Across North America, women are trading in their high-heeled stilettos for sneakers and ballet flats. Workplaces are becoming more casual, and it is increasingly acceptable to wear sneakers to dinner. As more North Americans are working from home, and those who do go into the office are more often walking to work, sales of high heels dropped 12 percent last year, while sales of women’s sneakers rose 37 percent (according to the NPD Group’s retail tracking service). Perhaps a surpise high-heel inventory rose 28 percent from the year before (according to Edited, a London-based retail technology company). And not because of price: about one-third of high heels had been discounted by almost 50 percent. In a recent survey, nearly half of those surveyed said they are willing to pay more for shoes that are comfortable. Tech giants are also taking note: A ballet-flat emoji is slated to make its debut later this year.
(Source: Abha Bhattarai, Washington Post; Image: dailymail.co.uk)