Sandals with super-duper high arch support?

To make a long story short, I have a really screwed-up left ankle courtesy of the aftermath of a long-ago injury, which has left me with basically no ankle cartilage, compounded by really high arches (and a neuroma in the right foot, which mercifully hasn’t been bothering me). This makes finding shoes, and sometimes walking, a bitch. Most of the time I wear custom orthotics in closed shoes, but it’s nice to be able to wear sandals in the summer.

The best support I’ve found so far in sandals are Chacos, and I sometimes wear Birkenstocks around the house. I’ve had various pairs of Mephisto sandals over the years, and though I find that certain styles (like these) have the arch support I need, after a while (a year or two, and not even everyday wear) they lose their resilience and leave me limping again, even if they look just fine to the casual observer. It would be nice to find a pair I could to wear to work and/or occasions that call for something dressier than Chacos.

Anyone else have recommendations for sandals with super-high arches and nice cushy insoles, that keep their resilience over time? I’ve tried Dansko (not enough arch support, not cushy enough), Naot (never bought a pair though they look like they might be nice and cushy, because the arches aren’t high enough), Wolky (I have a pair I wear around the house as slippers, but not supportive enough for all-day wear), Finn Comfort (nice, but arches not high enough) - I’m willing to consider just about anything, and don’t mind shelling out some cash for them if they will hold up over time. Heck, they’ve got to be cheaper than the prescription orthotics!

Add Clarks to your list, but there really is no substitute for going to the stores and trying each pair on. I found a pair of Clark’s sandals recently that I can wear, but it has been a very, very long time that I have felt that my feet were in good enough condition to wear a sandal and I don’t wear this pair much just to be safe.

Sadly, Clarks aren’t supportive enough, which is too bad because they are everywhere and aren’t hideously expensive. Even in stores specializing in people with crummy feet (like the one where my orthotics are made), I don’t find a lot of options. Sometimes I get lucky, but sometimes not - I have better luck in stores buying regular shoes.

Ever tried Think? They look like they could be good, but sometimes I just don’t know until I wear a pair outside for a day, by which time I can’t return them. My mom has ended up with a lot of shoes that way :slight_smile:

I want to caution people about Clark’s. Some time ago they changed what they make their soles out of. I’m not sure exactly what it is, but after a certain period of time it just crumbles. There’s nothing you can do to stop it. It’s like there’s a timer in the chemistry and when it goes off they self-destruct.

If you can find a pair cheap and you’ll wear them a lot go ahead, but don’t put money into them if you only plan to wear them occasionally, there are better values out there.

Yeah, I used to have a pair of Clarks sandals that I wore around the house in lieu of slippers. One day I put them on after not wearing them for a while, and instantly the sole split into several pieces, held together only by the insole. I guess their time had come.

My problem with shoes like Mephisto is that the shoes still look fine after a year or two, but the insoles just lose their cushiness and leave me limping after a short while wearing them. Any comments on brands that are not likely to do that, or am I just hosed and will need to replace them fairly often?

I was in a shoe store a few months ago and the salesperson told me about a brand they were just starting to carry, something with lots of support but they only came in sandals or the store only carried sandals (I think that was the story). I tried on a pair and they were comfy, but I don’t wear sandals, so I wasn’t interested.

I think that I remember the salesperson mentioning Andrew Weil, so I think it might be this brand: Orthaheel
ETA: Actually, poking around the site, I remember that I tried on Orthaheel slippers, not sandals. They really were comfy.

Finn Comforts are the direction a lot of people in your situation go. They have significant arch support. They are quite expensive but they are usually regarded as the one of the best support sandals. Styling on Finn Comforts is a little quirky from quite attractive to WTF?

You can sometimes find them new on ebay at half retail.

I bought some Orthaheel flip-flops from QVC; really serious arch supports & quite comfortable. The company offers a variety of styles.

SAS also makes a bunch of styles. Including sandals, which are my go-to shoes during the warm part of the year–which is most of the time in Texas. Only offered in their stores, because they want to measure your foot; *all *sizes are offered. Over time, the resilient soles will wear down from pavement–especially if you walk crooked. And the leather stretches a bit. But they never just “fall apart.” (I have some cute Clarks–with soles beginning to shred.)

I bought a pair maybe a year and a half ago, from the place that makes my orthotics…they felt fabulous in the store because of the nice cushy footbed, but after wearing Chacos and then switching to those, I can feel that believe it or not, the arches aren’t high enough for me and it puts pressure on the ball of my foot. I wear them to work, but I couldn’t walk around all day in them. Of course it’s really questionable at this point whether I can walk around all day in anything that isn’t lace-up walking shoes with orthotics, or maybe not even that - we shall see. I have a trip coming up at the end of the month that will involve a lot of walking, and I will be sad if I can’t do at least some of it in sandals.

Ah well, I just ordered these, and at that price (30% off the sale price) even if they aren’t perfect, they are fine for work and general non-grubby occasions, with dresses, etc. Fingers crossed!

I have high arches, and the absolute most comfortable shoes I have ever worn are Merrells with Q-Form soles. They do make some sandals with this sole as well. I have two pairs I have been wearing all summer and they keep me comfortable even when I’m on my feet 8+ hours at work.