the shoe and prevent the foot from moving around, which could cause more arthritis pain.

Soft Upper

Although the base of your shoe should be stiff and supportive, the upper should be soft against the skin.

Arthritis feet often have deformed joints that can bulge out against the upper. A stiff upper is more likely to chafe and cause more pain in addition to arthritis pain.

However, a soft and stretchy upper will be more comfortable and allow the foot to move comfortably without friction.

Adjustability

Choosing a shoe that is easy to adjust and offers a lot of adjustability will give your feet the space they need even if they swell or need a looser fit for comfort.

When arthritis flares up, the feet may swell or become tender to the touch. Adjustable shoes will allow you to get a looser fit on sore feet or allow for swelling.

Heel Height

You should choose a shoe with a low heel height to avoid putting extra pressure on the forefoot. A heel lower than 1.5 inches is best.

Women should avoid high heels, as not only do they place excess pressure on the metatarsals, but they also often cause the toes to be cramped and uncomfortable, which will lead to pain.

Flats

Wearing flat shoes is recommended, however, they should offer adequate arch support and impact absorption for your feet.

FAQs

What Are the Signs of Arthritis in Your Foot?

If you have arthritis in your feet, you may find that you get pain in the joint when you move, walk, or flex your foot.

You may have trouble walking comfortably or putting weight on the affected foot. There may also be stiffness or swelling in the joint, and you may feel warmth in the area as well.

Pain and swelling associated with arthritis doesn’t usually go away with rest, so you may find that the affected area is painful, red, and swollen after you’ve been resting, like after sleep.

What Are the Benefits of Orthopedic and Orthotic Footwear?

Orthopedic shoes and orthotic devices can provide optimal support for the arches and gently align the feet, keeping the joints safe and stable.

When your feet are in the correct position and have proper support, you will find that the symptoms associated with arthritis are reduced.

You may have less pain not only in your feet but in your knees, hips, and lower back. They are usually also very comfortable.

What Is the Best Exercise for Arthritis?

Weight-bearing exercises and muscle-strengthening exercises are good choices to help reduce arthritis pain.

Yoga, Pilates, and resistance exercises like weight lifting and using resistance bands can help to strengthen the muscles, which in turn support the joints and help to reduce the pain of arthritis.

Can Walking Make Arthritis Worse?

Walking is a weight-bearing exercise, but that doesn’t mean it will make your arthritis worse.

Although the joints of the legs and feet are under pressure from bearing the entire body weight, walking is an excellent way to increase circulation in the legs and bring oxygen and nutrients to the joints and muscles.

End result is that walking can help to ease the pain of arthritis.