What Heels Do to Your Feet & How to Wear Them Properly


The wearing of high heels must be treated like an athletic activity that requires “before” and “after” care of the body!

There’s no getting around the fact we’re asking something unnatural and potentially damaging of our bodies for the sake of aesthetics.

I have no judgements about this and quite frankly, I have no issues with heels, no matter how high–provided that you care for your feet properly!

These are the “DOs” I have learned over the years, in helping women in my life master their heels without risking bunions, corns, shortened Achilles tendons, in-grown toenails, and other issues. They also helped me while seriously engaged in Latin and Ballroom dance lessons.



WALK HEEL to TOE. If you cannot perform a “foot flex” (P\point your foot like a gymnast, then lift it back up until it is “flat” as if you were standing on it barefoot) in your heels they are too high for you! (And/or the pitch of the shoe is too great for your height.)

An even better test: Standing in your heels, if you cannot lift yourself up on your toes about an inch–they are too high for you or the pitch meets the yoke of the shoe in a way that does not work for your feet. Pass on those shoes, for the sake of wellness.


Wear the right heel size, height, shape, and width for your weight–at the right pitch for your height.

I cannot stress this enough: There is a direct relation to stress on your knees, heel height, and your weight. In short: There is no such thing as “sit and look cute shoes.”

You can either wear them without laming yourself or you cannot.

You may also need to go up a half-size for higher heights. Different companies cut shoes differently AND different styles requires different sizes for your feet! Some times I go up a full size, because the cut of the shoe may strangle my toes–I add heel grips and insole cushions and then go about my merry way! So please:



Have strong ankles.

Check out YouTube for exercises. Strong ankles resist sprains!! Ladies who regularly wear platform pumps, this is especially relevant!


Wear QUALITY leather shoes.

And then have them stretched, add cushioning soles, heel grips, and hell grips where they are needed. Fully leather shoes are best, but can be pricey. The next best thing? Wear shoes with leather-uppers!

Leather uppers can be found at price points from $30 to $3,000. Your feet change sizes slightly through out the day–your shoes must be able to accommodate this and still fit your feet perfectly.

Heels even more so.

PRO TIP: Try on and buy shoes after 2 p.m. Most of our feet have swelled by then.


Massage and realign the bones of your feet and ankles after wearing very high (3-4″ and up) heels.

This is KEY to keeping future problems at bay. You must put the bones of your feet back into proper alignment to avoid bunions. Stretch your ankles and Achilles tendons to reduce shortening of the latter (it’s extremely painful) and reduce injury in the former. Stretch and rolls toes to maintain alignment and flexibility.

PRO TIP: Alternating with flats is the easiest way to accomplish this (or be dedicated to vanity, by massaging your feet properly EVERYDAY that you wear super high heels).


Regularly soak sore feet with Epson salts and/or green tea (Read my tutorial here).

When your feet complain–LISTEN. Please, beloved readers, I implore you to not “wait a day or two” or “deal with it”. These are your (precious) feet.

You’re only given two, after all.