Best Slip On
Nurse Mates Dove
Alegria Paloma Flat
Brooks Addiction Walker
As a nurse, your job is hard enough, so don't let it be hard on your feet too. We've picked out the best shoes for nurses to keep you comfortable all day long.
Caring for others as a nurse is a selfless act you partake in because you’re nurturing and kind. But while you care for others, you can still pay attention to your needs as well! After a long day of serving others, your feet can begin to hurt.
Thankfully, they don’t have to! If you invest in the best shoes for nurses, you can have pain-free feet even after a double shift. We’ve reviewed the best nursing shoes available so you can take care of yourself and others in comfort, making your hard job a bit easier!
Nurses Shoes Compared
Type of Shoe
Dansko Professional Clog
New Balance WX608V4 Trainers
Crocs Mercy Work Clog
Black, Black/Gold, Black/Silver, White
Alegria Women's Paloma Flat
Nurse Mates Women's Dove
White or Black
K-Swiss Classic VN Fashion
KEEN Utility PTC Slip-On
ASICS GEL-Dedicate 5
adidas PerformanceBarricade Club
Merrell Men's Jungle Moc Pro Grip
Why Good Nursing Shoes Matter so Much?
It really doesn’t matter what kind of nurse you are, you know that this profession takes a toll on the body. Even if you’re still a student in nursing school, you probably spend a good amount of time on your feet.
With long shifts, heavy lifting, and a fast pace, you don’t generally get to just lie down on the job and take a break. That’s why it’s critical you take care of each area of your body, starting with your feet. Your feet aren’t the only part of your body that you can feel pain in.
Nursing adds plenty of stress to areas such as your hips, ankles and lower back as well. Working a full-time nursing job means you’re putting your body under repetitive stress and you need the proper comfort.
Wearing shoes that contain heels or have improper skid resistance make these complications even worse. In addition, by wearing shoes that aren’t sized properly, you can impact the health of your feet and joints.
By investing in a high-quality pair of shoes, you not only reduce pain but you set yourself up for optimal health in the future. You preach to others about taking care of themselves every day; it’s time to follow your own advice.
What Styles of Shoe Can You Wear?
Picking out a quality pair of nursing shoes doesn’t mean you can’t be stylish. There are plenty of options available to you to choose from. Some of the more popular styles include:
Nurses tend to gravitate toward clogs because of their comfort, protective design plus arch and heel support. They’re made with a closed toe, optional rear strap and open back. They tend to improve slip resistance, are made from waterproof materials and offer reinforced toe guards.
You’ll find them made from various materials such as leather, suede and resin. This helps them to be lightweight, have increased durability and optimal stain resistant properties.
Crocs are a lot like clogs and are made from a solid foam resin material. They feature a closed vented air portal plus an open or low-level heel design. They may also have an optional rear strap like clogs.
Crocs allow your feet to breathe comfortably but you might opt for some without the vents instead to protect from spills. Many podiatrists have recommended Crocs to deal with various ailments.
Tennis or Athletic Shoes
Many nurses choose to wear support tennis or athletic shoes that provide balance and comfort. They protect the feet and make movement easy. Having a quality pair of shoes with shock absorption is a good choice when working on hard surfaces all day.
They’re also lightweight and flexible so walking around for long periods is less stressful on the joints. With a pair of athletic shoes, you can easily add some additional comforts such as memory foam insoles or ankle support. You can also find a variety of shoes that offer laceless entry or slip-on designs for easy on and off.
Keep in mind that tennis and athletic shoes typically have a break in time before they’re completely comfortable. You might opt to wear them around the house for a little first before wearing them all day long.
How to Choose the Most Comfortable Nursing Shoes for You
Finding the right pair of nursing shoes is going to be a personal choice, but here are some things to pay attention to.
Weight and Comfort
Your shoes will be worn for hours on end and days in a row. The weight of them can wear on you after a while, so you don’t want heavy or clunky shoes.
When you wear shoes that hurt your feet, your performance level decreases and others will take notice. You can increase your comfort by adding a pair of compression socks. This helps the circulation of blood flow and minimizes any swelling for people that spend lots of time on their feet.
Support and Stability
The shoe you pick should offer back and ankle support to eliminate unnecessary pain. The material of the shoe, as well as the shape and height, are going to play a part in the stability being offered. Supportive shoes will keep your feet pain-free and happy even during the longest shifts.
