Behold! The infamous Swarovski Crystal Cinderella shoe. Fit for a true Princess! How did she manage to dance all night long in glass slippers and not have bloody feet and blisters? What were her secrets?!
“The right shoes can change your life.” Cinderella
If you are a shoe aficionado and believe all nice outfits deserve a set of heels, we’ve got some great tips for how you can be the Belle of the ball without having to go barefoot before the end of the night. We spoke with personal shoppers, stylists, models, business executives, and even some dancers asking them what they recommend for fancy footwear. We were dying to know how these stylish leading ladies survive long days standing, dancing, or walking in stilettos? Luckily, we’ve got some wonderful friends who were happy to share their secrets. Here are their top tips for looking fabulous in heels- pain free.
1. The top advice amongst all our contributing ladies was to choose a shoe that has a chunky block heel. Look for a solid heel (nothing glued together or composite) since this will reduce the likelihood it will break after pressure and wear. Heels that have a rubberized sole are best because they offer traction especially on slippery or uneven surfaces. Block heels distribute weight more evenly than pointy heels and take strain off the ankle.
2. Choose a shoe with a rubberized platform under the ball as well. Again, you want something that is stable, slip proof, and that will cushion this sensitive part of your foot as you walk or stand. Shoes that have a super thin platform under the ball will be painful very quickly unless it is reinforced with some additional inserts.
3. When trying out your shoes at the store, go later in the day when your feet are more likely to be a little swollen. It’s great to try on shoes in the morning if you are out, but you wont get the most accurate sizing until you’ve already been on your feet for a few hours and the blood has been pumping.
4. Look for shoes that offer some bend, particularly in the toe box. If you are walking and the shoe doesn’t give at all, it will feel very unnatural and will likely influence your walk. Don’t get a shoe that is so flimsy you can fold it in half and tuck it in your purse. Instead look for something with a little bend that will reduce your chance of getting cramps or sprains. Ankle straps are great to keep the foot in place as well.
“Shoes transform your body language and attitude. They lift you physically, and emotionally.” Christian Louboutin
5. If you wear orthotics, get a custom set for high heels. Your feet will thank you, your back and hips will thank you, and you’ll be more likely to enjoy formal shoes. Heels offer next to no support and if you are used to wearing inserts in your shoes on a regular basis, don’t ignore them now when you’ll need their support most!
6. If you love the height and class that heels tend to offer but have very sensitive feet, try a pair of booties! Stiletto shoes can be much harder to walk in than a short boot that offers you the comfort of more shock absorption, ankle support, and a stronger heel. Booties are all the rage so don’t feel for a second that you are stuck with flats if you can’t handle wearing regular high heels.
7. Break in your new shoes before you go out anywhere. The fastest way to do this is to wear them around the house. If the shoe isn’t too painful, the fastest way to break down the fibres is to wear them barefoot, even for a few short intervals of 15 minutes per day for a week. Don’t worry if your feet sweat a bit either. The sweat and pressure will help the shoe form to your feet naturally.
Let us know if you have any other tips you’ve tried, we’d love to hear from you!
P.S. Big thanks to all the ladies who contributed to this article! Thanks to you, we can now ditch the flats and go pain free in cute shoes!