High heels and too high heels

Last Updated on January 30, 2013

Last weekend an amusing retweet appeared on my Twitter timeline. It said that heels should be either very high or completely flat, implying there's no middle ground. High heels are to be taken seriously!

Zara pumps

I used to be very adamant about this philosophy too. For me, the "true" high heel began at 10 centimeters (3,9 inches). It was also because the higher the heel, the better your legs will look. I suppose I was/am lucky to never get leg or foot pain wearing high heels. However, sometimes hours after I've already come home and put the shoes in their box, my back would start to hurt.

I didn't give this problem much thought until very recently. As soon as I acknowledged it, though, I decided that my spring and summer are going to be mostly about flat and not-so-high-heeled footwear (apart from the high-heeled shoes I already own that aren't complicated to wear).

The pumps above - bought on sale at Zara with my new shoe philosophy in mind - have a heel of astounding 6 centimeters (2,4 inches). I expect to get a ton of use out of them. The best thing is that they don't scream "I'm a cop-out!" at all. They look lovely and thanks to them I learned that pumps are called court shoes in British English. Now that's fancy.

P.S. Just so you know how serious I am about restraining myself from buying high-heeled shoes: I skipped on these boots today. Heartbreak if there ever was one, but you gotta do what you gotta do.

24 thoughts on “High heels and too high heels”

    • Danas su ih prvi put imali u mom broju (inače su na sniženju), izgleda neko rezervisao, a nije došao po njih. Sigurna sam da ih sutra više neće biti.

  1. I also belong to the school of thought that believes that heels should be really high (10cm & up) or completely flat for several reasons. One of them you've already mentioned - legs look way better in properly high heels. +I've somehow always felt that girls resort to wearing kitten or mid-heels simply because they cannot walk in high ones. Another reason for my high-or-flat attitude is that I'm quite short & petite and I've come to fully embrace it (I feel it makes me special in a way). Wearing flats (particularly a pair of pretty ballerinas) somehow accentuates the cuteness that comes with being petite, while a kitten heel would make me boringly average.

    Having said all that, I do believe your new philosophy makes a lot of sense, especially health-wise and the sensible Zara heels do look nice (though they don't posses the wow factor that the other pair does). I will, however, still stick to flats most of the time, with the occasional high heel thrown in.

    • I'm still feeling sort of blah about having to let the other pair go. But I must say they're a bit weird to walk in anyway and it's not a comfort issue (it's as if the shoe isn't the best technically). So maybe I'll get over it. :P

  2. I used to be the same too. Sky high or not at all. I discovered the middle ground this summer in a pair of faux-snakeskin Nine West pumps which I could wear for hours and hours, walk around in and barely feel any pain. It's almost magical to be able to wear a heel and still be able to do all the things you can do in flats.

    • "It's almost magical to be able to wear a heel and still be able to do all the things you can do in flats"

      Yes! I kept buying epic 4"+ heels, only to realize: I never wore them because they made me taller than I felt comfortable with on a regular day (about 5'11), and that they weren't comfortable enough for my daily activities. I've started stocking up on those between 2.5" and 3.5" and wear them more regularly, they're comfortable... they may not be as striking as uber heels, but they fit me & my life much better!

  3. Though I really love looking at "properly" high heels, I stick to the mid-height ones for wearing, at the rare occasions when I am not wearing flats.

    Since I am quite tall (to be read as: since I consider myself quite tall, in comparison to my environment, at 175 cm), I feel happy at the way mid-heels will make me look even taller and my legs longer, even though they will be only, say, 5 to 7 cm high. (like these fabulous puppies)

    • You ARE tall! My height is 172 cm, but I think the "tallness" really begins at 175.

      Re: the pumps you linked. I used to have a very similar pair when I was in high school. Wore it every single day. If I remember correctly, the heel was 6 cm ... which means it made me tall. :D

  4. Yeah, you WERE tall :-) and still are - maybe there are heights where women needn't wear really high heels to look good? I don't know... But I think Posh Spice is not tall enough and should wear high heels, except when playing with her sons.

    • Hahahaha, how did you bring up Posh Spice just now? :D I still remember that peculiar instance when she was photographed doing sports in high-heeled athletic shoes (I think wedges) and the world frowned upon it.

      I thought it was cool, totally in her style ... can't imagine her in flat shoes either.

  5. I thought of her because she says in her book women should wear ... it was "that extra inch", wasn't it?

    Well, I think it is certainly true she should, also because we've gotten so used to her wearing all those ... eye candies :-)

    And I agree with you, it is okay that she sticks to her image, the only time I did frown upon her was seeing her on the playground with her sons and she was wearing high heels. I thought a really cool woman would sometimes just let her kids influence her clothes/shoes.

