Nowadays, Heart Evangelista has been flying in and out of fashion capitals—from New York to Paris to Milan—to live a fabulous life most fashion girls could only dream of: to sit front row at Fashion Week and be photographed by the paparazzi clad in the off-the-runway pieces of the most covetable fashion houses. Watching the star style strut down the streets in her towering heels, Heart's followers probably can't help but wonder: How does she survive in those stilettos all day long?
Well, here's a fun fact: Back in 2017, we actually asked Heart the exact same question as she concluded her Paris trip in skyrocketing five-inch Azzedine Alaia lace-up booties. “I just Emla!” she told Preview matter-of-factly. Truth be told, we were a bit dumbfounded and puzzled by her reply. We thought, what in the world is Emla? And how could it help you walk in heels all day?
It’s not a fashion girl term for a styling trick, if that’s what you’re thinking. In fact, it's a brand of topical anesthesia. Available over-the-counter at your local drugstore, Emla cream (its generic name is lidocaine/prilocaine) is commonly used to relieve and numb pain for minor surgeries and injections (especially for kids!). Emla is also sometimes used prior to bikini or Brazilian waxing procedures to make the treatment bearable.
IMAGE Wikimedia Commons
Naturally, we just had to get an expert's opinion. We asked Dra. Anna Palabyab-Rufino for a comment on whether or not it’s actually safe and if it's advisable to use a topical anesthetic for something as trivial as foot pain due to wearing heels. “I have no personal experience when it comes to this matter, but as long as there is no open wound and there is enough blood flow to the feet, then it should be fine,” she explains. She also reiterates that the numbing effect is temporary and very superficial so there are no long-term side effects.
“The numbing sensation gives an extra hour’s worth of walking,” Heart explained, and we totally get it! That extra time without your feet begging you to take a cab home could be particularly useful to shoot an OOTD or two, or even to shop a little more before the stores close.
That said, it's worth noting that this interview was done years ago, and it's totally possible that the actress has since developed tolerance for wearing high heels or has discovered another trick up her fashion-forward sleeve. One thing's for sure, though: Next time you need to walk or even dance in your painfully gorgeous high heels, Heart's genius hack is here to save the day!