Shopping for Stiletto Shoes

purple stiletto

If you're a fashionista or at least a girly-girl, shopping for stiletto shoes can be the highlight of your entire month -- or year, depending on how often you get to buy new shoes. As with any purchase - especially if you plan to invest quite a bit of money in your new shoe selections - there are some things to keep in mind while you shop.

Overview to Shopping for Stiletto Shoes

Stiletto shoes are known for two things: their complete and utter hotness and their ability to make you want to do nothing but sit and look pretty for an entire evening because they can be painful to walk in. A few things you should keep in mind when shopping include:

  • Your budget
  • The comfort of the shoes
  • The event (if you're shopping for an event and not a general shoe wardrobe addition), and how much standing or walking you will be expected to do there, before, and after
  • How much you can do to alter the shoe in order to add comfort, such as with insoles, if you find a slightly painful pair that you must have
  • How much time you have to prepare if you're hoping to wear taller stilettos than usual

The Budget

Before you even allow yourself to look at a new pair of stilettos, decide on your budget. If you do fall in love with a specific pair of shoes that are outside your budget, check online for sales at stores like,, and department stores' sites. If you love designer shoes, you may even be able to find a knockoff pair. Nothing hurts more than a tall stiletto heel like the buyer's remorse that comes with breaking a tight budget - and possibly having to return the shoes, too!

The Comfort

If you're shopping for stilettos in a brick and mortar store, go at the end of the day when your feet are their biggest, as feet tend to swell as the day goes on. Go beyond sliding your foot into the shoes and standing up to check for the perfect fit. Do a bit of walking in the shoes to see if they hurt right off the bat. If they do, keep moving. When you find shoes that make the cut, try them out again on carpet when you get home. Try standing in one place in them for a while, as well as walking.

Depending on the type of stilettos you're looking to buy, you may be able to add insoles to take the edge off the hot-shoes-induced pain. That will give you a bit of leeway when it comes to choosing your shoes, without condemning you to one or more nights or days of agony.

The Event

No matter what the event is, you know you want to look good. However, if you know you're going to be expected to walk around or you hope to go out after the main event for drinks or dinner, consider shopping for stilettos that are no more than two or three inches high. It's the perfect height for looking sexy rather than business-like, and probably being able to actually take all the steps you need to throughout the night.

Time to Prepare

If you've thrown caution to the wind and you're shopping for stiletto shoes that are higher than the heels you're normally comfortable in (aka: can manage walking in without planting your face in the sidewalk), consider the prep time. Remember when you were in school and your parents would buy you new shoes but forbid you from wearing them until the big first day back? You wore them around the house, didn't you, being careful not to go outside and scuff them up. Revisit those days and put on your stilettos, march around your house, check out your posture, and just make sure you can balance. Then put them back in the box, fighting the urge to wear them before the big event.

Final Thoughts

Shopping for stiletto shoes can be enjoyable if you have your guidelines in place beforehand. Leave a little room for "gottahaveit-they are so perfect!" purchases so you don't take the fun out of it. Just make sure you'll be able to actually wear the shoes where you need them to go.

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