On last year’s European tour, I wore them so much for our wild exploring and adventuring days, that they were affectionately dubbed my “sneakers” by the crew. As in “We’re going to walk to the top of the Eiffel Tower, go grab your ‘sneakers’.”
And grab them I did. Cute vintage burgundy 3″ high heels. They made it to the top of the Eiffel Tower, ran all over the Louvre, visited the graves of Jim Morrison and Oscar Wilde, and walked all over Notre Dame.
I’ve worn high heels hiking, exploring, climbing down into abandoned New York City subways, and breaking into abandoned trains from the 1800s.
The two questions I get more than anything when I do burlesque classes are:
- How do you walk in heels?
- How do you wear false eyelashes?
So in today’s how to – I’m tackling the high heel question!
Tip #1: Don’t Start By Diving Into The Deep End of the Pool.
You want to start with a low 1-2″ heel and work your way up to that sexy 5″ Louboutin stiletto. Make sure that the shoes are wide enough for your feet and fit comfortably.
Tip #2: Walk on Air.
Wearing high heels without gel inserts is like wearing sneakers without socks.
Do yourself a favor and get some gel inserts to put inside – all of my high heels have them. One brand I use often is Dr. Scholls. Any gel insert will alleviate pressure on the ball of your foot and provide extra cushion.
Tip #3: Practice Your Walk.
DON’T: Walk in a V-pattern in high heels. Imagine seeing yourself from overhead – if your body is at the base of the V – your legs kick outward when they walk going away from each other. This is fine when you’re in sneakers, but in heels, it’s a definite no-no. It’s the number 1 high heel walking problem I see on the streets of New York City.
DO: Imagine you’re on a tightrope and walking a straight line. The tops of your legs will be slightly crossing over each other as you walk. This will give you a graceful walk and give the appearance of legs that go on for miles.
Tip #4: The Art of The Tip Toe. Strange Fact About Me: I’ve naturally walked on my tip-toes since I was a little girl. For years, I would repeat “heel-toe”, “heel-toe” while I walked to try and train it out of me.
It didn’t work.
To write this blog today, I took notice of where I apply pressure when I walk, and I definitely put my weight into the ball of my foot. Because of that, I walk with ease over subway grates and the boardwalk of Coney Island – no getting the heel of my high heel stuck in a metal grate or boardwalk planks! I use the heel to balance with occasionally, but I step with the ball of my foot. It creates a lighter and more balanced walk, and my feet don’t hurt after walking on heels all day.
Tip #5: Throw A Little Wiggle Into It.
Hips are power.
Part of walking in high heels is learning the dance of your own body. For fun, get yourself a belly dancing belt with little chimes on it. Wear it low on your hips and walk around your room. Hear the music that your hips make as they sway. Now, put on your high heels and slowly walk – putting one foot in front of another. You’ll notice that when you put the right foot out in front, your right hip will jut to the right, and then when your left foot goes to the front, your left hip will jut out.
Imagine a lion walking in slow motion…they have a slink-stalk walk to them that’s both captivating and deadly. As you walk slowly, your hips will naturally swing back and forth like a pendulum.