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Best Sandals for Plantar Fasciitis

Medical information provided by Dr. Josh White, DPM - Written by OrthoFeet Team on May 03 2023

Summer is the time for fun and sun, when we can remove excess layers and go light with our wardrobe, including what we wear on our feet. However, this can come at a cost since many sandals are sometimes too simple and lack good design, materials and features which can damage our feet. This is especially true when you throw into the mix a foot condition such as plantar fasciitis

If you suffer from plantar fasciitis, you know that plantar fasciitis can cause leg pain as well as foot pain. To avoid that, your feet require supportive or orthotic sandals to keep symptoms at check. 

Ordinary sandals are typically flat, thin and do not have much or any cushioning, which can leave your feet in pain and you not being able to enjoy the activities you love most. They will also undoubtedly exacerbate your plantar fasciitis. 

But don’t fret, we are here to help you find the best summer sandals for plantar fasciitis.

 

Best sandals for plantar fasciitis

All our favorite plantar fasciitis sandals come with features that ease plantar fasciitis pain and minimize discomfort, and can even promote healing. These features are arch support, heel cushioning, ball-of-foot cushioning, wide shaped forefoot and an ergonomic sole.

If you want to learn how and why these design features help with plantar fasciitis, continue reading. 

Now it’s time for the main course: our list of the best plantar fasciitis sandals.

 

Best dress sandals for plantar fasciitis


Women’s Paloma

Paloma

Why you’ll love it

  • Fashionably diverse
  • Multiple straps allow you to customize fit

Specs

  • Sizes: 5-12
  • Widths: Standard (B) - Wide (D)
  • Upper materials: soft leather

 

The fact that you can pair these stylish sandals with any outfit and look great is a given, but they have a lot more to offer than just a beautiful design. 

You have the ability to completely personalize the fit of the Paloma sandals by effortlessly modifying the multiple straps that run across the instep and toe area. This can enhance stability and give your feet the support they need.

What’s more, the strap across the instep opens both sides, so you can choose which on-off wear is more comfortable for you: opening and closing the strap on the inside or outside of the sandal. If you have mobility issues, this is especially helpful. 

Available colors: camel and black. 

 

Men’s Gemini

Gemini

Why you’ll love it

  • 2 adjustable straps + a two-way strap system
  • Fully padded to avoid irritation

Specs

  • Sizes: 7-14
  • Widths: Standard (D) - Extra Wide (4E)
  • Upper materials: soft leather

 

Let’s talk adjustable straps. 

With the Gemini sandals you get to enjoy both a stylish look and the ultimate comfort and convenience. Featuring three adjustable straps, you can easily adjust the sandal to fit your feet just right, without any discomfort or irritation. 

Plus, the innovative two-way strap system allows you to quickly and effortlessly fasten and unfasten your sandals from both sides, making it easier than ever to put them on and take them off. If, for any physical reason, you find it difficult to reach the external part of the sandal, this feature can be particularly beneficial. 

Seeing as the interior has some stretch, you can expect the sandal to fit like a…sock.

Available colors: brown and black. 

Best hiking sandals for plantar fasciitis

Men’s Clearwater

Clearwater

Why you’ll love it

  • Multiple adjustability options
  • Closed toe design protects the feet at all times

Specs

  • Sizes: 7-14
  • Widths: Standard (D) - XX Wide (6E)
  • Upper materials: leather

 

The Clearwater sandals feature uppers made from a soft leather and breathable fabric combination that provides ventilation and a comfortable fit throughout the day. 

These sandals offer three customizable fit options. The bungee cord allows you to adjust the width; the two-way strap across the instep allows you to secure the fit and to fasten and unfasten the sandal on either side; and the heel strap ensures a snug fit at the back of the foot. 

The fisherman closed toe design offers maximum protection for sensitive feet and is also ideal for activities in rougher terrain.

Available colors: brown.  

Women’s Laguna

Laguna

Why you’ll love it

  • Orthotic insoles with anatomical arch support
  • Exceptionally breathable and lightweight

Specs

  • Sizes: 5-12
  • Widths: Standard (B) - Extra Wide (2E) 
  • Upper materials: stretch knit

 

The Laguna sandals' adjustable fit provides multiple options through a bungee cord across the instep and a heel strap, ensuring a secure and customized fit for optimal comfort.

