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What are the Best Dress Shoes for Kids with Flat Feet? – Supportive, Comfortable, and Stylish!


Editor’s Note: This post has been updated and revised for accuracy on April 2022 and reflects up-to-date information on what are the best dress shoes for kids with flat feet?

Most parents get confused as to what type of shoes their flat-footed children should wear for dressier occasions. The two most popular questions parents tend to ask are:

  • Are there any dress shoes that provide extra support or come with a built-in-arch?
  • Should I fit an orthotic inside my kids’ dress shoes?

I wanted to share these questions because you might be asking the same ones yourself.

There are definitely certain kids’ dress shoes that provide better support than others, and to answer the second question it depends on how severe your child’s foot condition is and whether your child is experiencing severe foot and leg pain.

My Experience Fitting Children’s Shoes

I have helped hundreds of children with flat feet find the correct pair of shoes for their feet, from sneakers, sandals and boots, to dress shoes. I have been working for a specialized children’s shoe store that focuses on helping children with foot and leg problems. Over the years I have become familiar with the best dress shoes for kids with flat feet.


Just to give you a little bit of background, the biggest issue with flat feet is that children who are flat-footed tend to walk with their feet turning inwards, which shifts their body out of alignment and affects their overall posture.

Once the feet are pronated, the knees and hips also become misaligned. This means the muscles that move those joints no longer work efficiently, and it will take more energy for your child to do the same work as other children who don’t have this condition. In addition, having flat feet can lead to future lower back pain and complicated foot conditions such as bunions.

The most important piece of footwear that children with flat feet need to wear are supportive sneakers, so if you are unsure whether your child is wearing the correct type of sneakers I suggest that you refer to the following article:

The Best Shoes for Kids with Flat Feet – STOP Your Kids’ Foot Pain!

When it comes to dress shoes there is a very small selection of shoes that provide the correct amount of support, but the good news is that I will help you find them.

Keep in mind that even if you provide your child with a pair of supportive dress shoes I suggest that you limit the amount of time your child wears them to no more than 4 hours a day.

What are the Best Dress Shoes for Flat Feet?

The best dress shoes for flat feet are the ones that come with a substantial outsole and a firm heel counter. Dress shoes with substantial outsoles and firm heel counters can prevent your child’s feet from rolling inwards. The medical term for this is overpronation, which is common in children with flat feet.

✅ Substantial Outsole: This is the part of the shoe that is going to support your child’s feet and prevent the feet from collapsing and turning inwards. In addition, the substantial outsole is going to minimize the impact that your kids’ feet take when they come in contact with the ground and prevent your child’s feet and legs from easily getting tired. Let me show you the difference in support between one of the dress shoes I recommend and a different style.

The substantial outsole of the shoe will help with raising your child’s arch to a normal level while the shoes are on.


✅ Firm Heel Counter: This is the back part of the shoe that provides ankle and heel support. Children with flat feet push a bit harder with their heels, so the shoe needs to stay strong in that specific area for as long as possible. I always recommend parents press on the heel counter of the shoe to make sure it feels firm before buying them.


What Dress Shoe Brands Provides the Best Support?

The 3 most supportive dress shoe brands for children that I have fitted before are Hush Puppies, Doc Martens and Geox.

Which one of these 3 shoe brands your child should wear depends on your child’s unique foot shape.

  • Hush Puppies can fit children with medium, wide, or extra wide feet.
  •  Geox can fit children with narrow or medium feet.
  • Doc Martens can fit children with medium or wide feet.

This doesn’t mean that all dress shoes from Hush Puppies and Geox are going to provide good support to your child’s feet. There are only specific shoe styles among these brands that provide good support, and I will show them to you shortly.

First Things First – Are You 100% Sure of Your Child’s Foot Shape?

Before I provide you with a selection of the best dress shoes for kids with flat feet I want to make sure that you know your child’s exact foot shape.

For example, do you know whether your child has narrow, medium, wide, or extra wide feet? Do you know if your child has a high instep or not? If you don’t know the answers to these questions you can’t possibly order the correct shoe size online.

There is an article I wrote that helps parents identify their child’s exact foot shape:

 How to Measure Your Kids’ Foot – 2 Simple Steps to Determine Foot Length and Foot Width

Now you should know your child’s exact foot shape so let’s take a look at a selection of the best dress shoes for kids with flat feet. Disclosure: Keep in mind that we may receive commissions when you click our links and make purchases.

Best Dress Shoes for Kids with Flat Feet ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Take a look at the description below each shoe to check if it’s capable of fitting your child’s specific foot shape. 

What Shoe Size Should you Order?

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

Do These Dress Shoes Come with a Built-In Arch?

These dress shoes don’t come with a built-in-arch. Remember that the support comes from the supportive outsole and the firm heel counter.

Those are the most supportive children’s dress shoes available in the market right now. Remember that even though these dress shoes provide excellent support I don’t recommend wearing them for longer than 4 hours a day.

Dress shoes for flat feet need to be sturdier to do their job. Now, let’s not confuse sturdy for uncomfortable. If your child complains that the shoes feel uncomfortable make sure that you bought the correct shoe size. You should also explain to your child that dress shoes are always going to feel stiffer than sneakers.

Orthotics for Kids’ Dress Shoes – Are They Necessary?

Some parents want to know whether they should fit an orthotic inside their kids’ dress shoes to provide them with extra support. My approach has always been to try a pair of supportive shoes first and observe how the child walks on them and check if the child is comfortable or not.

If your child complains of discomfort or pain then I suggest fitting an orthotic inside the shoes for extra support.

Not all orthotics work with dress shoes, but I have found one specific one that has become my go-to orthotic for kids with flat feet.

The main reason why I recommend this orthotic is because it provides excellent arch and heel support, and at the same time is not as invasive as other orthotics. This means that this orthotic allows the child’s foot and leg muscles to develop on their own while still supporting them.

You can interchange the orthotic between your child’s dress shoes and sneakers.

Let’s Keep Your Kids’ Feet Healthy! – Be Proactive!

I provided you with a selection of the best dress shoes for kids with flat feet and also with a pair of orthotics in case you feel like your child can benefit from extra support inside the shoes.

How effective the dress shoes I recommend will vary from child to child – we all have different feet, different degrees of fallen arches, and ultimately, different styles of walking.

I am always emphasizing to parents to not leave their child’s flat-footedness condition untreated as it can lead to future lower back pain, bunions, as well as general foot and leg pain. Be proactive and don’t wait for your child’s foot condition to resolve on its own, the longer you wait the higher the chances your child might develop foot pain or another foot problem such as bunions, tendon damage, and joint problems.

Before you leave, I wanted to provide you with an example of a parent that sent me an image of how her feet look like now from not having dealt with her flat feet condition from an early stage:


Wearing dress shoes that support the arches can make walking more comfortable and reduce the risk of complications!

Are Any Other Shoe Choices Available?

Do not hesitate to contact me directly at my e-mail if you have any further questions or if you need a different pair of shoes for your child’s flat feet. My e-mail address is: fittingchildrensshoes@gmail.com

Have you found a specific dress shoe style that has worked well for your child’s flat feet? Share your findings below so other families can benefit from your experiences.


I created this webpage to help parents understand the importance that shoes have in healthy foot development and how they can prevent foot problems in the future.Join the rest of the parents who are taking care of their kids feet and get my guide for free: 10 Mistakes Parents Must Avoid When Buying Shoes for their Kids.

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