One of the most common foot health problems that we encounter in our stores on a daily basis are bunions. Our expert teams in store see first-hand how each of our shoes fit and which styles to recommend to customers, especially those with foot problems. In this guide, we aim to give you an understanding of what bunions are, as well as which type of footwear may help to alleviate some of the soreness and slow down the progression that is associated with them.

Foot Health Guide Best Shoes for Bunions

What is a Bunion?

To put it into simple terms this is a condition in which the big toe turns towards the smaller toes, meaning the two bones which comprise the big toe form an angle that may stick out. In a lot of cases, a bunion will distort the shape of footwear and carefully selected and fitted shoes are essential for comfortable day to day wear. Bunions can be hereditary or linked to arthritis however the most common cause is generally accepted to be ill-fitting footwear.

Bunions are a common problem and can affect young and old alike. Medically known as hallux valgus, the lump or swelling and tenderness on the first joint of the big toe is not the same as a corn and can be very uncomfortable. Bunions may often have a fluid filled sac over the affected area which is the body’s natural defence in protecting the joint.

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What to look out for

It begins with the toe joint aching as well as becoming red. The cause of this could be due to the toes being cramped in certain types of footwear which don’t allow for forward movement, and with every step the big toe has been pushed backwards or sideways causing it to become distorted and bent. This happens to counteract the lack of room within the shoe to move freely.

Can age affect bunions & other foot problems?

If the problem presents itself in a young person, orthotics can be purchased to align the big toe in the correct place and appropriate footwear can be purchased to allow the foot the space needed to grow and for the toe to realign.

In a more mature foot, unfortunately the problem will progressively worsen as rheumatism and arthritis begin to affect the area. After consistently wearing inappropriate shoes, the bunion will get worse and may eventually be painful. Existing footwear can then become misshapen as the little toes are forced upwards to make way for the alteration of the big toe. It is important that the appropriate shoes should be worn to accommodate the repositioned toes as there can be knock-on effects. Another potential problem arising from bunions is that the other toes can then rub on the upper of the shoe and corns can then develop.


But what?

Unfortunately a bunion is an irreversible condition and may lead to another toe being removed if one becomes lifted and pushed out of place in severe cases (which is sometimes seen with the 2nd or 4th toe). Good quality leather shoes with ample room in the toe box, such as Padders Skye are always our top recommendation.

Leather is a fantastic material in footwear – breathable, flexible and looks great too. With a leather upper, you can expect natural stretch in the material, unlike many man-made materials and this helps the shoe adjust to your individual foot shape. We have specialist tools in store which allow us to stretch a leather shoe to match your foot shape better but any good shoe repair shop will do this for you locally if you don’t live near our stores.

From our experience, our customers are often advised to wear trainers if they have a bunion as they are soft, light and flexible and easily allow for orthotics. Unfortunately this is not a look that works for everyone – particularly for work or a formal occasion. There are lots of great options in our footwear range and we do our best to advise the best shoe for the purpose you have in mind.

At Begg Shoes, we have a huge range of shoes that can help be great for wearing with a bunion. These include fantastic and world renowned brands such as Rieker Shoes and Ecco Shoes as well as brands you may not have heard of before like or Legero Shoes.

What to wear?

As mentioned, we at Begg Shoes have a variety of brands who stock a collection of shoes which are bunion friendly. These shoes are very soft, stylish, have wide fitting options and often can accommodate additional orthotics  thanks to removable insoles. Women tend to be more prone to bunions due to wearing high heels, wearing pointed toe shoes or not being correctly fitted, however this common problem can affect men as well. Looking for wide fit shoes can be the best option to accommodate the bunion.

For men, bunions can often be caused by ill fitting footwear early on, or even in adult life by work footwear such as safety boots or loose fitting welly boots and of course it could also be hereditary! It is extremely important for parents to get their children’s feet professionally fitted from an early age to ensure they are wearing the correct shoes which allow for enough room for movement but not too much room.

Personalised Shoe Advice

In order for us to offer accurate recommendations please answer these questions:

Bunion Friendly Shoe Suggestions

Below is a list of shoes which we normally find fit customers feet with bunions or even an inflamed joint/start of a bunion.

1. Regarde Le Ciel

Christion 25 3743-00

Regarde le Ciel Boots for Bunions
BUY NOW £89.99

The super soft leather of these ankle boots will mould to your feet for an exceptionally comfortable fit.

2. Gabor

Nolene 34.670.32

Gabor Boots for Bunions
BUY NOW £95.00

These boots feature a side zip to easily put these on and off. The soft lining, cushioned footbed and Gabor’s Best Fit technology all combine together to offer you a wonderfully comfortable shoe making them ideal for those who suffer with bunions.

3. Legero

Soana Lace GTX 00683-21

Legero Shoes for Bunions
BUY NOW £115.00

The direct injection PU sole unit is lightweight and flexible, as well as shock absorbent and hard wearing. The soft suede leather will mould over your bunion allowing for a comfortable fit.

4. Hotter

Whisper 95 E 9503-81

Hotter Boots for Bunions
BUY NOW £75.00

Constructed from leather uppers and a premium lining, these boots will keep feet warm in cooler weather. The sole of the boot is both lightweight and flexible, making these boots comfortable enough to be worn all day.

5. Relaxshoe

291004-20 Sufflong

Long boots for bunions
BUY NOW £99.00

These long boots have been crafted from soft brown leather in the Italian method of stitch construction. The soft luxurious leathers mean these boots are exceptionally flexible and offer a lightweight experience, ensuring comfort on your bunions without compromising style.

Padders Shoes

Why are Padders good for bunions? Padders shoes and slippers offer extra width and a huge range of sizes in very practical shapes, making them a great everyday choice to accommodate a bunion. Made in the UK, they offer quality and comfort that our customers love and also have removable insoles, which allow you to add your own orthotics as required. Begg Shoes offer a broad range of Padders shoes, which you can find on this link.

Legero Shoes

Why Legero? Legero has developed a collection of shoes and boots with top quality leather uppers on a lightweight and flexible construction. Leather is a fantastic material which naturally moulds to your foot shape and the ease of movement and support on offer with a Legero shoe mean your foot does not need to work as hard. This should translate greater day to day comfort for a bunion. As a brand, Legero offer distinctive design features and twists, which are a breath of fresh air for those who have stuck with the famous comfort shoe brands until now – well worth a try. Click here to browse our collection of Legero shoes or to find out more about their brand.

Rieker Shoes Logo

Rieker Shoes

Rieker Shoes are world-renowned for their patented Anti-Stress technology shoes. Their shoes are designed with comfort and fitting in mind, which can be excellent for a fitting a bunion without overly compromising the fashion led design of the shoe. With huge seasonal ranges and a reputation for reliable comfort and quality, Rieker are one of our most sought after brands. Begg Shoes offer a UK leading range from Rieker Shoes but we always recommend our customer check out sister brand Remonte Shoes which features slightly higher material spec and finishing but the same excellent fit properties.