The Hunt: Heels Under 2 Inches

Stuart Weitzman Poco PumpSure, we all know what basics professional women are supposed to have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn into the ground, it can be a pain to find exactly the right incarnation in stores. In “The Hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.

So here’s the thing about low heels: 80% of the shoes offered with low heels can look really gross* — kind of the shoe equivalent of Mom Jeans. But there are cute ones out there (although it can be a challenge to find them), and there are actually a lot of times you might want to wear low heels, even if you’re not 90 years old:
- All you peeps preparing for interview week where you’ll be on your feet for 8 hours, running from interview to interview? Yeah, you.
- When you’re attending a conference or another networking event that will involve a lot of standing.
- If you have pants that are hemmed for flats.
- If you’re easing back into heels after a long delay because of injury (or if you never really wore heels to begin with).
- If you’re suffering from feet problems like bunions or worse — higher heels just aren’t doable all of the time!

So with that said, I tried to poke around to find the most sophisticated shoes I could for under 2 inches — and on the lower end of the price spectrum, because it’s surprisingly easy to find $600 shoes with 1.5 inch heels. Readers, what heel height do you wear 80% of the time? For those of you who prefer lower heels, which are your favorite brands? 

So: these are your basic pumps from Aerosoles, clocking in at exactly 2″.  This shoe comes in 7 other colors, and looks like a great starter heel.  Check out other shoes in this line such as “Black Cheery” (a slingback with a cute decorative strap) and “Cheer For Me” (a Mary Jane), both of which are also 2″ heels.  The Cheerful pump is $65 at Aerosoles. Cheerful Pump
Rockport Lilah PumpHere we have the Rockport Lilah, which comes in 4 colors (some of which are up to 50% off at Rockport.com).  I like that this one is actually leather, at least for the upper, and that it has the adidas adiPRENE® heel and forefoot cushioning.  The shoe is $110 at Zappos. Rockport – Lilah Pump (Black Smooth Calf) – Footwear
Cole Haan Air Juliana 45No roundup like this is complete without a Cole Haan pump, and I like the Air Juliana in the “2″ or under” category.  In addition to coming in 6 colors, I like that this leather shoe has NIKE AIR® technology.  If you prefer a rounder toe, the Air Talia Mid Pump is just a bit higher at 2.5″ (note also that the Air Juliana comes in a higher 75 mm heel as well).  The Air Juliana 45 is $148 at Zappos. Cole Haan – Air Juliana Pump 45 (Cove Patent) – Footwear
Stuart Weitzman PocoTime after time, readers swear by Stuart Weitzman pumps, and these highly rated Poco pumps look great. I like the pointed toe, the kitten heel, and the ultrasuede lining. They’re $$165-$275 at Zappos (depending on which of the 11 colors strikes your fancy — I’ve pictured the ““Jeans Snake Charmer”” color at the top of this post). (Note that the Bobo is another Weitzman shoe that’s under 2″.)  Stuart Weitzman – Poco (Red Quasar) – Footwear
Butter Stone PumpsButter actually has a bunch of cute heels under 2″. I like these Stone Pumps (available in 4 colors — including “glitter”!), but do check out the whole Butter collection on Amazon.  The Stone Pumps are $290. Butter Women’s Stone Pump
Jason Wu Slingback Kitten-Heel PumpLike I said, it’s really easy to find pricier shoes in the 2″ and under category. Today I’m liking these gorgeous blue and black slingback kitten heel pumps from Jason Wu, which clock in at exactly 2″. They’re $658 at Neiman Marcus. Jason Wu Slingback Kitten-Heel Pump

Like this feature? Check out other recent installments!

(L-#)

* UPDATE: A number of readers are taking issue with my calling low heels “gross,” so I’ve updated the text above to more accurately reflect my views.  To be even more clear: I think low heels are great, and practical, and I whole heartedly, enthusiastically recommend all of the ones I’ve cited above, which is kind of the entire point of this post.  BUT: If you had just spent the past 2 hours looking for cute heels under 2″ to whole heartedly, enthusiastically recommend, you’d agree with me that 80% of the ones out there are really gross.

