Shop For The Perfect Stiletto

What woman doesn’t feel sexy in stilettos? Not only do they make the legs look amazing, donning these fashionable stilts has the ability to make women feel powerful and the center of attention. Although stilettos are in a category all their own, they are still shoes and when it comes to shopping for the perfect pair, it’s important for women to know the dos and don’ts that apply.

DO: Shop for comfort, not just style

There are stilettos out there that are just to die for but if they’re not comfortable, your feet will be the only ones that’ll feel like they’re dying. Don’t go overboard with the style factor. The health of your feet is vital and you’ll be much happier in the long run by purchasing a pair of stilettos that satisfy the style factor as well as the comfort factor.

Women more prone to foot pain don’t have to be out of the running when choosing these types of heels. Instead of buying a pair of stilettos with a super skinny heel, opt for a thicker heel that still has the height. Platform styles offer additional support and are less likely to put as much stress on the foot itself, compared to the traditional stiletto style.

DON’T: Go for the highest heel possible

As fun as it may be to play up one’s height, if you aren’t experienced enough with walking in stilettos, you’ll only open yourself up to a challenge by purchasing sky-high heels. First timers are encouraged to invest in a shorter stiletto style in order to practice walking and getting the feet adjusted to this particular style. If you normally live in flats and wedges, slapping on high heels of this kind will throw you off completely.

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The shorter stiletto is ideal for bumping the height up just enough to get a feel for the shoes while decreasing the risk of falling. Remember, falling in high heels can cause severe injuries to the foot, especially the ankle.

DO: Experiment with different styles

You don’t have to buy a strappy stiletto with a super high, skinny heel. There are plenty of diverse options to choose from in terms of style. There are funky combinations that bring together not just the height of the heel, but the fashion of footwear. For example, a pair of booties with a thicker stiletto heel is an ideal style that provides maximum support, style, and flexibility when it comes to ankle movement.

DON’T: Buy cheap stilettos

This doesn’t mean you have to spend over $100, however. Just as it’s important to choose a pair of stilettos for its comfort and height factor, the same goes for the materials the shoes are made of. The main concern when wearing stilettos is making sure you don’t fall, walk incorrectly or become more prone to misstep. The shoe material itself can play into this factor.

Quality material is sturdy yet flexible and doesn’t restrict movement of the foot and ankle. But cheap materials like the popular plastic versions increase the likelihood of accidents occurring. There are plenty of stilettos of good quality that are within the $50-$100 price range.

Shop for Exercise Clothes

If you’ve decided to join the millions of people that are becoming more physically active, there are a couple of things that will be new to you: finding a gym, purchasing exercise equipment, setting goals, developing your workout routine, etc.

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In this economy, every penny you can stretch, pinch or double is an effort well-spent. But let’s face it, none of us are thrilled with the idea of giving up our fashion budget, no matter how thick or thin our wallet may be. Style experts are well aware of the squeeze on fashion dollars so they have compiled a list of surefire ways to shop smart and continue to look amazing. You may even find it’s more fun to shop this way because you’ve found the smartest way to spend your cash.

Boredom is the single greatest shopping motivator. The shop smart tip to battle boredom is to be creative and find a small detail to change rather than your entire fall wardrobe. For example, make it your mission to find three pairs of shoe clips. These are everywhere from vintage shops to department stores. Find one super fancy pair, one absolutely funky pair, and one in basic black, brown or white depending on the primary color of your shoe collection. Viola! You’ve bought at least three new pairs of shoes for less than the price of one. Put the clips everywhere on the shoes – front, heel, sides, only on one shoe or in a different spot on each shoe.

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Model Chanel Iman says, ”Making something ‘new’ can be as simple as cutting it up. I’ve taken long granny skirts and cut them short to look young and sexy.” Old things can become ‘new’ by replacing buttons with newer, more stylish buttons or even bows or by adding lace or ribbon to edging.

The need to update is the second reason to shop. While some things are just so last season and need to go, others can be updated by adding a trendy, new element to them. Lace tops may not be the rage this year, but put one together with chunky heels and sleek pants or a long skirt and you’ve got a modish outfit.

The dressing opposite of your weekday style can be tough if you don’t want to spend a lot. It doesn’t take much to create a new look you if you’re a clever shopper. If you spend your week in a suit and heels, you’ll need to relax sometime. For a smart, casual look buy a few key pieces (or pull them out from the back of your closet – old is new again) that dress down your workday-wear. Start with your 20-year-old denim jacket – that’s the hip way to say “jean jacket” in ’09. Put it on any white shirt and a bright, print skirt, pull on hobo boots and you’re on your way to relaxation. A denim jacket and hobo boots can comfortably and stylishly dress-down half your existing work wear.

Accessorizing is where you can be really smart and really fun at the same time. Look at every piece of jewelry you own or buy and find a use other than the one it was intended to fulfill.  A long thin necklace becomes a twice-wrapped headband. Pin a large, elaborate ring through a button hole for a fancy take on the broach. Use earrings as a tie-tack or in place of collar buttons on an oxford shirt. The more creative you get, the better you’ll look.

The bottom line for smart shopping: Unless you’re sure you’ll wear something a million times, wait for it to go on sale and always pay cash. The charging means you pay more in the end and miss out on the next must-have when it goes on sale.