High heels are great and all, but they are not for everyone, and the idea that you have to wear them to look professional, sexy, tall, polished, or whatever else, is total bullshit. It's a myth most often perpetuated by people who don't wear high heels (men) and an industry that is determined to sell high heels whether women actually enjoy wearing them or not.
1. They are uncomfortable.
2. They make it difficult to walk, dance, run, jump, or just be active in general.
5. They only improve your posture temporarily.
The reason you stand up straighter when you first wear high heels is because you feel off-balance. Once you get used to them though, your posture more or less goes back to what it was. Just be mindful of how you hold yourself and it won't matter whether you are wearing heels or not.
6. Guys who care whether you wear heels or not are not worth your time.
The fact is, most guys don't care and the ones who do are either hypocrites, misogynists, or both. After all, there is no way a guy would ever wear anything as uncomfortable as a pair of 4-inch stiletto pumps that pinched his feet and made it difficult for him to move around, so it would be pretty messed up for him to insist that you do just that, and you deserve better than that.
7. They don't make you look polished or more professional than flats.
Looking professional and polished has way more to do with the style of your shoes and the condition they are in than it does with the height of your heels. A pair of scuffed pumps with a missing heel cap looks much less professional than a clean, sleek pair of flats.
8. They slow you down.
Any heel over 3 inches changes your natural gait, forcing you to take smaller steps and slowing you down. That's one thing if you are walking around with a lot of other stilettoed women, but it's quite another if you are with a man in flat shoes. Now you're running along just trying to keep up, expending all this extra energy and probably compounding your usual baseline high-heel discomfort. That's not right and it's not to your advantage. As confident and in control as you might look when you are just standing or sitting around in a pair of high heels, it's a different story when you are teetering along in a pair of stilettos, unable to keep up and having to constantly look down to make sure you don't step on a sewer grate and break your ankle.
9. They instantly make it hard to walk on any surface.
Grass? Nope. Sand? As if! Cobblestones? Not without at least one helper for you to lean on. Even stairs take on an ominous feeling when you've got an especially high heel on. And don't even consider descending a steep hill, unless of course you just really want to feel what it's like to fall face-first into concrete, which is totally valid if that's what you want. I'm not here to judge. You do you.
10. There are lots of gorgeous flat shoes out there for every occasion and at every price point.
Again, if you like high heels and feel comfortable in them, that's fabulous. You do you. But if not, there are alternatives. True, there are not as many flat shoe options as high heels, but that situation is getting better all the time, and the more often you choose to buy flats over heels, the more flats designers are going to make.
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.com. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.