Comments

  1. Wow, that’s harsh! Low heels are “gross”?? I wear them daily, and while I would say that it is a challenge to find ones that are interesting and have some style, I would never call them gross or the equivalent of Mom jeans. Some of us are tall enough that it would be uncomfortable to add another 4 inches to our height (and yes, I know these days it’s empowering to be tall and what not, but I still don’t want to stick out in a crowd any more than I already do, not to mention the comfort factor in wearing a lower heel). Kat, let’s embrace all heel heights!

    • Elysian says:

      Agree, my fist reaction as well. I love a pair of low heels, especially when I want to wear heels but want to wear them with pants currently hemmed for flats. We’ve been vehemently hating on some things recently: low heels, cuffs, pleats (though that last one may have been deserved…). Seems like a little too much to me.

      • Anonymous says:

        I was dismayed by the harshness as well. Not everyone can wear high heels. I have knee problems and can’t wear high heels. Good to know I’m “gross.” :(

        • Anonymous says:

          +1

          My body does *not* like high heels. And for that matter, skinny heels, either. I’m sure I look better speed-walking and standing in my short, relatively stodgy heels than I do (oops, make that did, once) splayed out on the sidewalk where I’d lost my balance.

    • +1

      • I’ve amended the text above to more accurately reflect my views. I’m not going to name any brand names, but if you’d just spent the last 2 hours looking for cute heels under 2″ to recommend (which I 100% agree, exist) to readers, you’d agree with me on the “gross” comment.

        • baylaw says:

          I’ve never found a pair of low heels that I liked. “Gross” is my reaction, too. I think they look great on tall, lean people, though.

    • Did you just start a heel acceptance movement?

    • but… why is it ok to call mom jeans “gross” but not low heels?

    • Anonymous says:

      i totally agree

  2. Anonymous says:

    My sensible work/interview/running around in heels are cole haan mid-talias in black. they are low (2″ or so) and have a more rounded toe but are still sleek looking and are so stable and comfortable. a little tight at first, but the front loosens up in a non-patent leather.

    • Cornellian says:

      have those, ordered them in wide, which was easy and a good choice. BUT I ALSO just dropped them off after 20 wears to get them reheeled :(

      • 2lawl says:

        Me too! I’m glad it’s not just me. It took me forever to get over spending that much on shoes (I’m new to having to look nice) and they go and die after only 2 months of very little use. I’m annoyed.

    • Bonnie says:

      Air Talias are actually about 2.5″ There are exceptions but most heels under 2″ are frumpy.

  3. Wordy says:

    “Gross”? Seriously? First off, that’s a completely judge-y statement, and if you read the comments section you would see that many of your readers prefer flats or low heels for a variety of reasons. None

    • Wordy says:

      (sorry) of which is “gross.”. Second, Kat, at some point in your life you may be navigating one, two or three children around and low heels are a lot more practical.

      Complete fail.

      • Kat does have a kid.

        I personally find low heels to be no more comfortable than high heels, and I do think a lot of them are ugly. I was kind of surprised by the use of the word “gross,” but I don’t necessarily disagree. Let’s face it, they can be kinda frumpy. I don’t even like that Jason Wu number, no matter how expensive.

        • Wordy says:

          Yeah, I know she does. Should have expressed more fully – navigating a child or two or three to school or daycare dressed in full business formal with your work bag, their gear, etc. Much easier to manage in low heels!

    • Wordy says:

      Wow, I am grumpy about this. I see you’ve now edited the comment from “Here’s the thing about low heels:they usually look pretty gross” to recognize that only 80% do, in your estimation. I’d argue that that percentage is too low but at least you thought better of your original statement.

    • I agree. If low heels are “gross,” what are most flats and low wedges? To me, kitten heels are a great compromise, a look that is feminine, professional and stylish without being sexy. Like it or not, a lot of men think that high heels are sexy, and I’m not just talking about the two inch platform plus four inch heel style.

      • It’s not the height of the heel that makes kitten heels gross, it’s what they look like. Three inch heels are aesthetically pleasing. So are flats. Not so much kitten heels, in my opinion. It’s just a matter of taste. You might think differently–that’s fine.