Choosing a pair of shoes that’s slip resistant should be priority number one. Nursing environments are filled with hazards such as a spilt liquid. These mean you can fall easily, but with a high-quality pair of shoes, you won’t need to worry about injuring yourself. Stay safe by searching out slip-resistant shoes.
As we discussed above, there are many different styles of shoes you can choose from. Inside each of those styles you’ll find varying designs, colors and personalities. It helps you to pick a shoe that matches your unique personality. Not only will your feet feel good from having quality materials, but your mood will be boosted as well.
If you must choose between having a stylish looking shoe or one that’s comfortable but isn’t hip, choose the shoe that will be best for your foot! There’s no amount of pain that’s worth looking good for a period of time.
Obviously, most people are going to need to look at price as part of the criteria. Not everyone can afford to purchase the most expensive pair of shoes on the market, so it’s helpful to know your budget before shopping.
Depending on the materials used, construction of the shoe and overall design, prices can vary greatly. You may pay a little more to have the highest level of comfort. Keep in mind that a high-quality shoe is also going to be durable so you’ll need to purchase new shoes less often.
For example, if I’m trying to save money, I might purchase a pair of $40 shoes. They might only last me two months which means I could spend $120 over six months to have a pair of shoes that weren’t that great. In comparison, I could purchase a pair of $100 shoes that are durable and comfortable. If that pair of shoes lasts me six months, then I’ve saved money over buying “budget” shoes.
10 Best Nursing Shoes Reviewed
Here are the 10 best nursing shoes we’ve found currently on the market. We have reviewed and recommended models for both women and men. There are styles in black, white and other options.
1. Dansko Women's Professional Clog
Will These Shoes Fit Me?
One of the best nursing shoes for women is this Dansko Clog. It’s perfect if you spend a lot of time on your feet because it eases joint pressure and strain. By allowing you to achieve a natural stride, it also helps to reduce fatigue.
There’s a superior amount of shock absorption in this clog; better than most athletic footwear. It also offers a roomy toe box and an anti-microbial material to help you avoid bad odors. They’re approved by the American Podiatric Medical Association and are also slip resistant. This makes it easy to walk even in a slippery environment without the fear of hurting yourself.
However, specialists from Lexington Podiatry warn nurses about wearing clogs, since they may not be the most suitable option for everyone.
While wearing this shoe, your ligaments, tendons and muscles in your feet and calves, are working overtime to keep you supported and upright. Your feet are in there shifting back and forth putting stress on your Achilles tendon".
So while many nurses may find them an amazing option, it should be taken in consideration that some people will suffer from pain if they aren't the right choice for their feet. Nevertheless, if they fit nicely to you, this comfortable, leather nursing clog will help you to feel good and look good all day long. It is available in a variety of styles too.
2. New Balance Women's WX608V4 Training Shoe
Will These Shoes Fit Me?
This pair of New Balance sneakers is one of the best shoes for nurses with plantar fasciitis. New Balance has been a leader in comfortable shoes and these are perfect for standing all day. The shoe is made from a mix of synthetic and fabric, but the sole is rubber. This is perfect for dealing with spills in the hospital hallways.
This shoe also features New Balance’s ABZORB technology and an IMEVA midsole. The superior lateral support makes them great for those who are dealing with foot issues. The same specialists from Lexington Podiatry that we previously mentioned talk about tennis shoes as a better option for nurses, as they say:
You want to look for a supportive stiff-soled shoe. For the most part, you don’t want a flexible shoe. Flexible shoes often lack support. You also want to wear a shoe that ties".
One of the other nice things about New Balance is that the price is generally reasonable plus they offer a nice selection of styles to choose from.
5 Reasons why this is the best shoe for nurses with plantar fasciitis
3. Crocs Women's Mercy Work Clog
Will These Shoes Fit Me?
Crocs are a leader in producing shoes that are comfortable for nurses to wear. They’re comfortable, odor-resistant and lightweight. On top of that, you’ll find this clog to be roomy and comfortable. The rubber outsole contains slip-resistant materials and there’s a back strap to keep your foot secure at all times.
There’s even a footbed to enhance arch support. The tiny nubs inside the shoe provide the foot with a gentle massage every time you walk. With how stylish the Crocs are, you can wear them to work and then out to run errands as well.
