The High Heel: An Anatomy Lesson

Pop quiz: What makes one high heel better than another?

You have ten minutes to send me your answer. (I expect eloquence.) Now, go.

Fine, kidding. Here’s everything you need to know about the high heel before you make your next big purchase. Have at it.

Fitting Room Heels

The Sole: The best-quality heels have soles that are stitched on, not glued. Look for even stitching. Feel free to pull at it a little to make sure it’s in place. If you have to have that glued-on sole, do a space check first. You should only hold on to it if there’s zero space around the edges. Wouldn’t want that sole to peel right off.

The Insole: Top-brand shoes are lined with leather (not synthetic) insoles, which absorb moisture and allow your foot to breathe. Bonus points for an insole that covers more than just the shoe’s bottom. The best cover the interior sides, too.

The Heel: High heels can be comfortable. And we’re not just talking wedges. Contrary to popular belief, it’s the position of the heel – not the thickness – that’s essential. Look for styles where the heel is right under the heel bone, not all the way at the back of the foot, to keep you pain-free and balanced.

The Toe Box: If you’re looking for comfort, go for a deep rounded or almond-shaped toe box. A small amount of additional space can be the difference between shoes you can wear for an hour – and shoes that actually make it to 5PM.

By Joanna Berliner, Editor

What do you think makes one high heel better than another? Tweet us at @ruelala and let us know.

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September 9, 2013