  4. I wear much higher heels (4″) most days but I have some kitten heels I love. The only ones here that are really frumpy are the Aerosoles. The Butter shoes are pretty and I even like the Rockports. My favorite kitten heels are from Enzo Angiolini from several years ago. Sort of a crinkle patent with a flat bow on the front. I have them in red and light brown. I do find that, for some strange reason, kitten heels with a slingback tend to wear off the polish on my fourth toe. No idea why.

    • I am not a fan of the Aerosoles either. But I like the others. I think low heels tend to look best when they have nice details (e.g., the snakeskin or the Jason Wu pictured) or are just really simple and elegant (e.g., the SW or CH pictured).

  5. Circe says:

    The “gross” made me laugh. One of the most iconic outfits in fashion history is styled with a low heel. I give you the Audrey Hepburn Breakfast at Tiffany’s outfit: http://alisonkerr.files.wordpress.com/2011/01/breakfast-at-tiffanys-party-outfit.jpg (or, you know, anything else Audrey ever wore). I agree that the “gross” comment was pretty harsh, but I understand that some people feel that way about low heels. Check these out: http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/stuart-weitzman-daydream-pump-nordstrom-exclusive/3283947?origin=PredictiveSearch&fashionColor=&resultback=400

  6. Bluejay says:

    My Cole Haan Air Talias with a 2.5″ heels are incredibly comfortable, infinitely more so than any of my under 2″ heels. Just had to put in a plug.

  7. LilacWine says:

    Okay, I feel like I finally have to make a plug for Varda shoes in New York. I don’t think I’ve seen them mentioned on any posts, but they are hands-down the best high-end work shoes I have ever found. I think I saw one other poster on here comment about them once, and they are amazing!

    I spent over 6 months looking for shoes that fit my criteria: conservative pumps, low heel, variety of suit colors, reasonably wide width, well-made. The first two criteria meant that most designer shoes are out, and when I would find wide ones, they were usually from cheaper brands that did not look as professional as I would have liked. Varda (only one store in Soho, although they do mail order if you’re not in New York) fit all my criteria. If you are looking for beautifully made work shoes, look here. The designs are all very basic, but you can get pretty much any permutation of basic shoe you want (i.e. all heel heights/style, all pump types, all colors). They also have a pretty good boots and casuals selection.

    Be warned, they are pricey – you’re looking at 300-500 for a pair of leather pumps (although their sale section in the back can take you down to 150-300. But they are very high quality, hand made in Italy – think Manolos quality but with totally conservative office appropriate styles. On top of that, the owner is usually at the store and super helpful with shoe sizes/styles. They are perfect if you are not so “fashion-y” in your wardrobe, but like to look put together and well-tailored in a quite elegance kind of way.

    • Bubbles says:

      I heart Varda too-good call.

    • Varda says:

      I was the other commenter who posted (several times) about Varda. They are the most comfortable heels I have ever owned, even though mine are, at 4 inches, the highest I own. I think because they are hand made.

      I also love Galo pumps.

  8. Does anyone else find kitten heels absurdly difficult to walk in given their relative height? Perhaps I just need more practice, but I often give up on kitten heels and switch back to flats, as I find the 1 1/2 – 2″ is not worth the increased difficulty in walking.

    • mamabear says:

      Yes, completely. I posted below.

      • Banker says:

        Me too. I routinely roll my ankles in kitten heels and walk fine in 3″+ daily. I think my brain expects the heels to fall in a different place on the sidewalk than they do in kitten heels.

    • Me too.

      My ankles feel weaker and wobble much more when I wear kitten heels than 3″ pumps. Weird.

    • Niktaw says:

      Oh yes. I had a pair of kitten heel mules and they were horrendously uncomfortable to walk in.
      I am glad that there are so many low wedge styles currently available. Some are indeed frumpy, but there are many cute ones.

    • I was just about to write this exactly, but I’ll just +1 you instead.

