Bunions are common feet deformities that are characterised by large bony bumps at the base of the large toe. In most cases, bunion sufferers find it hard to fit in their old shoes once this condition develops.
One of the easiest ways to deal with bunions is by using bunion correctors. While these products may not necessarily fix the problem, they can help relieve the painful symptoms that come with the condition. Besides, these correctors can be used to minimise swelling and friction exerted on the area.
Best bunion corrector reviews
So, are you looking for the best bunion correctors for your condition? Below is a list of effective non-surgical treatments for correcting bunions:
|Type||For whom it is?||Recommended product|
|Bunion corrector kits||For people who are looking to buy a complete solution to their bunion problem||Penkwin Complete Bunion Corrector Kit|
|Toe separators||For people waiting to undergo surgery but need something to relieve their pain||Alignow Bunion Relief|
|Toe straighteners||For people who want to realign their toes affected by bunions||66fit Hallux Valgus Padded Night Support|
|Bunion sleeves||For people who want to cushion the bunion against friction or any pressure||Pro11 Wellbeing Bunion Sleeve|
We’ve also listed the pros and cons of each method while also recommending the best product for each category. Let’s start.
1. Toe separators
Toe separators are small flexible plastic materials that are placed between the big and the second toes. This method is recommended for people with painful bunions which have formed as a result of having an angled toe.
Pros of Toe separators
- They are washable and also reusable.
- Offer quick relief.
- They are discreet.
Cons of Toe separators
- May cause discomfort to the bunion especially if the condition is severe.
- Often made of plastics which may not be received well by the eco-conscious individuals.
- Protectors may also hamper breathability of the foot which may result in poor hygiene and possibly lead to bacterial and fungal infections.
All in all, toe separators are rated highly due to their value for money as well as their ability to offer quick bunion relief.
Our recommended Toe protector / separator
The Alignow Bunion Relief is one of the most popular toe separators on the current market. Upon purchasing this pack, you will be provided with two flexible separators to help you cushion your bunions against friction. This product is best suited for people waiting to undergo surgery but need something to relieve their pain.
Pros of Alignow Bunion Relief
- The product is reasonably priced.
- It’s also washable and waterproof.
- Easy to use.
Cons of Alignow Bunion Relief
- May not be appropriate for people with severe bunions.
- You’ll need to wash them often to maintain foot hygiene.
2. Toe straighteners
Also referred to as bunion splints, toe straighteners are devices that are specially designed to realign toes affected by bunions. These devices are made in such a way that they pull the toes outwards which is vital to straightening them.
Pros of Toe straighteners
- Most are durable.
- Offer comfort to the affected toe.
- They are reusable.
Cons of Toe straighteners
- They are not discreet.
- Due to their bulky nature, it’s difficult to wear straighteners together with footwear.
- You will need to wash them regularly and give them time to dry if you’re to maintain proper feet hygiene.
Most of those who opt for toe straighteners love their durability and convenience.
Our recommended toe straightener – best bunion splint
The 66fit Night Support is a top rated medical grade toe straightener that’s made using very soft material which makes it very comfortable to wear. The device is used to pull the big toe away from the second toe by tightening its Velcro pieces. Due to its bulky nature, this device is best suited for overnight use as you cannot wear it with shoes.
Pros of 66fit Night Support
- Highly durable.
- Washable and reusable.
- Suitable for both pre and post bunion surgery.
Cons of 66fit Night Support
- Quite expensive especially if you need two devices.
- Not suitable for use during the day.
3. Bunion sleeves
A bunion sleeve is a thin piece of material that is wrapped around the big toe while also holding onto the pad of the foot. Sleeves help in covering the bunion and thus cushion it against friction or any pressure that may be exerted on this sensitive area. The material will then gently align the affected toe after a while.
Pros of Bunion sleeves
- Often discreet.
- Can be used throughout the day.
- Easy to use.
Cons of Bunion sleeves
- Sleeves may not fit everyone well especially those with wider feet. However, you may look for sleeves that include heel strap although these may be relatively more expensive than those without.
- For proper feet hygiene, you’ll need to clean your sleeves regularly.
- Bunion sleeves tend to lose elasticity after being worn for a while.
Our recommended bunion sleeve
The Pro11 Wellbeing Sleeve is highly rated bunion sleeve that will offer you an affordable way to protect your foot. Featuring an incredibly lightweight material, this product offers a very gentle correction to your toe. Each package comes with two sleeves.
Pros of Pro11 Wellbeing Sleeve
- It’s lightweight.
