When my cousin asked me to be one of her bridesmaids, there was a catch: “Don’t wear anything weird, and don’t be extra.” I immediately understood where she was coming from. The last wedding we attended together, I showed up wearing red feathers. I wore PVC go-go boots and a pink tie-dyed skirt to my first day of sixth grade. When people compliment me on my shirt, I usually have to explain that I’m wearing it backward on purpose.
But the thing is, my cousin had picked out the bridesmaid dress. It was a long navy gown with a V neckline and a leg slit from a brand with the actual word bridesmaid in it. It was—and will probably always be—the least weird piece of clothing I’ve ever bought. Considering my history, I understood her initial concern; I just wasn’t entirely sure how I could dress weird at her wedding when there wasn’t even an option to. And then she sent me a text: “No platform shoes”—my usual footwear of choice.
The reason I love platforms is because they’re comfortable. They make me feel good because they look cool without murdering my feet. They give me added height and let me preside over the dance floor without the impending fear of rolling my ankle in the wrong way and falling face first into the crowd or a beer spill. Platforms don’t involve the blister casualties that typically come with ankle-strap heels like the one my cousin specifically asked that I buy.
But I wasn’t about to disappoint my cousin on her wedding day, and I could tell by her frequent “Have you bought your heels yet?” and “If you have, can you please tell me” and “I would like to see photos please” texts that she was concerned. So I started to look for comfortable heels that were both strappy and black and not extra that I didn’t completely hate or distrust. Enter Reformation’s new Isabelle Sandal.
If you are a wedding guest, chances are Reformation is your bible. Everything it makes is practically the textbook definition of romantic. Its dresses are beloved by celebrities because they sit nicely in that timeless but trendy sweet spot with a price point that won’t break the bank (it's also currently having an amazing 70%-off sale, just FYI). And although it's known for its clothing, a few months ago the brand launched shoes and I was eyeing Isabelle ever since.
I ordered them quickly but skeptically. I definitely wanted comfortable heels for the wedding but will admit my decision to buy them was because of the way they looked. I wanted them because they were different and I figured they could set me apart while I stood alongside five other girls wearing the same dress as me.
When they arrived, I was on vacation, and the first time I wore them was on the actual wedding day. I took a leap of faith and was not disappointed. I can confirm that Isabelle is a black strappy heel that is different than the other heels that have betrayed me.
For one, they’re not as narrow, with a square tip that gives my toes more room to breathe. The straps along the front and the side actually helped me keep my balance, and they kept my feet in position for dancing, church processions, and multiple return trips to the dessert table. The moment I realized they were truly a pair of comfortable heels, though, was when, halfway through the night, everyone was removing their shoes and I had completely forgotten that mine were still on. I wore them for 12 hours straight without a single tear, blister, or complaint.
Now, while I may not exactly be ready to retire all my platform heels—they'll forever be my preferred kind of shoe—I’ve definitely finally found a strappy heel that gives me the same kind of ease. And the next time someone tells me not to be too extra, I’ll know exactly what to wear.
Shop the Reformation heels and six more affordable options below.
Originally Appeared on Glamour