      Short heels put the ankle in a relatively weak position. Totally flat is obviously a stable position. On the other end of the spectrum, engaging the ankle muscles happens relatively automatically when the heel is above 3″ (though that constant engagement can also cause tendon problems and other issues). Shorter heels in the 2″ range put the ankle at an angle that makes engaging the supportive muscles much more difficult. In addition to the aesthetics, this is the reason that dancers balance with their ankle arched as much as possible v only partially arched.

      I’m going to get burned for this, but so be it… Maybe it will get someone to improve the way they walk in heels-

      The physics of stepping onto a short heel with partially-arched ankle make the step more of a stomp than a stride (in order words, the step is harder and heavier). I’ve noticed that I and other women tend to bend our knees more when walking in low heels to counter the wobbly-ness of the weak ankle position.

      Here’s my PSA: check how you look when you walk in heels *especially* if you’re walking in low heels. Take a video of yourself walking (and not looking in a mirror). I cringe every time I see women walking like newborn colts. I admit- I secretly judge women who walk this way. I know it has nothing to do with your professional ability, but I can’t believe that someone so smart and adept could miss something so obvious.

      If you have a “bad walk” in heels, just don’t wear them! It’s so much better for people to not notice your shoes (bc you’re in flats) than to notice you’re shoes because you look so uncomfortable in them. Or, worse, for someone to consciously or subconsciously think something negative about you because your shoe choice makes you stomp.

      • Niktaw says:

        Is the length of the footbed a factor?

      • mamabear says:

        I hear you. I wonder all the time if the woman walking in front of me knows how much her feet are wobbling back and forth every time she takes a step. Last week I was behind someone who was managing to balance on her shoes with the heels sticking out at close to a 45 degree angle. I don’t get how she stayed upright.

        If you think wedges are ugly, I guarantee you, walking badly in high heels is uglier.

    • Susan says:

      Yes. They’re just not worth it. They don’t add enough height for their relative lack of comfort and for their still getting caught in what seems like every crack in the sidewalk. I either go with flats or a higher heel.

      Kitten heels, for a shortie like me, present the worst of both worlds, despite my liking their look on other people!

  9. I have to agree that 80% of low heels are gross because I am constantly searching for (and buying when I find them) the remaining 20%. I flipped through the preview of Lauren Conrad’s style book on Amazon where she called kitten heels the “mullet of shoes.” So Kat could have been harsher.

    • mamabear says:

      ha! I’d never heard this, but I’ve always thought of those pumps that have a big platform in the front and a spiky thin stiletto in the back as the mullet of shoes. And LC probably wears those…

      • sweetknee says:

        A somewhat related question. . I am tall (5’10″), and most of my shoes are 3 inches or so. I have one or two pairs that have a two inch platform along with the heel. I really don’t mind being tall or sticking out in a crowd. However, I find I just cannot avoid “stomping” in platforms ! What am I doing wrong ? It just seems that the shoes itself has no “give” in that area, and I sound like a herd of elephants on the hardwood floors of our office.

        The lawyer in the office upstairs from me wears platforms all the time ( she’s 5’2″), and I can tell every time she gets up to go to the copier or bathroom, so it must not be just me. . . .

        • mamabear says:

          I think you are probably stomping because your front platform does not flex. There’s no way a 2″ platform has much flex. So you can’t walk the way your foot naturally does. I think prety much the only option is to be a bit stompy.

          As I said, I’m not wild about these shoes, though I do like a retro 40′s shoe with a modest front platform and proportional chunkier heel.

  10. CatMeows says:

    Normally a lurker, but decided to start seeking advice here since this is such a wonderful community!

    I find most of my heels quickly gets scratched up inside of the toe box by my toenails. This happens with not well worn shoes, but new ones after wearing for a couple of times only. This is a bit gross, but I could basically feel 3-4 holes in there! A related problem is I can’t buy lots of cute flats as I fear the leather presses down on my toes, and I’m afraid my toe nails would poke a hole very soon. Does anyone else have this issue? If so, how do you deal? I tried sizing up, but then my heel will slip out with every step. And no, my nails are not long… at all.

    Or maybe I’m doomed?

