Today I am in mourning. For yesterday, my feet died a horrifically painful death at the hands of a pair of black suede wedges. Poor little things just didn't stand a chance. Thanks to a stricter uniform policy at work, in order to tie in with the swanky new suit department, not only did I have to shell out on a new outfit, I had to get the shoes to match. And pumps didn't make the cut this season.
These are the beasts in question. They may look innocent, nice even. That's what I thought when I first tried them on. In comparison to six inch stiletto heels they seemed the lesser of two evils. But an hour in to my shift and I was struggling. Having to constantly concentrate on not falling over was quite distracting. As someone who has never sought the services of heels on nights out, I am not an practised walker. Productivity levels were dramatically decreased. Whereas I used to scoot around the shop floor, getting tasks done quick time, now every movement is a careful one. Forget answering the telephone, if I'm on the other side of the shop floor it takes a good minute to get anywhere near it. "Can you nip out to the stockroom?" No, no I cannot 'nip' any more. I can stumble along at a snail's pace, juttering along like Bambi on ice. All the while I'll be silently weeping, wondering if my feet are leaving bloody trails behind them.
When heels first came about in Ancient Greece, they reflected the social status of the wearer. In Ancient Rome their reputation had dropped, as heels identified prostitutes of the time, which were legal. In the Middle Ages women AND men wore heels. The same was true during 17th and 18th Century France, where the nobility and members of the court would totter around on an original version of clogs. But equality never lasts long does it. While Cowboy boots have a chunky heel, you won't spot many guys sporting a pair in your local shopping centre. Tom Cruise may try and get away with a sneaky hidden heel but not many men are
Since the Second World War heels have gone in and out of fashion, with the 90's seeing a particular disdain for them. But with celebrity culture saturating the fashion conciousness this millennium, anything they do or wear becomes instant inspiration for millions. And seeing as many of these stars are spotted donning Louboutins, women everywhere grin through the tears as they stumble around the office in high-street knock offs. What the magazines neglect to tell its humble readers is that while the celebs may be pictured strutting round the shops in platforms, there is a chauffeur parked outside waiting to whisk them away to their next important appointment. These women may live in heels, but their lives comprise of very little walking.
After some research, and some very gruesome pictures, here is a list of all of the negative side effects of wearing heels:
- Foot pain (For sure)
- Increased likelihood of sprains and fractures.
- They make calves look more rigid and sinewy.
- Foot deformities, including hammertoes and bunions (Eww)
- They can cause an unsteady gait (Definitely going to fall over)
- They can shorten the wearer's stride.
- They can render the wearer unable to run (What if there's an emergency?!)
- Degenerative changes in the knee joint.
- Foot and tendon problems as listed below.
As opposed to these reasons for wearing heels
- They make the wearer appear taller (OK, true)
- They make the legs appear longer.
- They make the foot appear smaller.
According to my calculations, the cons outweigh the pros here.
As I limped around the store last night, the unjustness was hard to ignore. My male colleagues were having no movement issues, because they were all in flat shoes. Smart shoes, but FLAT ones. There they were, skipping around with smiles on their faces, not a care in the world. There I was, using the till point for support as I tried desperately not to sink to the floor and cry. There's no equality in this work place. Fill all of the guys' shoes are filled with broken glass prior to their shifts and then I won't be as bitter.
People tell me I'll get used to it. I don't believe them. I'm just going to have to accept that my time with my tootsies has come to an end. They've had a hard life anyway. It's probably for the best. At least now the tangy scent of blood will be the only smell coming from them...