The Secrets My High Heels Are Hiding

shoes2

I vividly remember the exact day I decided I was going to grow up, and be the type of woman who wears high heels. At 16, I was interning at a law office over summer vacation. On my lunch break, I watched two stylish young women cross the street from an office building, confident and sexy in their heels. Something about the way they looked and the way they walked really struck a cord with me, and I remember thinking to myself, “I want to be like that…I’m going to be the type of woman who wears high heels…”

Over a decade later…I own my fair share of heels, and am happy to report I even wear them every now and again. But 16 year old Kelly had a long road ahead of her before she got to this point. From learning the hard way what size to wear, to discovering the following tools that have helped make my heels bearable (I dare say…in some cases, comfortable) to wear.

Disclaimer – not all shoes can be rehabilitated with these tips, and some women’s feet, for whatever reason, refuse to wear heels without pain. These tips do not guarantee your shoes will feel like you’re wearing Air Jordans, but they might help you make it through the work day without a blister.

Please excuse the dirty shoes in these photos…

Foot Cushions

Place At The Ball-Of-Foot
balloffootcushion

My favorite foot cushions are ball of foot cushions. These fit on the bottom of the shoe, where the ball of your foot sits. These do two things:

1. Cushion the part of your foot that receives the most pressure when wearing heels.
2. Stops your foot from sliding forward in your shoes.

The shoes above were my first pair of 4 inch heels, and while I absolutely love them, they were horrific to wear. The bottom of my foot would get sore from the pressure of such a high heel, and my feet would slide forward, so my toes were scrunched and the slingback would slip off my heel. Adding a pair of these cushions to my shoes has allowed me to wear these for hours at a time,  even while boogieing down at weddings.

Ball of foot cushions:

Foot Petals at Amazon

Foot Petals combo pack at Nordstrom

Foot Petals color combo pack at Shopbop

Foot Petals color combo pack at Zappos

Fab Feet in black & khaki at Target

Foot Petals at Beauty.com

Foot Petals at Footpetals.com

New ones for flip flops!

 

Heel Liners

Place At Back Of Heel
heelliner

My second favorite type of foot cushions are heel liners. These serve two purposes:

1. Keep your heel from slipping out of, and/or rubbing the back of the shoe, preventing blisters.
2. Push your feet slightly forward in the shoe for a tighter fit.

Shoes that rub at the heel, or have stretched with wear get a pair of these. The shoes above are my beloved Cole Haan open toe pumps. As I wore them, the leather slowly stretched over time, and began fitting a little loose. That’s when I slapped a heel liner at the back, and all of a sudden my shoes fit snugly again.

Tip: these are also great if, like me, you have one foot that is slightly smaller than the other. Buy the shoe size that fits well on your larger foot, and then place a heel liner at the back of the shoe for your smaller foot. It will help the shoe fit your smaller foot better.

Heel liners:

Foot Petals at Amazon

Pedag Suede Heel Grips at Amazon     ← These look cool!

Foot Petals combo pack at Nordstrom

Foot Petals color combo pack at Shopbop

Foot Petals color combo pack at Zappos

Fab Feet in black & khaki at Target

Foot Petals at Beauty.com

Foot Petals at Footpetals.com

 

Foot Liners

Protects Your Toes
footliners1

These strange looking things are my toe’s best friends! Even with all the foot cushions in the world, closed-toe shoes would rub my toes painfully raw. First, I tried full length foot liners, but they wouldn’t fit, hidden from view, in my heels (I do wear these with my kitten heels though). Then I found these slingback liners and my toes have never been happier.

footlinerson1

Foot liners:

SHEEC Slingback liners at Amazon

HUE Slingback liner at Amazon

HUE Slingback toe covers at Bloomingdales

HUE Slingback liners at Lord & Taylor

There are also Toe Covers without the elastic but I’ve never tried:

Toe Covers at Bloomingdales

Toe Covers at Bare Necessites

 

In Combination

So…what secrets are my favorite grey suede Cole Haan heels hiding, you ask?

secrets
secretsrevealed

1. A heel liner
2. A slingback foot liner

And now, I can be the type of woman who wears heels. ;)

 

Other Tips

- I detest the plasticy or gel filled cushions because they not only promote foot sweat, but they also make squeaky noises as you walk (true story)!
- If the heel of your foot feels sore from pressure, there are shoe cushions for that too.
- Adding cushions and liners will make your shoes fit snugger. This is great if you find shoes to be a tad too big at times, but can make them painfully tight if your shoes are very snug to begin with.

 

What secrets are your high heels hiding?

 

Read More Tips & Tricks »

152 Comments

  • Reply April 19, 2011

    Jackie

    Oh! I must get some of those. Currently my heels aren't hiding anything…except the fact that they hurt!

    I love heels so! I don't want them to hurt. Thank you for sharing this!! <3

  • Reply April 19, 2011

    Alyssa

    This is so great and exactly what I have slowly been discovering! Thanks for the tips since I was just second guessing my beautiful new cole haans.

    My left foot is a little smaller than my right, so in some of my heels, I have 2 cushions under the ball of my left foot. Sometimes, I even stop sticking them in with the adhesive, so I can air them out from smelling, or move them to another pair of shoes. They are pretty good about staying under my toes.

  • Reply April 19, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @Jackie – Oh no! I hate when beautiful shoes hurt! Definitely give some of these items a try, and I hope you find your perfect shoe combination to make your heels wearable. :)

    @Alyssa – I've tried sticking foot cushions in new shoes with scotch tape before, when they weren't quite fitting right, but I wanted to see if foot cushions would help before returning them. ;)

    If you wear those goofy looking slingback toe liners along with your foot cushions, they absorb sweat, so the foot cushions don't smell. Then you just toss the liners in the washer in a lingerie bag and they get all clean again.

  • Reply April 19, 2011

    Anonymous

    When you must buy those darling shoes that are inevitably too big, I have successfully used toe pads (made for ballet shoes), and voila, they now fit — or fit enough to wear.