The only disadvantage about these is, according to some customers, that they lack vents to let the feet breathe. Wearing this crocs is a great way to relieve pressure on your joints and back anytime you’re standing or walking. That’s why they’re my pick as the best shoes for nurses on their feet all day.
5 Reasons why these are the top-rated slip on shoes
4. Alegria Women's Paloma Flat
Will These Shoes Fit Me?
This has got to be one of the best nursing shoes for flat feet. Designed with leather and an animal print upper you can have the latest styles while being comfortable. The best part of this flat is the removable insole, which is constructed of cork and memory foam. You can opt to replace this with something better if you are one of the many people that struggle with foot issues.
They’re also completely breathable to help you avoid unwanted odors. There’s an integrated arch support that provides optimal comfort to flat feet. On top of that, the anatomically correct footbed was designed to promote natural contours to the foot. The outsole has rocker technology so you can walk with a natural rolling motion. This reduces heel pain and reduces central metatarsal pressure. It also encourages a natural gait and proper posture for your day.
The official website of Alegria Shoes Shop suggests that wearing the wrong shoes can cause several damages - such as bunions, plantar fasciitis, heel spurs, backaches, poor posture, fatigue, osteoporosis, inflammation, and varicose veins. However, they state:
Alegria nursing and professional shoes for women are designed to combat these issues by providing the exact fit you need to support and comfort your foot".
This shoe provides a little extra depth so you have a roomier fit. This allows your toes to move freely throughout the day.
5 Reasons why these are the best nursing shoes for flat feet
5. Skechers for Work Women's Sure Track Slip Resistant Shoe
Will These Shoes Fit Me?
The professional woman needs the best nursing shoes on the market. This pair of Skechers will perform better than most other brands and is made from a smooth leather for durability. They’re slip-resistant and rugged as well.
The memory foam insole makes this shoe one of the most comfortable to wear. In addition, it features a shock absorbing, supportive FlexSole midsole so your feet feel energized even after hours of standing. The outsole is designed to resist spills, oils and chemicals so your feet remain safe at all times. The downside is that they’re only available in black or white.
All in all, these shoes are found comfortable and practical by its users. This been told, they could be the best option for you too!
6. Dansko Women's Pro Xp Mule Shoe
Will These Shoes Fit Me?
If you have a larger foot, then you need the best nursing shoes for wide feet. This slip-on leather Dansko mule gives you ultimate style and confidence with a ton of different varieties to choose from. There’s a generous toe box to give your toes the room they need.
The instep of the shoe is also padded. In addition, the insole contains a dual density memory foam for some extra cushion. This mule is APMA certified and features an anti-fatigue rocker bottom. Combine that with the slip-resistant rubber outsole and you’ll find it easy to walk on slippery surfaces.
You can remove the insole and add in your own gel insert if you prefer. You’ll notice an immediate relief of your back pain with this comfortable support. Consider wearing them outside of work for even more comfort for your wide feet. Dr. Victoria M. Foley, a diplomat of the Board of Podiatric Surgery and a fellow of the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons, states on her blog:
According to the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society, women are nine times more likely than men to develop a foot problem due to ill-fitting shoes, and 90% of women say they wear shoes in too small of a size".
This is something you should take into account, especially if you have wide or large feet. That's why it is so important to find a pair of shoes that fit and are comfortable enough for your job, and these Dansko may be the right option for you.
5 Reasons why these are the best nursing shoes for wide feet
7. Brooks Women's Addiction Walker Walking Shoes
Will These Shoes Fit Me?
Brooks makes one of the best tennis shoes for nurses. With intense durability and extreme comfort, these walking shoes work perfectly for a day on your feet. They work well for people with knee, foot and ankle issues due to the quality construction.
They provide a supportive cushioning and thick rubber, foam sole. The removable insole is perfect if you want to add in your own set of orthotics. In addition, the slip-resistant outsole keeps you from being in danger when walking on slippery surfaces. Your feet will sink deep into the sneaker for maximum comfort.
They aren’t the most stylish shoes available, but if you’re more concerned about comfort, these will work great.
5 Reasons why these are the best tennis shoe for women nurses
8. Alegria Women's Keli Professional Shoe
Will These Shoes Fit Me?
