High heel hell?

The average woman can only stand her new pair of shoes for 34 minutes before grimacing with pain on a night out, according to new research

With Christmas parties in full flow, women all over the country are taking the chance to get all dolled up, and no festive outfit is complete without a pair of killer heels.

Despite one fifth of women saying they would never do away with their heels in the name of comfort, the average woman can only stand their new pair of shoes for 34 minutes before grimacing with pain on a night out.

A new study of 4,000 women found that 40% of us always carry a pair of flats to change in to, while more than half of us have stumbled home bare-foot, with one in 10 of us abandoning our heels altogether.

‘In standard three-inch heels, the pressure is 75% on the front of the foot, which is why you get that burning sensation on the ball of your foot. This can also lead to bad body alignment and leg and lower back pain,’ warns podiatrist, Erika Gibbins.

‘When you stand for a prolonged period of time the load is magnified to the point where the foot hurts all the time,’ she says.

The survey, conducted for Insolia, found that 80% of us have a shocking nine pairs of shoes that have never seen the light of day and four pairs that are deemed ‘too uncomfortable to wear’.

One in 10 of the UK’s fashionistas insist that shoes are the most important part of any outfit.

So if you’re one of those who needs a friend to fireman-lift you home after a night of dancing, Erika Gibbins says: ‘My advice would be to always test new shoes at home and if they feel like they might start to hurt, take precautions like fitting an insert to help realign the weight.’

Are heels the most important part of your outfit? Is it important to look the part and suffer the consequences? Let us know your thoughts below.

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