A few years ago, everyone was talking about Cinderella feet. In case you need a reminder, that trend was surgical. Women were asking podiatrists to operate on their toes and feet so they could fit into the modern version of a 'glass slipper': designer stilettos. As you might imagine, I was not onboard. Undergo a serious medical procedure just to fit into your Manolos? Not on my watch!

Well, now there's yet another foot trend taking the world by storm. This month, it's the #BarbieFeet hashtag on Instagram. And, while it certainly sounds like something less than ideal (I mean, Barbie isn't exactly a realistic model for female body image), I'm actually ok with this trend. And, before you start freaking out, let me explain exactly why that is. 

What's the Barbie Feet Trend All About?  #BarbieFeet on Instagram is a great compromise for women who want the look of high heels without the problems

Anyone who knows Barbie knows that her feet are disproportionately tiny. And permanently stuck in the high heel position. Thankfully, neither of those factors are involved in the latest hashtag trend. 

Instead, women are temporarily copying the pose of Barbie's feet. For the sake of a selfie, these ladies will go up on their tip toes (like Barbie), snap a pic and then sink down to safety. The idea is to capture all the bonuses of wearing high heels (added height, longer looking legs, the toned appearance of flexed muscles) without actually putting on stilettos. 

And there, ladies and gentleman, you have the reason that I like this trend. I truly understand why women love high heels. Heck, my own wife has a closet full of them. And yes, I do agree, she looks phenomenal in them. But if she, or any other woman out there, wears them for too long or too often, problems will start cropping up. 

It may start with aching feet. Later, it could progress to back and knee pain. Bunions may start to form The Achilles tendon could shorten up and cause heel pain. The toes could twist into shapes not intended by nature. Basically, so many unpretty things could happen. 

If, however, you stick to temporary Barbie Feet poses, you'll capture the look you love without any of the lasting, unpleasant side effects. So go ahead, ladies (and gents): snap those #BarbieFeet instas. And, while you're at it, go ahead and give my Tanglewood Foot Specialists account a follow. I promise lots of #footspiration and plenty of safe, happy fun! 


Dr. Andrew Schneider
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A podiatrist and foot surgeon in Houston, TX.
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