What are the best shoes for nurses? You should look at this Alegria pair! It’s a solid shoe made to withstand the long hours that a nurse faces. With a generous toe box, padded instep and back collar, you’ll be free from sores and chafing. There’s also a replaceable, detachable Perfect Fit Footbed to provide moisture management and cushioning.
The slip-resistant sole is made with polyurethane. While providing traction control, this shoe also relieves stress and pressure on your feet. They’re lightweight and don’t squeak. With a wide insole, even those with wide feet can use this shoe comfortably. On top of that, just look at all the styles that are available.
They may not be the cheapest option - but that's not necessarily an issue.
Invest in good quality shoes. The shoes you wear have a major impact on the health of your feet. Be sure that your footwear fits properly and is designed to accommodate any deformities".
Always remember your feet health shouldn't be taken for granted. With shoes like these, you'll be taking one step forward onto having a healthier and better way of life!
9. Nurse Mates Women's Dove
Will These Shoes Fit Me?
Sometimes you just need to find the best white nursing shoes! This pair of Nurse Mates features a pillow top insole for maximum arch support. They’re also extremely durable thanks to the full grain leather upper designed to protect.
There’s a slip-resistant bottom outsole plus a padded instep collar. The leather is stain resistant so your shoe will remain clean and white at all times.
10. Timberland PRO Women's Renova PROfessional Slip-On Clog
Will These Shoes Fit Me?
Timberland makes one of the best shoes for nurses to wear. The Renova was created specifically to be easy to wear with the slip-on design. The anti-fatigue support provides all-day comfort thanks to the anatomical shape. In addition, the outsole is one-piece from heel to toe and it reduces pressure on the forefoot.
With maximum leg and back support, this is also one of the best nursing shoes for back pain. The slip-resistant, Safegrip outsole allows for traction in any condition. The Scotchguard protectant keeps your shoes looking nice and resistant to stains.
Moreover, the Outlast Adaptive Comfort, Bi-Fit Tri-density footbed combined with the temperature regulator all provide the optimal condition for a day at work. Katy works as a critical care nurse and she just loved these Timberland shoes.
So if you're looking for white, comfortable and long-lasting nurse shoes, these may be a great option to cover your needs.
5 Reasons why these are the best nursing shoes for back pain
Best Brands for Nurses
There are several brands you can choose from when looking for a quality nursing shoe. Here are three of the most popular.
Crocs have been known for their comfortable style and loved by many. That’s why it is even more exciting to know that they’ve developed an entire line dedicated to nurses. They come with features that are going to help you feel good all day and look good as well.
Crocs are easy to clean with soap and water so you don’t need to worry about them getting ruined. In addition, there are several styles that offer the Crocs Lock tread to provide slip-resistant protection that exceed the industry standards. Finally, you will enjoy the all-day support with the Croslite material footbed in every pair.
Nike has been around for more than 50 years, so you can trust them to be a leader in the footwear industry. Not only do they create a useful and practical design, but there are plenty of unique styles to choose from. If you prefer a white nursing shoe, they have those available as well.
If you spend long hours walking or standing, you will find that Nike’s athletic shoes can be beneficial to minimize the additional stress put on your joints and feet. They tend to be lightweight and comforting even during long shifts at the hospital.
Dansko has been known to make highly-quality nursing shoes and clogs for both men and women. If you work long hours where you have to stand, work in surgery or do clinicals, you’ll find that Dansko provides your feet with all-day comfort.
They are made of high-quality materials and a variety of styles. You can find classic black, nurse white and other fun designs. Healthcare members everywhere have trusted the Dansko name for their foot needs. They will effectively help you to reduce foot pain as well as discomfort throughout your legs, hips and back.
Nursing Shoes 101: Frequently Asked Questions
Differences for Women’s vs Men’s Nursing shoes
Aside from style difference, you’ll also find a couple other areas that vary based on a shoe being geared towards a man or a woman. The first difference is the shape of the shoe. Most women’s shoes are built to be wider in the forefoot and toe area while remaining narrower in the heel.
Men’s shoes are wider and larger overall than a woman’s shoe. There can also be a difference in the midsole materials, heel support and weight of the shoe.
In addition, women tend to have about 15 percent less muscle than man. That causes them to weigh less than a man of the same height. With this in mind, a woman’s shoe is manufactured to sustain 15 percent less impact during foot strikes. They are generally lightweight and softer than the same shoe in the man’s style.