  • Reply April 19, 2011

    Angeline

    Great post and great tips! I've never even heard of the toe liners–I'll have to try them out! I put Dr. Scholl's For Her High Heel Insoles in all my heels. The arch support is second-to-none.

  • Reply April 19, 2011

    Maytheweed

    I think it's interesting to note that the smaller your feet the 'higher' proportionally a heel is. So for me with my Eu35s, a 4 inch heel makes my foot steeper, and my weight more on my toes that it would for a friend in size 40. Thanks for the tips!

  • Reply April 19, 2011

    Lucia H.

    Great post! I've heard of heel liners, but never actually purchased any. My trick is to take a pantiliner, snip off the curved ends, and stick them into the heels to prevent rubbing.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Cher

    I have all those plus some gel "spots" and some Dr. Scholl's cushion strips to fit right on the shoe right where the shoe hits the ankle bone. I'm not sure why, but I *always* get cut there. Maybe my ankle bone is just too low naturally? I just have a huge box full of inserts and shoe "goodies", it's almost ridiculous. I hate having hyper-sensitive feet!

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Anonymous

    great post!! I havent heard of/seen the slingback liners before…going to look for them today! I have "long toes" for small feet and I think these would be great…thanks!

    ~GRITS

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    daisy351

    Love this post! so informative for us girls who haven't quite figured out how to wear heels in comfort!

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Callandra

    I have never seen those sling back foot liners before and they look amazing! Thanks for sharing all of your high heel secrets ;)

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    PetiteAsianGirl

    Wonderful post showing all the ways we can "adjust" our heels! I also love heel liners for the reasons you mentioned. I have one foot that's slightly smaller, plus when I use two heel liners (one in the toe bed and one behind the heel) it helps bring the shoe down half a size.

    Those full insoles have never done anything for me. When I got shoes at aldo that were too big, the associate tried to pressure me into getting their full thick terry insoles which just pushed my foot directly upwards versus make the length shorter.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    PetiteAsianGirl

    And omigosh, gel heel liners squeaked so bad on me and chafed.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    b_ra

    I loved your tips especially about not using gel liners. I always felt like I was slipping and it made the heels even more uncomfortable. Also, I agree with Jean in that full length insoles don't really do much except elevate your foot so more of it is up. Sad to say, but I've actually stuffed tissues in the toe box just to make them smaller.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    MoneyMaus

    Adore this post!! I own a decent amount of heels and I have heel liners in most of them. Did you know Nordstrom gives them to you for free when you buy shoes in-store?! I always ask for extra and now I have a little plastic baggie filled with heel liners. They are awesome!

    I haven't ever tried toe pads (and didnt know about the liner slingbacks!) because I always feel like they'd be too large for my size 5 heels and that I'd have to cut them down to size! But maybe I'll try them out now :) Hooray for heels!

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Banhannas

    Those slingback liners look JUST like the liners that I used for my pointe shoes! With the exception that it doesn't have that translucent straps on them. I have been noticing that I'm slipping out of shoes more than usual with the reasons that you stated, leather just stretches out. BOO! Nice to know that we can still wear shoes and have our precious footsies protected. =0D

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Slayerbabe

    Brilliant idea! I wear heels everyday but what I figured out is that if there is some platform (just 1/2 inch) it helps absorb that impact and pressure when you walk and I haven't had any issues with wearing heels

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Elaine A (TOBeautyReviews)

    Those foot liners stay on you? Maybe I'm not getting the right ones b/c those always seem to move around for me and cause more blisters! Actually I just realized yours have straps! I don't think I've ever seen those!

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    April

    Amazing tips! I need to get heel liners! :)

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Trystan L. Bass

    I have very hard to fit feet, so I've used combos of all of these for ages. Depends on the shoe! I do like gel insoles for shoes I plan to walk in a lot — the key is to find gel insoles that have fabric on one side (the side that touches your foot). Very soft, no sweat, no squeak. I find them at Walgreens (but not CVS for some reason).

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    VictorianKitty

    I add non-slip shoe grips to the bottoms of mine, since most heels don't have much traction.

    I also use Love My Straps for strappy shoes that rub.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    doxyloo

    Those gel ones without a fabric outer gave me a blister even more painful than when I didn't have it in from all that chafing! Plus, it wouldn't stay put when I moved it to another shoe. Those things are pure evil. The foam and fabric lined ones are ok though.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Anonymous

    I like the ultra slim fabric topped gel liners from Kiwi smiling feet to help cushion "hard" soles http://kiwismilingfeet.com/
    I think Nordies rack has them. I've seen one with arch support as well, but not here in the states. Wish I could find them! It isn't so much about fit but finding a pair which are already comfy and adding some padding for shock absorption.

    A bit of moleskin fabric can also be stuck inside the top of shoes to help snug things up or prevent rub. I wish the toe boxes were wider on heels so my pinkie toes don't suffer shoe burn but a) wide toe boxes on heels usually doen't look good b) women who wear heels usually have mushed their toes to be more almond shape c) maybe I have a wider toe spread.

    Sometimes I use body glide or First Aid anti-chafing stick (usually near the blister bandages) to help when wearing new shoes.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    The Little Dust Princess

    Great tips! I also recommend using sole grips if your heels are slippery!

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Ledda

    Thanks so much for this post, it's so helpful. The other day I was at dsw trying to decide what to buy to help my small feet fit into bigger shoes and I couldn't decide, I asked for help but the SA didn't know much.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Rebecca

    I use superfeet insoles:
    http://www.superfeet.com/products/Women_s_3_4_High_Heel.aspx

    They only work for heels under 3 inches, but that is all I wear anyway. I tried all sorts of cushions, but it's not padding that I need, it's support. Even though superfeet are made of hard plastic, they are extremely comfortable. There is also a version made for flat shoes, which I use in all my ballet flats. The best thing is that they are much more durable than foot cushions, so I can easily transfer them from one shoe to another, using tape to hold them down.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Petite in the City

    Great tips! Just a few weeks ago, my friend (new to heels at the young age of 19) also asked me about how I wear heels all the time without my heels slipping out…then I took off my heels and showed her my secret..heavenly heelz!! I'll have to share this post with her :)

    I need to get tip toes for one of my pairs of heels, my foot keeps sliding forwards too!

