It should come as no surprise that most of us regularly suffer from foot pain. After all, daily physical activity and ill-fitting shoes tend to put extra strain on our feet throughout the day. In fact, the American Podiatric Medical Association says that a whopping 77% of Americans have experienced foot health problems at one point in their lives.
So, how do all these people alleviate their achy feet? It turns out there are a plethora of effective options available for soothing sore tootsies. In an attempt to find the best solutions, we scoured the internet and talked to a professional for customer- and podiatrist-approved products. We also tried a few popular options out for ourselves, too.
Best products for sore feet
Even though this is the most inexpensive option on our list, it actually may be one of the most effective for relieving sore feet. The reason? The spikes along the ball’s surface are said to dig deep into the muscle to help minimize knots and prevent foot cramping.
“[A] massage helps to loosen the soft tissue and increase circulation to the area,” says New York City podiatrist Dr. Jacqueline Sutera. “The increase of blood flow to painful areas can help to circulate in healing properties of blood and remove cellular debris from inflammation. Decreasing inflammation helps to reduce symptoms of pain.”
Touted for its ability to relieve plantar fasciitis, this massage roller is said to be a huge help for those battling foot pain. “Plantar fasciitis is an inflammation of the ligamentous-type structure called the fascia on the bottom of the foot,” says Sutera. “When this fascia is inflamed and swollen, it causes pain to the heel and arch, especially after periods of rest.”
This foot stand is an affordable choice for those who aren’t interested in spending a ton of money on electric massage options to treat their discomfort.
Athletes will already know that Biofreeze is essential for temporarily relieving any muscle pain or soreness. The formula uses menthol to cool the afflicted area and block pain signals for instant relief. I love this roll-on option, which is perfect for on-the-go applications.
If you’re standing for long periods of time each day, you likely need special shoe insoles. “Most insoles provide cushioning and arch support,” says Sutera. “They help to neutralize the foot as you step down and provide shock absorption, ultimately alleviating and preventing foot pain.”
These insoles by Dr. Scholl's are designed to offer improved cushioning and support to help prevent pain. "I tried wearing these Dr. Scholl's insoles with my chicer, but naturally uncomfortable shoes, including boots that have 2 to 3 inches of heel, trainers and stilettos," one Shop TODAY writer wrote. "Surprisingly, I stopped feeling that burning sensation in my calves hours into wearing them, and they even prevented pain from traveling to areas in my lower body."
Stephen Pribut, an assistant clinical professor of surgery at George Washington University School of Medicine, previously told us that these bestselling Amazon insoles "look like a good combination of structure [and] shape and are soft enough to be comfortable."
Not only is the soft fabric of these socks comforting for tired toes, but the cooling sensation they provide seems downright heavenly. Simply put the provided gel pack in the slips along the sock to provide a chilling sensation for sore, hot feet. "These may be the least sexy thing you own, but you'll feel so relaxed and your sore feet will feel so happy that you won't care," one shopper wrote.
Using both massage technology — which includes six massage heads and 18 rotating massaging nodes— and a heating function, this product is clearly a top seller for a reason. Plus, the equipment has an adjustable height option, making it perfect to use while seated in any chair or couch.
More than 17,000 shoppers have given it a perfect five-star rating. "Me and my fiancé use this every night," one person wrote. "Feels so amazing on the bottom of our feet. And after a long day of being on your feet, I always look forward to coming home and putting my feet on this and just relaxing for about an hour."
These shoes are popular among nurses and health care workers — and they can also be helpful for anyone else who spends the day on their feet. "These are perfect for workers who have plantar fasciitis pain and back pain [because of] their nice shock-absorbing memory," Dr. Krishna Tikiwala, DPM, a podiatrist at Northern Illinois Foot and Ankle Specialists, previously shared with us.
Sink tired feet and calves into these adjustable, cushioned wraps. I've tried this product and I love that it not only gently massages sore muscles, but it also heats up for additional comfort and improved circulation.