A recent study has suggested that women in a certain age bracket prefer wearing their high heels to other shoes, a trend that may explain why some wear them to sleep and others do not.
The research, which examined a representative sample of 1,813 women, found that those aged between 18 and 30 are most likely to wear high heels.
However, it is not clear why this preference is particularly strong among women in their early 20s.
The researchers suggest that the reason could be because they feel that their high heel is more supportive and can help prevent injuries during physical activity.
The findings, which were published in the journal PLOS ONE, could help explain why many women who exercise and eat well are uncomfortable with their feet getting too hot during exercise.
High heels are commonly worn by the average woman, but this may vary from person to person, the researchers said.
“It’s not like everyone wears them, or every woman does, but it’s something that we would expect to see in some age groups,” Dr Maria Alesina, a lecturer in psychology at the University of Cambridge and lead author of the study, told BBC News.
The study included women aged between 19 and 26.
The women were asked to select two different shoes, and then wore them for four hours.
They then recorded their body temperature using an infrared thermometer.
The scientists found that women who wore heels were more likely to sleep in them, which is associated with a higher body temperature.
They also reported feeling more comfortable in their heels when sleeping, which suggests they helped reduce body heat.
However the women who did not wear heels were less likely to feel comfortable sleeping in them when they were feeling tired.
Dr Alesinas team found that wearing heels reduced heart rate and blood pressure when sleeping.
She also found that the women with high heels were not only more likely than the women without high heels, but were also more likely for them to be able to sleep on their own, although the women wearing high-heeled shoes had more difficulty sleeping on their feet.
The results of the new study were published on the journal Plos One.
Dr Maria-Alicia Alesinas said the results of her study may also help explain how high heels can contribute to obesity.
“I think the main difference between men and women is that men tend to sleep better in their shoes than women do, which means that their heels help them sleep better,” she said.
The new findings come just weeks after a study found that some women were using their high-cut high heels as a means of covering up their feet during a visit to the doctor.
Some experts have suggested that people may use their high fashion to cover up their body parts, such as breasts and pubic hair, but Dr Aiesinas said this was not necessarily true.
The British Journal of Sports Medicine published a study last year that looked at how the number of women wearing heels during exercise affects their fitness levels and reported that the amount of exercise they performed was also related to the number and shape of their high shoes.
Women in their mid-30s, who tend to have more body fat than their female peers, were more prone to having heels, the study found.
The UK’s Health and Fitness Council said that it would be inappropriate to categorise the study as research, because it did not specifically explore how high-end heels affect the body, but that the results could be useful for health professionals.
The council said: “The findings suggest that wearing high heel shoes in conjunction with a high-rise dress can improve overall physical health.”
It also said it would support women’s self-esteem and encourage them to explore their own body image and body image of others.
The Royal College of Surgeons, the body which oversees the medical profession, said it was “disappointed” that this research did not examine the possible effects of wearing high heeled shoes on health.
It said: The research in this study could be used by medical professionals and patients alike to promote better understanding of how high heel heels affect women’s physical health.
“The association between high heels and health is not only a concern for the public health, it also impacts women’s bodies and their bodies can be a source of anxiety for them, especially if they are feeling insecure or uncomfortable about their body,” said Dr Sarah Smith, chief executive of the Royal College.