"You know the stilettos". Ouch!
'Tis the season to go into your shoe closet and pick out the hottest pair of party shoes your feet will tolerate and the question you probably ask yourself is, "How long can I wear them before I have to kick them off and switch to flats or go barefoot?" You know the ones, platform pumps, boots and sandals, stilettos and peep hole wedge sandals from designers such as Christian Louboutin, Jimmy Choo, Manolo Blahnik, Miu Miu, and Yves Saint Laurent. Depending on how much bubbly you have consumed during the evening, your pain tolerance and luck who knows how long they could last.
As we all know, there is a price to pay.
So, here are some toe and foot tips to prepare your feet for the holiday season and lower the price!
Never try and stuff your feet in a pair of shoes that does not fit just because they go with your outfit. That is a recipe for foot disaster. Bring a pair of ballet type flats with you just in case your feet start talking. Check the lining of your shoes to make sure there is no source of irritation to the top of the toes, sides, and back of the foot.
High fashion shoes can cause low back pain, blisters on the tops of toes, ingrown toe nails, arch cramps, tendon problems and ball of the foot pain. Blisters are formed because of friction or constant rubbing of your toes that occur in the toe box. When you wear shoes that are a bit too small, they can cause toe jamming where the tips of your toes will abut up against the end and top of the toe box and buckle the toes. This can lead to blister formation on the top and tip of the toes, pain, swelling and redness on the pads of your toes. Pumps with a narrow or shallow toe box can also irritate toenails that are too thick causing toe pain or increased pressure along the sides of the great toe nails eventually causing an ingrown toe nail to develop.
If the slope of the pump or wedge is to steep it will throw your body forward. This can create balance and low back problems when walking or standing. Problems can also develop in the arch, on the ball of the foot or on top of the foot where the toes bend. Shoes that narrow towards the toes can place pressure on an already existing bunion deformity. Wearing pumps over a prolonged period of time can cause the Achilles tendon to shorten. Women who experience this are not as comfortable wearing flats as they are wearing pumps.
Foot and Shoe Solutions
Band-Aids are one way to protect your toes in pumps from blisters or other pressure points. They are great in emergency situations to reduce skin irritation and friction. There are also many over the counter products you can purchase on line or at a pharmacy to protect your feet. Metatarsal pads can be placed on the ball of the foot to relieve pressure, silicone toe sleeves can wrap around toes and protect them or soft foam insoles can be placed in your shoes to cushion the entire foot. Or my own insoles, Instant Arches, is another product available online to make pumps more comfortable. They will eliminate arch cramping, foot slippage and ball of the foot pain in pumps, wedges and boots.
In order to enjoy the holidays, wear shoes that fit, protect your feet against blistering, cramping and toenail problems. Then, "Dance Happily Ever After"!