    -Lor

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    ShortBlonde

    Thank you so much for this post! I'm a newbie when it comes to heels, and I needed these tips.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    LaLaaLove

    Great post! I'm a size 4, so shoes are ALWAYS too big for me. I've tried using multiple pairs of heel cushions, but sometimes it just doesn't work! One pair of heels I own have a very cushy heel liner in the back, and a thick gel toe cushion in the front – Even then, I can only wear them with 2 pairs of socks. They're pumps, so this look only goes well on Halloween!

    The rest of my heels are hiding Insolia shoe inserts though – They redistribute the weight backwards. Heaven!

    I'll definitely have to try SuperFeet for flats though!

    My aunt went to Asia and got the cutest foot liners ever. They look like tiny panties. :D

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Really Petite

    Great post Kelly!!!! I don't have issues w/heels or toes hurting but I think I may try the heel pads :D

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    AubreyOhDang!

    @MoneyMaus wow this is a great tip! I will ask next time!

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @Anonymous – OMG…I never would have thought of that! Are they cushioned?

    @Maytheweed – Incredibly good point! The smaller your shoe size, the more treacherous those 4" and higher heels are. Larger footed ladies swear they won't wear anything shorter than 4", but 4" is my max. My little size 5 feet just can't bend that far! Not to mention the pressure that puts on the ball of your feet!

    @Lucia H. – LOL! I never would have thought of that either, but certainly see how it would work. Has anyone ever looked inside your shoes and asked if there's a panty liner in your shoe?

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @Cher – I'm slowly building a box of "shoe goodies" as well. Hmm…I have one pair of heels with a high cut back that cuts into the bottom of my ankle, and I haven't quite figured out how to fix it yet. Some people mentioned heel lifts, which has me intrigued. :)

    @Grits – I found mine at Nordstrom, but I think I've seen them at other major department stores too. I hope they work for you!

    @PetiteAsianGirl – Where do you place the heel liner in the toe bed? I'm having a hard time envisioning it. I always figured those full length insoles would be too long for my size 5 shoes, so have never bothered. Good to know I'm not missing out on anything. And, yes! I had a horrific day with gel heel liners and will never try them again. The squeaking was so embarrassing! ;)

    @b_ra – LOL. You're not the only one who "stuffs". I had a chat with an employee from Cinderella of Boston, and he mentioned that a lot of small footed ladies would come in with size 6 shoes stuffed full of tissues to fit their size 4 or smaller feet!

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @MoneyMaus – That is one of the best tips anyone has ever given me! Can't wait to buy my next pair of shoes from Nordstrom and get a hand full of heel liners!

    @Banhannas – I had no idea there was a similar liner for dance, but it makes so much sense! I wonder if the ones HUE makes are inspired by dance wear…

    @Slayerbabe – Yes! Platforms help a lot. My Cole Haan's have a small platform that hides their "Nike Air Technology", which helps the comfort level a lot!

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @Elaine A (TOBeautyReviews) – I don't think I've ever seen those without straps. I've seen (and own a pair) ones with a silicone pad at the bottom to keep them from sliding around inside the shoe, but I haven't seen that kind in a few years now. The straps on these definitely help keep them on the toes. ;)

    @Trystan L. Bass – Fabric on one side! Genius! I must find those! Gotta check my local Walgreens…thanks! ;)

    @VictorianKitty – I just added my very first pair of shoe grips to a slippery pair of boots. Haven't worn them yet, but I'm excited to see how they do. I've also used those strappy cushions, but on slingback shoes where the strap slides down and comes off.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @doxyloo – Ugh! I spent a day falling out of, and squeaking all around town in a pair of shoes with those gel liners. Never again!

    @Anonymous – I've never tried Moleskin or anti-chaffing products, but I've heard women sing their praises. Would be a good bet for someone who needs help with blisters, but doesn't want to add the added bulk of a cushion to shoes that are already snug.

    @The Little Dust Princess – Just slapped on my first pair of shoe grips the other day. Haven't walked in them yet, but have high hopes! ;)

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @Ledda – What? The sales associates at DSW didn't know what to put in your shoe? It's a warehouse…full of shoes! I'm shocked!

    @Rebecca – I've never heard of those before. I would probably be turned off because they're plastic, but your recommendation has be intrigued. ;)

    @Petite in the City – LOL! I remember being 19 and wondering how the heck all these women were walking around without their heels flying off all over the place. Ah…the wisdom that comes with age! ;)

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @ShortBlonde – Good luck! ;)

    @LaLaaLove – All those pads AND two pairs of socks?! Poor little shoes! Insolia inserts huh? I'm intrigued… ;)

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Mia

    Thank you so much for this post! I have always wanted to wear heels but I never understood how people kept their feet in the shoes comfortably. I walk right out of most flats even. I guess I have high arches? It sounds like there are certainly products out there that can help me out.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    SewPetiteGal

    GREAT post! I'm an avid fan of heel liners but I never knew why in the world I'd need a foot liner. Now that I understand its "power", I will definitely be checking it out! :)

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Jenn

    This is such an informative post. I loved it, especially the foot liners. I definitely have to try those! I have the bigger version of them but they always slip off. I've alway wondered how other bloggers wear heels, and now I know!

    Complex Cardigans

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Jen

    This is great! I never knew about foot liners prior to your post. Is it the same thickness of a pair of pantyhose or is it thicker? I actually wear most of my heels as they are unless they're a bit too big. I'm definitely going to have to try out the foot liners, plus the ball of foot cushions for all the shoes where my feet slip to the front!