    • LilacWine says:

      To be honest, my first thought was that you are buying the wrong shoe size. It’s annoying because it’s not just a matter of sizing up. You also need to be dealing with width, vamp height, and things that are usually non-negotiable for most women’s shoes. I’m always so jealous that nice men’s shoes always come in a variety of widths (some of the brands will even make a mixed width shoe for them)! You might want to try a size up but in a brand that has a narrow width selection to accomodate your heel. The other option is a wide width to accomodate your toes and then get one of those stick-in heel pads to solve the heel problem. Good luck!

    • Niktaw says:

      I haven’t had this problem, but have you considered low-cut peds or, for slingbacks, toe tape over the toenails? A PITA to be sure, but you may only need to do it once or twice.

    • My big toenails point slightly upward so I know what you are talking about! Although your toes sound a little more pointy than mine, you’ll want to look for brands that are roomier in the toe (rather than sloping down quickly to meet the bottom of the shoe) – Brooks Bros. almond toe heels have more space for toes than any other brand I’ve worn.

      http://www.brooksbrothers.com/IWCatProductPage.process?Merchant_Id=1&Section_Id=380&Product_Id=1570369&Parent_Id=314&default_color=BLACK&sort_by=&sectioncolor=&sectionsize=

    • I have some of the same thing, especially on the side where the big toe got smashed. It’s a matter of angle of toenail rather than length. First, you need to realize that a good toe box needs height. Many women’s shoes are built for pancake feet, and I just can’t wear those.
      I’ve had some success with smoothing down the top of my nail, but gently like with a polisher rather than a file. Otherwise I’d say Clarks, Rieke, Ecco..

    • Research, Not Law says:

      I have the same issue with my big toe. I’m even missing a nail on one big toe, and while I don’t get a hole like I do on the other foot, I still get obviously uneven wear. FWIW, the wearing is on the top of the shoe, not the front. It’s not a sizing issue.

      I have to be careful with the shoes I buy. Typically, they have a generous and stiff or reinforced toe box. I still wear leather shoes, but they aren’t usually soft leather. They aren’t clogs, either, I promise. I’m wearing some very cute BCBG leather flats today, for example. It’s just a matter of trying on shoes until one fits immediately.

      I also can prevent holes and bulging if I wear socks. I like Hue’s No Show socks. They particularly help me get away with softer materials.

    • CatMeows says:

      Thanks! I will look into toe tapes…I’m glad I’m not the only one with this problem. And I do tend to buy shoes with softer leather, which doesn’t help. Stiffer leather are just too painful.

    • If you’re getting 3-4 holes, perhaps your toenails are just too long.

    • Spunkrat says:

      My nails, both fingers & toes, curl upwards & outwards. The only solution I’ve come up with is trimming & filing my toenails often to keep them as short as possible, & putting tape over shoes that I’ve worn a considerable groove into so I don’t bust through.

  11. Shoelover says:

    Anything under 3″ usually looks strange and disproportionate to me. I like flats and I like high heels, but don’t wear anything in between except maybe the occasional pair of wedges.

  12. mamabear says:

    I’m recovering from foot problems and agree with Kat – most low heels are orthopedic-looking. Believe me when I say I’ve looked under every rock.

    I’ve had great luck with Fluevog, Fidji, Rieker, Ecco, and all low wedges by Cole Haan. Of those, Rieker and Ecco still make a lot of ugly styles, but there are some winners in there too.

    I personally can’t wear kitten heels as pictured because they’re too ankle-twisty for me.

    I’ll recommend again the blog barkingdogshoes. I don’t love all of Kirstin’s suggestions, but she has turned me onto some really great styles that have allowed my feet to slowly improve over the last two years without looking completely frumpy.

  13. I own only a few pairs of low heels because I actually find it more difficult to walk in them than in high heels: (1) you have all the wobbly-ness of a stiletto, but without the full corresponding shift in weight to the balls of your feet – making the heel feel less stable to me, and (2) low heels are most likely to pinch my feet because they still need to bend like a flat although they’re shaped like a heel.

