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How to Make High Heels Comfortable with … Silicon Gel Pads

A girl’s best friend is a silicon gel pad, not the Silicon breast implant , worthy of Playboy Covergirls,thank you very much, but a rather widely available form of Silicon… We reveal how to make high heels comfortable with Silicon Gel pads.

Diamonds may be a girl’s best friends, but for most of us, gorgeous sky-high heels can transform us instantly from duck to swan, and we can have a full closet of them, the only downside is that we weren’t built to stand on a pair of pins 4 to 8 hours straight. No matter how many warnings and articles are written about the consequences of wearing high heels , we are still falling prey to the dream of endless slender legs and a perky bottom. In a recent survey that was conducted on SUF, we asked our readers how long it took for them to start feeling pain from wearing high heels : over 40% of you said that you would start experiencing pain after 2 hours of wearing heels. Wow! Why hasn’t anyone thought of building more comfortable shoes, right?

Fluoresecent platform peep-toes from Casadei , Christian Louboutin pink slingbacks


If we were to follow doctors’ orders we would all be striding through life in ugly granny shoes and hideous orthopedic monstrosities, but then life would be extremely miserable and dull for most style-conscious women. Luckily I have discovered some tips over the years that have helped make the most uncomfortable and highest shoes, tolerable for at least 4 hours, and there was none other than my own best friend Dr. Scholl to contribute to that major life improvement.

Here are the 8 commandments to wearing high heels comfortably:

1-      Do not wear high heels only or flats only for an entire day, make sure you exercise different calf muscles with a variety of heels. If you wear ballerina flats every day, chances are you will notice your calves becoming thicker after a few months and worse, you will find it impossible to balance yourself on a pair of pins.
2-      Always add a rubber sole protector on the ball of foot area,  (take your shoes when they’re brand-new to your cobbler) to make sure you have a better grip when walking and to minimize the chance of injuring yourself from falls or twists of the foot.


Rubber sole protectors come in a variety of colours, including Louboutin red. Choose the closet shade to your shoe to make it look seemless, these sole protector won’t show when you’re walking or standing


3-      Walking in ultra-thick platforms may actually be more hazardous to some than wearing thin-soled stilettos, you need to balance yourself better on these blocks, so always make sure that you are still able to manage walking in them, without feeling like you are carrying a brick on each foot.


An example of a correct size fit, Gladiator-style golden high heels from Charles David
4-      There is a misconception that wearing larger sized designer shoes may actually be more comfortable, this is not the case with high heels, as your foot needs to follow the arch of the shoe as closely as possible. If a stiletto is too big, your foot will only slide forward , giving your heel very little space to actually fully rest on the back of the shoe. In the case of high heels sandals, it may be even worth wearing half a size down.
Mirror-effect Gold Miu Miu ankle strap sandals
5-      Do not subject yourself to tight toe straps or toe boxes: make sure you take them to a cobbler to stretch them for you or use the below DIY method at home. How to stretch a shoe with a foam shoe holder, a shoe tree or a rubbery toy


a.       Step 1: with a cotton wool dipped in alcohol, rub the back of your tight straps to helps loosen the leather


b.      Step 2: with both hands grabbing each side of the strap, pull in order to stretch it.


c.       Step 3: invest in a good shoe shape holder made of hard foam that you can buy from any good shoe store. I bought mine years ago from Russell & Bromley in London and it has helped me stretch over a number of days the tightest strappy shoes you can imagine. Alternatively, steal a men’s shoe tree or rubbery toy or ball small enough to fit snuggly into the shoe. To have a good permanent stretch, place these shape holders for 4 days at least and place them back every time you take off your shoes.


Strappy Suede platform sandals by Miu Miu, Ball of foot cushion is tinted for better visibility

6-      Always have packs of Dr.Scholl Party Feet insoles handy:

a.       Use them for all of your high heels even if you feel comfortable at first. 2 hours down the line you’ll start to feel like a burning sensation taking over the balls of your feet and a blistering pain that won’t go away for a day, if you choose not to make use of these pads.
b.      Do not place them too forward in your shoe, the pad shouldn’t be placed under your toes, as it will simply make your shoe smaller and crowd your toes. It should be placed slightly backwards between the ball of your foot and the beginning of your foot arch (the bit with softer skin on your feet). This will ensure that your foot doesn’t slide forward either and that you are firmly in place.
7-      Sometimes a ball of foot cushion may not be the solution to making a pair more walkable or bearable, this is because unfortunately most shoes are not built with a precise arch whereby your heel is resting fully and the soft skin under your arch is perfectly marrying the curve of the shoe.  You can tell that there is a problem if you look at the profile of a shoe: if it looks like a steep line downwards rather than an arched curve, then you can be sure that no ball of foot cushion will ever solve the problem.



a.     You should buy online a pack of Insolia Gel inserts which look like thin long strips in varying thickness. These clear inserts are meant to compensate for a missing arch and to push back the weight of your body so that your heel is resting on the back of the shoe. While this insert will not fully compensate for a missing curved arch, the non-slip material will prevent you from further sliding forward starting from the back of your shoe. The result is a more even weight distribution across the surface of your shoe and increased comfort.


Position of Party Feet cushion is behind the toe strap leaving toes to sit comfortably, Insolia support goes along the entire arch area to push back weight towards the heel area.


b.      I have been faced with impossibly high shoes that actually required the use of everything: a rubber sole protector, 2 pairs of Party Feet cushions and a pair of Insolia inserts! Check out this pair that measures 10cms in height and how I’ve placed these Silicon pads to create an even weight distribution. I can guarantee you that if placed correctly you should feel no change to the size of the shoes, only increased comfort from the cushioning and non-slip material.


Mounted pieces of Dr. Scholl Party Feet silicon gel pads and an Insolia insert, view from the bottom. Insolia piece should go on top of Party Feet cushion


8-      Last but not least, always keep a pack of Dr. Scholl’s rub-relief strips or small Gel cushions to protect your feet from rubbing on the sides or the back of shoes.
Silicon protective pad for heels and bunion protection


Colour Block Rubber and Leather Sergio Rossi sandals
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