Heels: You Don’t Gotta Fake It to Fit In!

Payless Shoes Christian Siriano

Photo by Arun Nevader/WireImage

The act of wearing a heel should always be a sophisticated scene. No matter what the character looks like wearing them or the style of the heel, there should always be an effortless attempt in walking in front of a crowd. Because ultimately, when you wear a heel, you really are on stage. And either the audience can nod in approval or laugh at your expense. When it comes to fashion, you never want to make a mockery of the piece you’re wearing or yourself.

I started off wearing heels religiously once I started working at Nordstrom nearly 12 years ago (Lord, time flies). From standing for hours greeting customers into the department to walking around the store to different departments for my personal clients, I quickly got the hang of it. But this was due to paying respect to it, and studying thy lovely, chic “Nordy” girls in action. I studied the way they glided with clothes in hand to the fitting rooms, made their way up and down corridors like it was nothing, giving life to the heel in the most respectable way—wearing it with ease and deliberate, yet subconscious, sophistication. Not soon thereafter, I began feeling like one of these chic girls. And like them, I kept a smile on my face and handled my heels with care.

Now, almost 32 years old, wearing heels to work or out for fun in the evening is a natural move. I rarely, if ever, think about the fact that wearing such a shoe is a balancing act. I just enjoy the tightness in my calves and booty! Wearing heels not only elongates the body, but in my opinion, it epitomizes the ultimate sense of femininity and sex appeal.

But only when worn in a sophisticated manner. And only when worn by someone who really enjoys wearing heels.

I’ve witnessed some unshakable images of women and young teenage girls wobbling around in heels like they are 5 years old, wearing mommy’s shoes, playing dress-up. The question I never ask out loud, but always want to, is: “If you can’t wear them appropriately, why wear them at all?” When I saw a teenager unable to walk through the frozen food section at Trader Joe’s without holding on to her mom’s cart for stability (a whole other issue there), I shivered. When I witnessed a friend walk into a club literally slipping and sliding, I was embarrassed for her. And, last but not least, when I saw a co-worker take very slow, calculated, mini-steps to the bathroom in 4-inch heels, I was confused. At least party girls usually get it right, keeping flip-flops in their handbags or cars, because they predict that at the end of the night they will be too intoxicated to walk in heels or their feet are too swollen to continue on for the night. Either way, those are smart cookies, if you ask me. And from time to time, I am proudly (yet, slightly ashamed to be) one of those chicks.

My only advice to those who are dying to wear a sky-high heel like the Kardashians in their Louboutin pumps, but aren’t willing to really learn and study the art of wearing heels: Try another trend! There are wedges, adorable peep-toe flats, and sexy sandals that range in price in nearly every store! Because while I am concerned for the overall safety of your ankles and self-confidence, I am . . . ummm . . . a little more concerned about the heel. Shoes have feelings, too, so please don’t fake it to fit in. If you do, I may be there to call you out on it.

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