The 8 Best Diabetic Shoes of 2019

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Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

First Look

Best Overall: Propet Life Walker Strap Sneaker at Amazon

"This affordable, Medicare-approved diabetic shoe has a rocker profile with a firm yet flexible heel for a smooth, easy stride."

Best Budget: New Balance MW411v2 at Amazon

"This thoughtfully designed shoe has a narrower heel, a high instep, and a deep toe box for maximum support without a cramped fit."

Best for Women: Drew Rose Mary Jane at Zappos

"This pair is a little dressier than standard diabetic shoes, but they’re still just as comfortable. The soft spandex lining conforms to your foot for a perfect fit, and it’s available in widths from Narrow to Extra Wide."

Best for Men: Hush Puppies Gil Slip-On Shoe at Amazon

"These sleek loafers have an easy hook-and-loop closure for a slip-on fit that won’t cause discomfort if you’re experiencing diabetes-related foot pain."

Best for Neuropathy: New Balance 626v2 at Amazon

"The compression-molded insole provides arch support without being too tight, and the rubber outsole prevents slipping."

Best for Pain: Orthofeet Carnegie Walking Shoe at Amazon

"These walking shoes have an extra depth design and a wide toe box to accomodate orthotics and diabetic foot swelling, and to eliminate pressure points."

Best for Swelling: Propet Cronus Stretchable Shoe at Amazon

"Propet’s Cronus Stretchable Shoe adjusts in multiple places for a comfortable fit in the face of swelling."

Best for Walking: Orthofeet Verve at Amazon

"This walking shoe adds spring to your step with an air cushioning system that cradles your feet to reduce pain from swelling, poor circulation, and stiffness."

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Propet Life Walker Strap Sneaker

Propet Life Walker Strap Sneaker

Courtesy of Amazon

Propet is a popular shoe brand for anyone who struggles with foot problems, and they hit another home run with their Life Walker Strap Sneaker. This affordable, Medicare-approved diabetic shoe has a rocker profile with a firm yet flexible heel for a smooth, easy stride.

ArchBridge technology helps control pronation, and you can customize your shoes with your own orthotic (or use the included one) for plenty of support. The interior padding protects diabetic feet from neuropathy-related discomfort, while still leaving enough room for swelling that diabetics may experience.

Best Budget: New Balance MW411v2

New Balance Walking Shoe

 Amazon

Committing to daily care for diabetes isn’t cheap. Whether you have type 1 or type 2, you have to budget for insulin, diabetic socks, nutritious food, and other medications to help you live each day to its fullest. You can save some cash on diabetes-friendly sneakers without foregoing quality with this pick from New Balance.

This thoughtfully designed shoe has a narrower heel, a high instep, and a deep toe box for maximum support without a cramped fit. Specialty midsole cushioning and a soft fabric lining all keep diabetic feet comfortable and shielded from injuries caused by bumps or trips.

Best for Women: Drew Rose Mary Jane

Drew Rose Mary Jane

Courtesy of Zappos

There are plenty of options for diabetic shoes for women, but many of them lack the femininity and fresh details that make getting dressed fun. This shoe has the support and flexibility that women with diabetes need, with a Mary Jane silhouette that stands out from the crowd.

This pair is a little dressier than standard diabetic shoes, but they’re still just as comfortable. The soft spandex lining conforms to your foot for a perfect fit, and it’s available in widths from Narrow to Extra Wide. The Rose also has two removable footbeds, leaving room for custom orthotics if necessary.

Best of all, this lightweight pick comes in black crocodile, black stretch, or white floral snake print leather, so you can put your best foot forward and express your style.

Best for Men: Hush Puppies Gil Slip-On Shoe

Finding a diabetic shoe for men that looks slick with work slacks or casual jeans is tricky, but the Hush Puppies Gil Slip-On has a rich leather look that you can wear from work to play and back again.

These sleek loafers have an easy hook-and-loop closure for a slip-on fit that won’t cause discomfort if you’re experiencing diabetes-related foot pain. A removable contoured footbed supports your arches if you leave them in (or gives plenty of room for orthotics if you take them out), and the slip-resistant outsole keeps you on firm footing.

Best for Neuropathy: New Balance 626v2

New Balance Shoe

 Amazon

Diabetic neuropathy is a complication where the nerves in your feet become damaged due to high or irregular blood sugar levels. It can cause pain, burning, or stinging feelings, and even the loss of sensation. New Balance’s 626v2 sneakers are Medicare-approved shoes with supportive cushioning that can help manage the pain associated with diabetic neuropathy.

These sneakers are great for men or women struggling with neuropathic pain. The compression-molded insole provides arch support without being too tight, and the rubber outsole prevents slipping. These features are essential for reducing pain and preventing falls and foot injuries that people with neuropathy are prone to.

Best for Pain: Orthofeet Carnegie Walking Shoe

Dealing with diabetic pain is no walk in the park: patients often struggle with pain throughout their body, but it’s especially noticeable in the feet. High blood glucose levels can reduce blood flow to your feet, causing stiffness and discomfort, while neuropathy can create a pins-and-needles feeling or numbness. Orthofeet’s Carnegie Walking Shoe is the ultimate in comfort from the second you put on your shoes to the moment you step out of them.

These walking shoes have an extra depth design and a wide toe box to accommodate orthotics and diabetic foot swelling, and to eliminate pressure points. The seam-free interior lining prevents chafing, and the easy on-off velcro upper makes getting in and out of these shoes a breeze.

Best for Swelling: Propet Cronus Stretchable Shoe

Another issue that pops up for diabetics is peripheral edema. The circulation problems that often come with diabetes can cause fluid to collect in your feet and ankles, creating swelling that makes shoe shopping a nightmare. Propet’s Cronus Stretchable Shoe adjusts in multiple places for a comfortable fit in the face of swelling.

The Cronus’s soft neoprene upper and lining stretch with your foot as you walk, creating a snug fit that still breathes. Multiple adjustable straps guarantee a customized and supportive fit every time, and the flexible rubber outsole gives you an excellent grip on the ground to protect against falls.

Best for Walking: Orthofeet Verve

Staying fit with diabetes is an uphill battle, but it’s one of the best tactics for controlling your symptoms and keeping your spirits high. Walking is a low-impact activity that is ideal for diabetics, and Orthofeet’s Verve shoe is the best diabetic walking shoe out there.

This walking shoe adds spring to your step with an air cushioning system that cradles your feet to reduce pain from swelling, poor circulation, and stiffness. The non-binding upper and seam-free interior lining limits chafing and gives your feet plenty of room to breathe, and the premium orthotic insole conforms to your foot with each step for a secure-yet-soft feel.

Our Process 

Our writers spent 6 hours researching the most popular diabetic shoes on the market. Before making their final recommendations, they considered 19 different shoes overall, screened options from 8 different brands and manufacturers and read over 41 user reviews (both positive and negative). All of this research adds up to recommendations you can trust.

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Article Sources

  • Diabetic neuropathy. Mayo Clinic. Published September 7, 2018.

  • Diabetic Neuropathy. NeuroImage.

  • Wu SC, Crews RT, Skratsky M, et al. Control of lower extremity edema in patients with diabetes: Double blind randomized controlled trial assessing the efficacy of mild compression diabetic socks. Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice. 2017;127:35-43. DOI:10.1016/j.diabres.2017.02.025