Best Nike Shoes for Bunions

by Purposeful Footwear - Last Updated: September 4, 2018

Painful bunions can seriously affect your mobility. But a good pair of shoes should help ease the discomfort to get you walking – and perhaps even running again – in no time at all. We’ve all come to know Nike as one of the prime brands for any sort of athletic gear. So I decided to check out their line-up to find out whether they offered any suitable footwear for people who want to stay active even with a painful bunion or two.

Wondering which ones topped my list? Check out these top 8 picks and my reviews for each one to learn more about the best shoes for bunions from the Nike brand.

Top 8 Best Nike Shoes for Bunions

Picture

Item Rating Price
Image of the Nike Men Air Presto Essential (black / black-white) Size 10 US

Air Presto Essential

4.5

$$$$$

Image of the NIKE Men's Flex 2016 RN Running Shoe NK830369 001 (Black/White/Cool Grey, 10.5 D(M) US)

Flex 2016 RN Running Shoe

4.4

$$$$

Image of the NIKE Mens Roshe One Running Shoes Black/Sail/Anthracite 511881-010 Size 11.5

Roshe Run

4.3

$$

Image of the NIKE Kaishi NS Mens Gray Mesh Athletic Lace Up Running Shoes 10

Kaishi Running Shoe

4.3

$$$$

Image of the Nike Mens Free Train Versatility Running Shoes (9.5, Black/White/Black)

Free Train Versatility Running Shoe

4.3 $$$
Image of the NIKE Men's Darwin Casual Shoe 819803 002 (Black/Black-White, 9.5 D(M) US)

Darwin Casual Shoe

4.3

$$$

Image of the NIKE Men's Downshifter 7 Running Shoe Black/Metallic Hematite/Anthracite Size 11 M US

Downshifter 7 Running Shoe

4.3

$

Image of the NIKE Mens Flex Control Low Top Lace up, Black/White/Dark Gray, Size 9.0 Flex Control Low Top Lace Up Fashion Sneaker 4.3

$$

 

Air Presto Essential

The Nike Air Presto Essential tops my list as the best Nike shoe for Bunions for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the Air Presto is exceptionally soft. And when I say soft, I mean buttery yet dense, giving you that satisfying comfort of responsiveness without the unease of losing your feet in a sea of cushion. The uppers stretch and flex, conforming to your foot and providing breathability for optimal sweat management.

Image of the Nike Men Air Presto Essential (black / black-white) Size 10 US

Inside the sole construction, a featherweight full length midsole offers exceptional responsiveness and cradles the feet for improved comfort. Running true to size, the Air Presto Essential Shoes were designed to embrace your natural motion. This, plus their roomy toe box, makes them ideal for painful bunions.

Pros

  • Featherweight design makes it feel like you’re not wearing shoes at all, giving you the freedom to move without the added weight on your feet.
  • Flexible uppers move and flex to your movements, reducing restriction and pressure
  • Breathable material permits exceptional airflow for cool comfort even with long hours of use
  • Runs true to size
  • Cushioned full-length midsole is soft and bouncy, reducing the energy spent on each step
  • Lacing system permits lots of room for adjustment so it’s easy to optimize fit
  • Roomy toe box eliminates pressure on painful bunions
  • Killer aesthetics

Cons

  • Costs a very pretty penny

Flex 2016 RN Running Shoe

My second pick for anyone struggling with bunions is the Flex 2016 RN Running Shoe. Designed for running, the Flex 2016 is lightweight, breathable, and flexible, offering superb freedom of movement to limit pressure spots and pain where unnecessary.

Image of the NIKE Men's Flex 2016 RN Running Shoe NK830369 001 (Black/White/Cool Grey, 10.5 D(M) US)

The soft mesh uppers are pliable and highly permissive of airflow. Much like the Air Presto, these shoes have a built-in midsole cushion that helps dampen the impact of heel strike for a more comfortable ride. Finally, I want to mention that the shoes are the perfect example of ideal fit. Locked down around the midfoot region, the Flex 2016 RN is spacious around the toes. This gives you the support and stability you need without losing the space you need to keep your bunions pain-free.

