When it comes to women and shoes, high heels are the no 1 culprit of foot pain. From a survey done by Mestrae in 2015 targeting urban working women in Klang Valley, 70% of 1000 women said these shoes hurt their feet but that doesn't stop them from buying more!
When were high heels first used ?
While high heels can be traced back to ancient Egypt, it progressed over the centuries for different purposes. Catherine de Medici (1519 - 1589) wore it elevate and to give an alluring sway while she walked, to impress her then future husband, King of France. Soon it was associated with "people with privileges" or the "well-heeled". In the 1600s, it was used by men as "rider's heels" , to prevent the rider's feet from slipping forward in stirrups when riding a horse. Mary Tudor wore heels with the highest height possible and for many centuries, it was in vogue and fashion bloomed.
(Source : http://www.batashoemuseum.ca/podcasts/200903/index.shtml)
What causes foot pain ?
From a research carried out on 400 urban working women (age 21 to 40 years old), by the Department of Orthopedic Surgery of the University of Malaya and the Hospital Pakar Sultanah Muar in 2012, 52.3% wore high heels and at least more than half of them complained of foot pain. The alleviated angle against norm creates pressure on the toe front of the foot. Keeping the heels at a constant alleviated angle tend to cause bone structure damage. Once the feet gets tired, there is a high possibility of wobbly foot, instability while walking, slipping and damaging the ankle.
Can one reduce foot pain with heels ?
"Comfort shoes" are a common term for the additional comfort you get with a bit of heels. The feel would be "cushion-like"on your foot. This is due to the additional padding beneath the insoles of the shoes as well as softer and thicker insole.
The 2nd thing one might not be familiar with, is the "shoe last". This depicts an actual foot when a shoe is made. For comfort, the shoe lasts are broader and this limits the fashion and outlook.
The 3rd thing "comfort shoes" have is the reduction in size of heels. While this might not be preferred by women who like higher heels, it minimises the angle of foot arch, hence the reduction of stress caused on the foot
The only problem with these "comfort shoes" is that is rarely appears fashionable. In fact, the term "fashion is pain" became popularized as there were no midway in having fashionable high-heeled shoes without compromising comfort.
Can fashion and comfort co-exist ?
That's what Mestrae's interchangeable heels aim to do for all women out there. At any point that the foot aches, these heels can be removed and replaced with a flats cover to be converted into flats version or a shorter heels. Where fashion is concerned, Mestrae's interchangeable heels can be interchanged to any available coloured heels and types (block heels, stilettos etc). What Mestrae aims to do is to ensure women feel comfortable and fashionable at any point of the day, regardless of where they are. They can now Make It Their Way.
For more information, go to www.mestrae.com