Heels are a wonderful way to achieve an elegant ladylike look. They can however be challenging to wear if one does not have adequate experience or know how. Please take a look at these tips to help achieve a graceful and hopefully pain free stride.
Walk heel to toe.
Put your heel down first and then your toe, as you would when walking in flats. This looks more natural than putting your whole foot down flat at once and will also help you maintain your balance.
Take smaller slower steps.
The higher the heel the shorter your stride will be so although it may feel different than your usual pace it will look more natural if you take smaller slower steps. Don’t fret that you’re walking too slowly. In fact by slowing down you can create a regal impression. A lady shouldn’t looked rushed, but should walk at a steady confident pace.
Practice walking on various surfaces.
Carpet, hardwood, marble, grass; each surface can have a completely different effect on heels so it’s wise to test various surfaces out beforehand. If walking on grass try to keep most of your weight towards the ball of your foot to keep the heels from sinking into the soil and becoming stuck or damaged. If you intend on spending the majority of the time outside, such as a garden party, I would recommend thicker heels to provide better support. Stilettos will have you leaning forward all day, not comfortable in the least.
When confronted with stairs you’ll want to make use of the hand railing if available. Hold it firmly but lightly. If there is no railing just be sure to keep focused on each step while still keeping your posture upright. When making your way up stairs it’s easier to put most of your weight on the ball of your foot, giving the rest of your foot a little rest. When going down stairs it’s best to put the foot flat down on each step. This makes for better balance and less chance of tripping.
Buy the correct pair.
When shopping for heels be sure to try them on as each brand’s size and fit can vary. Not all feet are created equal. Some have greater arches or more or less width. So what may be comfortable on your friend may be exceedingly painful on you.
Also consider the height. We’ve all been lured by the 5″ heel thinking it will make us madam glamazon until we get home and realize we can’t walk more than 3 feet. Those beautiful Manolo’s… forever banished to the back of the closet. Remember if they’re not comfortable in store then chances are they never will be, so best to move along.
If you love the look of heels but are having a hard time mastering them there are a couple options that can be a little less challenging than your typical 4″ stilettos. Platforms will give you height with less of an arch making you feel like you’re wearing a lower heel. Ankle boots or any heeled boots for that matter tend to be much easier to walk in than pumps or sandals as they provide extra support to the ankles. So if you’re still having a hard time these options may be something to consider.
Get some support.
Sometimes even the best shoes will end up pinching, slipping and eventually kill you after a prolonged period. Grab some cushions or insoles to add some extra comfort and support. They’re useful if a shoes is a tad too big, an instep too steep, or there’s rubbing at the heels or toes. You don’t have to use them right away but carrying them in your purse is always and I mean always a good idea.
*Bonus: For a supermodel stride walk one fit directly in front of the other as if you’re walking on a straight line. This will cause your hips to sway giving you that feminine sashay.
HOMEWORK: Get out a pair of heels and get to work. Practice walking on every surface you can find. Just be gentle on any delicate flooring such as hard wood. Stilettos can leave terrible markings.