Finding flat shoes with good arch support can be a tricky proposition. By definition, arch support requires some degree of lift, and flat shoes typically don't have that (or they wouldn't be called "flats"). That said, there are indeed some options out there — you just have to know where to look. The most comfortable flats with arch support usually have a combination of the following three elements:
- Soft footbeds: A well-cushioned footbed is a critical part of staying comfortable when it comes to footwear. It should offer metatarsal support and be made from flexible material, such as cork or EVA foam.
- Shock-absorbent soles: The bottoms of your shoes need to be able to absorb impact when your feet strike the ground. Soles made from 100 percent rubber are usually best, and if there's a cushioned midsole in between, that's even better.
- Flexible material: If your shoes are tough and rigid, it's a recipe for blisters. Flats made with flexible leather and other malleable materials will reduce the amount of rubbing and chafing.
Given these considerations, I've put together a list of the most comfortable flats with arch support I could find. Take a look so you can be on your way to happier feet.
1. The Best Ballet Flats With Arch Support
What's great about them: These versatile women's ballet flats are slender and low-profile, yet they still offer a reasonable degree of arch support. They're made with durable, full-grain nubuck leather that's treated with anti-stain technology so they won't wear out quickly. They come in seven cute colors and a wide range of sizes. Just one note: Several reviewers said they run large, so you may want to order a size down.
What fans say: "These are so cute and super comfortable! I have always loved the ballet flat but I need arch support and these give you that."
- Available sizes: 5.5 to 12
2. The Best Ballet Flats For Wide Feet
What's great about them: If you have wide feet, finding a pair of ballet flats that actually fit can be tough. Fortunately, these orthotic flats with arch support come in wide options for every size. They feature bio-mechanical footbeds designed by podiatrists with EVA foam. On top of that, the midsoles are super flexible, and the heel cups are extra-deep to provide added stability. The stylish shoes come in eight colors including black, light gray, pewter, and cherry. The only drawback is that a few reviewers reported getting blisters on the back of the heel at first, so you may need some time to break these in.
What fans say: "I have very wide feet and it's hard to find shoes that are attractive. These shoes provide the comfort and support I need while looking good. I can be on my feet all day and they don't hurt. I highly recommend them if you have problem feet!"
- Available sizes: 5 to 11 (Medium and Wide)
3. The Best Pointed Toe Flats With Arch Support
What's great about them: If pointed-toe shoes are more your jam, these cushioned ballet flats with arch support are an excellent choice. They're made by the same company that produces the wide-shoe pair above, so they have similar EVA footbeds (that are bio-mechanical and designed by podiatrists). They also have straps across the front of the feet with adjustable buckles, plus sturdy rubber soles to prevent you from slipping. What's more, they're made with real leather and come in three colors.
What fans say: "Quality workmanship and materials. True to size. Has good arch support that we expect from Vionic. Comfortable on the first wear. Versatile — dress up or down and could wear with a dress for work or with jeans. Very happy with these. I’m ordering a second pair in another color."
- Available sizes: 5 to 11 (Medium and Wide)
4. The Best Casual Flats
What's great about them: For more casual days, these laid-back flats with arch support offer a relaxed style that's easy to mix and match with different outfits. The insoles are contoured to provide metatarsal support while also preventing foot fatigue. They have footbeds made with a mix of latex and cork that's soft underfoot, and the elastic bands help them fit snugly on top. In addition to all of that, the leather material is breathable and moisture-wicking, so they minimize sweat while also blocking rain and other weather elements.
What fans say: "Very comfortable and supportive. I have high arches and this brand has great arch support! Highly recommend them."
- Available sizes: 4.5 to 12
5. The Best Odor-Fighting Flats
What's great about them: If you're someone who tends to get sweaty feet, these odor-fighting flats will feel amazing. On top of providing sensational arch support via the hidden wedge, the brushed suede microfiber has antimicrobial properties to help wick sweat and reduce odor. That means no more stinky feet at the end of the day. The cushioned footbed is fully removable, and the material is made from 100 percent leather.
What fans say: "I have this shoe in 4 different colors. Absolutely love it... SoftWalk is perfect fit for me... Perfect!"
- Available sizes: 5 to 10 (Medium and Wide)
Bustle may receive a portion of sales from products purchased from this article, which was created independently from Bustle's editorial and sales departments.