We’ve all been there—suffering through pain for days (or sometimes weeks) at a time trying to break in new shoes that are uncomfortable. While it seems smart in theory to wear a pair of shoes enough that they’re finally bearable to walk in without hurting, it’s actually quite terrible for your feet.
According to Profoot’s Dr. Jackie Sutera, foot pain is not normal. “Any time you experience pain, it’s your body’s way of telling you that there is something wrong,” she said. “Ignoring foot pain can lead to injury and chronic problems also affecting ankles, knees, hips, back, and the way you walk.” Essentially, if a pair of shoes hurt your feet when you're trying them on, you should just avoid purchasing them all together.
“Breaking shoes in is a really bad idea, and I don’t recommend buying shoes that don’t fit in the store,” Dr. Sutera further explained. “Sometimes shoes that are comfy initially become uncomfortable after a day of wearing them.” If you are feeling pain over time, there are ways to make your shoes feel a bit more comfortable. Dr. Sutera suggests investing in shoe stretchers to make heels feel less tight, trying gels and moleskin for pesky blisters, and orthodics for generalized arch support and cushioning.
Keep scrolling to shop a few of our favourite heels of the moment that may be comfortable right off the bat (or can be improved upon with simple pain-relieving items).