Wearing high heels during the holiday party circuit is a recipe for foot pain, but you’re probably going to do it anyway. After all, that’s why bought those sparkly stilettos in the first place. “I have never and will never say not to wear beautiful heels to complement an outfit,” says Dr. Krista Archer, DPM, PC, a New York-based podiatrist. However, she emphasizes that every foot type can take precautions to prevent foot pain after a holiday party. 

As Dr. Archer explains, all feet experience discomfort in heels over two inches because it places excess body weight upon the ball of the foot. And after hours of standing, dancing, and walking, this begins to take a toll. To avoid post-party foot pain, there are a few key factors to keep in mind. As a general rule, she says, try to avoid shoes with a thin heel that’s over three inches and/or a narrow toe area. Shoe inserts can also provide a great deal of relief.

Before going out, there are specific foot stretches — aka “foot yoga,” if you will — that will help prevent soreness. Point and flex your feet, holding each position for 5 seconds, and repeat to improve mobility in the feet. Then, do a few toe curls to warm up the flexor muscles. Repeating a few sets of each can help to ensure that muscles are providing the best support while you’re dancing the night away. 

Of course, there are plenty of products to look into, too. If you have a demanding party schedule in the coming weeks, keep reading for the pro-approved products that will prevent foot pain and save your soles from high heels this holiday season.