The search for the perfect slipper
Not all slippers are created equal; most slippers are made for comfort, but are they therapeutic? Good foot health promotes well-being, the more supportive your footwear, the more healthy your body is.
After working from home for a year, I have experienced firsthand the benefits of a house shoe with arch support versus without. Soft cushy slippers may be nice for sitting by the fire, but they are not equipped for all-day wear. But when working from home and on busy weekends, I need a house shoe that can do it all:
- Working from my sofa office
- Doing household chores
- Running errands
- Picking up the kids
A well-made slipper with anatomical arch support checks all the boxes.
In my search for the perfect house shoe, I discovered wool clogs. Wool clogs have been famous in Europe for years, but they are gaining traction in the USA. European brands like Stegmann, Giesswein, and Le Clare have become more readily available. Wool clogs are practical, sensible, and have the cachet of "I am well-traveled."
Le Clare clogs are my personal choice because I find them the most stylish, but I've written this article to share a few things I have learned and help you choose the best arch support clog for you.
Here are some FAQs around the topic of arch support, fit, and materials/construction:
DO ALL CLOGS HAVE ARCH SUPPORT?
Most European-style clogs have some form of arch support. However, not all clogs are designed to be therapeutic. With recent advances in anatomical and ergonomic design, higher-end clogs like the wool clog slippers with cork insoles have increased comfort and support. Cork insoles are superior because traditional wear molds to the unique shape of your foot. With self-molding cork, you get the feel of a custom-made shoe. Each brand has its proprietary designs that vary in shape, construction, firmness, and fit. Some brands work for some and may not work for others. For example, Birkenstock has very firm insoles that can take some time to break in, but Le Clare's cork insoles are slightly softer and break in much faster.
How do arch support insoles compare to orthotics?
The first thing to consider is whether you need orthotic inserts. If you're experiencing pain from an injury, then yes, you probably will want to use some insert. However, most people who suffer from foot problems don't have structural issues like those associated with heel spurs, bunions, hammertoes, etc., so these injuries aren't usually helped by using orthotics. Many studies show that orthotics can even cause harm.
Are clogs good for flat feet?
If you suffer from flat-footedness, then you probably already know what an issue this is. Flat-footed people tend to walk more slowly than those with arches in their feet—strolling means that over time, your body becomes accustomed to walking without proper support, which leads to pain and discomfort and other problems such as bunions. When wearing clogs, you get all the comfort and protection of traditional shoes and boots while giving your feet the necessary support needed to avoid injury. Indoor-outdoor wear is a perfect choice for anyone with flat feet.
Are clogs with arch support recommended for Plantar Fasciitis?
How do you know if your foot pain is caused by plantar fasciitis the symptoms are:
- Pain in the heel, arch, or sole. Arch support is of the utmost importance for people who suffer from this condition.
- Heel spurs can be very painful and difficult to treat, but a few strategies may help. Like, they were taking the pressure off your heel by elevating it and using ice packs or a cold compress on it for 20 minutes at a time.
- Pain that worsens with walking and standing. Aching at night when lying down—swelling around the ankle joint. Tingling sensation on top of the foot.
- Numbness or tingling in toes. Difficulty sleeping because of discomfort from plantar fasciitis/foot pain. Arch support is recommended.
Bunions are a widespread foot problem and one that many people struggle with without even knowing it. Bunions cause the toes to angle towards the big toe and are often accompanied by pain, swelling, or redness. This condition is caused when your toes become bent from wearing tight shoes or having a high arch, causing arch pain. Bunions are also common in people who have arthritis because the bone can grow out of place. That is why wearing shoes that are true to size is essential. The cause may be overuse of the feet, injury, obesity, diabetes, arthritis, pregnancy, unexpected issues from poor circulation, lack of exercise, wearing high heels, improper footwear, etc.
What's more, there are different styles of wool clogs that come with varying features. Some models feature removable insoles while others do not. Others offer additional cushioning for added comfort.
So, which ones should you choose for yourself? It depends on your preference and budget. However, if you're looking for something with a bit of style, then sheepskin will probably work out better for you. If you prefer natural products that won't harm animals, then maybe synthetic fiber would suit you better. The bottom line here is that there isn't any single "best" option among them.
Material and Care:
Wool clog features that set them apart:
The toe box area tends to be larger than those of sneakers. It provides additional space for your toes while still allowing enough room for your big toe by design. The anatomical shape of the wool clog helps prevent blisters by providing proper pressure distribution across your entire foot in its natural form, even if you have a wide foot.
- You can wear socks inside wool clogs to keep your feet cozy. If you prefer not to wear socks, consider purchasing woolen ones made specifically for use with wool clogs. These socks are designed to wick away moisture and protect your feet from getting wet.
