Because they cover the foot, symbol of power in women for Freud, our shoes say a lot about our way forward in life. Ultra-thin ballerinas or high heels? Between the two, our body swings and our mood with … Decryption.

Women and shoes, it’s a story. Our closets abound: more than nine pairs on average according to a survey TNS Sofres 2008. They fascinate, have their icons monstrous, laughable, irresistible as Imelda Marcos or Celine Dion who would have more than three thousand pairs of luxury shoes. They reflect our moods and the many personalities we put on the same day. Camille, a beautiful quadra, admits choosing her outfits according to her shoes: “They are essential. First of all, I want to value them. Yesterday, my mood turned to pointy ballerinas, to celebrate the arrival of the sun after a week of greyness. And I had to find the ideal jean and a school shirt falsely wise. ”

Why give this accessory such importance that it sometimes ends up dictating the choice of our clothes? Because it covers the foot, which represents the “substitute of the woman’s phallus”, explains Freud in Three Essays on Sexual Theory (Gallimard, “Folio Essays”, 1989). In other words, the foot symbolizes the power of the woman, who does not have a penis. In covering it, we definitively take it out of its organic function to make it an object of desire, to signify to others what force animates us, what history we want to tell them. When we enter a shop, two main concerns animate us: comfort, which will emphasize our approach, and aesthetics, which will reveal our seductive capacity. According to our mood, one takes precedence over the other.

When we choose them comfortable
We are moving towards functional shoes when we want to be young, quick, reactive. Like Laure, 35: “I have to catch a bus, go on an adventure, run if necessary. There are certain models I do not want to hear about: mules, for example. I would be too scared to be trapped, that my heel gets stuck in a grid. “François Feijoo, CEO of André, the shoe brand, confirms that functionality is part of the requirements of customers and that the brand is studying more and more the topic:” We decided to focus on the fact of to be able to walk comfortably with pretty models. They must not be instruments of torture. You have to respect the foot. ”

Like men, women also want to put on boots for seven leagues. This winter, the shoe has sold very well western boots which he had worked a lot on footwear (the most pleasant arch for the foot). This form won all the votes for its functionality, but also because “the time is very aggressive and boots protect,” says the designer Nathalie Elharrar, who founded the brand La Rare.
Valérie, 42, still buys shoes in which she feels “good, immediately”. On the day of her marriage, she considered leaving her status as a strong young woman, down to earth. She had thought to perch on high heels, which has considerably weakened and unbalanced: “It was anxiety. I bought two pairs of shoes: reds that I tried to “break” on the advice of the saleswoman. In vain. And another, with different heels, but it did not go either. Her dress, she recalls, had been much easier to choose. After running everywhere, she finally said “yes” flat, ballerinas, but gilded. Elisabeth, 40, looks like a child, feels totally free in Converse white: “This is my sesame. I travel everywhere with: both in the desert and in the Parisian palaces. It is a sign of pep, youth, spring, ease. ”

Being comfortable with one’s pumps is not easy. Explanations of the psychiatrist, philosopher and psychoanalyst Vannina Micheli-Rechtman, author of the Psychoanalysis in the face of its detractors (Aubier, 2007): “The foot is the end of our body, the representation, it ends us. The shoe works as a protection, it is the garment of the foot that tends to redo the envelope, in other words: inside and outside. “It protects the fragility of the image,” punctuates the outfit, gives the final touch, “confirms the psychiatrist and psychoanalyst Catherine Joubert (Undress me at Hachette Literatures,” Plural “, 2007). It’s a bit like Cinderella’s slippers: an affirmation on our part of princess, a synthesis of the style you want to give yourself.

When we want them seductive

It is necessary to be one’s own creation, that the composition is perfect, matching the portrait that one wants to give of oneself. The success of the very fine pumps worn by Carrie Bradshaw, the heroine of the series Sex and the City, underscores how fashionable stilettos are emblematic of a modern woman who can hurry to prove her full control of herself. It expresses, with its capacity to mask pain, all its duality: it is strong and fragile at the same time.

These sets of ambitious sexy chic arouse a lot of lust, ensure stylists and manufacturers, who decline in colors more vivid than each other: intense red, shocking pink, lemon, lilac … Dare this extreme version of the traditional pump comes back to propose a maximum concentration of seduction. According to Nathalie Elharrar: “We do not say:” This woman has beautiful shoes. “But simply:” This woman is beautiful. “” In the evening, Monique, 45, puts on shoes “impossible, shoes that me grow, give me the look and draw a beautiful silhouette. During the day, she gets a little less, but barely (ten centimeters): “I exercise a position of responsibility in a misogynist environment and I like to perch, to look at others in the eyes, even from the top to the low. With high heels, we want to see and be seen. It is our ego that expresses itself: “I am here. Look at me. I’m not just anybody. “From nine centimeters, a picture of woman in majesty emerges and confirms a very sexual turn:” This voluntary setting on pedestal, this height obliges to return the belly so that the abdominal belt holds the back. Breasts and buttocks stand out, which erotises us, “says Nathalie Elharrar.

For his part, Daniel Régnaut, director of collection at André, found that we were more and more “liberated”, that we played without taboo with fantasies judged until there is little sulphurous: “Women are much more bold for five years. They dare color and heels because they are sophisticated, sexualize. “. The IFOP study for Baranne (carried out in 2015) confirms that, 71% of women believe in majority that the men prefer them in stilettos, an attribute with strong connotation of seduction.

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