Wearing certain shoes can be a far throw from a walk in the park; for instance, high heels take a whole lot of time to get used to and a lot of endurance altogether. Not only is it extremely uncomfortable, but it also has adverse effects on the knees, balls of the feet and posture. The good news here is that there’s a way to eat your cake and have it – all that is needed is a good set of heel inserts. Since there is a variety of them currently available on the market, here are a select few that clearly stand out as the best heel inserts out there.
The Best Heel Insert
Friction can be a pesky thing when it comes to both flats and high heel shoes, that is where a good pair of shoe inserts come into play. So, say goodbye to tape and other DIY options and hello to Dr. Scholl’s Moleskin Plus Padding Roll. This product comes in a thin design that easily fits all feet and shoe sizes and the great part of all this is that it stays on all day long whilst protecting all parts of the foot from friction. What’s more, it can equally be shaped to any given size. Make sure you also check our guide to the best insoles.
Comes in a thin design that fits in all shoes
It can stay on all day long
It can be shaped to any size
Made of cuttable moleskin fabrics
- BrandDr. Scholl’s
- Weight1.6 ounces
It does not add bulk to the shoes
Alleviates pain and reduces friction
It is water resistant and durable
It is too thin for some shoes
Not sticky enough
Extremely hard to cut
We all have that pair of shoes that is visually stunning but can literally be a pain to wear – well not anymore. The Tip Toes Ball of Foot Triple Pack-W is a solution that just keeps giving. It is designed to alleviate pain related to wearing heels, boots and other kinds of shoes. Apart from being incredibly easy to hide, even in the most strappy shoes, these shoe inserts are armed with superior shock absorption. Thanks to the springy foam material used to make them, your feet won’t feel a thing. All in all, it guards against slipping and sliding once your feet are inside your shoes.
It comes in sets of three
Can be worn with or without hosiery
Superior shock absorption
Invisible when worn
- BrandFoot Petals
- ModelTip Toes Ball of Foot Triple Pack-W
- Weight0.8 ounces
Guards against feet sliding down uncomfortably
Cushions the ball of the feet for extra comfort
Hard to get in the right position
Difficult to adjust
Not great for flat shoes
For a night out on the town or a long day at the office, these shoe inserts deliver on the fronts of function and comfort. Gone are the days that wearing heels come with a painful price and this is all thanks to the Walkize Metatarsal Pads. It is a soft, gel-based, cloth covered heel insert and when placed under the balls of the feet, it can relieve a whole lot of pressure. The adhesive which sticks it onto shoes is highly effective and goes a long way to ensure that it stays in place all day long. In a nutshell, there is no slipping, there’s no pain and there’s certainly no stress when using these orthotic inserts. You may also like to check our guide to the best insoles for plantar fasciitis.
It is an adhesive shoe pad
Fits most shoes
- Weight2.4 ounces
They give comfortable support
It gets even better with time
Shaped specifically to each foot
A bit tough to position in a covered shoe
Their thickness raises the feet
Not great for narrow feet
If there ever was a starter pack for women in heels then this would be the number one product in it. The Ballotte Ball of Foot Cushions is shoe inserts that are so effective and thin that they are practically invisible when fitted. One of the things which makes these handy shoe inserts stand out is the fact that each pack has in it a dotted shoe wipe with which to clean the insole before installing the insert. The result is an obvious improvement in the stickiness of the adhesive.
The fact that it sticks on doesn’t mean it’s disposable, this shoe insert can be washed with warm soapy water and used multiple times. The best part is that it works perfectly on most types of shoes.
