Best Women’s Walking Shoes for Hallux Rigidus & Limitus

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This article is our review of the best women's footwear for Hallux Rigidus & Limitus. If you are looking for men's shoes for hallux rigidus and limitus click here. You might also find our shoe sizing by brand post useful if you have trouble getting the right size shoes.

I encourage you to read all the information on this post but since we all lead busy lives, I am including the reviews at the top of the page. Use the table and button jump links to read the reviews and move around the page easily. You can find my informational content after the reviews or jump there from here.

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Last Reviewed on 12 March 2019 - Minor Update - 28 February 2019 - Minor content updates

by Jennifer

A Quick Look at the 8 Best Women's Footwear for Hallux Limitus & Hallux Rigidus in this Review


Best Women's Footwear for Hallux Limitus & Rigidus 

Merrell Womens Moab 2 Mid

Merrell Women's
MOAB 2 Mid Boot
Jump to Our Review

Hoka One One Men Gaviota 2

Hoka One One Women's Gaviota
Jump to Our Review

El Naturalista Womens Myth Yggdrasil

El Naturalista Yggdrasil N5133
Jump to Our Review

LAmour des Pieds Womens Amadour

L'Amour Des Pieds Amadour Sandal
Jump to Our Review

Dansko Womens Sam Ankle-Strap

Dansko Women's Sam Ankle Strap
Jump to Our Review

Alegria Womens Kourtney

Alegria Kourtney Professional Shoe
Jump to Our Review

El Naturalista Women's

El Naturalista
Grosella Sandal
Jump to Our Review

Dromedaris Womens Hornbill

Dromedaris Hormbill Platform Shoe
Jump to Our Review

Keep in mind we are looking for shoes that some or all of these features:

  • inflexible soles,
  • space in the toe box for our toes to spread out,
  • stablity to help reduce inward foot roll (overpronation),
  • shaped to encourage consistent foot position in the shoe,
  • a rocker sole to the forefoot to reduce flex on our big toe,
  • minimal heel and good overall cushioning for comfort.

Merrell MOAB II Mid Boot

For Gait Type
Neutral

For Arch Type
Normal

For Walk Type
Trail & Concrete

Merrell Women's Moab 2
$129.95
(As of: 2019/09/17 1:01 pm - Details)
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Merrel Shoes
93
Overall

Pros

  • Multiple Widths
  • Solid Build
  • Durable Rigid Soles
  • Wider Toe Box
  • Very Comfortable
  • 1.5" Heel, 1" Platform
  • Zoned Footbed
  • Waterproof Variation Available
  • 5 Star Walking Boot

Cons

  • Lightweight for a Trail Shoe
  • Non-Waterproof Versions are Not Good in Wet Conditions

The Merrell MOAB II Waterproof hiking boot is not just for hiking if you have hallux limitus. The rigid sole and great ankle support will look after your big toe and ankles when you are out walking.

Merrell Women's Moab 2
$129.95
(As of: 2019/09/17 1:01 pm - Details)
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It isn't going to be suitable for the office of course unless you are going to change out when you get there.

But this boot will serve you well for any outdoor walking you plan to do and is really quite comfortable and lightweight for its type.

The model I have picked for you is a mid ankle boot that's waterproof, but there are non-waterproof versions as well as shoe stylings if you prefer. 

The reason it is good for hallux limitus and rigidus sufferers is the quite rigid and rugged sole is inflexible at the toe end and there is a slight heel. You still get a little lift from the platform though.

You'll get lots of support in the heel and midsole too from teh contoured footbed working together with the insole which seats your foot nicely. And if it isn't good enough then you can take it out and fit some better ones.

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There is a nice spacious toe box for your toes to occupy and spread out in which, over time, will help counter the toe squashing that we put up with daily.

The upper is a waterproof mix of mesh and suede which looks too smart for its own good. I love the waterproof version because I can wear it truding around in the snow or if its pouring and still have dry feet.

It is a great choice if you are happy having your feet well secured and want something to do some serious walking in.

Another hiking style shoe I like a lot is the Altra Lone Peak 4.0.

Altra are great for Hallux sufferers because they have a nice roomy toe box which is more like the shape of your foot than the end of a canoe.

The zero drop platform is great too because you toe starts off in an unflexed position and sort of rolls forward with the roll front sole shape which reduces the maximum flex on your biggie.

The Altra loses out to the Merrell when it comes to keeping those tootsies dry though because the upper isn't waterproof and being a quick drying mesh doesn't help too much if your socks are soaking.

That said, the Lone peak is a really super looking shoe - sort of sporty charming. I like the look a lot!

The other thing with teh Altra is that the fit is slightly better than the shoe version of the Merrell because Altra have the sense to make womens shoes to fit our real footshape.

