Hayley Matthews: I shot myself in the foot with my Spice Girl heels

I’m not great in the winter, I have to be honest. The bleakness of the colder months and the sparseness of greenery ­always has me aching for a touch of warm sun on my face.

Friday, 25th January 2019, 5:00 am
TSPL staff member Alice Wyllie wearing seven inch heels, walking around Edinburgh in high-heels. Fashion Trends High-heels

However, if I had to pick one positive about the winter, then it would have to be that my feet are not on display. When God was handing out beautiful, long, elegant finger toes, he skipped me and giving me the feet of a hobbit. If feet give you the dry boak then stop reading now!

I have toes that could climb trees – trust me, they are not smooth, long and dainty. I can describe my feet best in one word – Gollum! I think for the most part it’s down to genetics but a lot of it is down to rocking about in stilettos every day of the 90s like a Spice Girl. I can’t do much about it now, so I have succumbed to trainers almost every day.

I did love a heel in my teens. I remember working as a receptionist in the mid-90s and going shopping with my work colleague Karen, who’s now a dear friend. Our love of shoes saw us visit Russell and Bromley many a lunchtime. Despite only being on £5k a year (I’d been sacked from my previous job for “thinking I was a Spice Girl”) I managed to buy the odd pair which got worn every day and were cherished like gold dust. I always went for the highest and strappiest shoes that were never going to do anyone’s feet any good if worn every day.

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There was one occasion I remember when trying on shoes that Karen produced a beautiful pair of ­jewelled thong sandals with a ring for the big toe to sit in.

On trying to get my half mangled feet in them, I realised my toes were too small and curled to reach the bit for your toes to slide through. The bit that housed the big toe with the incredibly sparkly jewel was half a shoe away from my wee mangled twinkies.

We were both doubled over with laughter at my tiny bent hammer toes and, in that moment, I realised that I have quite ugly feet. A chiropodist told me when I was 15 that I’d get arthritis early and boy has it hit me hard now. So away with the heels and out with the flats.

I’m actually starting to love it. I’ve accepted that even a low heel leaves me in pain and just isn’t worth it. Gone are the days of platforms and kitten heels, so I’ve had to up my trainer game.

I’ve mentioned before about my love of recycling plastic, and trying to tackle the ocean plastic problem, so I was delighted to see a huge company like Adidas, tackle ocean waste by recycling ocean plastic and making trainers with it.

I’m totally baffled as to how they make the Ultra Boost from ocean waste and despite watching numerous videos, I’m still amazed at how it’s done. Why can’t more companies do it?

I’m now on my second pair and I especially love the new Adidas Ultra Boost 19. They must be doing something right as there are reports of them selling more than one million pairs of eco-friendly trainers in 2017.

So I’ll spare you a glimpse of my tree climbers for a few months yet, keeping the trainers on in the meantime until June arrives, when the Black & Decker, chainsaw and industrial strength foot file all come out for their annual duties.

Then my mission is to find ocean plastic flip-flops that my toes can ­actually reach.