The Causes of Toe Pain – The Best Shoes for Your Child with Toe Pain

Do you have a child that is complaining about toe pain? Is your child refusing to wear his or her shoes lately? Did you know that the most common cause of toe pain is wearing shoes that are too short or too narrow? There is a selection of shoes that have proven to be the most effective ones when it comes to treating and preventing toe pain. Let’s find out the causes of toe pain and the best shoes to help prevent discomfort and pain.

What Makes the Shoes I Recommend Effective for Toe Pain?

The shoes I recommend provide 2 key features that help prevent and treat toe pain:

1️⃣ Extra Depth: This feature prevents your kids’ toes from rubbing against one another or the top of the shoes. The shoes below are the same size, but notice the difference in depth between the two:

2️⃣ Rounder Toe-Boxes: This feature prevents your child’s toes from overlapping one another or rubbing against the side of the shoes. The shoes below are also the same size, but notice how the shoe on the right has a rounder toe-box compared to the shoe on the left:

The issue is that most parents don’t know where and how to find these types of shoes, as shoes don’t come labeled as “extra deep” or with a “rounder toe-box”. The good news is that I will help you find them!

If your children are complaining about toe pain, the first step is to check the shoes that they are currently wearing. Shoes are a direct cause of foot pain and foot injuries, and when parents don’t provide their children with the correct type of shoes or the correct shoe size, they end up creating several foot issues for their children’s feet.

I am always explaining to parents how it doesn’t matter how narrow or wide their kids’ feet are, there is always at least one particular shoe style out there that will fit the shape of their feet perfectly, and I will help you find it.

Let me show you the causes of toe pain in more detail, and then show you a selection of the best kids’ shoes that provide extra depth and rounder toe-boxes.

What Are The 2 Most Common Causes of Toe Pain?

1️⃣ The first most common cause of toe pain is wearing shoes that are too short or too narrow.

Shoes that come with a pointy toe-box or are too shallow will cramp your kids’ toes against the side of the shoe or make them overlap against each other. This is why it’s so important to get the correct shoe style and stay away from shoes that are too pointy at the front.

Shoes that provide extra depth and rounder toe-boxes will guarantee that you keep your children’s feet healthy. In addition to providing these 2 features, the shoes must be supportive, lightweight, flexible, and breathable.

2️⃣ The second most common cause of toe pain is having an ingrown toenail.

I will now provide you with a selection of the deepest shoes with the roundest toe-boxes that I have fitted before, but I want to be absolutely sure that you know your child’s exact foot size first. Remember that shoes that are too short or too narrow will only contribute to your child’s toe pain.

Do You Have Certainty of Your Child’s Foot Size? – Get it Right!

I am always emphasizing to parents that it doesn’t matter how many features a particular shoe style provides, if the shoes are not fitted properly which involves getting the correct shoe length and the correct shoe width, your child won’t get any of the benefits that the shoes have to offer.

I always recommend parents take their children to their local children’s shoe store that they trust, the issue is that most stores have been closing down and parents need to end up buying their kids’ shoes online. There is nothing wrong with this, but you must know your child’s exact foot size to know what size to order. I created a resource that showcases the best-fitting children’s local shoe stores by state.

How to Retrieve Your Child’s Exact Foot Length and Shape

If after looking at that resource you still can’t seem to identify a shoe store in your area, then proceed to take a look at an article I created that describes the simplest, yet most effective way to figure out your child’s foot size from home.

In that article I help parents determine their child’s exact foot size and whether the child has narrow, medium, wide, or extra wide feet. I also will be able to tell you whether your child has a high instep or not.


Keep in mind that I only write reviews of shoe styles that I have fitted before, otherwise, I wouldn’t know how well-made they are, the amount of support that they provide, and how they fit. 

Without further ado, let’s take a look at a selection of the best shoes for children that are experiencing toe pain. Disclosure: Some links in this post may be affiliate links and we may receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you) when you click our links and make purchases.

The Best Shoes for Kids with Toe Pain

Below you can find a selection of the best shoes for children who have toe pain. Keep in mind that these shoe styles are available in different widths such as medium (M), wide (W), and extra wide (XW).

These are the best shoes for a child that has been dealing with toe pain, and if the shoes are fitted properly, you will notice an improvement right away.

Unsure About What Shoe Size You Should Order?

In each of the descriptions of the shoes, I indicate whether you need to order a half size or a whole size bigger than your child’s foot size to provide the correct amount of growing room.

*A half a size bigger translates to 3/16 of an inch or 0.4 centimeters of space between your child’s longest toe and the end of the shoes.

*A whole size bigger translates to 3/8 of an inch or 0.8 centimeters of space between your child’s longest toe and the end of the shoes.

Before you leave, I wanted to let you know that socks play a key role in keeping your kids’ feet healthy, as they act as a barrier between your kids’ feet and the shoes, preventing the formation and build-up of bacteria inside the shoes.

The Best Kids’ Socks for Toe Pain – Seamless and Breathable!

While shoes are the main contributing factor to toe pain, socks that are not made of the right materials or that are the wrong size will make your child’s pain worse.

Socks that are too short constrict toe movement and cramp your kids’ toes, so it’s important that you provide your child with the correct sock size.

I always recommend seamless socks for kids who are dealing with toe pain as they allow the child’s toes to freely move and they are also great for those children who feel every lump and bump. While I can’t get into too much detail about which are the best seamless socks for kids in this article, you should take a look at another article I wrote where I describe the best seamless socks for kids.

Experiences from Other Parents – You Are Not Alone!

Parents who have children that were experiencing toe pain came up with the following conclusions:

  • “I had the same issue with my youngest and he would take his shoes off as much as he could get by with and go barefoot or sockfooted. What the issue was the sock seam was pressing against his shoe & toes and it was intermintent so it took us quite a while to figure it out. I ended up getting a 1/2 size bigger in his shoes and it seemed to end the issue of toe pain. Also remember that kids grow so fast that shoes that fit one day might not the next”
  • “I bought my daughter new shoes with extra space in the toes and/or are more flexible. Some children have more sensitive toes and this solved the issue.”
  • “My child’s toenail was being pressed against the side of the shoe. I bought him a shoe in an extra wide width and that took the pressure away from his nail. Now he doesn’t complain about pain anymore”.

Please don’t ignore your child’s toe pain. If you don’t pay attention when your child complains about toe or foot pain in general, the long-term consequences of not treating these conditions can include joint arthritis, muscle weakness, overloading of the opposite foot and ankle, deformity, and inactivity.

Have you tried a particular shoe style that has worked well in reducing or fully eliminating your child’s toe pain? Please share your findings below so other parents can benefit from your experiences.