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Macy’s / Ideas & Inspiration / Must-Have Shoe Guide / 6 Types of Heels Every Woman Should Own

6 Types of Heels Every Woman Should Own

Are you ready for your shoe collection to reach new heights? A woman can never have too many shoes—it’s a fact—but there are six essential types of heels every woman should have in her closet. We’ve rounded up our top picks in various heel heights to match different lifestyles and occasions—think tips on how to style low, mid and high heels.

1. Pumps

What are pumps? Classic pumps, also known as court shoes, feature low-cut uppers, no closures and simple design. In short, pumps are timeless. They provide elegant elevation to make any outfit appear more polished, especially in corporate and creative offices. If you’re in need of a versatile pair of pumps to wear with a variety of outfits, then keep this in mind: the simpler, the better. Take your pick or cap-toe, rounded, almond and pointed-toe heels.

Quick Tip: Pumps are available in a variety of heel heights so it’s crucial to choose a height that you feel comfortable wearing—this varies from woman to woman. To make your pair of pumps comfier to wear all day use padded insole inserts made with memory foam or cushioning gel.

2. Kitten Heels

What are kitten heels? Kitten heels find themselves at the forefront of trend lists every few years—it’s like they have nine lives. With a heel height of 1.5 inches or less, kitten heels and booties are great options if you’re used to wearing flats or if you plan to be on your feet for a while. You can dress them up or dress them down based on the occasion.

Quick Tip: Want your legs to appear longer? Sling-back mules and sandals with kitten heels help your legs appear longer because they allow some skin to peek through.

3. Block Heels

What are block heels? Block heels have a sturdy, prominent heel and can be some of the easiest heels to walk in. They’re also ideal to experiment with different treatments. Block heels made of lucite, options that feature embellishments like studs and contrasting materials are all currently trending. Macy’s has everything from ankle-strap sandals to ankle booties (and every style in between) with block heels, so there’s something for everyone.

Quick Tip: Low block heels are great for daytime. They’re perfect for dressing up a pair of denim cutoffs (or jeans) and a simple tee.

4. Stilettos

What are stilettos? The highest of the high, reach for stilettos when you need a powerful heel. Stilettos elongate the leg and are flattering on all body types. They can be dressed down for a sexy daytime look and worn for a night out or special occasion.

Quick Tip: It’s all about posture when wearing super-high heels like stilettos. Stand up straight to evenly distribute your weight across the ball and heel of your foot as you walk.

5. Wedges

What are wedges? Wedge heels give you the height you’re after with the comfort you need. Flattering and functional, they elevate and provide a sturdy option. They’re available in a variety of styles for different occasions. Espadrilles with a jute or cork sole are begging to be worn during warm days and nights. Ankle-strap wedges and sneaker wedges are great for daytime, while leather and studded wedges are perfect for the evening.

Quick Tip: When wearing wedges it’s best to pair them with sleek or flowing clothing. A beautiful dress that falls below the knee is great. Skinny jeans will look amazing.

6. Special Occasion Heels

What are special occasion heels? Special occasion heels are the pair you pull out only for special events and typically feature statement-making details—think embellishments, luxurious materials and eye-catching colors. Whether you're heading to a party or prepping for a wedding (yours or someone else’s), we've got the shoes to pull together a gorgeous look. From pumps to high-heeled sandals and even booties, check out our collection of heels that are perfect for a special occasion.

Quick Tip: Pick the heel types based on your style and what feels best underfoot. Don’t feel obligated to trends—if you love it, then wear it.