Canadian Living: What are some of the sexiest styles of shoes for women?
Julia McEwen: The classic pointy-toe pumps have disappeared for the past few years, but they seem to be making a big comeback.
Personally, I love a sleek pointy-toe heel because it's unapologetically feminine. Not to mention, it's a flattering style for women of every size. The pointy toe gives the illusion that your legs are longer and slimmer.
Also, I'm a sucker for a giant block heel, á la Balenciaga. They're available in pumps and booties and usually available in three-inch heels and up.
However, for gals who suffer from vertigo, you aren't just stuck with skyscraper heels this season. Kitten heels are also big, and with the right print, such as the quintessential leopard print, you have an instantly sexy look.
CL: Can you provide some shopping tips to help women find the perfect pair of shoes?
JM: I always do my shoe shopping mid- to end-of-day. That way my feet are a little swollen. This ensures that I won't purchase a pair that's too tight. Swollen feet and high heels kind of go hand in hand (or is that foot in foot?).
I also like to visit discount stores such as Winners for my shoe purchases. Winners is a goldmine — you just have to go often enough to find the gems. I also frequent Holt Renfrew Last Call. This is where all those gorgeous designer shoes go to die. You can get them up to 90 per cent off the original price and can find a timeless, investment pair of pumps to add to your wardrobe for a fraction of the original price.
If you know your true foot size and it never varies, you can get some great deals online too. If you want a high pair of heels, but are worried that there's no way you'll be able to wear them comfortably, you're wrong. Look for a heel with a platform. This will make the angle less dramatic on your foot, leaving your foot slightly more level and a lot more comfortable.
Page 1 of 2 -- Discover the right shoe for your body type on page 2.Here are McEwen's tips for choosing the right kind of shoe for your body type
• Tall women or short women
I don't think it matters if you're tall or short. You can wear the exact same styles in the same height – it's all about confidence.
• Women with large calves
I would stick with pointy toe heels and pick a colour that is similar to your natural skin tone. This will make your legs look long and lean. Stay away from anything that will break up your ankles, which means no ankle straps, cage shoes or gladiator styles, which will shorten your leg and accentuate larger calves.
• Women with skinny ankles
The world is your oyster. You can wear any style, including ankle straps, which are a no-no for most women.
Finding the right material
When you're looking for that perfect pair of sexy shoes, the options can be overwhelming. McEwen offers tips on choosing between a variety of materials:
• Leather: Always go for leather– unless you're vegan, of course. Leather just looks more expensive and is a better quality in general. It also allows your feet to breathe better than synthetic materials. And, of course, leather is sexy, especially thigh-high leather boots.
• Suede: Suede is great and I especially like it for fall. The added texture makes shoes look richer. However, it's harder to care for and usually doesn't hold up as well as leather, especially not on our Canadian streets, covered in salt and slush in the winters. I don't find this material tremendously sexy, but it is stylish.
• Patent leather: It all depends on your outfit and the style of shoe. When done right this, can be an uber-sexy look. When done wrong, it can look cheap.
• Crocodile: I'm a sucker for croc, but it costs a fortune. On a scale from one to 10 in sexiness, I would say it's a six.
• Satin: I personally don't find satin pumps sexy, but that's a hang-up I have. I think the material usually looks cheap on shoes and doesn't hold up well. Save satin for a nice blouse.
Finding the right heel
Sexy shoes come in a variety of shapes, sizes and heights. McEwen weighs in on some of the most popular choices:
• Stiletto: Very sexy, but not modern.
• Classic pump: Ultra feminine, sleek and chic. With the right outfit, these are always going to be sexy.
• Wedge: I love a nice wedge, but I don't find it sexy at all. It's something you would wear to the grocery store or a backyard barbeque.
• Platform: I have a love affair with platforms. You can get a ton of height and they're super comfortable and stylish, but I don't find them sexy.
• Stacked heel: YES! This is the new sexy. In my opinion, this style is the sexiest of them all.
Take a look at the 12 sexiest shoes in our photo gallery.
Natalie Bahadur is the senior editor of styleathome.com, and is a regular contributor to CanadianLiving.com.
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