    I wear 2.5″-4″ heels probably 3 days a week (all week if in meetings), and flats the other 2. (I have a walking commute and wear comfy walking flats for that.)

    • Shoelover says:

      I think you hit the nail on the head about the weight shift – I hate that slight elevation that doesn’t let me fully transfer my weight to the ball of my foot. I wonder if it varies for women depending on where they carry their weight. My dance teacher used to point out that I was “derriere centered” and liked to come way up on my toes when I danced. Other women were what she called “abdominally centered” and seemed happier dancing flat-footed or in a low releve.

  14. I highly recommend the Naturalizer Denios for an inexpensive, low-heeled shoe. They are 2.5″ rather than 2″, but they’re actually more comfortable than some of my slightly shorter kitten heels.

    • Anonymous Poser says:

      Thanks for the rec. Found it–Naturalizer Deino. (Easier to find that way ;) )

    • Nellie says:

      Agree with this rec. A completely classic, basic pump that is really comfortable. And I find the 2.5-inch height is a sweet spot for me in terms of looking good with both skirts and pants.

    • These are my go-to work pumps as well. Really comfortable, right out of the box, and look decent with skirts and pants.

  15. Medium Heels all the way. I recently found a pair of high heel pumps that were too die for and in the spirit of trying to be as cool as my writing partner in crime – who wears sky high heels as if they were sneakers – bought them. Complete fail. Cannot walk in them for the life of me. I look like a wobbly uncomfortable teenager who snuck into mom’s closet to try on her shoes.

    So it’s back to medium height heels. Luckily, I am pretty tall. So 2.5-3.0 inches are my preferred height, because at this height I find my arch is supported best. I scour all the “comfort/grandma” shoe brands (e.g. Naturalizer, Sofft, Clark’s etc.) regularly so I don’t miss the occasional pair that is chic and stylish. I realize that this way I am never going to have the most outstanding footwear, but as long as its reasonably passable I don’t mind, because I am of the firm conviction that deportment is half the battle.

    • long-time lurker says:

      This is pretty much how I feel. I cannot do the pointy toed shoes of any height, or heels more than about 2.5-3 inches, it just kills my feet and even on days when I am just sitting at my desk I seem to get up a lot and walk a lot. I do flip flops or commuting flats for my commute, and keep a variety of mid-height heels at the office. I will also wear cute flats when I know I have a long day of being on my feet. I hear you about the granny brands! I am currently wearing some Clarks that I think look acceptable enough for a a late thirties type in a law firm. It is hit or miss with these brands as some cross the frump line even for me, but there is an occasional gem. Stuart Weiztman is a bit of a splurge but some of those are a good height and more comfortable.

  16. I like kitten heels generally, though certainly as with anything “sensible,” there can be some rather unattractive options. I think details are important here, as a result. I would also add that in addition to Kat’s list, lower heels are great for when you want to look professional and elegant but without looking like you’re trying too hard or whatnot. E.g., I was having lunch last week with a mentor who is a much older male and although there is nothing remotely inappropriate about it, I just felt better wearing 2 inch heels than I would have wearing 3 1/2 inch ones, if that makes sense…

    There are a lot of cute low Stuart Weitzman heels on sale at 6 pm dot com, inc. these: http://tinyurl.com/d3esuaf (also see the unfortunately named “midlasagna” in plain black leather – not as big a discount but gorgeous)

    • Also: Joan & David and their lower price line Circa by J&D both make cute and comfortable lower heels (nothing worse than a lower heel that isn’t actually comfy) –
      I like these:
      http://www.6pm.com/joan-david-gila-pink

    • mamabear says:

      Oh, those Stuart Weitzman Tuxbows are pretty! And a really good price for what they are. I can’t wear skinny heels like that, but for those who can, this is a great lead. If I could, I would have purchased them just now. :)

    • mamabear says:

      Also, I kind of want to buy the midlasagnas just so I can say, “Today, I think I’ll wear my Midlasagnas.”

      • Haha, you and me both! Apparently, there are also regular lasagnas. They’re taller. If they get marked down a bit more, I might pull the trigger and then next time we do a “what are you wearing” post, I will chime in with, “Grey tweed dress and purple suede Lasagnas, thanks.”

