The Best Metatarsal Pads Health & Beauty

Things to consider when buying metatarsal pads, including things to consider, faq's and reviews of top products.

If you suffer from metatarsal pain, you are all too familiar with how uncomfortable things can really get. The pain can extend from lower-back pain, from a foot-injury, or you might simply have a condition which leads to pain in the metatarsal area.

Regardless of what your pain stems from, metatarsal pads, which provide an added layer of cushioning right between your toes, will afford you the much-needed pain-relief you desire. This however, is if you buy the right product, to ensure you are getting additional arch-support, and are properly stepping with the metatarsal area of your feet.

About

Metatarsal pads are intended to help provide improved levels of support. They are also intended to help with pain and joint relief. From bunions, to improved cushioning in your shoes, they can be worn for a number of purposes.

Depending on the reason why you are purchasing and using metatarsal pads, there are different designs, sizes, and features you can choose from when you are ready to buy them. So, it is important to know the design, how they fit, how comfortable they are, and different cushioning options available when choosing the metatarsal pads. Obviously, some products are better than others, so you should consider this and compare several prior to choosing a pair of pads.

Some cases are more severe than others, so you might require a doctor’s prescription, or additional foot-care products. If you suffer from severe pain, it might be best to speak with a specialist, who can help you choose the right foot pads, and those which are going to afford you the additional support, and the pain-relief you seek. Ultimately, metatarsal pads can help improve gait, toe-spacing, and help with arch support. So, understanding the varieties available, will help you choose the right product, for your issue, and the type of foot condition you are trying to treat with these pads.

There are various price points available when choosing metatarsal pads. So, before investing in metatarsal pads for continual use and relief, these are some of the features you should look for.

1. Ace Ball Cushions - The Highest Rated

The design fits similarly to a pair of flip-flops. So, comfort won’t be an issue. And, they are thin, so they can fit in with socks, or can be worn with different pairs of shoes easily, without causing discomfort.

Some features of these metatarsal pads include:

  • Highly breathable material. Your feet won’t sweat or stink with all-day use.
  • Soft cushioning, provides added support and improved step when you walk.
  • Thin layer-finish. They won’t swell or cause you to feel like you are stuck in your shoes with all day use.
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Pros
  • They are comfy even with thicker shoes and won’t weigh you down.
  • You can use them for both men and women, without need of a prescription.
  • You can easily and freely move the toes and your feet, even if you are standing all day.
Cons

The pads may restrict movement of your toes a bit. They do leave the big-toe free, however towards the end, they are squeezed together. If you prefer open, and full range of mobility and movement, these might hinder your ability to do so, and freely move your toes when in your shoes.

2. Happy feet - The Cheapest

Optimal comfort, and additional padding, with this gel cushioning base. This is simply a gel-cushion which you place at the bottom of your shoe, and wear for all day support and relief on your feet.

Some features include:

  • A thick, plastic gel finish, won’t move or cause discomfort.
  • They don’t restrict your toes or movement. They go on the bottom of the shoe.
  • They allow for freedom of mobility, and don’t require you to put them on over socks.
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Pros

These pads can be used with nearly any pair of shoes, even open-toed shoes and sandals. They have a thick cushioning base, so you don’t have to worry about them softening or losing form, even if they are used often, and by individuals who are on their feet all day long.

Cons

They don’t offer much arch-support, nor do they work throughout the entire sole of your foot. They simply go on a single area of the foot, for relief. Although they are highly affordable, they don’t offer as much full-foot improvement, comfort, and might only target minor issues with pain and discomfort, by the individuals who wear these pads in their shoes.

3. Hapad - The Best Money Can Buy

Although these are costlier than other brands/styles, they do afford more protection and can be worn by anyone. They are easy to place in shoes, and provide all day pain relief and comfort, even if you are on your feet all day.

Some features include:

  • Thicker base, for optimal padding and control.
  • Limited movement. They aren’t going to get out of place, even if you are highly mobile.
  • Easy to use with any pair of shoes, and they won’t begin to lose shape after several uses.
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Pros

It is an adhesive pad, which is intentionally sticky, in order to stay in place. You can reuse them several times, and don’t have to worry about them losing their shape or form, and will provide optimal comfort for pain relief.

Cons

The metatarsal pads are costly. And, you can only reuse them a handful of times, before they begin to lose their stickiness. Although they are effective, they also have to be replaced often. And, they only provide support to a smaller area of the foot, so your heel, and other arch-support or improvement, might be limited at best, when using these pads for pain relief and support.

4. Pro-tec - Quirky #1

Compression at its finest. These pads will conform to your feet, to your step, and overtime, they are going to help improve issues with gait, or improper step, to help eliminate pain, and ensure comfort on your feet.

