Different Types Of Heels – A Beginner’s Guide

Those new to the world of heels should find a pair that allows them to tread with confidence.

Reviewed by Paola Farina, Personal Stylist Paola Farina Paola FarinaPersonal Stylist linkedin_iconinsta_icon
Written by , MSc Pratima Ati MSc
Edited by , MA (English Literature) Madhumati Chowdhury MA (English Literature) Experience: 7 years
Fact-checked by , MA (English & Literature), Certified Style & Image Consultant Srijita De MA (English & Literature), Certified Style & Image Consultant Experience: 2 years
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As a heel aficionado, it is absolutely essential for you to know about all different types of heels that are available. Yes, it is true that heels come in many different types, and with them comes a wide range of options to style them. Since one can never have too many shoes, this page will help you pick some of the most amazing heels that are oh-so-perfect. Below, we are going to introduce you to the types of heels and the ways you can rock them. So without holding yourself up, scroll down and find them all out. Come on! It is time for you to flaunt different heels every day and steal the show wherever you go!

Ace The Look
  • Start Small: If you are not used to wearing heels, start with a heel height of 2 inches or less to avoid putting strain on your feet and joints.
  • Correct Fit: Ensure your heels are an exact fit for your feet to avoid tripping and spraining your ankles.
  • Break Them In: Practice wearing high heels at home or around the neighborhood to get used to them with minimal discomfort and prepare for shoe bites.
  • Alternate With Flats: Wearing heels for prolonged periods can strain the joints and muscles in your legs. Alternate them with flat footwear, and wear extremely high heels only occasionally.
  • Stretch The Calves: Stretch and massage your calf muscles before and after wearing heels to avoid cramps.

Different Types Of Heels – A Beginner’s Guide

1. Peep Toes

Image: IStock

Peep-toes are one of the sexiest kinds of heels. The heels come in all lengths, but the higher the heel, the hotter this style looks. They come with an opening at the front, making the toes look like they are peeping, hence the name.

Fashion Tip – Wear them with ankle length trousers, short dresses or anything that is fitted and figure hugging. Paint your nails some bold and dramatic color to make them pop and add drama.

2. Wedge Heels

Image: IStock

“Wedge heels are perfect if you have never worn a pair of heels before and need some practice. The heels are large and stable, ideal for beginners,” says Paola Farina, a certified image consultant and event stylist.

Fashion tip – You can wear them with just about any kind of dress.

3. Cone Heels

Image: Instagram @plumtr3

Cone heels stay true to their name and just like a cone, they are slightly wider at the top and taper as they go down. They come in all lengths and models. Paola Farina says, “These are great for women who don’t wear heels often, like an intermediate level. They are elegant and perfect for work or daytime events where heels like stilettos don’t work very well.”

Fashion Tip – These look great with skirts or dresses that have a flowing hemline.

4. Stilettos

Image: Instagram

The mother of all heels, and a pair of classics every girl needs to own. These are usually anywhere between 4 to 6 inches elevated, closed at the front, and came in a million different designs. It can seem like an impossible task to walk in these, but once you walk in them – there’s no going back. Certified image consultant Paola Farina recommends these heels for regular heel-wearers. She says, “If you want to wear stilettos to work, opt for kitty or medium-length heels. At night you can increase the length to 10-12 cm.”

Fashion Tip – Just a pair of black or nude stilettos are enough to cover you for office, party or anything casual. It also goes with any random outfit from your wardrobe. That’s how versatile these are. These also look great with formal dresses and events.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Stilettos look perfectly good on people with an apple body shape. They draw attention to the legs and distract from the upper body.

5. Platform Heels

Platform heels
Image: Shutterstock

A lot of people mistake platform heels for wedges, but platforms are heels that are thick and chunky at the front of the shoe, making it comfortable to walk around, unlike your regular pointed shoes. “These heels are a big trend of the upcoming Summer-Spring season, a huge must-have. Go for a fun colorful model as they pair well with flair pants, mini skirts, or colored opaque tights,” recommends Paola Farina.

Fashion Tip – Wear them with well-fitted or bodycon dresses.

6. Cut Out Heels

Image: Instagram

Cutout heels are becoming increasingly popular and considered incredibly stylish if you can pull them off. They come in all sizes and shapes, but the common aspect of all these shoes are that they are all cut out, making them look neat and sexy.

