I have: Fibromyalgia, ME/CFS, Holt-Oram Syndrome, nasal allergies, food allergies, depression, TMJ, anxiety
Married to a wonderful supportive husband & between us we have 4 children & 7 grandchildren
As apples of gold in silver carvings is a word spoken at the right time for it. Prov. 25:11
I'm like Austen. The only shoes I can wear besides certain tennis shoes and slippers(my fav) are Aerosoles because the leather is soft and they are light weight. I can't wear anything with a seam near my big toes so it's hard to find a shoe that doesn't hurt. Yes...I am a fashion plate. I go for what's comfortable and not in style.
WOOHOO!!! I love this subject!!
I guess it is really dependent on what you are looking for and how much you are willing to pay. I don't mind spending money on my shoes because they are going to last and generally, you will get what you pay for. So, hopefully this will help.
My all time favorites are:
Tennis shoes: Saucony. They have a decent range of middle to high priced shoes and are SUPER comfortable. I have a neutral foot so I don't need support, but I am pretty sure that they offer shoes with support. If they don't have something you are looking for, I am a HUGE fan of Mizuno's. They are more firm, but offer lots of support (if you make sure to get the right type). If you need more help to figure out if you pronate or supernate or what-not, let me know or google it. You should be able to figure out your foot type. Also, being in the right shoe for walking/running will help other ailments like knee pain and lower back pain. It all starts at the feet. I also hear that Brooks are good, although, I haven't gotten a chance to try them and from what I can tell, they are for those that need support. New Balance has potential. Be careful though, the higher the number the higher the quality. I believe they have comfy shoes, but I don't know much about their support.
Comfy casual and cute: Merrells. These are at a pretty decent price point and are the #1 repeat buying brand in America. I have 8 pairs of these. I even like their sandals because of the arch support and cushion. They have a huge variety of shoes, sandals, and boots and it seems like they can all be worn right out of the box. My only concern could be that they are not all wide enough for you.
Sandals: Chaco or Birkenstock (or Merrell) I like the Chaco because of the support and sportyness. However, the Birkenstock is a European shoe and has a wide to box. The European brands (Dansko and Ecco as well) do not make wides or half sizes, instead they have created a fit that is narrower in the heal to hold the shoe where it is supposed to, but the toe box is wide so your toes and feet have room to breath and move. I have known many people that swear by their Birkenstocks and I can definately see why. They have a cork sole which is comfy and they offer a lot of support. I believe they are recommended by foot doctors.
Nicer dressy type or more than casual: Ecco and Dansko. If you ever pay attention to the shoes that many nurses wear, they are a stapled clog. Those are Danskos. They are great on the arch and offer a rocking motion that allows the shoe to do the work. I have 2 pairs of these and love them both. My feet do not feel restricted at all. They are great if you need to stand for a long while. If you try these for the first time, do note that it will take 2-3 weeks to get used to the rocking motion of the shoe, after that, you'll love em! As for the Ecco's, I was not a fan of the styles, but they are super comfy and the sole is very durable. It is made out of the same material that a bouncy ball is. Also they use superior leather for the upper. These are able to be worn for hours right out of the box and will mold to your feet. I bought my husband 3 pairs of Eccos for christmas last year and he says they are the greatest dress shoes he has ever worn.
Others: I love my crocs. I know they are ugly, but they are getting better. I wore them around an amusement park ALL day and didn't have a single problem. So did my mom and she has screws in her big toes. I also love my Adidas soccer sandals. They have a wonderful footbed and are super comfortable.
I hope this has given you some options. I know that it might be overwhelming at first, but at least you have some knowledge now. If you have any questions, let me know. I am a shoe fanatic and even worked at a shoe store finishing up with college.
I love my Ryka's. The walking shoe in particular. For those of you who don't know about Ryka's they are made and designed by women to fit a woman's foot. Smaller in the heel and wider in the front. They don't just take a mold for a mans shoe and cut it down to fit a woman. Actually, they don't make mens or childrens shoes. They fit beautifully, have support in all the right places and wear like iron. I had my first pair for a year and a half before I finally had to give up on them and that was when I was able to walk around all over the place.
My second favorite is Minnetonca moccasins, I prefer the ones without the rubber sole. Don't much need it in my wheelchair. They are a comfy as slippers, but acceptable to wear out in public.