Mission Impossible: Comfort and Style in the Same Pair of Shoes

Do you really know why the Devil wears Prada? To lure you do the same and endure the pain of wearing high heels for the rest of your life.

Just joking. It is not only the devil that hooks innocent women and make them victims of fashion. This is also good friends, competitors and fashionable co-workers that do the same. And if you want to be stylish you are forced into wearing awesome looking but terrible to wear shoes.

Enough is enough! Your shoes are not simply expression of style, the influence greatly the health of your feet.

Poorly fitted shoes can cause a plethora of feet problems – bunions, hammer toes, calluses, even sweaty feet that lead to fungus infections of nails. We spend a lot of time wearing shoes, sneakers, and even slippers! Our poor feet rarely have the chance to contact the nature directly. Do you remember when the last time you walked barefoot was? No? You are not the only one. But I have some good news for you! Finding the right shoes might be tricky but is possible. Heck, it is even possible to find stylish AND comfortable office shoes. There are simply few rules you need to follow:

  1. Get the right size!

Never buy shoes that are too small or too large for you. Make sure to always measure both left and the right shoe. Our feet are not absolutely equal in size and width, so taking little extra time to make sure both shoes fit well is crucial.

  1. Avoid really high heels

3 inches is the absolute maximum to look for. High fashion designers don’t think about comfort of the users, they only think about the best looking shoes. The height of the heel determines the weight on the forefoot. The higher the heel – the greater the pressure on the forefoot and bigger the suffering. All in all avoiding high heels is the best you can do for your feet, but if you absolutely must wear high heels, consider doing these:

  • Wear the high heels as little as possible. Wearing them for prolong periods seriously impacts health
  • Avoid pointed, needle thin heels as this increases the pressure on your forefoot (your total weight distributes evenly on all points touching the ground. The less the total area is (e.g. the thinner the heel is, the greater the pressure)
  • Avoid pointed toes too! This will press your toes into each other
  • Always go for leather or natural insoles, to keep feet from slipping
  • Buy a variety of shoes in different shapes and styles and rotate them daily! This will help keep your feet from being forced into the same position every single day
  1. Go shopping in the late afternoon or in the evening.

At this time your feet are at their largest due to the natural swelling through the day.

  1. Be careful when choosing materials.

Natural and breathable materials are the best when it comes to shoes. Not only your feet won’t sweat in breathable shoes, but you will also feel more comfortable!

RESOURCES:

http://comforthacks.com/best-shoes-for-standing-all-day/ – Comfort Hacks is offering advice how to pick shoes if you are standing all day

http://www.thespinehealthinstitute.com/news-room/health-blog/how-high-heels-affect-your-body  – good infografic with information how the high heels affect your posture and spine

http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/ – American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons on Tight Shoes and Foot Problems.

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History of Work Boots Evolution

I’ve always been curious about the history of everything around me. From a very young age I’ve follow my dad around the house asking the ‘why’ and ‘how’ questions. Years passed, but my curiosity remains the same. The only thing that have changed is that I am a designer now, and somehow everything is filtered through my designer perspective. I’ve been at my parents’ house few weeks ago and once again helped my dad do his work around the house. My eyes fell on his work boots, and this was maybe the first time that got me thinking how exactly those evolved.

work-boots-evolution

The only thing I knew at the time was that workers that dealt with heavy objects wore wooden shoes to protect their feet. Little did I know that the safety boots have developed on many other levels. Although short from high-tech product, these have transformed a lot during the last half a century. Unlike other protective equipment, the safety boots continue to develop and reflect the current demand and fashion.

Evolution of features

The first safety boots were invented at the beginning of the 20th century, when the industrial safety became an issue. It was mainly addressed due to the laws on compensation which forced the large industrials to take measures to prevent injuries.

Safety toes

composite

The steel-cap boots’ history started around the end of the World War II and their roots can be traced back to Germany. They were first made to protect the workers while performing their duties. Only wooden clogs and some leather boots were used before making the first work boots. The first real safety toes were exclusively made of steel. Nowadays there are not only steel toe work boots, but also composite toes, aluminum toes and even metatarsal guards to protect not only the toes but the upper part of the foot as well. Also the modern safety tools are designed to withstand much heavier objects.

Improved insulation

better insulation

Unlike waterproofness, which has always been a prominent feature for workers, the importance of insulation was not considered so important until recently. Modern work boots are offered in wider range, including boots with such a good insulation that can be worn in even the harshest winters.

Better attachment of soles

During the course of the years, many different construction methods were invented and improved. The construction is very important to the durability of the shoes, as it is the method used to attach the sole to the upper of the boot. The quality of the attachment has improved dramatically, and the price was lowered significantly due to the constant improvement of the technology used to produce them. Some of the most durable work boots can serve for years.

Variety of safety features

Some of the modern work boots offer much more than features mentioned above. Some have puncture resistant soles, others are constructed to withstand electrical hazards, and some boots are even chemical and slip-resistant.

Color and length

styles

The design of the work boots has drastically improved from what it used to be. Nowadays boots come in variety of color – red, yellow, green, black, orange, brown and in different heights with most popular being the 6, 9 and 11-inch ones.

Modern work boots offer not only basic protection but also have great variety of features, are very comfortable, and come in bazillion different colors and styles.

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