    This is a GREAT post. Thank you for sharing!
    Jen

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    DSK Steph

    I love this post! lol It's like interior decorating for the high heel. :D

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    Gracie

    great tips! i love looking at heels because mentally I envision myself with a few inches higher into the air… but that's usually as far as it goes.

    I'm going to try the first tip to see if it eases the pain for me when i slip on some heels.

  • Reply April 20, 2011

    deelirium

    I have the problem that my feet are so sweaty that I'm always slipping out of my shoes unless they're sneakers. And if I put on a nylon ped-sock thingie, that makes them slip off, too. Plus the grossness that builds up in my poor size 4 shoes. :(

  • Reply April 21, 2011

    Dainty Chibi

    Thanks for sharing this! I shall try the slingback sock one. I didn't know the ball of foot cushion prevents the feet from sliding up.

    This reminds me of my post:
    http://daintychibi.typepad.com/dainty-chibi/2011/03/spring-shoes-and-a-little-secret.html

  • Reply April 21, 2011

    Nelah

    I absolutely have no ideas about these products so thank you..thank and thank you. They seem to make heels wearing more pleasant and less painful and stinky especially closed toe type heels.

  • Reply April 21, 2011

    Angie

    this is an amazing article, kelly! i always find my shoes way too big because i am more of a size 4.5 than anything and the not-so-snug usually leads to a lot of pain and discomfort throughout the day. can't wait to deck out my pumps for a go!

  • Reply April 21, 2011

    Ski Petite

    Nice roundup! I use heel liners on a few pairs of heels, but have never tried the foot cushions.

  • Reply April 22, 2011

    shoeheart

    great post! glad to know i'm not the only one that uses insoles. have u tried this brand… http://www.stilettohardware.com? i love these. they're my go-to product for when my feet ache. will have to check out those sockliners!

  • Reply April 22, 2011

    Janine aka J-Ezzy @ *La Dolce Vita*

    ah-mah-zing post!! i use foot liners and i found only one kind at target that actually stays on and doesn't show through my pumps. i had to buy 5 different kinds to find them! but i MUST try the ones you recommended asap :)

  • Reply April 22, 2011

    shooting star

    i love wearing heels but have faced similar problems, so this is a very useful post for me..will be hunting for all the mentioned add ons in shops starting today!!!

  • Reply April 22, 2011

    Recovering Shopaholic

    PHENOMENAL POST! Thanks for this!

  • Reply April 22, 2011

    tifyeh

    fun note: both the foot cushions you mentioned are sold out online.. i wonder if your post had anything to do with that =)

  • Reply April 22, 2011

    Lili

    Great article! Thank you! I didn't even know there was such a thing as slingback toe covers! I have to admit though, I have tried heel liners and they failed me… So I stick to a small piece of double sided tape just under my heel. Works like a dream on slippery shoes – and on the one smaller foot, that I have as well :-)

    Relatable Style

  • Reply April 22, 2011

    Michelle

    I should really try a heel liner! I avoid the classic pump style because my heels usually slip out.

    Thanks for the tips!

  • Reply April 23, 2011

    Rinny

    Thanks so much for sharing this post! I am a big fan of Foot Petals foot cushions, but I've never even seen anything like the slingback toe covers before. I have a lot of problems with heels (especially pointed toe ones) rubbing my skin raw. I'll have to try to find those in stores!

  • Reply April 25, 2011

    lisa

    Such a great post! I love heel liners for the same reasons you described. To make the inside of a streamlined shoe cushier, I also rely on Dr. Scholl's gel insoles, the slim ones with the fabric covering on top that are designed for open-toed shoes. They fit in ballet flats and heels without crowding toes.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Rinny

    Thanks so much for sharing this post! I am a big fan of Foot Petals foot cushions, but I've never even seen anything like the slingback toe covers before. I have a lot of problems with heels (especially pointed toe ones) rubbing my skin raw. I'll have to try to find those in stores!

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    shoeheart

    great post! glad to know i'm not the only one that uses insoles. have u tried this brand… http://www.stilettohardware.com? i love these. they're my go-to product for when my feet ache. will have to check out those sockliners!

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    tifyeh

    fun note: both the foot cushions you mentioned are sold out online.. i wonder if your post had anything to do with that =)

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Recovering Shopaholic

    PHENOMENAL POST! Thanks for this!

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Jenn

    This is such an informative post. I loved it, especially the foot liners. I definitely have to try those! I have the bigger version of them but they always slip off. I've alway wondered how other bloggers wear heels, and now I know!

    Complex Cardigans

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Mia

    Thank you so much for this post! I have always wanted to wear heels but I never understood how people kept their feet in the shoes comfortably. I walk right out of most flats even. I guess I have high arches? It sounds like there are certainly products out there that can help me out.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Alterations Needed

    @Ledda – What? The sales associates at DSW didn't know what to put in your shoe? It's a warehouse…full of shoes! I'm shocked!

    @Rebecca – I've never heard of those before. I would probably be turned off because they're plastic, but your recommendation has be intrigued. ;)

    @Petite in the City – LOL! I remember being 19 and wondering how the heck all these women were walking around without their heels flying off all over the place. Ah…the wisdom that comes with age! ;)

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    AubreyOhDang!

    @MoneyMaus wow this is a great tip! I will ask next time!

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    LaLaaLove

    Great post! I'm a size 4, so shoes are ALWAYS too big for me. I've tried using multiple pairs of heel cushions, but sometimes it just doesn't work! One pair of heels I own have a very cushy heel liner in the back, and a thick gel toe cushion in the front – Even then, I can only wear them with 2 pairs of socks. They're pumps, so this look only goes well on Halloween!

    The rest of my heels are hiding Insolia shoe inserts though – They redistribute the weight backwards. Heaven!

    I'll definitely have to try SuperFeet for flats though!