Both shoes have lots of cushioning. 

Why not grab the Merrells for wet days and the Altras for the dry ones and have the best of both worlds. They are both excellent shoes.

MERRELL BEHIND THE SHOE MOAB 2 SD

Hoka One One Gaviota II

For Gait Type
Mild Overpronator

For Arch Type
Flat - Normal

For Walk Type
Concrete & Casual

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Hoka One Shoes
88
Overall

Pros

  • Wide Toe Box
  • Lightweight
  • Good Heel Cushioning
  • Overpronators Shoe
  • Good Breathability
  • 5 Star Walking Shoe

Cons

  • Flex will likely need foot plates if Limitus is advanced
  • Hard to find current models

Hoka One One is a great footwear company and the Gaviota may sound like a Harry Potter spell, perhaps because your feet will be under one.

It is an excellent shoe for hallux sufferers because it is a stability shoe to keep your pronation under control and the pressure off the big ball of your foot under the big toe joint.

Anything that takes the pressure off the painfull bits has got to be a hit right?

If you are looking for a sports style shoe there are a couple of other Hoka One One shoes worth a look - the Bondi 6 and the Clifton 5 in particular. The Bondi is the more cushioned but neither has any pronation control which is teh reason I chose the Gaviota 2.

Brooks Women's Addiction
$99.95
(As of: 2019/09/17 1:01 pm - Details)
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All the Hoka One One shoes have good cushioning and the Gaviota is no exception. It has a good breathable upper and a moderate rocker bottom which along with the sole alignment should help offset your hallux limitus.

The Brooks Addiction Walker is another shoe which is designed for the overpronator and so will help reduce the pressure at that big toe metatarsal joint that is giving you pain.

The Addiction Walker has a good sized toe box and moderate cushioning which will suit you if you feel a little queasy on the super soft cushioned styles shoes.

It is a supportive shoe with a good quality removable insole and it comes in lots of width fittings so no trouble will be had finding a good fit.

Only limited colors for the Brooks but the styling is somewhat more ordinary and so good for wearing whether you are out and about or off to a party. The more definately sporty styles don't have quite so much wear adaptability I think. Do you agree?  

The Gaviota from HOKA ONE ONE

El Naturalista N5133

For Gait Type
Normal

For Arch Type
Normal

For Walk Type
Concrete & Casual

3% savings
El Naturalista Womens Myth Yggdrasil
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El Naturalista Shoes
95
Overall

Pros

  • A Company That Values the Planet 
  • A Boot that Oozes Style
  • Cushioned and comfortable
  • Light & Flexible
  • Leather Uppers & Lining
  • Good Toe Box
  • Light Outsole from Recyclables

Cons

  • Not suitable for later stage limitus because footbed is a little high in the heel
  • No Overpronation Control

El Naturalista is a European footwear manufacturer that has the ecology and sustainability as its ethos. 

So it should be no surprise that part of this boot is made from recyclable materials - the sole to be exact.

The boot is built off a platform to give you a boost off the floor leaving a moderate drop in the shoe. For this reason it might not be so suitable for you if you have late stage limitus or rigidus.

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The boot has a beautiful leather upper and is such a beautiful design I think you will agree.

The zip inside makes it easy to get on and off and it is really lightweight.

The footbed is great smelling leather and very comfortable but still removable if you want to fit orthotics.

You might need to experiment with sizing if you intend to do that though as only medium width fitting is available.

The boot last is quite roomy for a European shoe and should suit you unless you have wide feet.

The styling is adaptable because it will look great whether you want to dress up or down or stay somewhere in the middle. They are comfortable, stylish and did I say cute already?

My advice though is to take a half size larger than normal especially if you will wear with thicker socks (which protect you from chafing) or plan on fitting custom orthotics.

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This is a low heel boot with a small heel to toe drop that will suit your hallux limitus.

The cork and foam insole is deliciously comfortable and the moderate rocker sole helps with the push off as you walk.

The insole is supportive and with the Alegria contoured insole you'll be getting plenty of cushion. 

They are removable and replaceable too so you can fit your own or wear them out and get some more.

The rounded toe box gives plenty of room for your toes to spread out without squashing you.

Medium and wide widths available in this shoe depending on the design availability.


L'Amour Des Pieds Amadour Sandal

For Gait Type
Neutral

For Arch Type
Flat - Normal

For Walk Type
Comfortable Style

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L'Amour Des Pieds Shoes
92
Overall

Pros

  • Only the Best Materials
  • Great Cushioning
  • Fantasitc Arch Support
  • Sturdy Yet Amazingly Comfortable
  • Super Comfortable

Cons

  • A bit pricey but fantastic.
  • Only in Medium Widths
  • Add 1/2 size larger

One thing you have to admit is that the Europeans make some wonderfully designed shoes. The LÁmour Des Pieds have a superb range of shoes to die for!

