Searching for good brands of wide shoes
July 19, 2021 7:53 AM   Subscribe

I'm a tall guy in search of footwear brands that sell shoes and boots in wide widths.

I've been recently diagnosed with Morton's neuroma and it has instilled in me the desire to replace a good chunk of my footwear to help prevent further discomfort. I've spent too many years squeezing my feet into whatever is in front of me at the store. I wear a US men's 13 and finding a brand that goes up to 13 and makes a wide as well is tricky, which is where you come in.

I like simple leather work boots with maybe five holes, rubber soles. I also could use another pair of simple sneakers - think something along the lines of Adidas Sambas. Lightweight and eco-friendly materials are a plus, but ultimately I'm just looking for recommendations on brands that serve the bigfeet population.
posted by komara to Shopping (25 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Hello friend. 6 feet 5, size 15 wide over here.

If you want to buy at retail, Nordstrom's is a nice place to start as the founder of Nordstrom was very tall. Also Nordstrom Rack.

On the athletic side, I unconditionally recommend the Brooks Beast. Even the non-wide width is wide enough for me to fit my giant orthotics into.

For sandals I like my Chacos, good arch support, nice sizing.

My orthotics guy also recommended shopping at The Walking Company for more casual shoes.

I'll be watching this thread with interest, thank you for asking.
posted by rachelpapers at 8:04 AM on July 19, 2021 [2 favorites]

Duck paddle foot here- merrell moab’s have been my go-to hiking shoe for a decade plus.

Rockport makes a decent wide dress shoe. Brooks as mentioned makes a good wide runner, I like the Ghost.
posted by stinkfoot at 8:09 AM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

Not cheap by any means, but Alden makes a classic work boot in several styles. Goes up to size 13E; one style has up to EEE width. These will last forever.

Rancourt is slightly cheaper and has sizes up to 14EE in some styles. They've been shifting towards a crowdfunding production scheme due to the pandemic, so it looks like their inventory is pretty limited right now. They also make leather sneakers if that's your thing. These will also last longer than you.

If your location info is correct, you may be able to try the Aldens on in person. Rancourt is online ordering only, but I've found their lasts to fit pretty true to size if you've already been measured properly.
posted by backseatpilot at 8:12 AM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

Mr. gudrun has had good luck with Skechers for sneakers.
posted by gudrun at 8:48 AM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

Hello from another wide-foot person. I get Brooks athletic shoes in double E width. They go up to 4E and it looks like size 13. These days, I just reorder the same ones when they wear out, as getting shoes in my size in an actual shoe store is just a crazy dream.

But my brother, who wore a 13 or 14 and also had wide feet, said he could buy shoes in person at Nordstrom. That was a long time ago though.
posted by FencingGal at 8:49 AM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

I have EEEEE-width feet, albeit in a small size rather than your large size. The undisputed leader in this field is Hitchcock Shoes, and I think they likely have boots and general purpose sneakers to suit your criteria. They sell their own house brand as well as wide shoes from other makers.
posted by slkinsey at 8:59 AM on July 19, 2021 [2 favorites]

Keens are wide.
posted by aniola at 9:01 AM on July 19, 2021 [2 favorites]

Get The Drifter Leather to make you a custom pair.
posted by dobbs at 9:25 AM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Duckfeet - specifically the Faborg model - go up to size 48 in European sizes and they are nicely wide. Keens are not wide enough for me but Duckfeet work fine. I’ve also ordered from Drifter Leather and that’s a good option too. Also Lems Primals could work.
posted by umwhat at 9:51 AM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

Yeah, I like the wide front of Keens. They're basically rectangles, which is great for me (wide and flat feet -- though not "special order wide").
posted by wenestvedt at 10:06 AM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

I've been having trouble with feet and lately tried Orthofeet. The bonus is that they come with the option for a 60 day trial with free returns so you can actually wear the shoes for a day to see how they really fit over time and still return them.
posted by metahawk at 10:11 AM on July 19, 2021 [2 favorites]

