Instagram trends can get weird, but before deeming them totally loco, we like to take our time to investigate the hype. Up on the chopping block today is the Instagram craze we like to call “Barbie feet,” which models, celebrities, and fashion girls have taken an obsessive liking to. The idea behind this trend is to pose up on your toes to elongate your legs and flex your muscles a little bit. It appears as though you’re wearing high heels sans the shoes. This positioning of the leg is nearly identical to the propped-up feet of Barbie. Typically, this pose is accompanied by a swimsuit or summery ‘fit since those are the occasions where no shoes reside.
The hype is now confirmed (just scroll down to see all the Instagram proof), so to further investigate, we reached out to three experts in different fields to weigh in—a podiatrist, an Instagram expert, and a Mattel spokesperson. Read on to find out what each had to say from their own point of view and to shop some shoes that will give the Barbie feet allusion for all those times where no shoes isn’t an option.
“I have had a lot of my patients ask me recently about ‘Barbie feet.’ I’m surprised this trend didn’t begin earlier. ‘Barbie feet’ are obviously better than wearing high heels because the position of the foot is temporary. Posing with ‘Barbie feet’ can make you look taller and can possibly make your calves look more muscular, but this pose is not recommended for long periods of time because you can get calf shortening and pain and inflation along the ball of the foot.” — Bobby Pourziaee, DPM, also known as “The High Heel Doc” of Rodeo Drive Podiatry
“As a global cultural icon for almost 60 years, Barbie is often referenced in cultural trends that are not created or endorsed by the brand. Today, Barbie is the most diverse doll line on the market with a variety of skin tones, body sizes, hair textures, and even dolls with flat feet that are resonating with consumers.” — Mattel spokesperson
“The best shoes to wear on any summer trip (or #revolvearoundtheworld activation) is to not wear any at all! As far as bikinis, beaches, and boats are concerned, ‘Barbie feet’ are like the invisible counterpart to the so-now Lucite heel—they’re deceptively lengthening and good for posture and give a whole new meaning to going nude.” — Anna Tran, brand director at Revolve and Forward
“As we spent most of July in Bermuda for #RevolveSummer, we noticed a trend with almost all of the influencers balancing on their toes when they were without a high heel. Instantly they looked a foot taller, magically had defined calf muscles, and everything just seemed perkier (including their butts). It’s hard not to like ‘Barbie feet’ when the outcome is just so much better in photos. Why set limitations on elongating yourself just because you’re barefoot? Even the Instagram pros are doing it.” — Justine Cuenco, brand manager at Revolve and Forward
This was originally published at an earlier date and has been updated.