Beyond fit adjustments, the wide toe box of the sandals caters to various forefoot conditions, alleviating pressure on sensitive areas and allowing for natural toe movement.

The breathable and lightweight knit fabric ensures a cool and comfortable experience, while the orthotic insole offers anatomical arch support that enhances foot alignment. 

The sole design evenly transfers forces from the heel to the toe, easing the walking experience. The seamfree interior, gentle against bare skin, guarantees maximum comfort, crucial for individuals with heightened sensitivity.

Available colors: blue, peach, gray

Best flip flops for plantar fasciitis

 

 Women’s Clio

Clio

Why you’ll love it

  • Chic meets practicality
  • Adjustable strap on both sides

Specs

  • Sizes: 5-12
  • Widths: Standard (B) - Wide (D)
  • Upper materials: synthetic

 

If you’ve been avoiding wearing flip flops because they are flat and really bad for your feet, especially if you have plantar fasciitis, now you can finally wear them without pain as the Clio flip flops come with a full blown arch support.

These toe-post sandals come with the added advantage of having adjustable straps on both sides of the foot, which can be customized to provide a secure fit. The toe post is both thin and soft, to avoid any discomfort. This means you won’t need to break them in gradually to avoid irritation between your toes. Happy times!

In addition, the rubber outsole ensures you are stable on feet and allows for unrestricted walking.

Available colors: brown and black.

 

Men’s Eldorado

Eldorado

Why you’ll love it

  • Super stylish yet extremely comfortable
  • A thin toe post made with soft material 

Specs

  • Sizes: 7-14
  • Widths: Standard (D) - Extra Wide (4E)
  • Upper materials: stretch knit

 

Unlike your typical flip flops, the Eldorados offer unique features, first and foremost arch support that doesn’t put stress on your fascia, leading to pain.

The velcro strap on the instep ensures a secure fit and improved stability, while the intentionally thin and soft toe post prevents any discomfort or irritation between the toes.

In addition, the soft leather upper is padded with fabric, so that your feet won’t experience any irritation even on the hottest of days.

Available colors: black. 

What special features do plantar fasciitis sandals need to have? 

The plantar fascia is a band of tissue that connects the toes and heel, and helping it function is key to maintaining a healthy foot and treating plantar fasciitis. 

Repetitive stress, excess body weight and shoes without support can increase tension on the fascia, causing it to overstretch, tear and become inflamed. 

Sandals for plantar fasciitis are designed to support the arch, absorb shock forces, and distribute pressure evenly to minimize pain and discomfort. 

The best sandals for plantar fasciitis should be designed with: 

  • Arch support: Sandals designed with built in arch support, or orthotic insoles, support the plantar fascia so it doesn’t over pull on the heel bone insertion. The insole reduces the arch drop that lengthens the foot which stretches the fascia. Orthotics also unlock a dysfunctional big toe joint by reducing the pronation that can cause it. 
  • Heel cushioning: Heel pain and plantar fasciitis are closely related and oftentimes misdiagnosed. However, today we know that plantar fasciitis causes the onset of heel pain. In addition, as we age and the more active we are, our natural fat pad located under the heel begins to wear out and thin. Plantar fasciitis sandals should have robust cushioning in the heel, such as gel or foam, to protect the area and alleviate the pain. 
  • Ball-of-foot cushioning: Since the plantar fascia connects the heel to the toes, it can become damaged and inflamed at any part, including the ball-of-foot area. The best plantar fasciitis sandals will have thick padding in the toe area to offset pressure from the metatarsal heads. 
  • Wide shaped forefoot: Sandals, especially if they are closed toe, need to have a wide and round shape in the front to give the toes plenty of space to move around. The space will prevent overlapping toes, promote biomechanical foot motion, and not put any extra pressure on the big toe joint. If the sandals are open toe, you need to make sure they are wide enough and the shape accommodates the toes so they are not bulging out from the sides. 
  • Ergonomic sole: Sandals for plantar fasciitis should be designed with a heel height that is close to the height of the front part of the shoe, so that the heel and forefoot are on the same level. Sandals with significantly elevated heels pose a problem as they place excess pressure on the big toe joint which is one cause of plantar fasciitis.