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The Amadour is one of those shoes that makes you just want to tough them.

Beautifully crafted suede uppers with a hook and loop elasticated strap to secure around the top of your instep / ankle.

The footbed is just fantastic and with a low drop and great cushioining from the supportive insole, it will help your hallux limitus keep in check.

The substantial but super lightweight sole will not flex much so limiting the big toe flex and bye bye to pain there.

You've got to love these sandals.

Particularly suited to people with metatarsalgia as well, by the way.

L'Amour Des Pieds - Why the shoes are so comfortable.

Dansko Sam Ankle Strap Clog

For Gait Type
Mild Overpronator

For Arch Type
Flat - Normal

For Walk Type
Concrete & Casual

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Dansko Shoes
86
Overall

Pros

  • Great Rocker Bottom Rigid Sole
  • Leather Uppers
  • Elasticated Ankle Strap
  • Good Width Last
  • Contoured Comfortable Insole
  • Looks Cute for a Round Toe

Cons

  • Heel a bit higher than ideal

Dansko make really comfortable shoes and the Sam Clog from their Sausalito collection is no exception.

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With a good wide last in the medium width shoes you might be complaining if you have narrow feet.

Otherwise you will be singing the praises of some of the most comfy clog style shoes on the market.

Dansko have an excellent, moisture managing and well cushioned insole that really does its job of support and comfort.

The rocker bottom sole somewhat copmensates for the higher heel height which is only around 2 inches but for some might be on the high side.

But, to comensate, there is no flex in the sole at the forefoot and the rocker design will help orientate your foot so as to minimize big toe flex - just what you need.

It's no surprising these shoes come with the APMA (American Podiatric Medical Association) seal of acceptance.

Try them!

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As an alternative - and I've been offering a lot of alternatives to you today, but the Dansko Marty Clog is another great option. 

The Marty Clog has a swivel strap so you can wear it as a slide on clog or one with a back strap which is handy.

Most of my comments above apply equally to this model which is just a differnt style.

So instead of wittering on I'll just put it in here for you to have a look and see if you prefer the syling.


Alegria Kourtney Professional Shoe

For Gait Type
Normal

For Arch Type
Normal

For Walk Type
Casual & Concrete

Alegria Womens Kourtney
$79.95
(As of: 2019/09/17 1:02 pm - Details)
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Alegria Shoes
88
Overall

Pros

  • Good Wide Toe Box
  • Great Brand
  • Excellent Cushioning
  • Breathable Upper
  • Good Fit with Space
  • Removable insoles
  • Good Arch Support

Cons

  • Only Medium Width Fitting readily available

Looking for a work shoe that you can go out in afterwards? This Alegria may be the ticket!

58% savings
Alegria Women's"Kourtney"
$54.95
(As of: 2019/09/17 1:02 pm - Details)
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Alegria has a wider than average last for most of its shoes and most of their designs have a sensible toe box that does not squash.

Add to that a mild rocker bottom and fairly inflexible sole with a sensible heel and we are on to a winner.

The Alegria insoles are great already, replaceable if you need and can be swapped out with orthotics.

The Kourtney has a great sized toe box to let your toes expand and do the job they were made for.

The Kourtney is available in a generous sized medium width and also a wider width fitting for you if your feet are a little wider than normal. 

However you may have difficulty getting hold of the wide fittings as they are a little difficult to find.

A really comfortable shoe that will do you well for those long days at the office.


El Naturalista Grosella Sandal

For Gait Type
Normal

For Arch Type
Flat - Normal

For Walk Type
Formal & Casual

El Naturalista Women's
$154.95
(As of: 2019/09/17 1:01 pm - Details)
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El Naturalista Shoes
90
Overall

Pros

  • Dress Shoe Option
  • Wide Spacious Shoe
  • Designed for Cushion
  • Designed for Metatarsal Support
  • Looks Beautiful
  • Open Toe Design
  • Mid Flex Sole

Cons

  • Umm - it's European if that's a con!
  • A little pricey

El Naturalista again so if you want to read about the company please read my review on the N5133 above about the company to avaoid repeating myself and boring you.

El Naturalista Women's
$154.95
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This is another fantastic looking shoe from El Naturalista and again incorporates recycled materials, this time for the footbed which is antibacterial.

The insole is also breathable so if your feet tend to get a bit hot they will be able to wick away any moisture build up.

The sole on this shoe is flexible but by design to flex at the midsole section rather than the forefoot. 

So whilst there will be some flex required of your big toes it won't be excessive.

The rubber outsole does a good job of doing a bit of shock absorbing and giving plenty of grip.

