Tips for Walking in High Heels

Tips Walking in High Heels

The comfortable and more casual flat may have become the staple in most modern closets, for both casual and formal wear I must add, but I do believe that a girl will always need a good pair of high heels.

In my overview of Top Dress Shoes for Women, I recommend different types of both flat and heel options for formal events - and this is always great to have. But I think it’s about time to give a few pointers for those who would like to opt for a great pair of high heel shoes, but might not feel confident or comfortable enough to walk in them.

First-off, let’s understand why it might be challenging for some of us to get into the hang of walking comfortably in high heels. Simply put, the problem is that they throw us off balance. While in heels, our bodies are pushed forward causing our balance to change. Because of that, and the pressure on our feet, our walk changes, and muscles that were not previously used while walking in flats are now strained. This can cause the imbalance and wobbliness to occur.

One might think, why go through the trouble and pain? No one wants to look great in a pair of heels but end up tottering and stumbling all over the place!
But it is worth it – once you get yourself into the right ones.

The truth is, a good heel doesn’t have to be a 7-inch stiletto, and although sky-high heels are a painful affair and limit the time and places you can be in them, picking the right high heel option for you will make a world of a difference.

black leather shoe


So, what are the ‘safer’ heel options?
I always recommend one of the below types of heels. They give the benefits of a high heel shoe while remaining within reason of comfort.

These are:

  1. The Mid-Height Block Heel 
    A mid-height heel is a good option to give a little height, and if it’s a block heel version then even better. This becomes a very easy option for walking, dancing and day-to-night versatility. I love recommending the Rana Cheikha best-selling Dinieh 5cm block heel, or the summer inspired Noura 5cm version (directly below).
    white leather shoe
  2. The Chunky Heel
    Similar to the block heel, the chunky heel is a great option for adding more height while maintaining stability in comparison to the stiletto or cigarette heels.
    red leather shoe
  3. The Platform Heel
    These are great because you get the heel height, but the front platform helps to decrease the arch in your foot. This makes the shoes more comfortable to wear.
  4. The Wedge Heel
    Like the platform heel, the wedge is a great option because the full wedge gives you the height while allowing your foot to remain in natural form (without the arch).
  5. The Kitten Heel
    A small heel gives that little extra something special of wearing a high heel without going all out. These are great for day-time outings, long nights out or for someone who is looking to start getting used to wearing heels gradually.

I will also add that wearing a heeled shoe (in the option that is suitable for you) does come with benefits. I will share some next as I am sure these will make the tips to improve your walking in high heels lot more convincing to try and achieve!

Benefits of wearing heels:

  1. They will work your legs muscles and strengthen ankle and muscle joints.
  2. Wearing heels generally improves posture.
  3. Opting for a heeled shoe (even a low one) gives the impression of longer and slimmer legs.

So now that you’re ready for heels, it’s time to get comfortable walking in them! Here are few tips for walking in high heels that will get you going (in height) in no time:

  1. Start low and chunky
    Start with a shorter heel and work your way up, this will help you build confidence and get used to the balance. Simultaneously, start with a chunkier heel and work your way to a slimmer one (if that’s what you would prefer to wear), thicker heels are always easier to walk in. You can opt for a platform or wedge as they are the safer options. A higher platform or wedge is probably much easier to walk in than a thin low heel.
  1. Make sure the shoe fits well
    Even if you are buying from a brand that you’re used to, it might be that you need different size elevating from a flat to a heeled shoe. Pointy high-heel shoes also tend to run slightly smaller.
  1. Moisturize!
    Use a small amount of petroleum jelly (like Vaseline) to moisturize the front area of your foot, primarily the outside areas of your big and small toes and the ball of your foot, before wearing closed high heels. This will give your toes some space to wiggle around and not feel so squashed in there!

  2. Break them in
    Like any pair of shoes, it is important to always break in your high heels. If you’ve bought a special pair and saving them for the day of the occasion, odds are you won’t be comfortable in them for too long. It’s a better idea to break them in, and you can even do this around the house to make sure they stay in tip-top condition.
    When breaking them in, it is important to keep the heel area snug to make sure the shoe wont slip out while you walk. The toe area is usually where a little stretch can help with the comfort level. You can do this by wearing socks (fold them over your toes to double them in the front while keeping your ankle free), and then wear them around the house for an hour or two a few times to give that extra stretch. 
    Break in High Heels Wear Socks
  1. Roughen up the soles
    New shoes are always slippery, and high heels are no exception! Make sure you’re not slipping all over the place (which can be dangerous!) by roughing up the soles a little. You can do this using sandpaper or simply lightly scratching them with a pair of scissors.
    Scratch Shoe Soles Avoid Slipping Heels

  2. Think of your posture
    A great benefit of wearing heels is the improvement of posture. It is important to hold your head up to the ceiling and stack it in line with your spine. Make sure your shoulders are not slouching, but instead held back. You will stand straighter and taller.

  3. Take smaller steps
    Until you get used to your normal stride, it is a good idea to take smaller steps to help maintain balance and stability.

  4. Practice!
    There’s no shame in practicing your walk around the house. It will give you the right feel for balance and the confidence before heading out in your high heels. It’s a good idea to start by practicing on carpet instead of hardwood floors.
    Practice Walking High Heels
  5. Walk heel, then toe
    Unlike when in flats, your entire foot shouldn’t hit the ground at the same time when walking in heels. Your heel should hit the ground first, then roll forward to your toe. This is excluding times you may be going up stairs. In that case, always place the front part of your foot on the step, and never your heel.
    While walking, also make sure you don’t lock your knees. Keep them slightly bent, especially when landing, to protect your back from impact. 
    How to Walk in High Heels Heel then Toe

So now we’ve seen that there is no reason you can’t enjoy yourself in a good pair of high heels! Just make sure you’ve picked the right pair that feels comfortable for you, follow the tips above and voila! you’re ready to get on your way!

Signing-off: Rana Cheikha for The Shoe Advisor 


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