Fashion Tip – For a last minute party plan where your feet are not manicured and need to be covered, these can come in handy.

7. Sling Back Heels

Image: Instagram

You are not comfortable with stilettos or pumps that do not sit properly at the back of your feet? No problem – slingbacks are your answer. They come with straps that cinch them together and enhance how the shoes and feet look. Paola shares, “My favorite! You can wear these in winter with opaque tights or pair them with trousers and skirts during summer. They look amazing.”

Fashion Tip – Wear them with just about any outfit because they are convenient; but these look great with dresses that show your ankles.

8. French Heels

Image: Shutterstock

Have heard of Pompadour or Spool heels? They are very similar, but more curvaceous. These were famous in olden days and are considered vintage.

Fashion Tip – If you are looking to add a vintage touch to your long flowing dresses, go for these French heels.

9. Kitten Heels

Image: IStock

Kitten heels are forever hashtagged with Audrey Hepburn. If you are someone who detests the idea of anything uncomfortably high, kitten heels are for you, my friend. They are not super thin or high, but just enough to elevate your outfit.

Fashion Tip – These look great with well-fitted denim, trousers, and one piece dresses.

10. Pumps

Image: IStock

Pumps are very similar to stilettos, but not as high as they are. They usually come with a 3 or 4-inch heel tops, and the fronts sit lower on the floor when compared to you stilettos.

Fashion Tip – From everyday essentials to party wear dresses and work, you can wear them with any outfit, and it looks great.

11. Oxfords

Image: Instagram @glimmerhawkvintage

Oxfords are high heels, except these are closed and look like elevated shoes. These were quite famous back in the day and gave a Victorian finish to your outfit.

Fashion Tip – Wear it with boyfriend/mom jeans or trousers that are less defined at the hemline. It is also an interesting idea to match them with monochrome outfits.

12. Chunky Heels

Image: Instagram @amiclubwear

If you are a heel aficionado and tried every type of heels, here’s something that might interest you. The heels are usually bulky and give you a solid base on which you can walk easily. The popular low block-heeled Mary Jane shoes are a type of chunky shoes.

Fashion Tip – Since the heels are usually thick and funky, keep your outfit simple, letting the heels pop.

13. Comma Heels

Image: Instagram

We might not find these everywhere, and it’s strange that heels like these even exist, but these are quite a hot favorite at the runway and on red carpets. The heels are literally shaped like a comma and are not as high as your regular heels.

Fashion Tip – Bring out your inner fashionista and wear this to a Christmas or New Year party.

14. Spool heels

Image: Instagram

Spool heels are a real blessing for anyone who is new to heels and still figuring out a way to walk gracefully. They are wide at the front and rear and relatively narrow at the center, which makes it easier to create a balance.

Fashion Tip – These heels are an everyday essential, look great with formal/office outfits, and do not hurt your feet.

protip_icon Quick Tip
This type of heels looks good with vintage-style dresses, thin pencil skirts, and boot-cut jeans.

15. Espadrille Heels

Espadrille heels
Image: Shutterstock

Espadrille shoes have been around for a while now and are one of the most comfortable footwear. However, it’s the heels that are new to the line, but have caught on for the same reason. The base is made with natural fibers, while the upper part is made of cloth, leather, etc.

Fashion Tip – They go with western outfits and are quite comfortable. Be it long days at work or a night out at the bar, these are your go-to.

16. Fantasy Heels

Image: Instagram @shaherfashion

If Lady Gaga or Katy Perry are your style icons, you need heels like these in your shoe closet. I think a crazy pair of fantasy heels is something every girl could use on days she wants to be outlandish and let it all go. Paola Farina recommends a pair of fantasy heels for this winter season.

Fashion Tip – You can go all out and wear a dress that matches your fantasy heels or keep it simple and let the shoes do the talking.

17. Ankle Strap Heels

Image: IStock

Are you one of those people who always wear strapped footwear because you like the feeling of having a secure shoe? Then, ankle strap heels are perfect, and you can check that off your list. Paola advises, “Avoid these if your legs and ankles are not slim and toned, or if you are petite.” These shoes are perfect for flaunting long legs.

