"Many fashionable shoes now are narrow and pointy at the toe," says podiatrist Dr. Carolyn McAloon, adjunct clinical professor at the California School of Podiatric Medicine at Samuel Meritt University in Oakland. "They can cause pain and calluses and redness in the toes." All that, she says, comes from squishing feet into too-small, oddly shaped spaces. High heels put immense pressure on the ball of the foot, which can pinch nerves. Toes can develop corns from rubbing against the shoe. "After a while," McAloon says, "the toes are going to complain."
When they do, make amends with this ritual: Soak feet in warm water and mineral salts. That soaking, McAloon says, helps increase circulation, soothe tired muscles and soften hard calluses, which can be removed with a pumice stone. Finish with a hydrating cream. Then, do some stretches, such as rotating the ankles and flexing and pointing the toes -- this will help stretch calf muscles and Achilles tendons, which can get stiff (those stretches can also be done while sitting with high heels on). Finally, ice the feet to reduce any swelling.
Carolyn McAloon, DPM, CSPM Clinical Assistant Professor graduated from the California School of Podiatric Medicine (CSPM) formerly known as California College of Podiatric Medicine (CCPM), in 1997.