    My aunt went to Asia and got the cutest foot liners ever. They look like tiny panties. :D

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    ShortBlonde

    Thank you so much for this post! I'm a newbie when it comes to heels, and I needed these tips.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Anonymous

    I like the ultra slim fabric topped gel liners from Kiwi smiling feet to help cushion "hard" soles http://kiwismilingfeet.com/
    I think Nordies rack has them. I've seen one with arch support as well, but not here in the states. Wish I could find them! It isn't so much about fit but finding a pair which are already comfy and adding some padding for shock absorption.

    A bit of moleskin fabric can also be stuck inside the top of shoes to help snug things up or prevent rub. I wish the toe boxes were wider on heels so my pinkie toes don't suffer shoe burn but a) wide toe boxes on heels usually doen't look good b) women who wear heels usually have mushed their toes to be more almond shape c) maybe I have a wider toe spread.

    Sometimes I use body glide or First Aid anti-chafing stick (usually near the blister bandages) to help when wearing new shoes.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    VictorianKitty

    I add non-slip shoe grips to the bottoms of mine, since most heels don't have much traction.

    I also use Love My Straps for strappy shoes that rub.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    MoneyMaus

    Adore this post!! I own a decent amount of heels and I have heel liners in most of them. Did you know Nordstrom gives them to you for free when you buy shoes in-store?! I always ask for extra and now I have a little plastic baggie filled with heel liners. They are awesome!

    I haven't ever tried toe pads (and didnt know about the liner slingbacks!) because I always feel like they'd be too large for my size 5 heels and that I'd have to cut them down to size! But maybe I'll try them out now :) Hooray for heels!

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    daisy351

    Love this post! so informative for us girls who haven't quite figured out how to wear heels in comfort!

  • Reply September 8, 2011

    Wbgirl66

    I have tried the heel liners and they did not work for my :(  My heel still slips out of my shoes.  I am not able to wear my fabulous heels because of this :(  Any other suggestions?  The toe part of the shoe fits snug so the foot petals would not be an option and I am not able to go a half size smaller….

    • Reply September 8, 2011

      Alterations Needed

      Hi WBgirl66!

      -Are you using foamy texture heel liners or the gel-like, smooth ones? My heels slip out when using the gel-like smooth ones, so if you’re using those, try the foamy texture ones. They grip better.

      -Is the back of your shoes (the part that comes over the heel of your foot) kind of short? Some brands have short backs, and some brands have higher backs. Some brands even have higher backs that squeeze smaller at the top. Heels that have a higher back, and especially those that squeeze smaller at the top, hold your heel in better. I have an expensive pair of Jimmy Choo’s that even thought they are great quality, the back of the shoe is too short, so it doesn’t grip my heel and I slip out with every step. I’ll have to sell them. :(

      - Is your foot really really narrow at the heel? Maybe you need to look for “narrow” shoes…which admittedly are very hard to find. Another thing you could try is cutting the heel liners in half, and only putting them along the side of the back of the shoe so they only pad around your narrow heel. Putting the whole heel pad in will only make the shoe fit smaller, and it sounds like that would be uncomfortable for you. Instead, just put the heel liners along the side (and you can stack them on top of each other if you need) will help bring the shoe in.

      - If you’re still not finding a good solution, bring a few pairs of your shoes to a shoe repair shop, and explain to them what’s happening. They might have a better solution for you, or might be able to explain to you why this is happening.

      - Other than that, maybe you’re buying the wrong brands for your feet. Shoes, just like clothing, can fit differently in the same size, depending on the brand, and even the style. For example,  I  have narrow feet, and I can’t wear shoe from Aldo in size 5 because they run too wide for me. However, Cole Haan size 5 fits me better and I stock up when I can find them. Christian Louboutin in size 35 (US5) fits me EVEN better, and I plan to expand my collection of those when finances permits. :)

      Good luck!!

      • Reply September 25, 2011

        Angie

        Oh , I have this problem too!  I have a 5 inch wedges which i absolutely adore but i couldn’t wear it because my heels slip off all the time even when i insert heel grips (spongy types) and my toes really hurt (kinda tight infront).

        I even thought of putting on some 2 sided tape on my heels  as I didnt wanna sell them :( Sound ridiculous?  Have you tried this method?

        • Reply September 25, 2011

          Alterations Needed

          Hi Angie! Try the ball-of-foot cushions. It sounds like your 5inch heels are so high, that your foot is sliding forward in your shoes from the incline, causing your toes to get smooshed. The ball-of-foot cushions help keep your feet from sliding all the way forward in your shoe, which should also help your heel stay in the back on the shoe, so hopefully your heel won’t slip.

          • Reply September 25, 2011

            Angie

            Thanks a lot . You’re very helpful :)

  • Reply October 9, 2011

    Pauline

    Hello. You have a fabulous site. Love looking through it.
    What would you say is your best comeback to people teasing you about being short?

    • Reply April 28, 2012

      Jackie Mich

      In my family, all the women are petite. We say, “Good things come in small packages.”

      • Reply June 18, 2012

        Corbet91

        You’re right…good things to come in small packages. I’d like to find a more effective come back to the comments we petites all inevitably face from unkind people. Any body out there with comments??? Thanks to all for your time

  • Reply October 24, 2011

    Kimparks9645

    Love the idea of the slingback footliners.I do wear slingbacks alot and think they lookgood with bare feet. I wonder if they would work with mules too?

    • Reply October 24, 2011

      Alterations Needed

      Hi Kim! They’d probably show with mules, since the elastic strap that slips around your heel is a little shiney & plasticy looking. But, I do have a pair of slingback footliners that the strap broke on, and I still wear them in the toe box of my shoe if the shoe is a little snug. Otherwise, the liner will move around. If your mules are snug in the toe, you could snip the strap off a pair and it would work just fine. :)

  • Reply October 29, 2011

    Guest1

    Is there an insert to use along side of your anklebone where my high heels rub?