- Can be worn with shoes.
- Very comfortable.
Cons of Pro11 Wellbeing Sleeve
- Not durable compared to other methods.
- May need constant readjustments especially after losing its elasticity.
Why you should use bunion correctors
As mentioned earlier, the purpose of a bunion corrector is not to treat the condition but to offer relief to those awaiting surgery. Below are three reasons you should consider buying a bunion corrector:
To relieve pain
A bunion corrector helps to align the affected toe and consequently minimise the friction and pain that comes with bunions. As such, most correctors include a pad to cushion the side of the bunion.
Enhance the health of a foot
If left unattended, bunions can facilitate occurrences of other feet problems such as corns, callus, or general swelling. As such, it’s important to treat them or use correctors to stop them from deteriorating.
Help you wear regular footwear
Unaligned toes formed as a result of bunions can prevent you from wearing regular footwear. Fortunately, you can use correctors to align such toes and subsequently make it easy for your feet to fit in such footwear again or use footwear specifically designed for bunions.
Tips to consider when buying the best bunion correctors
Bunion correctors can easily facilitate fungal and bacterial infections if not properly cleaned or changed. For this reason, it’s important to go for easy to clean products that also dry quickly after cleaning.
Try to make your affected toe as comfortable as possible to avoid worsening your bunion. As such, you may want to consider a gentler bunion sleeve in place of toe separator if having a severe bunion.
Bunion correctors come in virtually all budgets. Most of them are available for between £2 and £24. When purchasing a particular product, be sure to check whether one or two correctors are provided in the pack.
It is important to understand how often you’ll need to use a bunion corrector before choosing the most appropriate corrector type for yourself. For example, a splint will work best when used for infrequent use while a toe protector is best suited for people that use the corrector on a daily basis.
Alternative treatments for bunions
If the methods discussed above do not seem to offer your relief, it’s vital that you seek professional treatment to determine the best alternative treatment method that will help you solve your problem quicker. Often, your GP will recommend surgery to correct the bone problem.
Below are the three types of surgeries you can undergo to treat your bunion:
This procedure entails cutting away the lump of the bone while also realigning the affected toe to a more straightened position.
Excision (Keller’s) arthroplasty
For this surgery, both the deformed bone and the toe joint are removed completely after which a new joint develops from scar tissues.
This method is only used in severe cases. It entails fusing together the joints of the affected toe thereby making them completely inflexible.
Some of the common tools used during toe surgeries include screws, pins, and wires which are used to hold the toe together until recovery. In some cases, these tools are removed after some time although they may also be left to stay to allow long-term stability.
Frequently asked questions
Q: How does a bunion corrector help?
It relieves the pain from a bunion, it keeps your toe from rubbing against the shoe as you walk, it cushions your bunion when you are walking or running and it corrects your toe’s alignment.
Not all bunion correctors provide all these benefits. It depends on the type of corrector.
Toe straighteners help correct misalignment, bunion sleeves prevent friction with the shoe and bunion pads shield the affected area from pressure.
Q: Which is the best bunion corrector for running?
Running can be especially uncomfortable when you have bunions. The combined aggravation from your toe rubbing against the shoe and the shock from hitting the ground can cause a lot of pain.
A sleeve is a great solution for runners. It protects the bunion from friction while providing some support and cushioning.
You can also use a bunion pad or a splint pad, also called a toe straightener.
Q: How should I use a bunion corrector?
It depends on the type of corrector as well as the manufacturer specifications.
The most important thing is to make sure it fits when you put on your shoes. Check that your shoes have a wide enough toe box.
A tight shoe could worsen the pain and misalignment, even if you are using a corrector.
Something else to check is how many hours the manufacturer recommends leaving the corrector on per day.
With some, you only use them when you are wearing shoes. Others are designed to be comfortable enough for 24/7 use. Others are meant for night time use only.
Q: How long does a bunion splint take to correct the toe?
It depends on a lot of factors including the severity of your bunions, what kind of shoes you wear and whether you are using any other type of therapy to treat the bunions.
But generally, do not expect major changes immediately. Most people experience pain relief within a few days.
But when it comes to straightening the toe, it might take a few weeks. Just keep wearing the splint and be patient.
However, if you have severe bunions, a splint alone is not enough. Your podiatrist or doctor may recommend additional physical therapy or even surgery.
Q: What is a hinged bunion splint?
It is a type of toe straightener with some sort of hinge mechanism in the middle. It allows you to move and wiggle your toes.
It’s much more comfortable than a rigid splint.