Pros

  • Lightweight construction reduces fatigue over long periods of use
  • Flexible and breathable uppers are a dream to walk in, giving you a comfortable barefoot feel while still providing protection and support
  • Full-length midsole cushion lightens the impact of heel strike for improved performance and comfort
  • Locked down midfoot region ensures a stable step
  • Roomy toe box eliminates the chances of applying unnecessary pressure on painful bunions
  • Runs true to size
  • Flexible outsole lets you move without limitations

Cons

  • Upper material isn’t as durable as many would have hoped
  • Tend to look old and worn out after just a few weeks of use

Roshe Run

When the Roshe Run first came out, they were an instant hit. These relatively affordable yet fashion-forward Nike shoes are a favorite among street wear enthusiasts, but they’re suitable for other purposes, too. In terms of comfort, the Roshe Runs are some of the best. With buttery soft yet responsive insoles, they’re nothing short of a dream to walk in. This, in combination with they’re highly forgiving uppers, makes them very comfortable to walk in.

Image of the Nike Men's Roshe One Running Shoes, Black/Black, 11 M US

Breathable, lightweight, and pliable, the Roshe Runs were designed for everyday, casual use, and they perform well to that end. They’re comfortable, stylish, and versatile, offering just enough space up front to accommodate an aching bunion.

Pros

  • Stylish aesthetic comes in a variety of colorways
  • Lightweight construction makes them easy to walk in
  • Responsive, soft insoles cradle the feet and make each step pain-free
  • Flexible uppers bend and move to your step to eliminate restriction
  • Breathable material minimizes sweat production
  • Reasonably priced
  • Spacious toe box gives painful bunions lots of room to reduce pain

Cons

  • Not exactly the most durable shoe
  • Uppers tend to lose their integrity after a while, easily giving up to wear and tear

Kaishi Running Shoe

Following the success of the Roshe Run aesthetic, the company came out with the Kaishi Running Shoe. Taking cues from its stylish predecessor, the Kaishi was designed with similar comfort features. The difference is that the Kaishi is better equipped for athletic use such as running.

Image of the NIKE Kaishi NS Mens Gray Mesh Athletic Lace Up Running Shoes 10

TPU overlays that cover parts of the uppers provide greater stability, and ultimately resolve the integrity issue we saw with the Roshe Run. Save for the soles which also offer substantially more traction, the Kaishi features the same upper material, foam midsole, and low cut silhouette that the Roshe has.

Pros

  • Breathable mesh uppers allow substantial airflow for optimal climate control
  • TPU overlays add structure and integrity to an otherwise pliable upper material
  • Soles designed to give greater traction for reliable use during running
  • Foam midsole is soft yet dense, making each step comfortable and relaxed
  • Casual aesthetic works well for a variety of outfits and occasions
  • Much more durable compared to its Roshe counterpart
  • Lightweight build lets you get around without any extra weight on your feet

Cons

  • Slightly narrower toe box than the Roshe’s
  • Falls along the higher end of the price spectrum

Free Train Versatility Running Shoe

Another great pick if you want something that’ll be easy on your bunions is the Free Train Versatility Running Shoe. This particular design is a featherweight, allowing you to get around and move without the burden of clumsy shoes weighing you down. Much like many other Nike running shoes, they’re flexible and breathable, so they won’t be difficult to walk in.

Image of the Nike Mens Free Train Versatility Running Shoes (9.5, Black/White/Black)

FlyWire cables connected to the laces help improve lockdown by adjusting tightness all around for a dynamic fit. Around front though, the Free Train Versatility Running Shoe still maintains a pretty substantial toe box to prevent pressure on the bunions. What’s nice about the Free Train Versatility is that the whole shoe is quite roomy, so the addition of an orthotic insert won’t make them too tight.