The uppers - well just look at those shoes - gorgeous and leather.

Never say never to pink!


Dromedaris Hornbill

For Gait Type
Mild Overpronator - Neutral

For Arch Type
Flat - Normal

For Walk Type
Any Casual or Work

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Dromedaris Shoes
94
Overall

Pros

  • A Lot of Room in the Toes
  • Perfect Dress Shoe for Work
  • Lightweight
  • Low Toe Drop
  • Rocker Bottom
  • Lace Up Style
  • Great Footbed
  • Good For People Who Have to Stand All Day
  • Good Support & Cushioning

Cons

  • Shorter Strides better to reduce flex in leather at front

This all leather upper lace up shoe from Dromedaris has a real rocker bottom sole to ensure you keep on rolling through your stride.

With the classic professional services design, the shoe will be a match for any formal requirement of work whilst allowing your feet to relax.

The sold platform sole give you height and rigidity so your hallux is not rotating everywhere. 

The leather uppers are very soft but that has a small drawback if you have a longer stride as the leather tends to crease at the toes in this situation.

In any case it is a good idea to reduce the length of your stride with hallux limitus or rigidus because the toes have to flex more at the push off if your stride is long.

The reality is that if you are suffering with hallus limitus already then your stride has probably been consciously or unconsciously shortened to reduce pain in any case.

The shoe has a good footbed to provide lots of cushioning and a fairly low heel to toe drop.

The shoe features a 3D footbed design made up of a trio of materials to provide great cushioning, great arch support and plenty of shock absorption.

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The next best shoe that provides a decent toe box at a reasonable price and suitable for more formal wear is the Orthofeet Lake Charles lace up shoe.

The Orthofeet company make shoes that help reduce or solve foot problems and the Lake Charles is a shoe made to suit diabetics.

Don't let that put you off though because diabetics need metatarsal cushioning as the balls of the foot of a diabetic are much more sensive to damage.

The additional cushioning and depth provided to the shoe which also has a super cushioning and supportive insole, will help your hallux rigidus as well.

The shoe is nicely lightweight and has a midsole that soaks up impact shock to leave your stride very comfortable.

The only downside is that I, along with many others, are not particularly enamoured with the styling which is a little plain. but plenty of people prefer that and my personal choice is not really so important when compared to your foot pain. 

Orthofeet Orthotic Shoes

It is an interesting fact that women's feet are different to men's feet. Well I think you and I both knew that instinctively, our feet cerainly smell less! But from the point of view of hallux limitus and hallux rigidus we should take a look at these differences.

Womens heels are narrower than mens but their forefeet are wider. Our feet are obviously smaller than mens feet, since on average our body frame is smaller, better shaped and neater, which includes our feet.

But our forefoot is larger than a man's in relation to our foot length, yet our heels are narrower. Our cartiledges are thinner but our ankles are thicker, comparatively speaking. If want the whole run down on differences check out this foot specialist talking about it.

All human beings work to make their lifestyles better. That is why every day, technology keeps on taking everything a notch higher to make the human race more comfortable. However, one area which people focus on is ensuring that they are in good health.

The number one reason being that the body is the vessel which makes all the other goals achievable. That is why you will find many people waking up at dawn to run, jog or walk to keep in shape and also keep control of their bodies.

Sadly, no matter how fit we are, our bodies tend to develop conditions which limit us from the activities which we deem normal such as walking or running as we age on.

Among these, hallux rigidus and limitus top the list. In case you’ve never heard of these conditions and you are wondering what gibberish this is, don’t worry because I got you.

What is hallux rigidus & limitus?

Hallux rigidus and limitus are disorders which cause pain and stiffness to the big toe. In the initial stages, Limitus only causes pain and difficulties to you bending the toe.

However, as it progresses, it is referred to as rigidus, and the sufferer can no longer bend or move the toe as it is frozen. Hallux rigidus causes the rest of the joints to strain since most of your body weight usually relies on the big toe.

Signs and symptoms

  • The most prominent symptom is rigidity and pain when you try to move the big toe
  • Limping
  • Swelling near or on the MTP joint

If not treated urgently, this foot condition may cause rheumatoid arthritis. Therefore it is important that anyone with the above signs get treatment. It may also cause a change in gait since most of your joints are now straining. Fortunately, you don’t have to stop your fitness program as there are shoes specifically designed to suit people with a stiff big toe.

You can, therefore, continue with your morning jogs and walks without experiencing discomfort and pain and at the same time are in style.

Best Walking Shoes for Hallux Rigidus & Limitus 2

If you want to learn more about Hallux Rigidus and Hallus Limitus then head on over to the Men's Shoes for Hallus Rigidus and skip the reviews. There is a lot of information and it is as pertinent to you as it is to men.

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