Shailene Woodley’s post-Golden Globes footwear involved a peep-toe — but not from a classic pump. The “Secret Life of the American Teenager” actress’s choice of Vibram FiveFingers toe-shoes was a faux-pas that has brought on the wrath of the fashion police. But wearers of the toe-separating shoes have launched a vociferous defense of the footwear that they say is comfortable and easy on muscles and joints — especially after a long night of walking in heels.
Woodley didn’t wear the Vibrams to the actual ceremony — there, she wore some appropriate pumps with her elegant Marchesa dress. But after the show, she changed into a black one-sleeved Calvin Klein gown for the Warner Bros. party co-hosted by InStyle. Maybe she thought no one would notice the toe shoes under her long dress, but the telltale toes of the Vibrams peeked out from beneath the hem as she walked the blue carpet.
Jezebel called them “hideous running shoe contraptions your dad wears on vacation.” The Telegraph went a step further, with a threat for the young star: “Every move you make, every fashion mistake, we’ll be watching you.”
But fashion experts seem to be the only ones turning up their noses at Woodley’s choice of footwear. Many women — accustomed to achy feet after spending far less time in heels — are applauding Woodley’s choice to choose sensibility over style, for once in Hollywood.
“This girl is my hero,” said one Daily Mail commenter. “The dress was really long, no one would normally have noticed and she gets to enjoy the experience without 1. Being in pain and 2. [Worrying] about falling flat on her face. High five!”
“Horrible and painful shoes should not be encouraged,” said another commenter on Jezebel. “I support her completely.”
Whether or not Woodley’s photos will give Vibram a fashionable boost — or start a trend of sensible, orthopedic runway-ready footwear — remains to be seen, but the company is loving its Hollywood close-up: It tweeted “Who says #Vibram #FiveFingers aren’t appropriate for any occasion?”