Our Guide To Wearing Heels

Heel season is here, are you feeling mentally prepared? Trust us, we know how it feels to see those women who seem to be able to float around the office in their heels with unimaginable ease. While you’re hobbling along in a whirl of blisters and plasters, they seem to have no problem. If you’ve been wondering what their secret is, look no further. Here to save your feet this party season, we’ve put together the ultimate guide to wearing heels, from how to make heels comfy, ensure they fit well, and find the right style for you.


#1 How should heels fit?

Heels should always fit tightly around your ankle, offering as much hold and support as possible. If they’re too big here, your foot will shift up and down, causing blisters but also leaving you at risk of hurting your ankle. You want your heel to move as little as possible when you walk.

Across the width of your foot, you can allow a little extra room here. Round the ball of your foot you want to feel secure, but not squished. Make sure there’s a bit of space for your toes and that you don’t feel too much pressure around your footbone. 

For heels with toe and ankle straps, you simply want to make sure that your foot feels secure and held down. Too much movement is a sure-fire way to get blisters and doesn’t equal comfy shoes. 

#2 What style of heels should I go for?

The most important way to make heels comfy is to make sure you bought the right style in the first place. Certain styles will work better with particular foot shapes, so getting familiar with your feet will make shoe shopping far easier. 

Wide feet- Open-toe heels with a toe and ankle strap generally fit wider and will be less likely to rub. They’re also really slimming and won’t collapse outward, making your feet look wider than they are. 

Narrow feet- In general, narrow feet are pretty compatible with all heel styles, you may just have to go down a size. But for super slim feet, a shoe with multiple straps is going to ensure you’re supported and held in. 

High arch- If your feet have a high arch, you want to go for a heel that is shock absorbent and spongy. These will be less harsh on your soles and be more mouldable to offer greater support. Something like a platform or a wedge heel is ideal as they’re usually made from a rubberised or cork material and put less pressure on your arch.

Flat feet- For people with flat feet, super high heels with an intense arch are definitely not a good option. Instead, a kitten heel or trending slingback will be far more comfortable and supportive. They’re also super versatile and can be worn with jeans and party dresses alike. 

Square feet- Whatever you do, don’t go for a pointy heel. As the narrowest of all styles, a pointed toe and square foot will rarely ever be comfy. Hate to break it to you…

#3 How do I make heels comfy?

There are several things you can do to break in your heels and make them more comfy in time for party season. Dependant on their material, some heels may be more stubborn than others and take a little longer, but perseverance is key. 

  • Stretch them out

When you’re doing this, you only want to stretch the front of the shoe, keeping the heel nice and cosy. Put on a pair of socks then fold them over so they’re doubled up on the ball of your feet and toes. Put your heels on and wear them around the house for a while to stretch out the front zone while moulding them to your foot shape. You can also buy a shoe or leather stretching spray to help this along. 

  • Blast them with a hairdryer

For a quick fix, warming your shoes up before you wear them will help them stretch and mould to your feet quickly by softening the material. This is a good option for any last-minute shoe purchases or if you’re running out to an unexpected event.

  • Moisturise your feet

While breaking in your shoes, you want to make sure your feet are lubricated a little bit. Before wearing your shoes, put on plenty of think moisturiser around the front of your foot, or use some Vaseline on the areas that are most likely to rub. Alternatively, you can buy a blister balm or stick that does the same thing. This will help prevent you from getting any blisters while will put your breaking in progress straight back to zero.  

  • Use gel insoles

Investing in some gel insoles can be a game changer when you’re trying to make heels comfy. Sometimes no matter how much time you dedicate to breaking them in, a pair of heels will be stubborn. Gel insoles offer some extra cushioning, making that arch a little less extreme or that sole a little easier on the ball of your feet. That little extra comfort may just be the thing that keeps you going past midnight.

  • Pamper your feet after

Before an occasion, the temptation to pamper from head to toe is hard to resist. But skip the toe part until afterwards. Using things like foot masks or soaks before a night in heels will make your feet softer and therefore far weaker and more likely to blister or ache. Instead, treat your feet after and keep your toes as tough and strong as possible for the event itself. 

make heels comfy

#4 How should I walk in heels?

Another way to make heels comfy is simply to learn to walk properly in them. It may feel like an impossible task, but here are our top tips.

  • Stretch!

We’re not suggesting you train for your night out like an Olympic event, but a stretch will do you good. Wearing heels can put a lot of strain on your calves and ankles, which is why rookie heel wearers stand with bent knees and struggle to walk upright. Stretching out your legs before a night out will help loosen these muscles and let you walk more naturally and easily. Try kneeling on the floor and then laying back so your legs are flat behind your back, or do some deep lunges.

  • Heel, toe, heel, toe

Walking in heels should be a rolling motion as you place your heel down then push forward to put your toe down. Walking flatfooted, placing your whole foot down at once, will look unnatural and make walking in your heels far harder. To make it easier, find a rhythm to your steps and add a little wiggle into your step, this will help you walk and feel more confident.

  • Stand upright

Heels require good posture, so regularly check yourself and make sure you’re standing up nice and tall. Slouching or leaning forward will make your heels feel far heavier. 

  • Practice makes perfect 

Put those heels on and wander around your house. Regardless of whether you’re new to heel wearing or a pro, every pair feels different so give each new purchase a trial run before wearing them to an event. Especially practice going down stairs as that’s normally where we all struggle. 

  • Have confidence!

If you feel confident, you’ll walk confidently; so believe in yourself!


Written by Lucy Harbron

Sarah Atkinson

Sarah Atkinson

Writer and expert