- Some models feature removable insoles. Removable insoles let you customize the shoe to suit your personal preferences.
Wool Clogs are the most popular, but can they be made of other materials?
The most common materials used in making wool clogs include sheepskin leather with seamless wool, cotton canvas, synthetic fabrics, rubber soles, and other fabric types. Sheepskin is one of the oldest forms of animal skin available today; however, it has become increasingly popular over time due to its softness and durability. Cotton canvas is another durable yet flexible material commonly found in wool clogs. Synthetic fibers such as nylon and polyester are also often used to make wool clogs. Rubber soles provide traction and protection against sharp objects. But a latex sole is very common also. Other materials may include plastic, wood, metal, etc., depending on the manufacturer.
Do Wool Clogs Get Hot Inside?
Anyone can wear wool clogs year-round. The reason why wool clogs stay warm is that they have layers of insulation built-in. These insolations prevent heat loss by trapping air pockets within them. They also wick away moisture, which helps maintain a body temperature that keeps your feet cool in the winter.
Wool is the best quality material to make shoes because it's breathable, durable, soft, warm, comfortable, and easy to clean. It also has natural antibacterial properties that help keep your feet healthy. The most common type of shoes made from this fabric is shoes or moccasins. Anyone can wear these types of footwear in any season, but they are trendy during the winter months when you need something extra cozy on cold days. They come in many designs and styles, so there should always be one available at home if you want them. You may not know how much these shoes will benefit your health until you try them out yourself.
Wool is the most commonly used material for making clogs, but Le Clare offers styles in hemp for those who have wool allergies or who live in warmer climates.
Do wool clogs need special care?
Yes, but not nearly as much as regular sneakers would require. It would help if you washed wool clogs periodically using mild soap and water. If you live somewhere where temperatures drop below freezing, consider adding a little dish detergent into the mix. Air dry completely before storing away. Don't forget to check out our guide on caring for wool upper here. A pair of slippers shouldn't last forever, especially if you wear them every day. So, try to avoid getting them wet whenever possible. Also, remember that wool tends to shrink slightly when washed.
How can I clean wool clogs?
That being said, if you want to take advantage of this style of shoe, then you must first ensure that your environment doesn't pose too many risks. For example, don't go hiking through deep mud without proper gear. Also, avoid wearing these shoes during freezing climates since they might cause frostbite.
How long will my wool clogs last?
The lifespan of wool clogs varies depending on how well maintained they are. You may even find that they'll last much longer than expected! However, we recommend washing them at least once per month to help extend their lifespan.
Can I wear wool clogs outside?
Wool clogs are explicitly designed for outdoor use. Their construction makes if you live somewhere where temperatures fall below 40 degrees Fahrenheit on average, then wool clogs should work nicely for you. Just note that they may become uncomfortably warm once exposed to direct sunlight.
Can wool clogs last longer than sneakers?
This depends entirely upon the quality of the product. Some manufacturers claim that their products can withstand harsh weather conditions, including snowfall and rain. Others say that their shoes only work indoors. It's essential to read the fine print carefully before buying any footwear. Comfortable shoes are the key to keeping yourself healthy throughout the day. So why settle for anything else when you could have something like these wool clogs that keep your feet cozy?
If you're looking for comfortable shoes that are easy to wear, then wool clogs are worth checking out. They'll give you plenty of support while still being lightweight enough to move around without feeling cumbersome.
What makes a great sole?
Wool felt with a wool upper needs a great sole. Consider a house shoe sole that fits true-to-size when picking the pair. A shoe sole made of wool felts typically used for indoor slippers and works well. A Cork latex footbed is another good material for an outdoor slipper as long as they don't contain a latex footbed. They're easy to clean and dry quickly after use. You'll want to avoid rubber soles since these tend to crack easily. But if it is made of quality materials, you should not have a problem because we use an advanced construction technique.
The best way to determine whether you have bunions is to look closely at your own feet. Do you notice anything unusual? Are your toes pointing inward toward each other? Does one toe seem more significant than the rest? These signs could indicate that you have bunions, and a cork-latex sole may help.
The outsole is the outer sole of a shoe or boot. A cork outsole is softer and absorbs shock much as a sponge does. A flexible inner liner helps keep the sock in place. Worn together, the combination of this dense material creates a comfortable environment inside the shoe. Toe caps provide stability and grip on surfaces like pavement and stairs. But a durable outsole provides traction on slippery conditions such as snow or ice.
I hope my article has helped you understand what makes a good pair of wool slippers.
If you wear orthotics, make sure the model you buy accommodates them. Orthotic devices are designed to correct abnormal alignment of bones, muscles, ligaments, joints, nerves, and soft tissues. This allows us to walk comfortably without discomfort.