The first pair you ever tried on was probably your mother's, when she wasn't looking. The first pair you ever owned was probably pink sequined. Chances are it was a gift that came with a boa, some gaudy fake jewels and some play make up. No doubt it was your favorite present. Nothing says big girl, glamorous —and yes, sexy —like wearing high heels. Fast-forward to the mall this season. Watch the girl wobbling precariously as she shops in forward-thrusting heels. She believes that when she is wearing high heels, she appears smarter and more sophisticated, that her carriage is improved, and that she walks better. What a pity that her feet disagree! Shoes run rampant in books, calendars, and movie covers; they dangle in miniature precious metal versions from earlobes and chains. Their original purpose, to protect the feet and aid mobility, has changed. Now they've become a constant obsession in pop culture, none more than the majestic high heel. Women, young and old, choose to wear them, often at the expense of their own physical comfort. No matter what we say, we know you love how wearing high heels makes you feel. The fashion forecast is for women's shoes to be high, higher, and highest. Think five-, six-, and seven-inch heels. Before you run out and join the crowd, we just want to give you some facts before you start wearing high heels too often. Did you know...? The stiletto heel, known as the killer heel, comes from a term meaning thin-bladed knife. It was worn by Catherine de Medicis, who in 1533 at the age of 15, brought them from Florence to the French court. Up until the 1700s, the five-inch heel (!) was the most popular shoe among European women. During the women's movement, wearing high heels came under attack by feminists. In the 80s, wearing high heels became a symbol of personal choice and empowerment. Women receive 90% of the foot surgeries performed in the United States. Doctors compare the foot deformities that continual use of high heels can cause to the damage seen in Chinese women who had their feet bound. Wearing high heels for a long time has also been linked to knee and back problems. Wearing the popular three-inch kitten heel makes simple tasks dangerous. Sidewalk grating, stairs, slick floors, any speed faster than slow even crossing a lawn becomes challenging. It's hard not to feel sexy when wearing high heels. That's because they tilt the fanny and arch the instep. They lift the calves and make your feet look shorter. They create the illusion of longer, more defined legs and emphasize all the aspects of femininity. Of all the miracles of modern shoe technology, the stiletto might be the greatest. The architecture is such that a women's weight is balanced on a heel the size of a pencil! Eighty-eight percent of the women in a recent survey wear shoes that are too small! If you do succumb and buy a pair this season, doctors recommend that you wear them around the house first to get used to them and decrease your chances off falling and breaking or spraining your ankle.
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