    • Reply December 1, 2011

      Alterations Needed

      So sorry for the super late reply! I somehow missed this comment! If the shoe is rubbing your anklebone, try putting something like these under your heel. They will lift your foot a little higher, which will hopefully raise your ankle a little higher so the shoe won’t rub. They also add cushion to your heel, which is always nice. =)

      http://rstyle.me/bujsmecz5
      (Foot Petals Haute Heelz)

  • Reply December 1, 2011

    Lucy

    You rock for showing me those Slingback foot liners. I made a pair ands they saved my life. Thnannkksss :D

    • Reply December 1, 2011

      Alterations Needed

      Of course! Aren’t they wonderful? I haven’t had a toe blister since I started using them. I’m a BIG advocate. =)

  • Reply January 1, 2012

    MJColussy

    Love this page. Soo helpful. Because of this page, I was able to wear 5 1/2 inch heels all night last light – and they weren’t mary janes! Finally the answer to my shoe problem! Who knew it would be $3 heel liners at Wal-Mart!

  • Reply January 29, 2012

    αnαbeℓ.

    Ooh..the cushion at the ball of the foot might just do the trick for me. My feet don’t slip, but the pressure from the heel on my boots – which are my favorite, I’d wear them every day if I could – often kills the ball of my foot and makes it sore. I must look into these..

  • Reply April 2, 2012

    Ginger

    Great tips! I think you may have revived a few of my heels that I thought were goners. Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply April 3, 2012

    Perrier

    I tried the gel type heel grips in a new pair of heels. Initially, I thought they were the best thing & couldn’t believe I’d never used them before!  Then, after walking from my car to my office, the grips started coming out. They weren’t sticking in the shoe! Ugh! So, I hot glued those suckers in.  I wore them today, & guess what.  They still came out! Unblieveable. Wonder if a shoe repair place can just sew them in for me……….. 

    • Reply April 3, 2012

      Alterations Needed

       LOL! I can’t believe they still came out after being hot glued! A cobbler might be able to do something about that. Sometimes if a shoe is a bit dirty from wear (usually body oils are the culprit), those things won’t stick very well. Maybe giving them a good inside cleaning will help.

    • Reply April 5, 2012

      Pametriad

      The gel liners don’t work at all.  I like them because they don’t make my shoe fit quite as tight as the regular heel liners but after only a few steps they lose their umph!  This happened to me too and my shoes were brand new!!! The liner slipped down lower than where it was supposed to be.

  • Reply April 23, 2012

    Oci

    Thank you so much for all these great tips, I’m gonna share this page with everyone!
    So I bought a cute pair of heels for Junior prom (my first heels!)
    http://origin.kaboodle.com/hi/img/c/0/0/13b/2/AAAADJn_iRoAAAAAATsjig.jpg?v=1300554227000
    Nothing too fancy, or too high, and they are accually comfortable (who knew that could be possible for heels?) EXCEPT that my left heels kept slipping out, making it really awkward to walk! I was scared that would ruin my evening since I had never heard of heel liners before and then I found your page and tips which just saved my life! I’m so grateful, thank you so much, I’m going to go get some right away!

  • Reply April 25, 2012

    MarRuth

    An amazing trick I learned for stability and not squishing your toes in heels is to tape your 3rd and 4th toe together and I am telling you heels are soooo much easier to walk in! I don’t know how but it works! So the toe next to the pinky and the one next to that tape them together and presto…soo much better especially those heels that have the super skinny heel and its hard to balance it helps a ton with that!
    Hope this helps!

  • Reply May 9, 2012

    Quynh

    My heel liner makes a sqeaky noise.  How do I get rid of that noise?

    •  Probably by trying a different kind of heel liner in your shoe. I’ve had the plasticy ones make noise before. Try the foamy ones instead.

  • Reply May 24, 2012

    L.

    I was reading this last night and it seems like this gets a lot of hits, so I wanted to add my two cents… 

    I’ve tried inserts similar to “foot petals” and though they help with comfort on the ball of the foot, they don’t seem to help with my feet sliding forward.  I found “Summer Soles” online.  They are a suede insert and you can size (alter) them to fit your shoes.  They also have an insert specifically for extra absorbancy, but I purchased the suede type.  Best part, they have a 30 day satisfaction guarantee so if they don’t work, I’ll get my $ back.  I haven’t received them yet, but am very excited.  Check them out!  http://www.summersoles.com/

  • Reply May 29, 2012

    April

    The shoes that make you taller may certainly not just raise the highness of the patron, nonetheless additionally increase the physical effect of them. The shoe heel elevates you select need to match your shoes in relations to elevation also.

  • Reply May 31, 2012

    Khadijah

    Can you wear the slingback footliners in shoes that are NOT slingback shoes? For instance, can u wear it with pumps?

  • Reply June 4, 2012

    Kelly

    Thanks so much!  I just got a pair of high heels online that are nonreturnable.  I wasn’t sure what size to get, but because I have a very high instep, I went with about 1 to 1-1/2 sizes larger than I wear.  They’re about 1/2 size too big and my heel completely comes out, so walking is nearly impossible.  I’m hoping my using a heel grip like you suggested I’ll be able to wear these, as I love everything else about them.  Also thinking of putting some moleskin along the rim at the top of the shoes where they rub a little against the top of my foot.  Thanks again! :)

    • Reply June 4, 2012

      Alterations Needed

       Sure thing Kelly! And if you find that your feet slip forward in your shoe after a bit of wear, making your heel slip out again, try the ball of foot pads. They give your foot traction so you don’t slide forward. Just had to add some of those to a pair of shoes over the weekend!

  • Reply June 10, 2012

    Mary

    What can I put under the heel of my foot to keep it from sliding off to the side of my sandals?

    • Reply June 10, 2012

      Alterations Needed

       You can try a heel pad that sits under the heel of your foot, but no guarantee it will work because sometimes our feet slide off sandals because it’s not shaped the same way as our feet. I’ve had sandals that my heel always sat off to the side because the shoe was just shaped funny compared to my foot.

      Here are the pads:
      http://rstyle.me/buhzrqcz5

  • Reply June 22, 2012

    Christian Louboutin

     The peep toe heels are so so sexy  when you put on!

