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|Now that I’m officially into my fifties, I’m finding I have a low tolerate for uncomfortable shoe or hard to wear shoes and I can no longer subscribe to ‘pain for fashion’s sake. Nah, when my feet start talking to me it could be a early wrap for the evening and my feet have been ‘talking to me’ alot lately. There are even shoes I look at on-line and can just feel the pain I would subjecting myself too if I bought them. I’ve invested in a lot of high heels in my forties (not quite sure what I was thinking about) and though I’m good about moving older styles out of my shoe collection via Ebay, I’m not totally ready to walk away from my 5 inch and up stiletto. I have however decided I could find a happy medium, a compromise. These are some of the things I decided to do in order to still get some use of my over 4 inch heels.|
I purchased more heels in a lower heel height (3 inches). The style that are super cute and even trendy are also made in heights lower than 4 inches. I found an amazing pair of on-trend heels from Jessica Simpson in a 3 inch heel. On the days that I want to have a little height but not subject myself to 4 or 5 inch heel, I opt for the lower heels to give my feet a break. You can also find super cute, trendy and classic heels at thrift stores like the Goodwill, Value Village and Clothes Mentor for under $10 dollars. I realized I didn’t have a lot of heels at 4 inches and under so I started buying them at thrift stores on the cheap and now I have a fairly decent collection.
|I wear a low wedge heel or comfortable cute flats (with inner foot support) 4 days at week at work now. If I’m going out after work, I change into the heels appropriate for what I plan on doing (movies, bar, restaurant, lot of walking, etc). Giving my feet a break during the work day is a good thing. If at anytime during the day I need to switch it up, I plan ahead and throw a pair of heels in my handbag. The point is I’m not in heels all day long bringing pain and anguish to my feet and creating varicose veins.
Since my feet have been pretty comfortable and supported throughout the work week, I can wear a nice 3 or 4 inch heel on Friday and be super sassy.
Invest in good shoe insoles. I can’t stress this enough. It’s worth it to purchase good insole to protect your feet. They make insole for open toe sandals, boots and all variation of shoes. They have various types of insole for different kinds of support (arch, ball of feet, heel, etc). You can swap the good ones out and put them in different shoes instead of buying a pair for every shoe.
|I massage my feet, stretch my leg muscles and soak my feet in Epsom Salt at the end of the work week. Epsom salt is great old remedy and it works for combating any kind of inflammation and swelling. It really is a nice relief for my feet and help to keep them in better good shape. I also get pedicures every two weeks and invest in the extra foot massage when my wallet allows for it.|
|Pick the right heel height for your activity or event. Select the right heel height for what you have planned for the day. If it’s dinner and the movies and you are in car, just walking from the your vehicle to the restaurant and theatre with very little standing or walking, then you can probably rock those 5 inch heels. If you’re at a concert where you’re standing for the entire show or you’re at a festival doing a great deal of walking, you might want to wear a good sturdy platform heel, wedge heel or opt for a 3 inch heel for comfort and support. Basically wear the shoes that best fit the activity or event and won’t cause you to be dealing with sore feets when you get home.|
|Do Yoga for your feet. My job has a wellness program and fitness center in the building and I’m now taking yoga classes. I think taking yoga overall for the entire body is very important to keep your joints and ligament flexible, limber and to keep that blood circulating going, especially for individual over forty. Their are specific routine and poses to strengthen your legs and feet muscles. There are several videos on youtube that can get you started.|
|Supplements can help. I have found that taking collagen and MSM has helped me greatly with any joint or muscle discomfort, also Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth has worked incredibly well in helping relieve inflammation and pain in my ankle that I had for months before taking a tablespoon of DE every day. Supplement can and do work but with anything, please consider any other supplements or medication you may be taking prior to introducing something new into your regime, as some medications and herbs will conflict with each other.|
|You can still rock those 4 or 5 inch heels ladies but as you get older you probably can’t wear those puppies all day. You have to be selective about when and how to wear them; making sure to give your feet the support or break it needs during the day so you can rock the glam heels for date night or a special event that evening. I hope some of things I’ve done will or can help you to balance out your shoe collection and get a sensible rotating going so that you are not putting undue stress on your feet ladies.|
|Well I think the time has finally arrived, when I have to downgrade my heel height. A few months ago I slipped in a restaurant and twisted my ankle and ever since that incident I’ve been dealing with occasion swelling and pain. I went to the ortho clinic and they told me I had some kind of sprain that is common for individuals with flat feet. They gave me to exercise to do with a theraband, but the exercises really suck so I’m trying to find some good youtube videos of better exercises I can do that will allow me more control.
In the meantime I’ve been wearing my sneakers to work. I’ve invested in some good insoles and yes, I may have to start downgrading my heel height. At 51 it’s probably time to go from those sky high 5 to 5.5 inch heels to nice 3 to 2.5 inch heel right about now. so I’ve been shopping at the Goodwill and other thrift stores buying lower heel dress and casual shoes to populate my shoe racks. I’ve been finding some great deals for under $7. So I should have a nice selection in no time. I still plan on wearing the higher heels I’ve invested so much money in over the last 10 years, they’ll be worn for events where I won’t be on my feet all night.