Women’s flex grooves are also significantly deeper in a woman’s shoe. This is carved into the forefront of a shoe’s outsole. This is done because a women’s lower body mass can make it more difficult to flex the midsole. Having these grooves makes it easier.
Black or white nursing shoes: Which is best?
Some hospitals or clinics will require a certain dress code, so you may not be able to pick the color of shoe you want. If you have the ability to pick your own, there are several reasons that people enjoy the black or white.
Both of these colors are professional looking and go with almost any color of scrubs. With that being said, black is going to hide the spills or stains much better than a pair of white shoes would. You also won’t see the dirt which means you could wear these for a longer amount of time than a white pair.
On the other hand, if you spill bodily fluids on a pair of black shoes, you might not even know they are there. You also won’t be able to tell if you cleaned it off properly. Some nurses prefer to wear the white shoes and keep them clean so they know they are protected from dangerous fluids.
The choice of black or white nursing shoes really comes down to your personal preference of style. There is no right or wrong answer that every nurse should go by.
How do nursing shoes differ from regular shoes?
Some nurses choose to wear regular shoes during work, but they don’t offer the same support that a high-quality pair of nursing shoes do. You can achieve more support, comfort and flexibility with a high-quality pair of designated nursing shoes. This will reduce foot pain as well as discomfort in your knees, joints and back.
Most nursing shoes also feature properties that make them easy to clean and stain-proof. This is important if you work in environments with frequent spills and messes.
The traction on a pair of nursing shoes will also be superior to that of a regular pair of shoes. This is important because there are times when you are working on slippery surfaces. The last thing you want is to fall and need a nurse yourself!
When you work in a hospital or doctor’s office, you tend to walk all day on hard floors. That’s why it is crucial to your joints that you have a shock-absorbing shoe. Nursing shoes all feature some measure to reduce that additional strain on your feet and joints for maximum, all-day relief.
Are tennis shoes a good choice for nurses?
Tennis shoes are a good option when you are looking for an all-white sneaker. The key to finding the right tennis shoe or athletic shoe is to ensure it has the same qualities as nursing shoes. There should be additional support added to the shoe. If not, ensure there is room to add some additional support like insoles.
They should also be built from strong materials, feature shock absorption and have an overall comfort to them. If you are a nurse who wants to avoid the clog look that most nurses wear, then a high-quality pair of tennis shoes is a great option for you.
Where can you buy cheap nursing shoes?
Shopping at a store that specializes in nursing gear is not the way to find a deal. You will pay full price or more on most of the supplies and you don’t need to. Your best bet for finding a low-cost pair of nursing shoes is to check on Amazon.
Most of the major brands sell their shoes there so there is competition which drives lower prices. In addition, Amazon offers free returns on many of their footwear products, so be sure to look for that while shopping. It could save you money if you find that the shoe doesn’t fit quite right.
Problems that can arise from wearing bad shoes
Wearing the wrong shoes can not only cause discomfort but could also lead to foot problems in the future. The most common occurrence is aching feet. Shoes that are smaller than your feet, as well as footwear that is too tight, loose, airtight, or shaped in a way that isn't natural, can cause problems.
In addition, wearing a pair of shoes that isn’t breathable or loose enough could lead to Athlete’s Foot. This is due to the lack of air which allows bacteria to thrive and grow in the warm, moist shoe.
Blisters are common when you wear shoes that are too big or too small. If the shoe has rough spots in them, you might also find that they rub against a sensitive spot on your foot.
Wearing a shoe that doesn’t fit properly can lead to bunions. Bunions are caused because the base of the toe gets pushed out of its normal position.
If you have flat feet or high arches, certain shoes can trigger inflammation in your plantar fascia ligament. The result of this inflammation is called plantar fasciitis and can lead to incredible amounts of discomfort. The pain might be felt first thing in the day or after hours of inactivity.
If plantar fasciitis is left untreated, or you continue wearing improper support, you could end up with heel spurs. Any foot issue should be first treated by switching to a more supportive shoe.
If you are a nurse, it is vital that you give your feet the support they need. Long hours of standing or walking can lead to pain that will cause you to be less effective. Take the time to research your options and then invest in the best nursing shoes you can find. Your feet will thank you!