Know Your Heels: Do You Know Your Achilles Heel?

Most of us have more shoes than we care to admit, and none build confidence quite like heels. They are elegant, feminine, and there is a style of the heel that goes with just about anything. While it is certainly a plus that heels are such versatile compliments to an outfit, that same versatility can make it hard to know which type of heel to wear when. Here we will go over a few of the more popular styles of heels, what is great (and not so great) about each, and when you should consider each style.

Pumps and Stilettos

Chances are that when you think of heels you think of either pumps or stilettos. Both are about as classic as you can get, and sometimes the line between them can be a little bit blurry. That said, they are not necessarily interchangeable. Pumps are the little sister of stilettos – both have thin prominent heels, but pumps tend to be far shorter and have a slightly thicker base to the heel itself. If you combine this with the fact that stilettos have pointier tips than pumps, it becomes obvious that one of the biggest practical differences between these two is comfort.

Stilettos are certainly not meant to be worn for long periods of time. They are intentionally formal and attention-grabbing, most often having complex buckles and designs on them. Think weddings and formal parties. Pumps are not necessarily the most comfortable thing you can wear, but they are designed to be far more comfortable than heels. They should be easy to slip on and off, have a heel that is no more than 1-3 inches tall, and not be overly embellished.

Pumps also tend to be far more versatile than heels, and not just because they are physically easier to wear. You can look great in work attire with pumps just as easily as you can look great dressed for a night out. For work, try pumps with a pencil skirt or slacks; for a night out you can wear almost anything: a dress, tights, or even jeans.


For those of us who are less friendly with gravity, wedge heels provide a stylish alternative to heels with a narrower base. Wedges date all the way back to ancient Greece, and they are perfectly suited for its comfortable Mediterranean climate. When you think wedge heels you should think of fun weekend attire, and it is a safe bet to just keep these in the closet in the winter if you live up north.

While wedges have a reputation for being casual and fun, the right pair can work in formal occasions. If you have a pair that you absolutely love, for instance, they can transform a little black dress by adding a pop that will really make you stand out. Another good option with wedges in almost any situation is a floral dress or romper. They are all about fun, so use your own creativity as these are great shoes to really express yourself in.

Block Heels

It can be hard to make generalizations about block heels simply because of the dizzying variety in which they come. You can find everything from block heel sandals to block heel boots. The one thing they all have in common is that they have a heel with such a wide base that it looks like well… a block.

This block makes them as easy to walk in and as comfortable as most wedges, while, at the same time, offering designs that span the entire spectrum of footwear. Block heels can be the perfect solution to finding something fashionable yet functional in the winter, and block heel boots especially are a staple to help you navigate the snow and ice and look great doing it. What you wear with block heels will really depend on what style you are going for, but a safe bet is that they will work well for most of the outfits that you would wear pumps in.

No matter what your level of fashion consciousness might be, chances are you will need at least a few pairs of heels to help make your outfits stand out from the crowd. Finding the right kind of heel can seem daunting and unnecessarily complex – and in many ways it is! However, if you have stilettos, wedges, and block heels that compliment your look, odds are that you will find great options for every occasion.

Annu Kumari is a writer cum makeup artist and an introvert. From studying Aeronautical Engineering and wanting to design her own aeroplane to writing articles on beauty.

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