    But I do seriously adore her collections (what I've seen of them), so I have lost all the "well, yeah, Posh Spice" resentments I MAY have had in the process.

  6. Hello Eva :)
    This is the first time I'm visiting your blog and I liked this a lot, girl. The content is very proper and it gets to people, I mean, you 'talk' with your bloggers instead of posting and posting random subjects. - Found that quite interesting, as I've been visiting fashion blogs quite often recently and this one really caught me.

    I loved some of your popular posts, such as the one about 'self promotion' and those tips to reach people as bloggers we all are. Tips were important and fine, maybe very useful for any sort of blog, so I thank you for sharing it.

    About this post: I found it very interesting! I love high-heeled shoes (but not actually wearing them! xD), and those you tweeted of Zara were great!
    Btw, I fell in love with this animated-gif grafic, and I'm reblogging it, if you don't mind - I'll give you the credits!

    I'm sorry for any English mistake, but I'm from Portugal (and I haven't definitely taken the «Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English exam with an A»!).

    Cheers and keep on doing this good job ;)

    • Dear Ânia, I've been feeling a bit down yesterday and today, but reading your lovely comment instantly made it all go away. Thank you so much! I'm constantly thinking about how I could make my blog even better, so when someone recognizes it, it means so much to me. I'm also so glad you found those posts useful.

      The McQueen shoes gif is from Tumblr and I found it uncredited (as is often the case on that site), so I suppose you can use it wherever you'd like (without crediting me).

      Hope to see you again on Dressful soon! :)

      • Oh, I'm pretty glad I amused you and made you feel a bit more comfortable :) Everything will be okay, for sure!

        Well, about the animated gif: i've already blogged it and still put the credits to you, I haven't said you have created it, but, as I took it from here, I've just put the link and mentioned your blog :) as it doesn't have any credits on it, I can't do anything else than it , maybe the person who has created it doesn't mind...

        Cheers * :)

  7. I had the same philosophy and I wore >10cm heels all day every day since I was 14 until I was 32. For the first 15 years I never experienced any foot pain even when I did crazy things like actually climbing on the top of Hanging Rock (a famous rock formation in Australia) in what can only be described as fetish platform leather boots and such madness. But then I started getting occasional severe muscle spasm in my back but of course it still weren't the heels. When I turned 32 and went on a sabbatical, I decided to chill out at home for a few months, I wasn't going out except to run errands and I wanted to walk around in slippers and sneakers. Long story short, I ended up with such a severe tendonitis first in left heel then in the right. It appears that over the years, my tendons actually shortened from wearing the heels and simple walking flat stretched them so painfully that I had to shout ouch! every time I took a step. I really became crippled with it and it took 12 months to settle down. Now I never wear heels for more that 2-3 hours at a time and I take days off because I refuse to go through it again. Heels are not really our friend, not in the long run, I've decided. Regardless what they do for the appearance of a leg :(

    • Wow, I was impressed while reading your story... and i'm sorry for you. What impressed me the most is that you've started really young wearing way too high heels...I'm 16 now, and I still don't feel that comfortable wearing high heels!
      Are you okay, nowadays?


    • "Heels are not really our friend, not in the long run, I've decided."

      Damn, Anne, this is the most truthful thing anyone has ever said about heels. :D

      I always hear those stories about women damaging their feet because of wearing (too) high heels (too) often and it's horrifying, just the thought of having to have a foot surgery makes me cringe. I'm so glad you were able to get out without consequences.

      My mom commented the other day that I started getting back pains very early for my age. >_> In her youth she was pretty much the same as you, always wearing heels and her back only started to hurt in her mid-30s. Your backbones must have supernatural powers.

      P.S. What a crazy climbing story (although somehow I'm not really surprised :D)

  8. I don't like too high heels, looks like you're about to trip. Most women say they are (and look indeed) much more comfortable in equally high wedges so I'd say, as a boy go for it, they are practical, classy and glamorous, ans suits every leg type especially those with thick ankles (example: http://img.auctiva.com/imgdata/8/1/8/1/5/6/webimg/359509754_o.jpg?nc=573) are very flattered by the contrast with the wedge.
    I like medium and kitten heels in every girl but these heels suits the tall women much more than a very high heel, which may look excessive. Mind it, tall women you'll remain comfortable, won't look excessive or giraffe like but you won't make without the glamourous look of the heels.


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