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High heels and your feet: Our top tips!

High heels are one of the most common types of footwear out there, but wearing high heels the wrong way can result in soreness, pain and even damage to your feet. If you want to make sure that your heels aren’t hurting your feet in the short or long term, make sure you consider these top tips that will help keep your heels from hurting you.

Tip #1: Don’t wear high heels too long

Whenever possible, make sure that you aren’t wearing high heels for more than 3 to 8 hours at a time, with 8 hours being the absolutely maximum consecutive period you should wear them. If you must wear them for longer–such as all day at work–then choose heels with a shorter heel and a wider style, as these will not be as harsh on your feet.

Tip #2: Make sure there is a half inch of space in the toe

Don’t wear high heels that pinch your toes! Your heels should have about half an inch of space in the toe, as this will give your feet enough room in the shoe to avoid unnecessary friction. This may be difficult with high heels that have a thin design, but try your best not to wear narrow high heels for too long.

Tip #3: Avoid heel heights over 5cm whenever possible 

The highest your heel should be is about 5 cm; any higher than this and you increase the chances of falling while wearing the shoe, while also increasing the amount of pressure the shoe has on your feet. Whenever possible, avoid wearing shoes with heels higher than 5 cm; or if you must wear them, keep them on for a limited time and exercise caution while walking.

Tip #4: Take shorter strides when wearing heels

Wearing heels increases your chance for tripping and stumbling, but you can reduce this risk by taking smaller, shorter strides when you walk. A shorter and smaller step will make it easier for you to control your steps and reduce the chances of getting the heel caught on the ground or otherwise causing the shoe to buckle.

Tip #5: Bring flats or slip shoes in case your feet hurt too much

If you plan on wearing new heels for the first time or you think the heels might get uncomfortable, make sure you bring along a pair of flats or slip shoes that you can change into when it gets to be too much. It’s better to deal with the brief awkwardness of stashing your heels in your work desk or tossing them into your backseat in the middle of an event than to have to manage the pain and frustrating that comes with wearing painful shoes for too long.

Remember, wearing high heels is perfectly fine, as long as you practice common sense tips to protect your feet from getting hurt while wearing them. 

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