shoes that are made for walking, but not all over you
February 3, 2010 5:17 PM   Subscribe

Please help me find some comfortable shoes for some high-arched feet

My feet have very high arches. They are particularly high in the interior, but I have an upward arch that is evident on the exterior sides of my feet as well. I walk a lot, and would love some help to find some good quality, not too expensive, comfortable yet cute shoes.

I do have Dansko clogs, which work fairly well with my feet and their natural arches - I could stand to have a slightly greater arch, but they work ok. The Dansko mary-janes don't seem to be made with as prominent an arch, but they're... ok. What other companies make shoes that can handle a fair amount of trekking and still be supportive?

I can't wear flats - I often feel very unstable and unsupported walking in them (oddly), and most heels just aren't good for walking on old brick sidewalks and public transportation.

Any other suggestions would be great! From sneakers to dressier types, it would be nice to know what other people have found works for them. Other high-arched footed laydeez, what kinds of shoes do you love?
posted by raztaj to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (12 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
I have extremely high arches and the only solution I've found, for sneakers or any other footwear, is to put extra arch support inside every shoe. They make the slip-ins for nearly every type of shoe - including heels.
posted by patheral at 5:26 PM on February 3, 2010 [1 favorite]

Ditto. Arch inserts is the way to go. It may take a couple tries to find ones that don't feel weird, but it's worth it.
posted by grapesaresour at 5:31 PM on February 3, 2010

A lot of shoes (but not all) by Merrell come with a high-arched insole. Worth trying on some of those.
posted by wondermouse at 5:39 PM on February 3, 2010

I have prominent arches and I love Saucony and Asics running shoes for walking long distances. As a bonus, they are great for running. My mother has even more pronounces arches and swears by Mephisto comfort shoes and Nike running shoes.
posted by abirae at 5:43 PM on February 3, 2010

I have very high arches and chronic plantar fasciitis. The only shoes that work for me are Keens with added arch supports. I can even wear their Mary Janes when before I had basically sworn off anything that wasn't boots or sneakers.
posted by hydropsyche at 5:53 PM on February 3, 2010

I have high arches, wear Asics for walking several miles a day, and Mephisto and Keen the rest of the time. Mephistos are very pricey, but last forever. Keens need more arch, my feet hurt after a few hours.
posted by mareli at 6:09 PM on February 3, 2010

I have a pretty high arch, so I'll pass along some of my recommendations. These shoes by J-41 are extremely comfortable, cute, and versatile. I'm short (5'2") and most of my pants, even in petite sizes, are long on me, so a stylish and comfortable shoe with height is key. That brand also looks to have lots of other adorable styles; my cousin has these mary janes in black that she loves and look awesomely cute on her. Oh, and I think I've already plugged these on Metafilter before, but the Dansko Sally is another favorite of mine. Super comfy -- I trekked across Italy in them last summer, and still wear them frequently.
posted by JenMarie at 6:12 PM on February 3, 2010

High arches here too. The only flats I can wear are Gentle Souls Gabbys, which have a buckwheat pillow in them that molds to your foot shape. They're ridiculously pricey, but worth it.
posted by chez shoes at 6:35 PM on February 3, 2010

High arches here too. I had custom orthotics made ... 6 years ago... and they are still in great shape. Primarily I only use them only in my running shoes, currently a pair of Brooks Adrenaline. But they make a world of difference.

I alternate my primary shoes during winter - an old pair of Doc Marten mules and Dansko clogs; in summer, I live in my Chaco sandals. I absolutely love the Chaco's! For the super high arched feet of the world, my orthopedist says avoid the Z1's but go for the Z2's.
posted by lostinsupermarket at 7:23 PM on February 3, 2010

2nding Brooks. I've also had good luck with Earth Shoes.

I'll also say: Orthotics are good and it is WORTH going to a shoe store that will actually measure your feet and try and help you.
posted by eleanna at 9:11 PM on February 3, 2010

Cushioning is good for high arches, because high arches don't need support and don't provide shock absorption. My favorite shoes are Nike Pegasus running shoes, which are well-cushioned and have a highish heel. I add custom orthotics now, but they were my favorite shoe before I added them, too.

If I can't wear the nikes or another shoe with cushioning + a high heel, I go for one or the other. Naot shoes have great cushioning but a low heel and many men's dress shoes have a high(ish) heel but no cushioning.
posted by callmejay at 8:32 PM on February 4, 2010

I have extremely high arches and sold shoes for many years. Of all the brands listed above, the only two that I find to be consistently comfortable for my feet are Chacos and Keens.

A story that testifies to how awesome Keens are: I inherited my high arches from my father, who has serious plantar fasciitis; they're the only shoes he can wear comfortably. He wore them year 'round in Maine even back when they only made sandals. Also, he is a crazy man.
posted by dizziest at 9:14 PM on February 4, 2010

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