To platform or not

In the very distant past I have once mentioned about using platforms to reduce the pressure on your feet, the theory is strong and sound, and definitely works by reducing the pressure on your arches while giving you the boost you need. While I enjoy the benefits that platforms give, there are certain challenges that they do bring, and this time I’m going to explore what the wear and when.

Strangely we shall start with the single sole shoe, which many of my regulars will notice is quite a strong feature of my blog. Single soles do give one great advantage, they’re precise, and feel so much more natural. Anything that could throw you off balance can be felt underfoot, but equally the policies on installing tactile paving makes it agony to try to cross any road these days. There is also a natural limit to heel height on a single sole shoe, most people will struggle beyond 10-12cm of heel, even with my huge 40/41s I max out at 12cm, and I have huge respect to anybody with petite feet who wears anything with 10cms or more.

Thin soles bend and flex, which I do find more agile, but it’s agony when you step on anything, just like The Princess And The Pea, the smallest pebble can cause discomfort in the same way.

Going to the other end of the spectrum, lets look at “stripper” platforms. Since Christian Louboutin famously introduced the 16cm high Daffodil pumps, in the early 2010s they were exceptionally popular with the WAG crowd, large platforms have changed their image somewhat. No longer are they only acceptable in Stringfellows, the likes of Nicholas Kirkwood and Charlotte Olympia have definitely made them acceptable on the red carpet. Wearing them is a rather different proposition though, having suddenly gained 16cm of height its almost like being on stilts, and you will need a fair bit of practice as even the tiniest lump or bump can throw you onto your backside. A small thing under your foot will cause your ankle to move by a longer distance so you’ll need to have exceptionally strong muscles.

On the left are a close copy of the Daffodil by Alejandro Ingelmo, with a huge platform a small object (such as tactile paving) can cause your ankle to move by a large amount, it’s quite a lot of stress on my ankle here. While when you drop down to a 1cm platform seen on these Nude Ted Baker shoes, you’ll notice that the ankle is still pretty much in a straight line

Styling sky high platforms is a challenge though, you want to avoid the whole stripper image and channel your inner A-lister. First I would advise that you find a “hidden platform” as it’s a more elegant, cleaner look although the island platform made popular by Charlotte Olympia are really hot right now. Then it’s all about making sure you cover up, avoid dresses and skirts which are shorter than mid-thigh, or wear wide trousers or a jumpsuit.

Whatever the circumstances, wide legged trousers are going to be your friend this summer, and will complete that elegant look day or night

So we’ve explored the two extremes, and now we’re moving into super versatile territory. Platforms however small will still have an inherent problem that you can’t feel anything, but dropping the platform down to 1-2cm it will still feel natural to wear while freeing you to wear high heel in comfort.

A hidden 1cm heel seen on the Aldo peep toes are a classic approach, but now it’s popular to have a little floating platform, popular with Charlotte Olympia, here it’s only ½cm high

The right mid platform could be perfect shoe that can go effortlessly from day to night, and giving you an evening glam factor while still being comfortable enough to wear all day. Look out for materials that ooze luxury, a creamy velvet or a rich suede anything that has a deepness in colour, they don’t need to be over decorated or embellished while being able to carry themselves in the evening. Since you will get a lot of use from this type of shoe, it’s definitely worth putting a bit of money into.



  1. Total respect who can pull off these hugely high platforms, I just can’t do it myself plus it feels odd suddenly being 8 cms higher than usual. I love the Charlotte Olympia lip shoes, cute as

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I can get away with big platforms (dancing means that i have strong muscles and very flexible ones so if they turn it doesn’t hurt haha). I just think they look a bit like horses hooves (sorry big platform lovers!) I do like a little one from time to time but either to look as a cool dssign feature of the shoe or to bot be apparent at all!


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