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Swollen Feet? These Are the Best Shoes for Pregnancy




Written by:

Barbara Mighdoll

During pregnancy, your body goes through numerous changes, and your feet are no exception. Especially in that third trimester when it feels like everything is bloating up. I distinctly recall looking down at my feet in the final weeks of pregnancy in shock by their size. From there on out, my husband was responsible for shoving compression socks up my swollen feet and legs every morning.

Having the right pair of shoes isn't just about comfort – it's like having a solid support system for your feet, keeping you stable and lowering the chances of clumsy slips. Plus, the right footwear can do wonders in preventing issues like overpronation and plantar fasciitis, which tend to act up during pregnancy thanks to the extra weight gain and shifting balance.

Selecting the best pregnancy shoes is more than just immediate comfort – it's a wise investment in your foot health and overall well-being. But taking care of your feet during pregnancy doesn't mean giving up on style. In this article, we'll explore the changes your feet go through during pregnancy and give you tons of great recommendations on the best shoes to wear.

Best Shoes for Pregnancy Swollen Feet

How Does Pregnancy Affect Your Feet?

While you're pregnant, your body produces a hormone called relaxin, which helps stretch ligaments to accommodate your growing baby. While this hormone is doing a fantastic job in the pelvic area, it also affects ligaments in your feet. This is why you might notice your feet expanding and swelling, sometimes reaching a full size larger than they were before pregnancy.

On top of that, the extra weight gained during pregnancy puts additional pressure on your feet, especially in the later stages. This increased weight can lead to more swelling, causing discomfort and altering your balance and gait. These changes raise the risk of overpronation (flat feet/decreased arch height), underscoring the importance of investing in proper shoes (and a different shoe size!) during pregnancy.

Finding the perfect fit for you

Now that you understand why your feet change during pregnancy, let's focus on finding the perfect shoe fit for your swollen feet. Pregnancy should be a time of joy, not discomfort – and that includes your footwear. Whether you are out for a casual stroll or heading to work, our guide will help you find the best shoes for every occasion.

What to look for in Pregnancy Shoes

When choosing the best shoes for pregnancy, consider these important features:

  1. Adjustability: Velcro straps, buckles, or laces allow for easy modifications as your feet change.
  2. Wide Toe Box: This feature provides ample space for your toes to spread out and not feel cramped, supporting overall comfort and blood circulation.
  3. Supportive Arch: A shoe with good arch support helps to distribute body weight more evenly across the foot, reducing pressure on swollen areas. Adequate support is an absolute must!
  4. Cushioning: Look for shoes with extra cushioning, especially around the heel and ball of the foot, to alleviate discomfort caused by swelling. Shoes made with memory foam can provide cushioned support and can mold to the shape of your foot, providing personalized comfort.
  5. Breathability: Shoes made of breathable materials like canvas or mesh can help reduce sweating and discomfort, particularly important during pregnancy.
  6. Non-slip Soles: Pregnant women often experience balance changes, so a non-slip sole can provide additional safety and stability.
  7. Easy to Wear: Opt for shoes that are easy to slip on and off to make your life easier.

Types of Shoes to Avoid During Pregnancy

During pregnancy, comfort and safety should be your top priorities when selecting footwear. Here are some types of shoes you might want to avoid:

  1. High Heels: These can cause an imbalance due to the shifting center of gravity during pregnancy, increasing the risk of falls and sprains.
  2. Narrow Toe Box Shoes: These can constrict your feet, causing discomfort especially if you have swelling.
  3. Non-breathable Materials: Pairs made from synthetic materials that are not breathable can cause your feet to sweat, potentially leading to blisters and discomfort.
  4. Heavy Shoe Designs: Heavy boots or clogs can add considerable weight, making walking more strenuous and tiring during pregnancy.

The best shoes for swollen feet in pregnancy

With different features like shock absorption and arch support, these comfortable shoes are designed to accommodate your changing body and provide comfort during your pregnancy.

