Body Signature Series: Does This Shoe Make My Foot Look Fat?

When it comes to our bodies we often focus simply on our body's shape which is only one part of your overall Body Signature. In my Body Signature series I focus on some of the other unique aspects of a woman's body signature and how to dress them. This week we're looking at your feet.

The "normal" height-to-foot ratio for a woman is about 6.6:1. That means you'll have roughly 6.6 inches of height for every inch of foot length. However, the ratio is just an estimation, and many people have longer or shorter feet than you would calculate based on this ratio.

As well, an "average" foot width in a US sized shoe is a "B" width. But many women will have a narrower or wider foot.

As well, as we age, our feet often become wider. If someone is gaining weight, the feet splay to accommodate the increased pressure.

So if your foot is not quite in proportion with the rest of your body, you are in good company.

Of course understanding your shoe size/width is critical to finding a shoe that will support your foot and fit comfortably. But when it comes to how your foot looks in a shoe, there are a few tricks that you can employ to change the appearance of your foot and make it appear to be more proportional with the rest of you.

1. Choose the right toe shape:

A round or square toe will make a long foot appear shorter.

Whereas a pointed toe will make any foot appear longer.

2. Choose the right heel:

Our feet are horizontal in their natural state, so the eye perceives foot length as a horizontal measurement. When you wear a higher heel, more of the horizontal length of the foot is put into a vertical position and therefore the perceived length becomes shorter. Be sure the thickness of the heel matches the scale of your bones.

3. Choose the Right Exposure:

When it comes to sandals, if you have wide feet, choose a wider strap but be sure to let a little skin show through. Long, narrow feet will need a thinner strap and benefit from an ankle strap to shorten the visual length of the foot. You can also adorn your ankles with ankle bracelets and a toe ring on each foot. Foot jewelry will draw more attention to itself, than to the size of your feet. Don’t forget that pedicure too!

4. Choose the Right Lines:

To make a long, narrow foot appear shorter and wider, choose a shoe with horizontal seams, lines or straps.

To make a short and wide foot appear longer and narrower, choose a shoe with vertical lines.

And of course the most universally flattering line on a shoe is the diagonal line. It magically makes a narrow foot look wider and a wider foot look narrower.

Is a visually longer, shorter, wider or narrower foot part of your Body Signature? By paying just a little bit of attention to the details of your shoe purchases, you can visually create more balance just by wearing the right style of shoes.

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Joan Kosmachuk

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