At this point, it's hard to ignore the facts about the negative health effects of high heels. They can lead to hammertoes, bunions, plantar fasciitis and even muscle strains and joint problems. Yet many women continue to wear towering stilettos.
That said, you'd be hard pressed to find a heel-wearing woman who doesn't have an embarrassing story to tell.
We asked our readers to share their high heel horror stories, and boy were there some doozies. Take this one, from Facebook user Janine Pacheco: "I wore 5-inch heels in a snowstorm, stepped into some snow thinking it was just a coating, but it was about 8 to 10 inches deep. I twisted my ankle and tore everything in it. Couldn't walk for about 12 weeks. Thirteen years later and it's still a disaster."
If that doesn't paint enough of a picture for you, we had Emily Brickel Edelson (founder of the app Chic Sketch) illustrate three of the other most treacherous tales. If this doesn't make you reconsider high heels, nothing will.
"I was 13, and it was my first time wearing heels on my way to an orchestra concert where I was performing. My best friend, also in the concert, asked me to carry her cello down the stairs. I lost my balance because of the [heels], slipped and [fell] head first down all of the stairs, still holding the cello. I survived, but the cello was broken into three pieces, thirty minutes before the concert where my friend was supposed to perform a solo." -- Facebook user Mara Viviano
"I was out with a few friends on a Friday night. Of course that night was packed with people. We had to cross at the crosswalk. The red light was about to turn green so I picked up the pace. Mid-way my stiletto heel got stuck in a grate. Since I was caught off guard I wasn't able to put my arms up in time to break my fall. My face hit the asphalt. Stunned, I looked to my right and realized I was holding up traffic. I must have been in shock of some sort because it didn't hurt that much. However, what I did feel was embarrassment. At that point my guy friend quickly lifts me up and carries me the rest of the way across [the street]. It was then as I'm standing there I noticed blood on his shirt where I had rested my head. I started to cry. Unfortunately, my friend thought this is the perfect time to blurt out 'Your face!' sending me into a panic attack. I can laugh about it now [but] the hard part was walking around with a busted lip and black eye. When people asked what happened, no one seemed to believe me when I said I fell." -- Facebook user Nicole Murawski
"I was in traffic court trying to get my license back and I realized I left my proof of insurance in my car. The judge was about to call me, [so] I took off running to my car and my giant heel bent in while running across a busy street and I landed on my back in the crosswalk. Because it was in the court district where all the criminal and traffic cases were held, everyone was so worried and in their head about their court cases people just walked around and over my body without laughing or even noticing me. I threw those shoes away when I got home."-- Facebook user Tamara Rachelle