Best walking shoes

HOKA Bondi

Best Shoes for Pregnancy Swollen Feet

The HOKA Bondi is an amazing choice for pregnant moms who love to walk. It features softer, lighter foams, an improved extended heel geometry, and rear crash pads. These awesome upgrades provide incredible comfort and shock absorption, which is perfect for leisurely walks during pregnancy.

Best running shoes

New Balance Fresh Foam

Best Shoes for Pregnancy Swollen Feet

These New Balance shoes offer improved performance and comfort, featuring clean lines and a simple yet stylish design. Specifically designed for running, they boast a foam midsole and rubber outsole that ensures superior durability in high-wear areas, allowing users to maximize the longevity and performance of the shoes.

Best casual sneakers

Allbirds Tree Runners

Best Shoes for Pregnancy Swollen Feet

Crafted from breathable eucalyptus fiber, these lightweight and machine-washable shoes offer unparalleled comfort. The sustainability factor is enhanced with soles made from sugarcane and shoelaces crafted from recycled plastic bottles. Allbirds Tree Runners seamlessly blend comfort and eco-friendliness, making them an ideal choice for both casual and athleisure wear. Not to mention they are incredibly lightweight and can be worn without socks.

Our picks for the best shoes for pregnancy swollen feet

Best sandals

Birkenstock Arizona Sandals

Best Shoes for Pregnancy Swollen Feet

These shoes, with their minimalist and earthy design, boast timeless style and exceptional comfort. Featuring adjustable straps and a cork midsole, these sandals are an ideal choice to ensure comfort during warmer months, especially for expectant mothers. I wore these to and home from the hospital.

Best slip-on shoes

Rothy's Original Slip On

Best Shoes for Pregnancy Swollen Feet

Ideal for running last-minute errands or spending a day in the kitchen, these slip-on sneakers offer a perfect blend of softness, flexibility, and durability. You can wear them frequently without the concern of them stretching out, making them a reliable choice for various activities. And yes, these shoes are machine washable.

Best for special occasions

Everlane Day Ballet Flat

Best Shoes for Pregnancy Swollen Feet

Crafted from luxuriously soft and comfortable leather, these ballet flats feature a cushioned insole that makes them ideal for wearing for long periods of time. Perfect for date nights, especially during pregnancy, these flats offer unparalleled comfort and versatility, making them a stylish choice for various special occasions.

Best slippers

Ugg Coquette Slipper

Best Shoes for Pregnancy Swollen Feet

Whether you're seeking a snug slipper or simply too fatigued from pregnancy to engage in any activities beyond lounging at the end of the day, these Ugg slippers are an ideal choice. They boast a soft and lightweight design, with soles suitable for both indoor and outdoor use, providing comfort for your relaxed moments. I literally wear mine everyday.

Best arch support

Nike Invincible 3

Best Shoes for Pregnancy Swollen Feet

Featuring responsive ZoomX foam, these Nikes excel in delivering a combination of comfort, stabilization, support, and cushioning. The incorporation of high-support technology safeguards your foot from pronation, the natural inward roll during walking or running that can strain muscles and tendons. With excellent arch support, these not only correct pronation but also offer comfort and stability, making them an excellent choice.

Best for back pain

ON Cloud 5

Best Shoes for Pregnancy Swollen Feet

There are my everyday go-to sneaker. Made from breathable antimicrobial mesh upper and fortified with taped seams, these showcase Zero-Gravity foam for a soft landing and soles designed for optimal traction, offering excellent back support during exercise or if you're on your feet all day. I LOVE the no-tie lace option, which is key in those final weeks of pregnancy where reaching your feet to tie your shoes is difficult. IYKYK.

Best for wide feet

Kizik Lima

Best Shoes for Pregnancy Swollen Feet

A new favorite on the market, these slip-on sneakers are perfect for elevating or casualizing outfits, offering a blend of comfort and style. Available in various wide-width sizes, they are an excellent choice for pregnant women experiencing swollen feet, providing ample room for feet to expand without sacrificing style or ease of actually getting on.

I hope this list helped you discover the best shoes for your pregnancy. For more topics like this, check out the pregnancy section of my blog, and don’t forget to follow me on Instagram!


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