Friday, August 12, 2011
4 Common Mistakes Women Make When Wearing High Heels
Avoiding these faux pas
Forget the black ice – for Fridays, Saturdays and the other days that round out the week, high heels are imperative for tying an outfit together and offering that particular je ne sais quoi. However, like any statement or wearable accessory, certain atrocities ensue that serve only to damage your feet, shoes and overall style. So to prevent such situations from arising, here's our guide to the biggest high heels faux pas and how to avoid them.
We've all stuffed our feet into size seven heels in hopes that a particular designer took some liberties and made them eight (present company included). However, regardless of promises made by hopeful salespeople, despite the fact that leather (or suede or any other material) allegedly stretches, by wearing a shoe that's too small, you won't only suffer blisters and momentarily deformed feet, you can pull muscles in your back and sprain toes – not to mention look like a baby deer learning to walk as you pull yourself from the nightclub and vow never to wear heels again. If they don't have your size, ask them to order from elsewhere – or move on to another style. Regardless of how cute they may look on, you'll only learn to weep at their presence after a fateful evening out.
Contrary to popular belief, investing in heels that are too big is not the answer to cancelling out a pair too small, and similar to the torment your feet will go through when squeezing them into a miniature size, too-large heels can cause blisters, strain (as you fight to keep them from slipping off) and make your feet seem larger than life – which is a bad thing considering heels have the tendency to elongate as is. True, a little extra room can be taken care of thanks to insoles, but if you're wearing worksocks in hopes of making them fit, it's time to move on to your natural size.
The cardinal rule of new high heels: before you wear them to an all-night event, spend time wearing them around the house so your feet can adjust. While certain designers boast footwear that's so comfortable you can avoid the ritualistic break-in, most heels require some wear before you're free of an evening defined by blisters and regret. And while you may think you're an exception to the rule, remember how most women look when walking home barefoot in moments of heel-based frustration – you're better than that.
True, chunky heels and statement wear have become embedded in the styles of the 2011 season, but while a clunky heel can balance out a mini-dress or add substance to an otherwise basic ensemble, donning a shoe too delicate will only serve to underplay what you're already wearing. Kitten heels and super-girly styles are perfect for pencil skirts and 60s themes, but when wearing high-waisted pleated trousers, a commanding shoe is needed to anchor their already-dynamic presence. While you may think a bold shoe is risky, to opt for a quiet, small heel will only serve to wrong you.
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Thursday, August 11, 2011
By Wanda Behrens-Horrell, L.C.S.W., N.C.Psy.A on September 23, 2009 - 5:58pm
There is no denying that women are fascinated with shoes. Remember Cinderella would never have been married to Prince Charming if it wasn't for those glass slippers and poor Dorothy would never leave OZ if not for those ruby red pumps. Lady Imelda Marcos owned 12,000 pairs and Carrie Bradshaw in Sex and the City had her share of shoes! Wasn't it $40,000 dollors worth of shoes?
High heels have been around for centuries and have been used for multiple purposes by both men and women. At one point in time, men stopped wearing four inch heels, wigs and makeup and women continued on with the fascination.
In a 2007, Consumer Report National Research Center polled 1,057 women and found that women on average own 19 pairs of shoes. Although, they wore only four pairs regularly while fifteen percent have over 30 pairs of shoes. Forty three percent of women said they were moderately injured by shoes and eight percent reported serious injuries from sprains or breaks. Out of curiosity, I checked my closet and found 22 pairs of shoes which half were high heels.
While visiting a friend I had taken my high heels off and had left them at the front door. Her daughter, like so many other girls slipped those ruby reds on her feet and was transformed into a beautiful woman. The shoe industry is well aware of why women love shoes and capitalize on the fact that they make women feel more beautiful, attractive, taller, thinner ... Very valuable commodities !
What does this all mean? Let's look at high heels in neuropsychological terms to find out if there could be another explanation for the relationship between women and high heels. At Wroclaw University in Poland, Dr. Pawlowski led a research study to find the formula for the perfect legs and the answer: they need to be longer than your torso, but not to long. Male and female subjects were asked to evaluate the attractiveness of different silhouettes of a man and woman. They found that a person of average height (5ft 4in tall) was rated most attractive when their inside leg measurement was 30.5 in, which is 5% longer than the average leg measurement for a person that size. In other, words you could be more attractive if you could lengthen your legs by a few inches. The study could provide scientific basis for why some people think high heels make a woman more attractive. Interestingly, it showed that very long legs were not as sexy.
And who wouldn't want to look more beautiful if it means attracting more men and therefore more potential mates!
©2009 Wanda Behrens Horrell, All Rights Reserved
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