High heels: are they worth it?

Although personally I always envisage plastic surgery as being on the face, it has now apparently moved down past the arms and chest, the stomach and thighs – the latest plastic surgery craze it seems, is for the foot. Now I’m not a huge foot and toe fan, I actually have a phobia of ‘wiggly toes’ (I think it stems back from seeing the film version of Roald Dahl’s ‘The Witches’ with the bald witches and their square feet, urgh) but while I do not particularly like my own feet, I seriously can’t imagine having them operated on for non-medical reasons. However, as celebrities prove, when you have a foot problem and a shoe addiction, it doesn’t always have the desired results…ahem Mrs Beckham!

As designer shoes with tiny straps and huge heels become increasingly popular, there’s admittedly less and less space to hide any foot ailments (unless you go with the Sienna Miller school of thought and cover any imperfections up). Apparently it’s more of a case of whether the foot fits than the shoe these days.

According to the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society (AOFAS), there is now a massive range of surgical procedures for any foot treatments required. In fact, you could have your toes shortened, your feet narrowed, the fat pad on your sole injected with collagen and many other appearance-related procedures. AOFAS surgeons seem to be very much against such surgery. “I think it’s reprehensible for a physician to correct someone’s feet so they can get into Jimmy Choo shoes,” said Dr. Sharon Dreeben, Chair of the AOFAS Public Education Committee.

Admittedly part of me does imagine that the AOFAS mainly involves middle aged men who have no idea what a shoe addiction is like which is why, when I saw that, according to The Times this week, shoe designer extraordinaire Rupert Sanderson agrees with them, it made me think even more carefully. He’s quoted as saying that that he thinks it’s ‘bonkers’ and that ‘to contort your natural shape for the sake of a shoe, well it’s Cinderella in reverse’. Wise words indeed, although from past experience I have to say that Mr. Sanderson’s footwear isn’t always the most comfortable in existence!

Personally I’m with the foot experts and the shoe designer on this one – I’m not a fan of foot surgery unless a person’s in actual pain walking – and by that I mean foot deformity type pain, not ‘Oh no my Manolos are a bit uncomfortable, better do something about that!’ type pain, although that’s not usually my opinion after a few hours in heels. Apparently, studies suggest that most foot deformities such as hammer toes, claw toes, corns and bunionettes are associeted with repeatedly wearing ill-fitting shoes, and this is something I am definitely guilty of. However, I’d rather experience the discomfort of blisters than the trauma of cosmetic surgery gone wrong – as much as I try to avoid walking long distances in my heels, feet are primarily functional!

So ladies, I’d love to hear your thoughts on this issue – what do you think?

[Sources: The Times, The American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society]

What do you think?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

GIPHY App Key not set. Please check settings


  1. I can’t see having cosmetic surgery on my feet, they’re rather important to risk problems with them just to have them be more conveniently sized.
    That said, if I had more money than I knew what to do with it might be a bit tempting to have my feet made narrower. But then, if I had that sort of money I’d just pay someone to make me pretty shoes that fit! 🙂

  2. well i think nice shoes can always look pretty and there’s no need to make them for Geisha feet… obviously there are more fitting shapes depending on the foot type but for instance shoes for big feet (wide, long or both) don’t necesarily have to be chunky… and there’s enough proof of that!

    i have narrow, little feet and toes… where’s the defect?? i can’t walk for more than 1 hour on heels, even half an hour!! because the arch between the toes and the instep (can’t recall the right term…) is deformed way up since a long time and never realized until i wore heels for first time, so the fat pads always hurt as the bones are constantly touching the sole. my instep is not very developed so there’s not enough opposite force to push the feet down… what a nightmare. and i so love heels!! 🙁

    • ^to jimena,

      get your facts straight! asian people by genetics may have smaller feet but the geisha artists of japan have nothing to do with small feet.

      it was the ancient ritual of footbinding in CHINA that you are thinking of.

      but of course, to most uncultured people, all asian people are the same slanty eyed people no matter what nationality they are anyway.

      next time, do some research before you publicize your ignorance please.

  3. If I had the money I would do it! I have my third toe longer (only a little bit, not freakishly long) and it can be really painful walking in heels or staying in heels for a long time. I think people who don’t experience problems with their feet can’t really look down on people because they want to wear pretty and glamorous heels!

  4. I love that movie! The toeless ladied scare me too.
    I am all for fixing things that hurt. I had ingrown toenails on my big toes. I was so scared of the shots in my toes. No way would I go through that just to wear heels. I’ve heard of plumping the fat in the balls of your feet so they don’t hurt so much. If was ever in the position to wear heels every day I MIGHT consider that. But I’d rather just get the gooey inserts they have out now.

  5. chill out lulu… so Arthur Golden might be wrong then… he talks about that and relates to Geishas. i don’t know, i’m not a researcher and novelist.

    that said, i think there is no need to be that rude. and i don’t know where all those prejudices come from: “but of course, to most uncultured people, all asian people are the same slanty eyed people no matter what nationality they are anyway.”
    if you have some kind of Asian ancestry or actually are from some Asian country and you or any people you represent had problems with other cultures, i’m sorry but i’m not the one who did anything to contribute to that. you don’t seem any relaxed or wanting to point out a “possible” mistake, which in any case (i was sure of that for what i’ve read), anyone can do. or are you perfect?
    yeah maybe i’m not expert at writting in English and in most of things, but certainly try to understand people instead of attacking them for no reason. it was certainly an exaggerated reaction.
    i’ll keep publicizing my ignorance around. i think it’s better to contribute with the best of one can in his/her own knowledge know than going around pretending to be judge and executioner to pay the own frustrations.

  6. Style Bard – thinking about it you may be right! I probably resemble an Ugly Sister regularly with my attempts to force my narrow feet into shoes too small just so that they’ll stay on!

  7. Ladies! You can get comfortable in your shoes without loosing body parts! There’s no logical reason for people to be hurting in their shoes. There are lots of designers who are producing great shoes with a lot of sex appeal that are also comfortable. Go online and find these brands. One is CC shoes. You can thank me later.

If The Shoe Fits : Trainers – they really are just for the gym, you know…

Best insoles for footpain