Fashion Tip – Wear them with jeans, trousers, and formal dresses.

18. Cork High Heels

Image: IStock

Cork high heels are made of cork material – and the reason people prefer these is that they take the pressure off your feet and keep them comfortable. If you cannot deal with heels and have sensitive feet, we have a solution for that too.

Fashion Tip – Depending on the kind of design, wear it with any of your western outfits.

19. Mules

Image: Shutterstock

Mules take the shape of your feet and are well defined. They are open near the soles and come in a lot of variants.

Fashion Tip – These look great with a leather jacket, denim, and anything a little casual yet chic.

20. Corset Heels

Image: Instagram @privilegedshoes

Shoes that are a true manifestation of the corset style. Just like your corset tops, these are closed and tight.

Fashion Tip – Wear it with trousers that are well-fitted and dresses that are defined.

21. Ankle Booties

Image: IStock

Come winter, you need lots of boots; and to add a little style to your winter outfits, go with ankle length boots with heels that are stylish, yet do the job for you. Certified image consultant Paola Farina says, “I always recommend to pair these boots with similar colored tights to give the appearance of a slender and long silhouette.”

Fashion Tip – Black ankle length booties are a must while camel colored ones set you apart and make you effortlessly stylish.

22. High Heeled Boots

Image: Instagram

There’s nothing sexier than a woman walking in these high heeled beauties in winter. If you are a sucker for heels and are comfortable pulling them off, then nothing should stop you, not even the cold weather.

Fashion Tip – Wear them with fleece leggings or skinny jeans.

23. Glitter Heels

Image: IStock

Glitter heels are for those who love everything in life with a sprinkle of glitter dust, even shoes! They are made with glitter-covered material and are available in different colors, catching light differently for a glamorous sheen. These footwear are suitable for parties, weddings, or special occasions.

Fashion Tip: They pair well with solid-colored dresses or outfits.

24. T-Strap Heels

Image: IStock

T-strap heels are distinguished by a strap that forms a T shape and wraps around the ankle and top of the foot. T-straps provide additional support to the foot, making them comfortable to wear for extended periods.

Fashion Tip: They pair well with dresses, pantsuits, and skirts, adding elegance to both casual and formal outfits.

Valeria, a YouTuber, shares insights about essential shoes for one’s collection. Regarding her high-heeled boots, she expresses, “These are a classic; they’ve been around for years, so they’ll never go out of style, and you always find ways to style them, wear them, and feel really hot in them (i).”

Infographic: 7 Essential Heels For Your Shoe Closet

While one can never get enough of heels, having a few pairs of heels for every occasion is a must! If you need some help finding the right heels, you have come to the right place. We have rounded up 7 essential heels you must add to your collection. Check out the infographic below to know more!

7 essential heels for your shoe closet (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

We are spoiled for choice when it comes to heels because so many different types are flooding the market, with each one having a unique attraction. From peep toes to wedge heels, cone heels, stilettos, platform heels, and whatnot, the options seem endless. They can amp up any look; all you need to do is try them out and buy the one that makes you feel comfortable and stylish at the same time. While our favorite is French heels, you must buy the one that steals your heart right away. Because, why not!

Frequently Asked Questions

What are short high heels called?

Short high heels are known as stiletto heels. These range from 5 cm to 7 cm in height.

What are hidden heels?

Hidden heels are heels used to add a few inches to one’s overall height. These fit perfectly in flats, sneakers, or boots.

What is a Dutch heel?

A Dutch heel is a heel with a rectangular cap and a square heel. It can be worn on casual or office outfits and gives a classy look.

What does a Cuban heel look like?

A Cuban heel has a medium-high heel with a slightly curved back and is essentially straight.

Key Takeaways

  • You should select heels that make you feel comfortable and stylish at the same time.
  • Depending upon your outfit, you can pair your heels to accentuate the look.
  • Stilettoes are versatile, wear a black or nude with anything casual.
  • Cone heels with a tapering point go well with a dress or skirt.
  • Kitten heels are shorter and have a small inclination, giving them just the right amount of height without making walking too difficult. Pair it with pants or denim.

Step into the world of stylish footwear. From cute wedges to elegant stilettos, you can check out a variety of them in this video. Take a look.

Personal Experience: Source

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