High heels are a timeless fashion staple that has been around for centuries. So whether you're a fashionista or not, you've likely worn or at least seen high heels before. But did you know that these iconic shoes were created for men? That's right. Men first wore high heels before they became popular among women.
Though it's debated in which century high heels were first seen, we do know that the Persian cavalry was the first to wear them. Persian soldiers wore high-heeled boots to help them stay in their stirrups while riding horses.
Some of us have trouble walking and chewing gum at the same time, while Persian soldiers had to fire a bow from a charging horse while standing in the saddle. Talk about coordination! European aristocrats later adopted this style as a symbol of their high social status, and the trend quickly spread across the continent.
In the 17th century, King Louis XIV of France made high heels fashionable for men by wearing them himself and requiring his courtiers to do the same. As a result, heels became a sign of wealth and power, and men started wearing them with lavish outfits and wigs. But as the French Revolution brought about a shift towards more practical and simple clothing, high heels fell out of favor for men.
It wasn't until the mid-19th century that high heels became popular again, this time among women. As women's clothing became more form-fitting, high heels were seen as a way to accentuate the feminine figure. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Caterina Maria Romula de' Medici, Queen of France, is said to be the first woman to wear high heels.
Today, high heels come in all shapes and sizes, from stilettos to wedges to chunky heels. They can make you feel confident or be a pain in the feet (literally). But regardless of your style, it's undeniable that high heels have a rich and surprising history.
So the next time you slip on a pair of high heels, remember that you're carrying on a tradition that dates back centuries. Who knew that such a simple shoe could have such a fascinating backstory?