Guide to Comfortable heels reviewed for best high heels for work. Recommendations made by professional women on blog. Best loved heels are Cole Haan, Naturalizer & Nine West

July 26, 2017

Guide to Comfortable heels reviewed for best high heels for work. Recommendations made by professional women on blog. Best loved heels are Cole Haan, Naturalizer & Nine West

Data from blog  Guide to Comfortable Heels - (2011) is used in this blog in responses compiled from 65 female professionals - mostly New York lawyers.  (Synthesis of their comments begin in this post at "Recommendations for great heels that are comfortable for work " See for original article.)

 Reasons professional women choose to wear heels to work:

Professional women choose to wear heels to work for personal and professional reasons. Here are some of their views.

I am all for whatever makes a woman feel her most confident self, and definitely think that as long as her shoes are not drawing attention in a negative way, a woman should be able to select her own footwear without any comments from anybody.  Heels complete the image of what a successful, career-oriented women looks like in New York and  heels improve the way a woman looks. 

Heels are more formal than other common shoes, they automatically makes you feel very feminine and elegant.  Many women’s clothes- pants, skirts and long dresses - are designed with heels in mind. The proportions look “off” when worn with flats and the connotations can be damaging professionally: the same skirt that looks sharp with a three inch pump will look juvenile with a flat.

 How heels make a woman feel more confident and noticed:  

The additional height of heels lends an increased physical presence for new business pitches and client meetings. Women will say, If I have a big meeting internally and I’m trying to make a point or feel a fair amount of stress around it, I wear some kick-ass heels.  High heels demand that they, and their wearer, be noticed. So there's a very real and practical reason that many working women will grab her high heels if she’s headed to a meeting even if she wears flats at her workstation.   High heels have an undeniable, positive psychological effect on both women and men that encourages their continual use. It is an effect resulting from social conditioning, but it's there. 

 What is it about heels that makes them uncomfortable to wear:

Being a woman and wearing a nice pair of stilettos might give a huge boost to my own image, however it could be very uncomfortable. Your feet could start paining after even an hour.  Wear the right kind of heels (not the party type stilettos) but do consider your comfort level too and change heel heights when you need to.  One needs concentration while working – don’t let heel pain take that away from you.

 The problem with heels is that even if you find really comfortable shoes in the shop that seem to fit perfectly, they are not designed for walking and standing.

  1. First your weight is now over a small area causing more pressure on the front part of your foot. Every step you take pushes your foot down and forward into toe end of the shoe.
  2. It is very difficult for most to walk in heels as you would walk in flats. We screw up our toes to create friction and a better grip.

 These two points combined lead to a lot of pressure on the front of our foot. 

The downsides are blisters, aching feet, toes pain, a slower pace, and the potential to lose a shoe in sidewalk cracks or cobblestones.

Recommendations for great heels that are comfortable for work.  Text below is distilled from 65 responses to blog article "Guide to Comfortable Heels"  posted in 2011, with responses to it from 2011-2017 See for original post.

 The universal I'm-in-charge closed-toe pump in two or three inches is probably the best professional heel you can own. Similar to the shoes illustrated. Below are recommendations of brands with number of mentions in brackets. They are Cole Haan (Nike Air & Miranda)(10); Naturalizer(7); Nine West(6); Corso Como(4) & Stuart Weitzman(4).

Women who provided their preferences for shoe brands chose these.  

 High heel shoe brands recommended 10, 7, 6, 4, 3 & 2 times: 

Cole Haan Nike Air & Air Miranda (10)

Naturalizer  (7)

Nine West  (6) 

Corso Como (4); Stuart Weitzman (4)

Seychelles (3); Calvin Klein(3);Ecco  (3); Sofft (3); Ivanka Trump (3)

Franco Sarto (2); Bared(2); Enzo Angiolini(2); Athena Alexander(2);

Kenneth Cole Reaction, 925(2); Ann Taylor(2); Nurture(2) Crocs(2)

 45 other brands were mentioned one time each. Well known high heel brands that were mentioned once were: Manolo Blahnik, Prada, Chanel, YSL & Dior

 Construction details that makes a high heel shoe comfortable. 

  • extra padding in the foot-bed
  • lined in nylon tricot
  • made with care, well made
  • soft stretchy real leather
  • the heels are sturdy and don’t wobble
  • well-crafted stiletto with strong shanks

(very expensive shoes have strong shanks)

  • break in period is almost nil due to soft leather
  • a chunky heel
  • a platform sole
  • heels made with arch support
  • 2-2.5 inch heels
  • extra padding under the ankle
  • lots of padding in the sole area
  • very well padded inside

 Types of inserts that were recommended to be added for more comfort

  • heel stickies to avoid shoe slippage
  • comfy inserts
  • Killer Heels Comfort inserts for high heels
  • inserts which have a “gel–bubble” under the arch
  • Foot Petals arch inserts
  • Dr Scholls for High Heels inserts with gel arch support
  • heel grips and sole pads for shoes that are just a bit too big

Design features of high heels shoe that makes them comfortable

  • flexible latex soles which helps with foot fatigue.
  • bigger toe box because of bunions
  • a shoe design that suits feet that are of different sizes
  • nylon tricot lining in shoes
  • Shoes made in America not China so they fit better
  • An insole engineered so that the ball of your foot rests in a kind of shallow, nicely cushioned cup, which prevents the foot from sliding forward to smash your toes and makes everything much more stable

 This is how you know you are wearing comfortable high heels

  • fits well and provides all-over support
  • foot feels hugged by the shoe
  • swear I could walk in them all day
  • heels you can stand up in for a four hour lecture
  • if I can walk (several) blocks in them
  • comfortably wear both with and without stockings
  • comfy all day long, even after wearing them almost daily
  • can be worn outside of the office, even tromping around in The City
  • heels that won’t get stuck in sidewalk cracks
  • they’re buttery soft, no breaking in required at all
  • they don’t make noise on tile floors
  • fits great and I could walk for miles in them
  • the shoe can successfully be put through the test of walking on marble floors
  • go through an entire day with them
  • the shoe has heels that feel stable
  • I can walk in them like a normal human being (without wobbling)
  • comfortable walking from the office to Court and around all day
  • not tempting fate with each and every step
  • I can even run in my heels

2 Responses


April 26, 2017

Really interesting read. I’ve got to try some of these inserts!

Andrea Harrison
Andrea Harrison

April 26, 2017

Thanks to killerheelscomfort inserts! Wearing heels again!!

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