Style Debate: Heels or Flats?

The great style debate: do you prefer wearing heels or flats? I love wearing both flats and heels; its just that stilettos and high heels hurt. Well at least for me they do with my wide feet and therefore, I am probably a bit biased towards flats. Comfort over pain. And so I really believe there is a time and place for stilettos, heels and flats alike. Pounding the pavements shopping, wandering around sightseeing, speed walking along slippery airport floors to catch your flight or pushing a grocery laden shopping trolley around the supermarket are much more conducive to flats. Even if you are fortunate enough to have perfectly shaped mannequin feet, or your stilettos are hand crafted so they fit like a soft cashmere glove, why endure the awkwardness and possible excruciating pain of wearing heels in inappropriate situations? Why wear stiletto pain like a fashion badge of honour instead of realising the senselessness of it all?  There is a time and a place for stilettos and flats alike. Flats can make you feel just as powerful and sexy too. Its all in your confidence, attitude and stance. There is no need to be afraid of flats. If your sore feet and strained body could speak I am sure they would say “ouch, ouch, ouch” all the way home and day dream of a long hot seaming Epsom salts foot spa. Even Victoria Beckham – the queen of stilettos – recently told the Telegraph newspaper that she “just cant do heels anymore.” Especially when working and travelling.

Sitting in airport lounges waiting for my plane to depart, I have witnessed countless stiletto heeled travellers trying to consciously or unconsciously emulate stylish celebrities such as Victoria Beckham. During the week there is an endless procession of professional women tip toeing along city footpaths so as not snag and ruin their delicate heels in the pavement cracks. Recently I spotted a Japanese girl in her early 20’s walking around the grounds of The Getty Centre in LA in an expensive outfit and high heels. She looked gorgeous but all I could think was “ouch, ouch, ouch!” Even my sneaker adorned feet were tired and weary from a few hours exploring the gardens and artwork, and required a 15 minute rest to recharge. Can you really absorb beautiful views or art work when your brain, body and feet are silently screaming at you to take the damn heels off! Can you really look professional and poised when doing the tip-toe pavement dance down corporate streets?

In the right situation, event, circumstance six inch heels make you look and feel sexy, and in others, the pain and awkwardness blares ever so loudly toward the curious onlooker. Airports, supermarkets, shopping malls and cobble stone streets just beg for your stilettos to be left sitting patiently waiting in your shoe closet. Bring them out for special occasions such as dinner at an exquisite restaurant, a night out with the girls, a first date, or important business meeting. When travelling by airplane, carefully pack your stilettos away in your luggage ready to be adorned on your feet far far away from the ‘airport fashion runway’. When wandering around art museums, sightseeing or shopping treat your feet to a sneaker or ballet flat day. My current favourites are the New Balance Lifestyle sneakers,  Adidas Gazelle suede sneakers, or Bloch Ballet flats for traipsing around the city shopping or visiting museums. Other days when I am really going for comfort over style, I am just as happy in my bright pinky-orangey Nike Free running trainers. Don’t be afraid to love your easy going flats. Trust me, your feet and teetering body will be forever grateful!

And if you too are blessed with wider feet, check out my 7 Shoe Shopping Tips for Wide Feet post.




new-balance-ali-peatNew Balance sneakers | Jimmy Choo Pumps | Cheap Monday dress

If you too are blessed with wider feet, read about about my 7 shoe shopping tips here.

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