The best compression arch supports

From bestreviews.com
By
Seline Shenoy

Pain in the arch of the foot is a common problem. The two most frequent causes of arch pain involve injury or structural issues. Structural issues include plantar fasciitis, flat feet, overpronation, cavus foot and posterior tibial tendon dysfunction.

The good news is that high or low arches don’t have to be painful or troublesome. Get back on your feet by investing in proper arch support. Vive Orthotic Arch Support Brace provides different sets of gel inserts for customized relief from various arch issues.

What to know before you buy compression arch supports 

Signs that you may need arch supports

If there’s wear and tear on your shoes. If you find uneven wear on the outside or inside your shoes, it’s an indication of mechanical issues in your feet due to your arch. 

If you have sore ankles and feet. Some soreness is normal if you’re physically active and/or spend a lot of time on your feet, but excessive aches are a sign that your feet are working harder than they need to due to lack of support. 

If store-bought insoles aren't helping. If low-cost options from retail stores aren’t alleviating your pain, you need a sturdier option made with better materials.

Types of arch supports

  • Adjustable band wraps: Adjustable band wraps are made with Velcro to provide customizable compression. Several styles come with a few inserts that offer different levels of support. One of the drawbacks of this style is that it’s bulky and doesn't always fit into shoes.  
  • Band wraps: Band wraps are single pieces of flexible material that wrap around the arch. People with certain foot issues and those who want support that’s easy to wear with socks and shoes may prefer this option. One pitfall is that they only provide compression to a limited area.
  • Toeless socks: Toeless socks provide support and compression to most of the foot and through the ankle. Like band wraps, they’re thin enough to wear with shoes and socks. Despite the convenience, many wearers say that this style makes them sweat.

Compression arch support features

Material

Compression arch supports are made with a stretchy blend of materials such as polyester, nylon, rayon, spandex, Lycra and sometimes neoprene. Given the various combinations used, it's important to read instructions carefully before washing them.

Size

Compression arch supports are available in various sizes. Some are available in men's and women's sizing, while others are unisex. Each manufacturer follows different sizing charts, so be sure to measure your foot to find the correct size.

Color

Most compression arch supports are available in a limited range of colors, such as black, nude or gray. Some manufacturers have broadened their assortment to include bright and pastel colors for those looking for a touch of style.

Compression arch support cost

Budget-friendly options cost around $12 and offer moderate support and relief. Mid-range arch supports with better construction are priced at $15-$25. For those willing to pay more for higher quality, there are options that cost closer to $40. 

Compression arch support FAQ

Is there more than one level of support and compression available for compression arch supports?

A. Some manufacturers offer more than one level of support. Only reputable companies produce a wide variety of orthopedic devices and accessories, offering styles in more than one compression or support level.

Are compression arch supports better than orthopedic insoles with arch support?

A. Both aim to alleviate the common issues that people face, but they're not exactly interchangeable. Orthopedic insoles provide relief through contoured support, while compression arch supports provide relief through compression and a moderate amount of support.

Can I use a toeless sock style of compression arch support instead of an ankle brace?

A. It isn't recommended. Given their flexible design, the toeless sock style of compression arch support won’t actually maintain your ankle’s position due to a lack of rigidity. A better option would be an ankle brace that protects you from rolling your ankle.

Which compression arch supports should I get?

Best of the best compression arch supports

VIVE Arch Support Brace: available at Amazon 

Our take: With more than three sets of gel pads, you can choose how much arch support you want.

What we like: This option contains soft gel inserts that provide extra comfort and support while in motion. Maintains foot alignment and reduces pain in the arch and the rest of the foot. This well-made product provides just the right amount of support for a range of foot conditions like strains, sprains, heel spurs and plantar fasciitis.

What we dislike: Gel inserts may seem hard, but that's so they provide the right amount of support without flattening under body weight.

Best bang for your buck compression arch supports

Sparthos Plantar Fasciitis Arch Support Sleeve: available at Amazon

Our take: This highly affordable option stands out for its streamlined, understated design. Barely noticeable, it's perfect for shoes such as ballerina flats and pumps.

What we like: Colors available include gray, beige, black, pink and blue. You can find the right size easily with the foot width chart. The material is highly breathable, so blisters and sweaty feet shouldn’t be an issue. These supports are affordable enough to purchase more than one pair. 

What we dislike: Some users found the compressive support a bit too tight, especially those prone to foot swelling.

Honorable mention compression arch supports

CompressionZ Plantar Fasciitis Socks: available at Amazon

Our take: In addition to providing arch support, these socks provide compression at the ankle, heel and arch to help relieve pain. They don't include a specific arch support pad, but you can combine them with orthotics and insoles. 

What we like: These socks offer relief from pain caused by injuries, arthritis, edema and plantar fasciitis. They reduce swelling, improve circulation and provide therapeutic pressure. 

What we dislike: Leaves an imprint that lasts for more than an hour.
 

Seline Shenoy is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money.

BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. BestReviews and its newspaper partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.