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Open-Toe Boots Are Literally Just Sweat Funnels

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Live your life, but don’t live it in these shoes.

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A woman from the shins down wearing black open-toe high heel boots. Photo: Merilyn Smith/Getty Images

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Zany things have been happening lately in the world of shoe construction. All of a sudden loafers are backless and pumps are sideless and mules are topless. This kind of change can be scary, at least for a traditionalist like me: What if I accidentally kick a shoe down onto the subway track and I have to hop all the way home? What if the side of my foot gets cold???

I’ve largely adapted and am now clomping around in my wacky cutout footwear. But where I draw the line is open-toe boots.

Sometimes referred to as “peep-toe” (barf!), these shoes aren’t so much a trend as they are a recurring low-grade threat, like the cold you invariably get when the seasons change. There are plenty of people who look great in them: Rihanna, for example, or all bloggers. But unfortunately I am not a professionally beautiful person, and I possess neither the balance nor the sweat-free extremities to match. And so whenever I find myself face to face with a pair o’ peeps, I am reminded of nothing so much as twin gushing rivers funneled somewhere in the direction of my big toes.

Because in what weather are these shoes remotely reasonable? If it’s hot out, your feet schvitz; if it’s cold, your toes freeze. If they’re meant for the sliver of weather between mid-September and early October, in which we in the Northeast are (supposed to be) currently residing, then that is a woefully short season to make such an investment for.

Why not just wear sneakers or loafers like the rest of us normies? There’s something a little too coy about these shoes for them to sit well with me. It’s the same reason I viscerally recoil before cold-shoulder sweaters; when I happen upon one of them in a store, seemingly normal until revealing its deficiencies, I want to scream, “WHO TOOK THE REST OF YOU??”

I guess I’m just an old-fashioned curmudgeon who thinks that boots should be boots, sandals should be sandals, and never the twain should meet. And yet there are plenty of other shoes for me to wear, so I will now excuse myself, and I won’t make another peep.