Sketchers makes a wide sneaker in 13 with arch support, but their shoes are not particularly durable. New Balance also makes a bunch of wide sneakers in large sizes. Tecovas makes cowboy boots in wide but not extra wide. Allen Edmonds makes dress shoes in all different sizes but some are easier to find on sale than others. Unfortunately Adidas tends to be very narrow.
posted by Comrade_robot at 11:15 AM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

My son has wide feet. The Nike site has a 'custom' link. Their custom shoes cost not much more than their standard shoes. They get shipped to you directly from their Vietnam factory. (Since they are custom, you also have lots of choices of how you want your shoe to look). Since they are custom, they have a wide selection of shoe sizes (pun intended).
posted by eye of newt at 11:48 AM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

New Balance makes up to 6Es and length up to 20 for men's sizes, but may have to order off their website rather than through Amazon or other places.
posted by kschang at 12:04 PM on July 19, 2021 [2 favorites]

Best answer: In most shoes, I wear a 3-5E. But, I've been surprised to discover that Lems shoes, despite not being explicitly wide, are actually a better fit than most wide options, especially if they're a bit larger than usual. They ship with an absurd insole. The material under the insole is a perfectly wearable shoe if you want a flat, minimal bed. It might be worth a try, especially if the front half of your foot is the part that needs to be wide.

(My personal experience is that Allen Edmonds is lying when they claim they make wide shoes. Others disagree.)
posted by eotvos at 2:01 PM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

(My personal experience is that Allen Edmonds is lying when they claim they make wide shoes. Others disagree.)

Seconding this. They make some shoes that might be described as "not narrow" but none that is actually wide.
posted by slkinsey at 2:13 PM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

You might want to look around your area for custom-made and therapeutic shoes.
posted by Leontine at 3:18 PM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

Healthy feet store ( has custom shoes that can go up to 19E+ while some medical shoe makers like Apis can make up to 14E.

Their shopping tip indicates you need to look for "diabetic" or "medical" shoes which would be wider than normal if no extra-width was indicated.

Also, some people just have very TALL feet, so they need shoes with "extra depth", not necessarily extra width.
posted by kschang at 3:55 PM on July 19, 2021 [1 favorite]

Shop where the New Orleans Pelicans do.
posted by Cranberry at 12:40 AM on July 20, 2021 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thank you umwhat for mentioning Lems Primals and eotvos for confirming that they're nice and wide. I was intrigued when I saw them on first mention and the second was enough to push me into buying a pair.

Still combing through all your suggestions to find some good boots. I appreciate everyone that has responded. Thank you!
posted by komara at 7:41 AM on July 20, 2021

Wide feet guy here. Thanks for asking! It just so happens I'm in the market for new shoes. I'm going to comb through this when I get some down time.

I forgot to add: I've been buying Merrell hiking boots. I love them, they wear like iron, but now I need "shoes".
posted by james33 at 7:57 AM on July 20, 2021 [1 favorite]

I have wide and thick feet and depending on brand I have worn everything from size 9 to 13.

Lately I have been wearing Altra Lone Peak 5 trail runners. Walking is my sole form of exercise, so I regularly do 20+ km walks. The Lone Peaks are the most comfortable shoes I have ever worn. I never get blisters or bruised toes anymore.
posted by sindark at 10:24 AM on July 20, 2021 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: An update, for those who are curious. I landed on:

A.) Lems - Primal 2 in black. A little weird with the zero-drop (aka totally flat) platform but my podiatrist has recommended 3/4 length orthotic inserts and with those in there it feels like a normal shoe. Very roomy toe box.

B.) Thursday Boot Company - Captain in black matte. Just arrived yesterday so they're still very stiff but the toe box is already roomy enough and I know they'll loosen up with some wear. Had a good experience with a quick customer service response as well.
posted by komara at 7:26 AM on August 5, 2021

Alas, Lems only goes up to 2E, and Thursday Boot Company only goes up to 3E. :-/
posted by kschang at 2:30 PM on August 5, 2021

Response by poster: Wanted to follow up on my follow up: I love my Lems Primal 2. I bought a second pair. Once my foot got used to them they're my favorite shoes I've ever owned, I think.
posted by komara at 9:27 AM on November 19, 2021

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