Pros                                                                    

  • Flexible mesh material permits a wide range of motion for optimum comfort
  • Breathable design minimizes the production of perspiration
  • Triangular pods on the outsoles contract and bend to accommodate even greater flexion
  • Rough patches on the borders of the outsoles provide satisfying traction on both indoor and outdoor terrain
  • Spacious toe box prevents pressure on painful bunions
  • Enough room for an orthotic insert
  • FlyWire cables allow a dynamic fit

Cons

  • Runs slightly small. Buy a size up.
  • Stitching keeping the uppers together could use some improvement

Darwin Casual Shoe

With an aesthetic similar to the Air Presto Essential, it’s no surprise that the Darwin Casual Shoe offers pretty much the same comfort and performance. They’re breathable, flexible, and comfortable, especially because they use specially designed injected unitsoles to provide substantial cushioning and bounce.

Image of the NIKE Men's Darwin Casual Shoe 819803 002 (Black/Black-White, 9.5 D(M) US)

If the Darwin Casual shoe is so much like the top placer in my list, why didn’t it rank higher, you might ask? Well, the main problem lies in the fact that they take a while to break-in. At first, the shoes might feel a little too snug which may deter people with painful bunions from using them again. But once you get past the initial tightness, they start to feel a lot like the Air Presto Essentials.

Pros

  • Flexible material is highly permissive of movement
  • Breathable mesh allows substantial air flow for efficient sweat management
  • Injected unitsoles are responsive and bouncy, reducing the energy needed for each step
  • Rubber outsole pods provide maximum traction on both indoor and outdoor terrain
  • FlyWire cables make it easier to achieve the right fit
  • Solid aesthetics make them great for everyday, casual use

Cons

  • Take some time to break-in
  • Snug around the midfoot region
  • Can apply some pressure on bunions at the start

Downshifter 7 Running Shoe

Light, flexible, and soft, the Downshifter 7 Running Shoe is a well-performing athletic design that has also been used time and time again for a variety of special foot conditions. What I think sets it apart from others – especially because it uses the same mesh uppers and rubber outsoles as most other designs – is its articulated midsole which adds a facet of flexibility to the overall build.

Image of the NIKE Men's Downshifter 7 Running Shoe Black/Metallic Hematite/Anthracite Size 11 M US

What’s more, the shoe also has a no-sew midfoot saddle that adds support and improves lockdown for a safe and stable step. Other than that, the Downshifter 7 is your run-of-the-mill Nike running shoe, banking on comfort and support to give you a reliable footwear choice for daily use.

Pros

  • Pliable design allows a wide range of motion
  • Articulated midsole permits a natural step with minimal restriction
  • Spacious toe box
  • Breathable mesh material for substantial air flow
  • No-sew saddle provides extra support
  • Comfortable insole cradles the feet for a pain-free step

Cons

  • Tight around the midfoot region
  • Doesn’t grip well on wet pavement
  • Takes a while to break-in for a more comfortable user experience

Flex Control Low Top Lace Up Fashion Sneaker

The last shoe on my list of the best Nike shoes for bunions is the Flex Control Low Top Lace Up Fashion Sneaker. With articulated grooves on the outsole and an aggressive tread pattern that’s designed to stick, the shoes are some of the most reliable I’ve seen. Stepping on most surfaces results in a satisfying grip which I personally think is essential if you find yourself adjusting your gait to accommodate a painful bunion.

Image of the NIKE Mens Flex Control Low Top Lace up, Black/White/Dark Gray, Size 9.0

Comfort wise, they’re not too shabby. Cushioned insoles, foam midsoles, and plush padding all keep the foot comfortable in its place for extended periods of walking. If anything, the only reason why I couldn’t bring myself to rank them any higher is the fact that they’re a little on the flimsy side. So do expect some wear and tear a few months in.

Pros

  • Articulated groove outsoles help make each step more natural and free
  • Plush padding inside and around the collar add support and comfort
  • Tread patterns work well on interior and outdoor terrain
  • Mesh uppers are flexible and permit a wide range of motion
  • Lightweight construction
  • Wide silhouette can easily accommodate a painful bunion

Cons

  • The tongue might cause some pressure and friction over the dorsum of the foot
  • Might feel bulky for some users
  • Not too great against wear and tear
More Reviews

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *