High heels have a long history, dating as far back as the tenth century. The Persian cavalry, for example, wore a kind of boot with heels in order to ensure their feet stayed in the stirrups[citation needed]. Furthermore, research indicates that heels kept arrow-shooting riders, who stood up on galloping horses, safely on the horse.[2] This trend has translated into the popular 21st-century cowboy boot. Owning horses was expensive and time-consuming, so to wear heels implied the wearer had significant wealth.[3] This practical and effective use of the heel has set the standard for most horse-back riding shoes throughout history and even into the present day. Later, in the 12th century in India, heels become visible again. The image of a statue from the Ramappa Temple proves this, showing an Indian woman's foot clad in a raised shoe. Then, during the Medieval period, both men and women wore platform shoes in order to raise themselves out of the trash and excrement filled streets.[4] In 1430, chopines were 30 inches (76 cm) high, at times. Venetian law then limited the height to three inches—but this regulation was widely ignored.[5] A 17th-century law in Massachusetts announced that women would be subjected to the same treatment as witches if they lured men into marriage via the use of high-heeled shoes.[6]

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High heels are marketed to children, and some schools encourage children to wear them.[22] 18% of injuries from wearing high heels were in children, and 4% in under-tens, in a 2002-2012 US survey.[22] Concern was expressed about children's use of high heels in a 2016 medical review on high-heeled shoes.[22] A nine-year old is about half an adult's height, and a toddler about a quarter; so, relative to body height, a 2-inch (5 cm) heel on an adult would be a one-inch heel on the nine-year-old, and a half-inch heel on the toddler,[27] though whether this translates to comparable health harms is not known.[22]


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With the 1900s bringing two devastating world wars, many countries set wartime regulations for rationing almost all aspects of life. This included materials previously used for making heels, such as silk, rubber, or leather; these began to be replaced with cork and wooden soles.[13] Another one of the numerous outcomes of these wars was an increase in international relations, and a more proliferate sharing of fashion through photography and films, which helped spread high heel fashion as well.[9] Examples of this were the brown and white pumps with cutouts or ankle straps combined with an open toe.[13] Their practicality yet professional look appealed to the new, fast-paced lifestyle of many women.
Featuring trend-worthy women’s flats from TOMS, Cole Haan, Easy Spirit, Capezio, and Calvin Klein, you can find all your trusted and quality favorites in one place. To make it even easier, we provide several product filters to help refine your search. From ballet to mary jane flats, simply choose the brand, type, style, price, shoe size, shoe width, color, and average customer rating and we’ll show you the women’s flats that best match your criteria. If you’re unsure of what you want, you can also sort our selection by new and popular to see the latest on-trend pairs of flats we have online.
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