A Podiatrist Convinced Me to Toss These 4 Shoe Trends and Buy These Instead


I’m in love with shoes. And just like every love story, there’s that heartbreaking moment when the protagonist and her soulmate begin to drift apart. That’s what’s happening to me right now as my feet are healing from a nasty online purchase that did not meet my standards of comfort. Having comfortable shoes is so important to every fashion editor. We’re on our feet all the time, as part of the job is going out to discover new brands, and New York City is made for walking.

Since my latest shoe purchases haven’t been as walkable as I would’ve liked, I decided it was time to talk to an expert about what I should be looking for in my next pair. Tough love is necessary when someone is dealing with the level of heartbreak that I described above, so Benjamin Tehrani, DPM, kept it real with me. While I won’t be completely saying goodbye to some of these fun trends, Tehrani has me convinced that I should shy away from them on days when I’ll be on my feet a lot. When taking care of my health involves fashion, I dive right in. Below, you’ll find the four shoe styles that Tehrani and I approve of.

“The Birkenstock sandal provides the optimum foot contour that mimics a real foot shape. Birkenstocks are made of oak tree and rubber, so they’re both sturdy and also very comfortable to wear. I wear mine around the house since our floors are hardwood to prevent common foot problems from hard floors such as plantar fasciitis. It is heavier and has a robust arch pad that helps support your feet as if you were wearing sneakers. They’re made to last several years, whereas Havaianas and slides literally have zero support for your feet. I always tell people that if you’re going to invest in proper sandals, go with Birkenstocks because of their durability and comfort. We all know Havaianas are fun to wear around the house or at the beach, but if you walk more than a half mile in them or stand longer than 30 minutes, your feet will begin to ache.” 

The perfect shoes for a beach day.

It’s the stitching for me.

I’m loving this colorway.

House shoes that you can actually wear outside.

It’s the gold detailing for me.

Now these are my kind of Birkenstocks.

“Casual sneaker brands like Skechers pride themselves on being the most cushioned shoes. While memory foam is nice, they provide no structural support for your feet while walking. It is as if someone took a small section of a pillow and stitched it into the shoe. At first, when you wear it, it may feel amazing. However, after walking for miles upon miles, that pillow will begin to deteriorate, and so will your foot health. When our feet have to do more work during our workdays, it fatigues the tendons and muscles that support our arches. I absolutely love Hokas. They’re my go-to walking shoes and also the shoes I wear most in the clinic. While my friends make fun of me because I stopped wearing my Jordans and Nike Air Max as much in the clinic, I’ve been blown away by the amount of support Hoka has inside. Not only do they provide traction and stability, but they’re also surprisingly lightweight and come in many color options. I’ve even successfully treated people with chronic heel pain by forcing them to wear Hokas at all times inside their home for six weeks.”

Alright, I’m convinced that I need to run in these.

We love classic black sneakers.

My personal favorite.

Here for this.

Can we talk about this bold color combo?


“Okay, so don’t kill me for saying this (I’m sure it doesn’t come as a surprise), but stilettos are terrible for your feet. They cause many foot disorders such as bunions, hammertoes, metatarsalgia, plantar fasciitis, stress fractures, ankle equinus, achilles tendonitis… blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. In a nutshell, they’re very constrictive on the bones and joints, which causes the feet to work extra hard to keep you upright. I always tell my family and friends that, while they’re okay to wear on a night out, they’re never recommended for a workday or extended walking. Wedges, however, are closed behind the heel and provide a larger surface area for the foot to make contact with. They’re heavier, more durable, and allow the foot to rest on a larger surface area, which allows the body’s weight to be distributed more evenly throughout the sole of the foot.”

A must-have for every fashion person.

Doctor’s orders.

This makes me want to book a Spanish getaway.

I’d wear these from the beach to the city.

I’m in love.

A woven wonder.

The toe ring is a unique addition.

“Okay, so ballet flats have little to no support whatsoever. I’ve treated many female patients who were obese with arthritis in both of their knees. When I asked which shoes they like wearing the most, they mentioned ballet flats because they’re really easy to slip on and off. Unfortunately, with very little structural support, these ballet flats can cause arthritic conditions in our toes, feet, and knees—believe it or not. I would recommend clogs as a great alternative. Many surgeons like myself enjoy wearing clogs, and we spend many hours on our feet operating in them. Clogs help maintain a straight posture. The wooden soles are understandably resilient when it comes to breakdown and loss of support. Plus, Gucci just signed a deal with Adidas to make a line of trendy clogs, so… You’re welcome! I do caution not to wear them for more than one day at a time because they can be constricting in the toe box where the toes live, and over time this *may* cause foot ailments such as neuromas and hammertoes. I still wear mine when I operate and absolutely love them.” 

A trend I can definitely get behind.

The next It-girl shoes.

So effortlessly chic.

I’m obsessed.

Taking platforms and clogs and combining them in one shoe silhouette is genius.

I’m obsessed.

So good.

Up Next: I’m 23, and My Mom Is 60—We Both Went Viral on TikTok for Wearing These 4 Trends

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