        But seriously, I love the black mid ones. They strike me as both really pretty and totally authoritative, somehow.

      • Ha, this was my thought too!

    • MissJackson says:

      I have those Tuxbows in the brown color — bought them from Endless about 3-4 months ago. The leather is a little stiff, but they are still nice. Not my most comfortable shoe, and even the wide seemed a little narrow compared to other SWs. However, at the same time I also bought another pair of SWs — “puffystuff” http://www.6pm.com/stuart-weitzman-puffystuff-hummus-aniline which are super soft and comfortable. I bought the nude (in wide width) and they immediately became one of my favorite pairs of shoes. I don’t get any of that wobbly ankle stuff in the puffystuffs, although I have no idea why not.

  17. ToEachHerOwn says:

    Curvy heels, call them kitten if you want, under 2.5″ is always my goal. I run, and struggle with tight calf muscles. Plus, the men I work with are not tall, and I am. And, then, there’s comfort. Wedges do NOTHING for the appearance of my legs. Heels, even short ones, MUCH better. They are not easy to find, but not impossible either. Check out the Joan & David “Gardner” pump, now on sale at Nordstrom. They are just SLIGHTLY over 2″. NOT 2.5″. Comfortable, cute, and all leather, but they squeak. I’m keeping them anyway. I have had really good luck with Via Spiga. The “Angie” pump at Bloomingdales, among other places, looks great.

    • TEHO2 says:

      I agree– for me it has nothing to do with fashion; it has to do with my general health. The “tendon problems” that one commenter mentioned with higher heels are actually a shortening of the calf muscle and tightening of the achilles. Thus, if you wear heels often, don’t be surprised that you’re “only comfortable in high heels” because your calf muscle is now strained by walking in flats. I don’t recommend heels to any woman who is active for this reason. It just doesn’t make sense to put your body at risk for the sake of fashion. But that’s just me.

  18. eastbaybanker says:

    I will add to Anon’s comment that some of us are just too tall to wear 3 or 4 inch heels and not be distracting. As far as the “grossness” of kitten heels and low heels, I think it really has to do with the thickness of the heel and the shape of the toe box. A skinny heel with a pointy toe is adorable. I think a thicker heel with a more square toe can look a little queen mum. (Although to those of you wearing more stable heels for foot conditions, you are true fashionistas to be wearing heels at all.)

    Also, if your pants are tailored to your heel height, there’s really no visual difference between 1 inch heels and 3 inch heels. Skirts, I see more of a difference, and I’m more likely to wear my taller heels with skirts.

    • Elysian says:

      I agree – all the low heeled shoes that I like are pointy toed and have a skinny heel. Scanning Zappos, I would say don’t buy anything that looks like a clog, for instance. But there are a lot of cute pointy toed, skinny heeled low heels. I generally don’t wear them with skirts, but with my pants I agree you can’t really tell the difference between a low and high heel, unless I’m sitting and you’re staring at my feet under my desk/the conference table.

  19. karenpadi says:

    Question about styling low heels–I just got a bunch of pants that are more fitted and “straight leg” that go with ballet flats and loafer-like flats than my likely-outdated and frumpy boot-cut/wide-leg look (these aren’t outdated for everyone, but they were on I-hate-shopping-me).

    Can I wear low heels and wedges in more “fitted” pants that have narrow ankles (I don’t think they are tapered, but what do I know)? Is there anything to watch out for?

    • YES. that is your answer.
      No, really i think i look much better in my ankle cigar–e pants when i wear my sandals that have a 1.5″ wedge than in flats. Anything with a small wedge should be great, I don’t think there are any problems to look out for.

  20. Rockport Lilah, at 2″, are also very nice shoes in this category, as are Nine West’s Oaks and Upgradeya.

    I usually switch between 1.5″, 2″ and 3″ heels throughout the week to keep my achilles tendon and leg muscles from getting too used to being shortened. I’d rather look “gross” the the eyes of the fashion judgmental than face a lot more leg problems when I’m in my 60s.

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