Great documentary about the real harm of GMO foods on our grocery store shelves. If you are not familiar with what’s every major food brand is poisoning you with or the ammonia sprayed beef in fast food hamburgers. You definitely need to education yourself on the factory, profit driven world of Big Corporate food conglomerates. A good place to start is this documentary and the documentary Food, Inc.
|Being creative to save money is absolute key in maintaining a reasonable clothing budget. I like to maximize my dollar by shopping at discount retailers like Target, Junior Store like Forever 21, shopping department stores during seasonal clearance like Macy's, Dillards, Sears and designer discount stores like Nordstrom's Rack, Marshalls and T.J. Maxx.|
|I do purchase quite a bit of "cheap chic" items from different places. I think a great way to pull some of these pieces off is to do the "low-end, high-end" mix. It's quite the trend for women to mix inexpensive vintage and luxe designer pieces. You can work this same combination with your cheap chic pieces and higher-end department store brands (or designer pieces if you have any).|
|Try limiting your cheap chic pieces to one or two per outfit.|
|Only use one main cheap chic piece per outfit if at all possible. (ex: a H&M Shirt paired with Banana Republic slacks and a Michael Kors belt). This combination balances your look and keep the luxe factor in full effect.|
|When purchasing cheap chic items makes sure they look luxe. Check for the weight of the fabric, extra detailing, nice buttons, stitching, is it lined? I always do this, I try to buy the best cheap chic piece I can find. I'm constantly looking at fabrication and fit.|
|Using quality accessories like a fine leather belt, silk scarf or quality jewelry can help to balance your cheap chic look and add more of a luxe factor.|
|Add a pair of really nice leather shoes to your outfit or if you are wearing vegan shoes make sure the fabrication of the shoes are on-point!|
|You can always add more luxe to your cheap chic items by swatching out what's on the garment with nicer buttons, trim or embellishment.|
|Keeping track of how much money you spend is important – even smaller, inexpensive things add up. Try using personal finance software or apps while you shop!|
|Throwing in medium and small accessory pieces like a nice leather bag or a pair of leather gloves with a mink collar to your outfit, can definitely increase the luxe factor of your look without breaking the bank.|
|Certain fabrics work better for cheap chic apparel such as heavy jersey, sateen, cotton, some wool-blends, etc. These pieces tend to hang or fit better if the fabric is of a decent quality, making your item look like it cost more then what you paid.|
|Buying basic prints, colors and styles can help to keep your cheap chic pieces timeless and lends to more versatility (ex: White tailored shirt, black pencil skirt, taupe trousers, polka dot blouse, pinstripe blazer). It also gives you the ability to style these pieces more frequently into different looks.|
|What do you think of shoes clubs?
I just found out about yet another shoe club - Sole Society. The first shoe club was of course started by Kim K. - ShoeDazzle, then another club popped up called Just Fabulous and now we can add another one to the mix. Sole Society.
Sole Society offers members the same features as ShoeDazzle. You enter a profile of your fashion likes or dislikes. This gives the club information to determine your overall style and what shoe you would most likely purchase. Based on what they determine from your preferences, they suggest several shoe styles for that member to select from each month. ShoeDazzle I believe may give it's members 3 or 4 choices, whatever you pick there is a flat price of $39.95 per shoe. JustFab is also $39.95 and Sole Society's monthly charge for one (1) shoe is $49.95. The shoe club displays a few styles they believe may appeal to the member's taste to purchase each month (hence the personal stylist angle). You can opt-out of buying anything that month by logging in and setting that option before a certain date.
I'm not quite sure what I think of that concept yet because even if you were an extremely busy person and was not able to shop the brick and mortar stores; there are still really good shoe deals to be had on-line from many different retailers and many of the shoes are brand-names under $50 dollars. Belk has really good deals (especially during seasonal clearance) and so does Macy's and Nordstroms Rack. I have picked up brands like BCBG, Jessica Simpson, Nine West, etc on sale either at the store or on-line for under $50 dollars.
Personally, I really need to try the shoe on if I'm unfamiliar with how the brand fits or I know their sizing is inconsistent - like Aldos! I also like the art of the hunt. I know what I like as soon as I see it and I don't think even with the most detailed survey that anyone can get my style down pat, even I don't know what will truly appeal to me until I see it, view it at different angles, walk around with them on or style an outfit around it.
Though, I thought some of the styles were cute on a few of the shoe clubs, I didn't see where any of them were exclusive designs for that particular shoe club or that they were using designers like Payless. I mentioned Payless because most of their shoes are vegan and it looks like the majority of shoes these clubs offer their members are made of vegan/PVC material. There is nothing wrong with that at all provided that each shoe has good workmanship behind it and they are able to work well with the material so it "realistically" mimics natural fibers.
I like what Payless has done with Alice + Olivia and Chris Siriano. I wonder now that other companies are getting into the 'shoe club' game if Kim K. will step it up a notch and start using guest designers? Certainly, she now needs something to separate ShoeDazzle from what looks like a forming 'pack'. Would you become a member of a shoe club?
|Many women complain that their clothing from fast fashion retailers like H&M or F21 don’t last 3 or 4 washing. Well, I have a dress I purchased from Forever 21 in 2006 and it still looks new and is holding up just fine, with many more years to go. I don’t have money to waste and I don’t believe in the concept of ‘disposal clothing’ — you wear a few times and then toss. Nope, that’s just sheer waste and very anti-Green. Here are a few tips that I’ve learned to keep my purchases lasting for years. There is a method to the madness: It’s very important to understand how to care for your cheap chic items.|
|Tips for Caring for your Cheap Chic Wardrobe|
|Washing Your Cheap Chic Items|
Please give and participate, they are really in a serious crisis situation right now as Haiti was and need all the support they can get. The people of Japan especially the elderly living closer to the disaster area are losing their lives. All are deeply on my mind. Please help anyway you can. Tweet http://www.forjapanwithlove.com/ to raise awareness for this relief effort.