Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Happy Feet

My sons often tease me about my collection of 40+ pairs of shoes (no big deal by many women's standards, but considerably more than their assemblage of one pair each of sneakers, cleats, boots, and flip flops). Since becoming a mother, I've put on a few pounds, making shoes more fun to buy than clothes. And let's face it, since footwear comes in so many wonderful varieties (e.g. boots, sandals, pumps, flats), looking for a new pair of shoes is hardly like buying another pair of classic black trousers.

I'm especially addicted to buying shoes online (SmartBargains.com, Bluefly.com, Overstock.com and Zappos.com are all favorites). The benefit to this online shopping passion is that it is easy to sneak my habit into my daily work routine. The downside is that occasionally the shoes I buy are not a perfect fit. I'm pretty good about reading the retailer's/manufacturer's fit comments and pay critical attention to buyer feedback as an essential source of info; I also try to buy brands that I've been successful with in the past. But despite my best efforts, there are times that a beautiful pair of pumps arrives and I find I can't wear them comfortably.

If the shoes are obviously uncomfortable when they arrive, I return them. But sometimes the problems are more subtle (or I love the look of the shoes so much, I think it is worth some fiddling around). For these occasions, I turn to the products from FootPetals.com. They make a product called Heavenly Heelz that I've found especially useful -- it keeps my feet from slipping out of two pairs of pretty pointy-toe kitten heels that have become an essential part of my shoe wardrobe. Their Tips Toes pads are going to be useful this spring, to keep my feet from sliding into the openings of my new open-toed shoes. I've tried other products, like the padded sheer toe covers from No Nonsense but they aren't as helpful. Recently, though, I've discovered that in a pinch, you can cut pieces of moleskin (purchased at the drugstore) that work the same way as the FootPetals products for a lot less money.

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