I’m of the grin and bare it mentality when it comes to shoe comfort. If Sarah Jessica Parker runs around New York City (in real life and on SATC) in drool-worthy heels without a wince of pain showing up on her face, I should too, and I’ll put up with the blisters and aches for the sake of wearing a beautiful pair of stilettos that perfectly accessorize my dress. With that being said, I had all but come to terms with the fact that all heels were generally uncomfortable—but then one pair of heels changed everything I’ve ever known to be true.
I stumbled upon Banana Republic’s Madison 12-Hour Pumps ($118; bananarepublic.com) during one of the many shopping trips that fiscally I probably should have passed on, but I like to say it was fate. They are by far the most comfortable pair of heels I’ve ever worn in my life. And I’m not talking, like, decently comfy for 30 minutes and then digging and making actual slashes into your skin. The twelve hours in the name is legitimate, and I can wear them all day at the office and then for several hours later without any physical agony—or injury!
At at a full three inches, they’re not kitten heels either. The actual stiletto is sturdy and just thick enough, so you don’t feel like you’re wobbling around all day. The shoe’s design was made for extended wear. The inside of the shoe is padded with memory foam and cushioned at the sole. The outside of the shoe is slightly flexible, so you’re dealing with painful digging on the sides of your feet either. The amount of money I’ve saved on bandaids is shocking.
Recently, I wore them for a full nine hours at the office, walked to the subway, and then wore them for three hours more on a date. At that point (a total of 12 hours), the only reason I changed out of them was because it was about to rain and I was worried about the suede.
The bonus is that Banana Republic makes them in several colors, fabrics, and prints, so you can wear them with pretty much anything in your closet. I'm obsessed, my friends are obsessed, and my sister owns several versions of them.
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Me? I have a pair of magenta pumps, but right now I’m eyeing up a navy blue gingham pair to go with my summer whites.
Now when I grin and bare it, you can actually believe the smile on my face.