Some features of these pads include:

  • A compression base, meaning they conform and will not lose shape.
  • They have a thicker, raised cushion, for improved support.
  • The texture and finish are durable, and won’t wear or damage, even with extensive use.
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Pros

These pads are durable, they are easy to put into any shoe, and offer you a full range of mobility. Your toes or feet won’t become hot, they aren’t stuck, and you can freely move your toes, even when you wear the pads with tighter shoes.

Cons

Like other similar cushions, they are only targeting a small area of the foot. This means you are not going to experience full-foot relief. Further, over time, your feet might get used to the pads. So, you might have to upgrade to something a little thicker for relief, or look for a different design, to help improve problems with gait or arch-support issues.

5. Pedag - Quirky #2

This metatarsal pad is an insole, which covers the entire base of your foot. It doesn’t simply target one area, but it is going to provide additional padding/cushion, under the metatarsal to improve pain.

Some features of this product include:

  • Simple insole design. Simply place it at the bottom of any pair of shoes.
  • Breathability. Your toes aren’t constricted and you have full range of motion.
  • They fit with any pair of shoes, and can be worn by men and women for full support.
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Pros

The pads will not only help with metatarsal pain, but can be fitted as a custom-prescribed orthotic as well. Depending on the levels of pain you suffer from, a specialist can prescribe and fit the insole, for your specific needs.

Cons

They are an insole, meaning you have to wear a certain size shoe in order for them to fit your feet. They also have thinner cushion protection under the heel of the shoe. So, even though you are getting the entire bottom portion of your foot protected, you are getting uneven levels of protection and padding throughout, which might eventually lead to pain over other areas of your feet over time.

Features

  1. Design

    Some prefer toe-spacers, other prefer a foot pad or insole. It will most likely depend on the comfort you desire, and the type of shoes you plan on wearing your metatarsal pads with, as to which design option you will choose. It is best to try a few pairs, and compare fit, comfort, and overall support.

  2. Cushioning

    Depending on what you are using the pads to treat, some are thicker and more highly-padded than others. Discuss this with your doctor, or specialist, who will inform you which option is best for you. Not everyone has the same pain or issues with their step. Therefore, cushioning levels might differ in every case. This should be understood before you choose a pair of metatarsal pads to invest in.

  3. Breathability

    Keep in mind you are usually wearing these metatarsal pads with shoes on. And, in some cases, for the entire day while you are walking around on your feet. You want something that is breathable, won’t cause your feet to swell or sweat all day, and won’t make your feet sweat all day as they are cramped in a pair of shoes. Consider material finish, to ensure you choose the best fit, and breathable finish.

  4. Additional Benefits

    Are the pads intended to help with arch-support, improved gait, or even back-pain? Depending on the reason you are purchasing them, you might get a prescription for your metatarsal pads. Understand how they are intended to work, and what they are meant to treat/improve. This will allow you to choose the best product for personal use, and to help improve the pain levels you are experiencing on a daily basis.

  5. Usability

    Can you wear them with flip flops, sandals, or boots? What type of shoes will the pads fit into? And, can you find a pair which can blend in if you are wearing sandals or open-toe shoes? Depending on how often you have to wear the metatarsal pads, you might want them to go well with an outfit or your shoes. So, consider those which are easy to fit into any shoe, and those which can easily blend in if you are wearing an open-toe shoe when using the pads.

FAQ's

How thick should they be?

It is good to look for pads which have about ¼-1-inch thickness. This not only provides you the added arch support with each step, but will provide you with the additional cushioning you need, to help alleviate pain. It will also help provide a barrier between your foot and shoes, to help soften steps you take.

What design should I choose?

This is up to each wearer. Most are a toe-slot design, which fits over your big-toe, and the other section partitions the other four-toes. However, you can also choose a traditional shoe insole or pad. It depends on the amount of support needed, and comfort you seek when choosing the pads.

Are all pads filled?

Some metatarsal pads have cushioned filling, others are flatter. Again, it will depend on the comfort you desire, thickness you like, and the type of shoes you will wear the pads with. Every individual will choose something different, based upon personal use and comfort.

How much are metatarsal pads?

They can range from $10-$15, to over $100 if you need a prescription. Some specialists might require you use these pads, to help with your step, gait, or other conditions you suffer from. In such cases, they will end up costing more.

Do I need a prescription?

Usually not, as you can order metatarsal pads online. However, in more severe cases, you might need a doctor to prescribe specific insoles, or foot-care products, to help decrease pain, or improve your step patterns when you walk with the insole.

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