Slim and invisible
Suitable for most shoes
Made of a medical grade PU gel
- Weight2.4 ounces
There is no bulk
Extremely soft and cushiony
They stay in place
Not easy to install
They are visible when shoes are worn
Not thick enough for some shoes
Feet do not have it easy at all, they carry the weight of the body for the most part of the day and are stuck in uncomfortable shoes for more than half that time. Taking care of them does not solely involve foot rubs and pedicures, employing the use of a top-notch product such as the Ballotte Women Heel Cushion Inserts can make all the difference in the world. These orthotic inserts are essentially invisible gel heel grips which ensure that there is no chaffing or cutting of the skin around the heel area. These heel pads come in a perfect design that does not only contour the heel section of the shoe but also makes loose shoes a tad bit snugger. If you have issues breaking in new shoes, check out our guide to the best shoe stretchers.
Can be used on any type of shoe
Designed to fit the contour of heel section
Has Hit-and-Absorb foot technology
- Weight7.7 ounces
Cushions the back of the ankle
Can be used permanently in a pair of shoes
Difficult to install
It adds bulk
Occasionally slips off
As much as shoes can be the feet’s best friend, they can also end up being their enemy, giving way to foot pain, blisters, and calluses. With the damage done, the fact is that shoes still need to be worn; thankfully pain does not have to be part of the package. Relief is just an insert away and it comes in the form of Aveilo High heel pads.
The 6 pads included in the pack are sure to alleviate the pain no matter the pair of shoes you have on and the best part is that it comes in a universal size that fits in most shoes. So, if you are feeling any discomfort in the ball of your feet or your shoes keep slipping leading to injury, then this is the way to go.
Universal size that fits most shoes
Contains 6 pairs
It is moderately thick
- Weight8 ounces
Too thick at the base
It is narrow
Does not completely cover the heel
What is better than orthotic inserts that are great for your feet? Ones that are equally as good for the environment. That is what keeps the Helloheel Fitter Grips Heel Liners one step ahead in the game. It is made of natural latex foam that is biodegradable and even manufactured in an environmentally sustainable process. This results in a contoured and comfortable heel insert which guards against, rubbing and pinching that could lead to blisters on the heel. It features a soft suede finish that in no way impedes on the performance of the stay-strong adhesive which keeps the insert firmly in place. All in all, it provides much-needed protection against the perils of wearing shoes altogether. You can also combine it with one of the best shoes for standing all day.
Made of natural latex foam
Has a soft suede finish
Comes with a stay strong adhesive
Meant for oversized shoes
- BrandHelloheel International
- Weight0.8 ounces
Soft and comfortable
Prevents shoes from slipping
Not thick enough for some shoes
Grip is not adequate
Not suitable for oversized shoes
Bunion pain can be excruciating but it goes without saying that its victims still need to put on shoes. To ensure that the discomfort is kept at bay, shoe inserts such as NatraCure Gel Big Toe Bunion Guards & Toe Spreaders should be used faithfully. It provides instant relief from bunion pain by simply reducing friction, irritation and the pressure applied to the bunion joint. It also separates the first and second toe to ensure that there is no rubbing and discomfort. Additionally, it comes in a comfortable gel design that releases an all-natural mixture which equally nourishes the skin. If comfort is the end game, then this orthotic insert can provide all that and more.
Nourishes the skin
Recommended by doctors
Universal size fits most shoes
- Weight0.32 ounces
Delivers up pain relief
It has a simple yet functional design
Not much separation between toes
Not a long-term option
Cannot be worn with open shoes
Foot pain is a condition that most people battle with on the regular in different ways, based on this it is implied that wearing shoes could possibly make it worse. For that reason, Kefee High heel pads are designed in such a way that they not only alleviate the pain but also make wearing shoes a whole lot more comfortable. These heel inserts are made from a soft silica gel which is coated in a skin-friendly velvet exterior for added comfort. It is very flexible and equally as comfortable, fitting into almost every shoe size out there with unbelievable ease. The fact that it is washable and reusable just puts the cherry on the top of an already highly efficient product. Be sure to also check our guide to the best shoes for nurses.
