How to Survive a Holiday Party in Heels!
Foot Petals Founder Tina Aldatz explains how to buy the right shoe, how to properly break in a shoe and more.
I’ve often been nicknamed “Heather Heels” because few things in life will get between me and a pretty pair of pumps. But I have a confession to make: while I love the added height that my fancy footwear gives me, the breaking-in process is killer. Cuts, scraps, blisters, and going through entire boxes of Band-Aids just so that my feet can look chic. It hurts! With the holidays coming up and parties already scheduled on my Outlook calendar, I need a solution to my foot woes. Luckily, I had the chance to interview with Tina Aldatz, president of Foot Petals who promises that ladies don’t have to suffer for their shoes, whether heels or flats, with her line of customized shoe cushions and pads.
BettyConfidential: The holiday season is right around the corner! What do you see as the big trend in footwear this year?
Tina: Boots are back again this year, this time in various heights from ankle boots to mid-calf boots with shearling accents. Heels covered in lots of glitter or studs will be the shoe “showstopper” at this year’s holiday parties.
BC: Tell me about some of Foot Petals’ bestsellers and what they do to help out your feet.
T: Our best seller and claim to fame is our Tip Toes ball-of-foot cushion. These flower shaped insoles keep your feet from sliding forward, while cushioning the sensitive ball-of-foot area with every step. They also protect bones and tissue and prevent calluses from forming.
BC: Your cushions all seem to be one size only. How does that work if you have a larger shoe size like a 9 or 10?
T: They are a one-size fits most. Our cushions have proprietary technology and with their skived edges, you won’t feel the transition of the cushion to the shoe, no matter what size shoe you wear. For full coverage we recommend our Tip Toes ball-of-foot cushions combined with Haute Heelz to protect the bottom-of-heel area. Our cushions are great in that they can be cut to allow you to customize a fit that works best for you!
BC: How long can you wear the insoles for? I know a lot of foot padding peels off or shrivels up pretty fast.
T: Our cushions are guaranteed to last the lifetime of the shoe…once you put it in, you will never have to replace it. They don’t lose their shape or never go flat!
BC: How should a woman safely break in her heels before a party?
T: It’s always a good idea to walk around your house in your party shoes at least a week before the event. This will allow you to troubleshoot any areas of discomfort.
BC: You have a pretty scary story from your childhood about an incident involving your feet that inspired you to create Foot Petals. Would you mind telling us what happened?
T: As a young girl, I suffered third degree burns on my feet. It had left them really sensitive to anything. Working in the fashion industry and living in New York City where fashionable shoes and being on your feet is a must, I just couldn’t tolerate the daily pain. I knew there had to be a better way and worked to find one.
BC: Sometimes women buy shoes that might be too big for them and then stuff them with padding. Or the opposite happens with stuffing your foot into a too-tight shoe. Is it ever okay to wear a size that is too small or too big?
T: Proper fit is definitely key as over 90 percent of people have different sized feet. When buying a pair of shoes, buy shoes that fit your larger foot (commonly up to a half size difference). You never want to wear a shoe that is too small! You can really damage your feet with everything from blisters to bunions. I always recommend going with a larger size and cushioning them to give you the perfect fit.
BC: What should you do if you want to buy shoes online and you’re not sure of your size?
T: Again, it’s always better to go up a half size and cushion them, then to have shoes that fit too tight. Make sure to read the reviews. Customer feedback really helps determine if the shoes are running big or small. Most places today offer free return shipping, so don’t be afraid to try a new style.
BC: I know we talk about how painful heels can get, but what about flats?
T: Flats have little to no support in the soles, so there really isn’t much there to protect your feet from the pavement. Many of them also don’t have much flexibility at the back of heel. Look for flats that have padding and are flexible around the heel, or you’ll be in pain all day long/
BC: What are some of the consequences that can occur if you’re wearing heels day in and day out without any extra padding?
T: A lot of stress and strain is placed on our joints and tissue. Women who wear heels without any cushioning are more at risk to have a formation of corns and calluses due to friction and pressure.
BC: Are you a heels girl or do you prefer flats? Do you have any fave designer brands?
T: I love all heels! I have narrow feet so Jimmy Choos tend to fit me great.
Heather Taylor is BettyConfidential’s L.A. correspondent.