  • Reply July 15, 2012

    Doms

    i bought a pair of 5 inch stilettos that are surprisingly comfortable to walk around in but i hear air releasing during each strut.  What should i do to control this annoying noise?  I see a few commentors complaining about hearing a squeak  with plastic inserts.  I don’t have any inserts in them at all but i can’t get over the sound of air blowing out. :/

    • Reply July 15, 2012

      Alterations Needed

      What you should do is try to pinpoint the part of the shoe where the air noises are coming from, and then try to remedy it from there. Is the air coming out of the toe box? Then maybe the shoes aren’t snug enough on your feet and you try adding ball of foot pads to your shoes to make that area fit tighter. Is the noise coming out the area of the shoe near the arch of your foot? Try putting arch support in there. Is the noise coming from the sole of the shoe itself? It could be an issue with the construction of the shoe and you can take it to a cobbler to see if they can fix it.

      • Reply July 17, 2012

        Doms

        wonderful advise, thanks for the tip! :) :) :)

  • Reply July 17, 2012

    Sweetie3124

    This is great. I use all of the items you mentioned as well as no show socks. however i have had a problem come up that I cannot seem to figure out how to fix. I bought a pair of Toms wedges and I love them but on the top of my big toe the cuticle gets rubbed raw to the point of bleeding from the canvas. I don’t know how to fix it from doing this. Do you have any suggestions?

    • Reply July 17, 2012

      Alterations Needed

      Depending on how large of an area is rubbing your feet, try spot cushions (http://rstyle.me/hijd76cz5) or Strappy Strips (http://rstyle.me/hn5qg7cz5). I’ve used the strips on a pair of peep toes that rubbed the top of my toe in a similar way you’re describing and it worked like a charm!

      • Reply December 19, 2012

        reeder

        A bit of adhesive moleskin from the drugstore, cut to size and stuck inside the big toe area, might help. I have that rubbing problem with certain materials or while breaking in flatter toe boxes. Moleskin and a runner’s blister stick help a lot if the fit is already snug.

  • Reply August 1, 2012

    Marilyn

    hi,i found this all very helpful,many thanks,and i did’nt think your shoes looked that dirty,that did amuse me.

  • Reply September 25, 2012

    msjj1969

    I have narrow feet. Will the heel liners help me. They don’t make cute stylish shoes in narrow witiths. ;-(

    • Reply September 25, 2012

      Alterations Needed

      Yes! I also have narrow heels, so my heels usually slip out of shoes pretty easily. Here are some things I use to help the situation. Heel liners will help your foot grip the back of the shoe, so definitely give those a try. For future shoe shopping, look for shoes that have a higher back heel slope to them, since ones that are shallow won’t be able to hang onto your foot as well. Also, look at different shoes next time you’re in a shoe store and look at the way the heel of shoes cup together. Shoe that come together more at the heel creating a kind of “cup” will hold onto your feet better. Ones that don’t come together at the heel very much will make it much easier for your foot to slip right out. Hope that helps!

  • Reply November 24, 2012

    pixies

    Hi! I’ve just bought a fab pair of peep toes, five inch heels. Love them but my foot slides forward n top of shoes dig into my toes. Is there anything available to stop this? The tops of my toes are raw! Ouchie! Thanks x

    • Reply November 24, 2012

      Alterations Needed

      Of course! The ball-of-foot pads shown above in the slingback heels (the first pads I talked about) will help keep your feet from sliding forward. The Foot Petals ones are very thin, so shouldn’t make the toe box too much tighter as compared to some other brands.

    • Reply December 24, 2012

      Venus

      Try ‘Walk on a Cloud’ half insoles. I’m a dancer and I have been using them for years. I don’t wear peep toes, but they should still help you.

  • Reply December 4, 2012

    cschilling3

    This is a great post! It’s helped me a lot with some of my painful heels. One question. I recently bought a pair of four inch peep toe heels that are absolutely gorgeous but were a little wide in the heel. So I put some gel heel liners back there but now it pushes my foot forward which is painful, plus now my heel slides out when i walk. What should i do???

    • Reply December 4, 2012

      Alterations Needed

      First of all, ditch the gel liners. They are thicker than most heel liners, so they’ll push your foot further forward. They are also slippery because they are plastic covered, so they won’t grip your heel. I suggested “Foot Petals” in the post, and think that’s the way to go for you. They are thinner (won’t push your foot AS FAR forward…they will still push your foot a little forward) and they are foamy so they have grip (they’ll hang on to the heel of your foot better).

      • Reply December 4, 2012

        cschilling3

        Thanks for the response! I had some foot petals at home and gave them a try. At first I tried the heel grips but my foot was still sliding, so then I tried the ones for the balls of your feet and that helped the sliding my heels still popped out occasionally. So I tried a combo of the two which works for my left foot…but my right foot is bigger so it was too much. I think I might be destined to never wear these shoes. Curse my narrow heels!

        • Reply December 4, 2012

          Alterations Needed

          I also have narrow heels, so I know what you’re dealing with. For the future, shop for snugger fitting shoes to begin with which will help a lot. Higher heels also make your foot slide more than shorter heels. Also, the right shoe can be stretched if you need it. Leather shoes (aside from patent leather, which will eventually stretch, but it takes a long time) will stretch with wear, so you can simply try wearing them around the house a few times, or google search how to stretch leather heels and you’ll find a slew of options (the water-in-a-bag-in-the-freezer method, the sock method, or alcohol method, come to mind). A shoe repair shop can also stretch.

  • Reply December 16, 2012

    Susan

    Just had to leave a message since I just finished struggling with all of this myself. To wear heels, I learned I needed both a ball of foot cushion and heel liner. One additional note, since the heel liner pushed my foot too far forward and made the shoe tight, I cut it in half and place each half on the sides of my heels where I was slipping out and left the back open so I could keep the original shoe length. There’s no reason you can’t cut up these products and play around with them to find the best way to fill in the gaps for the particular size and shape of your individual foot!

