For several years now, I have shown you, dear reader, an occasional photo of my foot in a boot or a surgical shoe, or something.
I have a terrible time with my right foot and ankle (and occasionally in the left foot, too). I have arthritis in the joints in my big toe (or great toe, as my physical therapist calls it), and that causes me to walk on the metatarsal of the second toe, which makes that hurt.
In my right ankle, two of the bones rub together. Nothing seems to help this, though I use a lot of KT tape to keep the nerve pain to a level below "screaming."
Some of my feet problems didn't start until I had plantar fasciitis and a heel spur in the left foot, and a podiatrist insisted I must wear orthotics in my shoes, and my shoes must have a very solid sole. I used to wear Easy Spirit sneakers but the soles on those bend. So I began testing my shoes, and if the sole bent, it was not a shoe I wore. I ended up with New Balance 927s, but then New Balance changed those and I went to a 928. That worked okay for several years, though I still had a lot of pain. Then New Balance recently changed *that* shoe, and in March, when I went to purchase a new pair at the locally owned shoe store, I discovered the change made my foot drop inward even with my inserts in them. They had narrowed the sole significantly, it seemed, and changed the support.
So I went to a very stiff shoe called an Aetrex, and the jury is still out on those. I am wearing them but initially they made my big toe hurt, mostly because I was wearing them without the orthotic and thus walking like I should be, putting weight on that toe. I finally reconfigured a mosaic "pad" insert that came with the shoe to change the way my weight carried on the right side, stopping, at least, the pain in the toe.
I personally thought (and think) that the orthotics are as much of a problem as not. I used to wear Minnetonka moccasins with no soles around the house all the time, buying a new pair every time we went to the beach. But we stopped going to the beach and after I wore out my last pair (about 15 years ago), I did not replace them (online shopping wasn't the thing it is now). And my foot has grown wider in the intervening years, so I would prefer trying on a pair because Minnetonka doesn't make a wide shoe.
I would go barefoot but I have a thing about anything touching my feet except socks.
Anyway, the local paper a few weeks ago had an article about a company in Charlottesville called Oesh. (If that link doesn't work, you can see them at Amazon here.) The shoes reportedly were made by a woman for women, and there was a note that most shoes start with a basic form (from a male foot, of course) and so women are wearing the wrong shoes to begin with.
That does not surprise me.
So I went to the company website, and I purchased the shoe they had on sale.
If you think this looks like nothing I would wear out, you would be right. I'm little miss plain Jane, wearing only white sneakers. But around the house, these feel pretty good.
They feel a bit like a moccasin, and for that reason I am wearing them with no orthotics (though I do have my ankle taped up as I usually must do to keep the nerve pain down). At first, the soles felt squishy and unstable, but after walking on them a few minutes they were okay. The top is a very soft mesh. The bottom is entirely flat, so it is like walking barefoot but not, and with something soft between my foot and the floor.
I am not yet ready to make a call on these shoes, but I think if you have feet problems and are looking for something different to try, these might be an option. They have others that don't look quite so, um, different, but I went with the cheapest ones. If I should decide I like these well enough to order another pair, I'll get something that looks a bit better. I suppose one might consider these "fun" shoes but the colors really aren't my thing.
The fact that these are made locally (I'm 2 hours from Charlottesville) and in Virginia also factored into my decision to purchase. If that matters to you, then that is another reason to take a look at the shoe.
Many people on Amazon report that these shoes have helped their feet issues. I haven't worn them enough to know yet. But I do think that they may make a difference, especially if I wear them in conjunction with my other shoes, alternating. At any rate, I am not unhappy with them. We'll see.
*No one paid me to write about this product.*