Flight Attendants Love These Comfy Shoe Inserts
Even podiatrists recommend these best-sellers for long days on your feet.
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Travel + Leisure / Reese Herrington
If anyone doesn’t have time for foot pain, it’s a flight attendant. Whether they’re racing between terminals to catch their next flight or dodging passengers with their drink cart, they’re often on their feet. That said, you’ll probably never see them in supportive, orthopedic shoes. They know how to instantly turn stylish shoes into comfy shoes with the help of cushioned heel inserts. Not only can these affordable accessories make a pair of pumps less painful, but they’re also compatible with boots, trainers, walking shoes, and even sandals.
But which heel inserts are the best? Haley Phelan, a Florida-based flight attendant who always looks gorgeous on the go, is a fan of Walkize Metatarsal Pad Heel Inserts. And she’s not the only one. They have nearly 8,000 five-star ratings on Amazon and are the No. 1 best seller on Amazon’s list of Best Sellers in Ball-of-Foot Cushions. “The balls of my feet get so achy from standing all day,” Phelan told Travel + Leisure. “I need all the comfort I can get.” Fortunately, she can treat her feet for just $13.
Walkize Heel Inserts are made of a medical-grade silicone gel, which absorbs impact, and a polyurethane, which provides support. They’re about as thick as four stacked credit cards, so they don’t feel bulky. And unlike these other popular podiatrist-designed and travel writer-approved insoles, they don’t cover your entire shoe. They’re pads that go just under the ball of the foot. This is a very critical area, as it’s where your toes attach to your foot and your arch forms. If you’re going to have foot trouble, you don’t want it here!
Thanks to their soft cloth covering, these breathable pads are soothing. Shoppers say when they wear them, they feel like they’re “walking on a cloud.” And when you have that sensation, you’re more apt to have better posture, even if you’re wearing sky-high wedges. “They have made a huge difference in the way my feet feel,” wrote one shopper who got theirs after their podiatrist recommended them. “Like night and day! No more pain on the bottom of my feet.”
To attach them to your shoes, simply peel off the adhesive back and place them where the ball of your foot rests. If your shoes are clean and dry, the adhesive will stick properly, and they shouldn’t slide around. Currently, they’re available in three colors, clear, black, and beige, which may be best if you plan on wearing them with open-toed shoes or walking sandals. And if you’re worried about your carbon footprint, don’t be. These Walkize Heel Inserts are designated carbon neutral by ClimatePartner. In fact, they’re ranked No. 30 on Amazon’s list of Best Sellers in Climate Pledge Friendly Apparel.
Of course, Phelan isn’t the only flight attendant who loves these inserts. “I’m really impressed by the thin design, which fits in seamlessly yet provides extreme cushion on the most important part of the foot,” wrote one flight attendant who left a five-star review. Another shopper who got theirs for a girl’s trip to Las Vegas where they wore heels on a club crawl wrote: “These helped keep my feet going all through the night!”
But again, you don’t need to wear them with heels. One shopper who titled their five-star review “Makes sandals comfy” loved using theirs while on a vacation that involved a lot of walking. They wrote that they plan to order a pair for all of their shoes. “Great cushion for ball of foot and metatarsal pain relief,” wrote another shopper who uses theirs in their tennis shoes for extra support. Yet another shopper who wore theirs in a pair of boots to a wedding said they were so comfortable they ended up dancing for hours. “Stepping, tapping, stomping, twirling etc…no more 'beauty knows no pain' logic for me!”
That shopper couldn’t be more right. Looking good while traveling shouldn’t have to hurt. And airlines are starting to realize this because Qantas recently ditched its heel requirements. Whether you’re wearing flats, four-inch stilettos, or something in between, you deserve to feel both confident and comfortable. Heel inserts like Amazon’s No. 1 best-selling Walkize Metatarsal Pad Heel Inserts can help with that!
If you’re still searching for cushioned heel inserts for your shoes, Amazon has no shortage of highly rated options. Read on for more cloudlike insoles and shoe inserts we found from just $7.
At the time of publishing, the price started at $13.
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