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Just about everyone knows someone who has been bullied, in ways big and small. Understandably, though, many victims are reluctant to speak about their experiences. We found some who aren't.
By Nicole Zakrzewski, Palm Harbor University High
We women love high heels because they make our legs look longer, and our calves toned. Best of all, if we gain weight , our shoe size doesn’t slap us in the face like a too-tight waistband. Oh, and they also look amazing!
But the truth is, heels hurt — it’s as simple as that. They make us walk inches off the ground with our weight distributed unequally, leaving our ankles to wobble and twist and sometimes pitch sideways to the ground. Even the most casual of anatomy students know this can’t end well over the long haul. (See image below, left.)
Walking on a 6-inch tower is an unappreciated art. Marilyn Monroe perfected it: She would cut off 1/2 inch from her stiletto heels, which caused her hips to sway. Her heels actually helped create a sex symbol.
I confess, I have worn cruel heels to the point my bloodied feet resembled Chinese foot binding gone bad. Even so, I have no regrets. My feet (while in the shoes, of course) looked fantastic.
Women’s admiration for these torture devices has reached such a degree that wily entrepreneurs have designed collagen foot fillers to cushion our feet. Have some of that squishy stuff injected, and voila, instant pillow to walk on.
After an excruciating day on my feet in adorable strappy sandles during New York’s fashion week last fall, I decided to try a less invasive (and cheaper) alternative: Dr. Scholl’s for Her high heel insoles ($7), pictured at top left. After all, What Not to Wear’s Stacy London (below, right) says this product is the cure for “fabulitis,” her name for the malady suffered when wearing fabulous shoes.
To put them to the test, I install them in a favorite pair of classic black 3-inch pumps with a thick strap, and walk a mile.
In my hand, the inserts feel and look like a defective breast implant. The insert is a strip of silicon with an adhesive bottom to stick to the inside of your shoe. “Massage gel waves” cover the ball of the foot, and a marshmallow-like gel fills the arch, but overall, it’s very slim, and it doesn’t make my shoes seem tighter.
It takes a few tries to find the insoles’ sweet spot, matching up my arch to the gel hump, but once that’s achieved, my feet go on a vacation.
For the first half mile, I am completely comfortable, even vowing to wear heels more often. The thought even enters my mind that I could run a 50K flawlessly in these shoes. Okay, maybe jog.
The mile-long trek takes me 30 minutes. As I reach the second half of the experiment, my feet do begin to hurt some.
Once I take off my shoes, I lose balance a bit and feel as if I were walking on bubble wrap, but the sensation quickly diminishes.
I know I won’t be giving up my high heels, but I know I won’t be wearing them again without these gel insoles. They make this fashion burden bearable. After all, half a mile of comfort is better than nothing.