Made of soft silica gel
Comes in a universal size that fits most shoes
It is reusable
Contains 4 pairs
- Weight0.8 ounces
Good value for money
It is comfortable
Bigger than anticipated
Bunches at the toes
Heel Insert Buying Guide & FAQ
Shoe inserts are a tricky ground to tread on, buy the right one and you are in a world of comfort, the wrong one, on the other hand, can deliver worlds of pain. It may seem like a simple decision, but the array of products out there will beg to differ. For that reason, here are some pointers that will help streamline the process of finding the best heel inserts out there.
How We Chose Our Selection Of The Best Heel Inserts
Brand - Do not be deceived, the brand of any given product matters a whole lot because just like Rome, brand names are not built in a day. When it comes to heel inserts and any given product, the brand name is like a promise to deliver on a certain level. Since popular brands names become well-known on the premise that their products have been tried, tested and graded highly, it only makes sense that going for such brands ensures quality. When looking for good heel inserts, be sure to find out the most prominent names in the industry because the perfect product will not be far away.
Price - Since the inception of currency and more specifically, money, there has been a general rule of thumb applicable in most situations. The higher the price, the better the quality of the product is. This is not always the case, but more than half the time it is quite true, all in all, you get what you pay for. So, in order to secure a good heel insert, be prepared to spend a little money because you will surely save it in the long run. Rather than opting for a product with a short lifespan, spend a few extra bucks and go for something you can use for the long haul.
Reviews - This is a sure way of finding out exactly what to expect from your potential shoe insert. Manufacturers are obligated to highlight the strength of their products and conceal their weaknesses as well. The only way to get the real scoop is to study product reviews meticulously, it is also a great way to know which products are best suited for you because some inserts may not be bad at all, but they may end up being bad for you.
Features To Look For In Best Heel Inserts
Use - There are different types of heel inserts out there and they have diverse uses, educating yourself on the uses can bring you one step closer to finding the right one for you. Tapes or grips should be used on particular spots where you experience pain. So, if you are experiencing skin rubbing or being squeezed by a shoe, this is the best route for you. When it comes to pads and cushions, they reduce the stress caused by shoes and improve overall grip. Insoles, on the other hand, give full coverage while providing the arch and heel with some support.
Materials - The materials used to make the inserts can make all the difference in the world. Needless to say, inserts made with memory foam are the most comfortable, not only are they breathable but they provide thicker cushioning. Inserts made from Polyurethane are easily moldable, yet they retain their elasticity; likewise, silicone ones give added support but are a lot stiffer. While suede may give the best grip, the odor caused by the sweat means it has to be frequently washed.
Features - Just as there are different kinds of shoes, there are inserts with the features to suit each of them better. Trimmed inserts are quite versatile and can give you what you need when applied to most shoes, it is in the same vein that invisible inserts are logically the best option for open-toed shoes and sandals. For closed toed shoes, the possibilities are endless and can even match the tone of the shoe for aesthetic purposes.
Comfort - This definitely goes without saying, seeing as the core purpose for inserts is to achieve maximum comfort. All the above features can easily help you land the most comfortable option for you and your feet.
Heel Insert FAQ
Q: What are heel inserts?
A: It is a product usually place inside the shoe to provide some much-needed support for the ball or heel of the foot. They come in various shapes, sizes and consistencies, they are also made of different materials such as suede, silicone, and tape.
Q: How do I wash my heel inserts?
A: First, brush off any residual dirt/ debris, then fill a container with hot water and add a few drops of a mild dish soap/ detergent. Ensure that you do not submerge the insoles but make sure the brush you use is wet enough. Once you wash both sides thoroughly, wipe the soap away with a sponge then dry the insert thoroughly.
Q: How often should I change my heel inserts?
A: Most of them are replaceable within 6-12 months of regular use.
Q: Do I need different heel inserts for each pair of shoes?
A: Yes, some heel inserts are more suited to certain pairs of shoes than they are to others. For instance, an insert that prevents slipping in flat shoes may do just the opposite when used on heels.
Q: Do gel inserts work for high heels?
A: They are perfect for high heels because they guard against blisters and discomfort by preventing the toes from scrunching. They also give some additional padding while bearing most of the body weight.