  • Reply March 10, 2013

    Noreen

    Thanks so much for amazing tips, just one question. I have peep toe shoes that rub on my toes and if I wear HUE Slingback Liner the fabric will show through the peep toe. Do you have a recommendation of a similar product but something that is for peep toe shoes? The rubbing of my toes is my main concern when it comes wearing peep toes. Thanks so much! :)

  • Reply March 18, 2013

    Emma Louise

    hi, I have just started a new job where i have to wear kitten heels. They are slightly too big and slide off so i have put gel heel grips in them but they still slip off – what would you suggest is best?

    • Reply March 18, 2013

      Alterations Needed

      Get some ball-of-foot pads, as they help stop your foot from sliding forward, and try non-gel heel grips. I found the gel ones are still slippery, but the foamy ones have better heel grip.

  • Reply March 21, 2013

    Shyla

    Thanks so much for sharing! I have a question, I have clammy feet which suck when wearing open toe heels because my toes just slide right out, would you happen to know any helpful tips? Also how on earth do you keep slingback heels up?! The back strap never seems to stay for me!

    • Reply March 22, 2013

      Alterations Needed

      Hi Shyla! Try foamy (not gel ones…those will just get slippery) ball-of-foot pads for the clammy feet problem. The texture of the pads help give your feet grip so they don’t slide forward. My favorites are these:

      http://rstyle.me/bum7n2cz5

      For slingbacks, try foamy strips like these (I have these on a pair of my slingbacks and they work well):

      http://rstyle.me/~kKYe

      Good luck!

  • Reply March 25, 2013

    Mallory

    I’ve wondered if any kind of dancer’s toe pad would work in closed toes shoes, does anybody know if it does?

  • Reply April 22, 2013

    eyelash extensions montreal

    This is great! My heels are always slipping out! I’m definitely going to try this out.
    http://www.divinelashesqc.com

  • Reply May 1, 2013

    pinky75

    I have tried all this but still my feet slip out of heels i have a high instep which might b the problem.. i have to wear sling backs :(

  • Reply May 4, 2013

    ataylo25

    Great tips! Do you have any tips for wearing heels on slippery surfaces? I’ve had a few slips. Super embarassing. Lol

  • Reply May 16, 2013

    vanessa p

    This is an awesome post.I love wearing heels but they definitely take getting used to and the pain never goes away completely.
    ehowtobuy.com

  • Reply May 20, 2013

    Shanice Samuel

    Please reccomend something for those of us with high arches

  • Reply May 31, 2013

    Gloria

    You’ve got to try SummerSox. They are thin, cotton flat socks that stick to shoe insoles and stay put to keep feet comfy, soak up sweat and keep you from slipping and sliding forward in your shoes. They come in 2 styles, full for no-sock look in heels, flats, wedges, slides… and 3/4 for flip-flops and sandals. Best thing is that they are washable and reusable so you can wash after every use to keep take the daily grime out of your shoes and keep them fresh (the special adhesive on the bottom of the SummerSox stays sticky even through hundreds of washes). They are at summersox.com

  • Reply July 12, 2013

    VanessaElizebeth

    This sounds like a great read.I appreciate you for the post.

    Learn How to buy

  • Reply July 19, 2013

    Tori

    I love heels, but my feet are so narrow! I just bought a pair of ankle strap heels with just a strap over my toes from Steve Madden. My feet slide forward and my heel slides to the right and it makes walking impossible! What can I possibly do to keep both my heel and balls of my feet in place?

  • Reply August 19, 2013

    Angel

    Not only do my feet slide forward but I sweat a lot in my feet which makes my foot so slippery making the sliding worse.

    But I will try the foot petals and foot powder.

  • Reply August 26, 2013

    Sophie

    This post has been so useful because I have really narrow feet and they just slip down in high heels so I’ve ended up getting a size smaller but then my squished toes are in pain, hopefully no more of that for me! Thanks! :)

  • Reply September 11, 2013

    Sarah Deane

    I didn’t even know slingback liners existed, thanks so much!! Hopefully my toes won’t bunch up so much anymore and my heels won’t keep slipping out, thanks to the heel liners hint!!

  • Reply September 11, 2013

    Lorraine

    Thanks for this! It is extremely helpful and I am glad that I found it now that I need it. And gosh, my heels aren’t even that high, but I do have the one foot a half size bigger than the other issue.

  • Reply November 22, 2013

    Kristen

    I have one problem with heels that I can’t find an already existing product for. The bottom of the shoes are rubber for the sole of the shoe, and there’s even extra grips for those. But the bottom part of the actual heel is plastic which is too smooth and makes it very difficult for me to walk on hard, smooth floors. I need a rubbery grip for that so my heel doesnt slide when I’m trying to walk.

    • Reply November 22, 2013

      Alterations Needed

      Hi Kristen,

      It sounds like you’ll need to replace the heel tips for ones that are more rubbery and have more grip. You can find them for pretty cheap and try it yourself if you’re handy, or a cobbler can do it for you for about $10. Here’s a combo pack from Target: http://rstyle.me/n/c9sg2cz5

  • Reply May 27, 2014

    Eli

    Talk about a HELPFUL post. So much wisdom in one page. However, I tend to get really sweaty feet in heels, what do you recommend as a solution to this problem? I just bought new Christian Dior heels, and want to put some good use into them. Help please! Thanks!

    • Thanks Eli! I haven’t tried this myself, but I heard somewhere that applying an antiperspirant deodorant to your feet the night before you’re going to wear heels (so the product can dry, or else your feet will be so slippery, you’ll slip right out of your shoes), helps with sweat problems. If you give a try, please report back if it helps or not! ;)

  • Reply September 2, 2014

    Phoebe

    Thanks for the wonderful post! I also want to suggest detachable shoe straps. they’re removeable straps that you can add around the heels. They’d look ok especially with pants since you can’t see them.

    http://www.amazon.com/Detachable-Shoe-Straps-loose-heeled/dp/B00KFP73PU

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