How to Do Heels the Right Way

heelsandflowers

I can’t take it anymore!  Watching ladies hobble, limp and do the ouchie-ouchie-ah-ha walk in their heels!

It is not a cute look ladies and although it is entertaining to watch, all anyone can think is “Please get that girl some heels she can walk in”.

No matter how expensive or how good of a deal you got on them, it is pointless to buy a shoe that you can’t wear or that you will have to soak your feet in ice water after wearing!

It’s a fact that heels make a womans legs look longer, your body look more tone and they give your outfit a  polished look but none of that comes into play if your walk resembles a child struggling to take a step in their mothers heels, not to mention the damage you are doing to your tootsies!

Doing heels the right way begins at the store.  

The first step is selecting a shoe height that fits your needs and heel expertise level.  Every gal will ooh and awe at a pair of sky high stilettos but can you walk in them?  My friends at Vince Camuto have put together a great breakdown of some of their favorite heels according to your heels-pertise:

For the rookie –  Wobbly ankles are a common source of trepidation when just learning to wear heels. If you’re more of a beginner to heels, opt for styles that not only have a lower and chunkier heel but also have a higher wall to secure your ankle (like on the VC Signature Vince Camuto Greta sandal) for a more confident stride.

VC Signature Greta

For the novice – Once you’ve acclimated to the new heights, experiment with different styles within the same relative heel height. The VC Signature Shannah is a solid transition heel. The wider heel will keep you grounded and balanced but the lower sides will prepare you for walking in higher heel heights, forcing your body to tighten its core when you feel a little off-kilter

VC Signature  Shannah

For the middle man – Although their heel height is quite low, kitten heels can be tricky to walk in because of the narrow heel. The 3” heel height on the VC Signature Vince Camuto Abella shoe is a smart way to adjust from a chunkier heel to a sleeker stiletto without having to also worry about adjusting the pitch of your foot.

VC Siganture Abella

For the veteran – Wedges are usually a prime choice for any woman adjusting to wearing heels. The VC Signature Solanna, however, needs a more experienced wearer because of the absences of sides. This is definitely a style to work up to as it is fresh interpretation of a classic wedge.

VC Signature Solanna

For the expert -Once you’ve mastered the art of strutting in high heels, we love the VC Signature Vince Camuto Barbara. The Barbara is incredibly elegant but has a high 4” heel and small platform which can be challenging to wear for the less experienced high heel wearer.

VC Siganture Barbara

 

You have selected the appropriate heel height now its time to try them on.

There are 6 things to consider when you test drive those heels:

1. Don’t scrimp on shoes —Comfy shoes can cost more because of the quality.

2. Don’t Let your shoes wear you- You should be in charge. Your foot shouldn’t have to mold itself to the shoe. the shoe should mold to your foot. When you put it on if there is an immediate crushing pressure on the ball of your foot, that squeezes your toes, and  you could barely walk- then those are the WRONG heels, put them back.

3. Buy the right size. OK, it seems obvious, but when’s the last time you got measured for shoes? Feet can grow larger as we get older (and pregnancy can result in longer or wider feet, too). That’s why it’s crucial to have your feet measured every few years. Make sure there’s a thumb’s width between your longest toe and the front of the shoe, to give your toes room to move. For heels, this means you may need to go up a size to get a comfortable fit.

4. Walk on a hard floor. Step off the carpet while you’re in the shoe department. Every shoe feels better on carpet! You will get a more realistic idea of the feel of the shoe on a hard surface.

5. Go for padding. As we age, we lose padding in the ball of the foot where we can carry up to seven times our body weight.  So, press your thumb along the ball of the foot area and the arch. If your thumb springs back, there’s good padding.

6. Choose rounded toes over pointy toes; chunky heels over stilettos.

Now  that you found shoes you can “walk in”,  let’s define what “walking” in heels is.  Just because you are upright and in motion does not mean you are “walking in heels”.

When you walk in heels you should glide effortlessly.  The motion should begin at your hips not your knees and your foot placement should be as if you are on a tightrope, i.e. one foot in front of the other- no duck walks.

To have you walking like a heel expert I asked my friends at Vince Camuto to share their tips for walking in heels:

–          When it comes to walking in heels, the higher the heel, the shorter your stride should be. Similarly, slow down your pace and shorten your stride when wearing heels; a brisk pace is the usual culprit for a choppy looking strut.

–          High heels pitch your weight forward so roll your shoulders back as a “posture-check” when you’re feeling off balance.

–          As you walk in high heels, sway your hips in small sideways figure-8’s. This soft movement keeps your body from tensing up when you’re feeling off balance.

–          When wearing heels, keep your arms loose and swing them at gently at the elbow for better balance– a simple tip that makes a big difference!

–          When walking in heels, land on the heel and roll through to the ball of your foot (not just your toes). For extra balance, spread your toes as you step down.

 

 Expert Tip:  To break in heels quickly, wear your leather pumps with athletic socks and blast trouble spots with a hair dryer for a few seconds. Keep the high heels on and walk a little while the leather cools.

What kind a heel expert are you?

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5 Comments

  1. Great advice! I can’t wear high heels for very long anymore. Years of wearing flip flops chasing after kids have conditioned my feet to long for comfort. I do have one pair that I love that don’t hurt my feet. They fit in the novice category.

  2. This is awesome! Before my son was born, I could literally run in heels. I loved them. I feel like I’m a beginner again as I’ve been wearing flats (other than on special occasions) for almost three years now.

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