The pros and cons of wearing heels

Your girlfriends may tell you that strapping your toes into stilettos will boost your confidence, make your legs look longer, give you a skinnier-looking figure or make you look more stylish. But what are the short-term and long-term effects? Is it really worth it – especially if you get a bunion in the process?

A little history …
This was shocking even for me — and trust me, I've heard it all — but high heels have been around since the 1500s. However, it wasn't damsels or Renaissance princesses donning these shoes, it was men. Seriously … you have to chuckle a bit at that fun fact. Oh, the irony! Could it be that males are actually the first humans in history to get bunions from heels? It's highly possible! Despite its slightly amusing past, these painful yet sexy shoes are now one of the fashion features that women especially love to hate.

This really isn't rocket science. We all know why women wear heels – it gives you the idea that you look and feel like a million bucks, especially if you are one of the shorter gals out there. As a bonus, many people believe that these shoes accentuate curves by bringing your chest forward and your waistline back.

Although this is not safe or healthy for your legs – the calf muscles contract and adjust to the angle of high heels. This gives the illusion that you have been working out (even if you have been slacking off at the gym). However, the biggest reason women totter around in heels is because it makes your legs look longer.

The negative effects of stilettos are much less talked about, but I know for a fact that they're alive and well. You know that feeling when you take off your stilettos at the end of the day? That horrible foot pain is not normal, ladies. As much as I hate to admit it – these shoes are killers for foot health and can even cause irreversible damage.

You can easily get hammertoes or bunions since feet are crammed into tight, narrow spaces. However, there is also a risk for ankle sprains, knee and back pain and just plain falling flat on your face.

To save yourself this kind of embarrassment and possible bunion pain, stick with a pair of sexy flats and tone up those legs on the treadmill to look your best.