Relief at last! Foolproof tips on picking comfortable pumps, flats, and sandals.
Tips for Finding a Comfortable Pump
- Keep the shoe in the heel and toe area. The sole must be flexible and bend at the front of the arch, but must have a rigid bottom through the arch.
- Choose a pump with a high heel that is directly below the center of the heel. If you are too far ahead or behind the shoe, you will have balance problems.
- Look for false fronts. “A pointy shoe with an area that is much longer than the toes has a fake forehead. It prevents the toes from being pinched,” says Suzanne Levine, a podiatrist surgeon from New York City.
- Make sure the tip area is wide enough across the tip.
- Note that a wedge shoe distributes its weight more evenly and offers support on the whole foot. Note, however, that the limited flexibility of a wedge increases the risk of rolling the ankle to one side.
- Try cushioning a shoe by pressing a finger on the ball area. It should have some elasticity or a slightly padded feel.
- Avoid synthetics. Wear shoes with a leather, suede or fabric upper. These materials breathe, reducing the possibility of blistering.
Tips for Finding a Comfortable Flat
- Look for a sturdy construction. “Try to push the area around the heel,” says Meghan Cleary, author of The Perfect Fit: What Your Shoes Say About You (Chronicle Books, $ 13, amazon.com). “If the heel collapses enough to touch the insole, the shoe is not supportive.”
- Hold each end of a shoe and try to rotate it. If the shoe folds too much, it will not be supportive.
- Look for apartments with a small heel if you have high arches. Heels relieve pain in the feet.
- Buy shoes with leather or rubber sole for optimal shock absorption.
- Wear only shoes with leather or suede soles. Breathable and flexible, they help prevent chafing and blistering and conform to the feet.
- Look for rounded tips. They follow the shape of the foot and allow the toes to move.
- Avoid slipping and cutting your heels by finding a shoe with a back that fits perfectly and holds your foot firmly.
Tips for Finding a Blister-Proof Sandal
- Avoid wobbly shoes. Examine the quality of a shoe by looking at how it sits on a table. A well-built shoe will be balanced and stable when standing alone.
- Look for sleeping heels that have a touch of wide heel (base), which allows better shock absorption. It will also be more stable on your feet.
- “Stay away from backless shoes like flip flops and slides because they cause toe pain,” says Suzanne Levine. Instead, look for a sandal with straps that hit just below the ankle (without surrounding it). This will help stabilize the foot and hold it firmly.
- Wear only sandals with leather or suede straps to avoid chafing.
- Make sure the toe area is large enough for the widest part of the foot.
- Look for wedge shoes that give the illusion of a higher heel without feeling it.
- Examine the inside of the straps for seams and other construction details that can dig into your feet.