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You know what was really, really irritating about Sex and the City? Carrie strutted around New York in those Manolos for six whole seasons and she never stopped at Duane Reade to get Band-Aids. Not even once. You’ll probably never be able to prance around the city in stilettos for 15 hours in a row, but we have eight secrets to keep you pain-free through dinner, drinks and beyond.

RELATED: The Most Walkable Shoes That Are Still Trendy and Cute

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START WITH SOCKS

Before taking new heels for a stroll down Fifth Avenue, wear them around your apartment with a pair of thick socks for a few nights to break them in. The extra cushioning will allow the shoes to gently stretch while still keeping their shape.

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ADD SOME ICE

Wait, don’t hit the streets in those Jimmy Choos just yet. If they’re still feeling tight, fill two plastic baggies with water and stuff them into the toe boxes. Stick the shoes in the freezer overnight (yep, we're serious). As the water freezes, the baggies will expand and magically stretch out your shoes.

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TAPE YOUR TOES

This sounds totally weird, but it works. Tape your third and fourth toes together with medical tape. There’s a nerve located directly between these two toes, and providing some extra stability helps minimize foot strain. Science!

RELATED: 15 Weather-Resistant Boots That Actually Look Good

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ROUGH UP YOUR SOLES

No slipping down the subway stairs for you. Use a piece of sandpaper to score the soles of your shoes. It provides extra traction, and it’s cheaper than those rough stick-on pads they sell at the drugstore.

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MAKE YOUR FEET BLISTER-PROOF

Shoes + friction + skin = blisters. Apply a thin layer of clear deodorant to your heels (and anywhere else the shoe is rubbing) to keep your feet from getting irritated by your new kicks.

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COOL YOUR HEELS

It’s Friday night and you want to dance the night away in your favorite pair of stilettos. There’s only one problem: After walking around in midi boots all day, your feet are so swollen and puffy, trying to shove anything but a slipper over them is pure torture. Plunge your feet in cold water for as long as you can stand it--the icy temperature will reduce swelling, so you can kick up your heels all night long.

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STRUT LIKE A MODEL

If you’re still in pain, it might not be the shoes--especially if you’re slouching or shuffling your feet as you walk. Keep your head up and your shoulders back, and take short strides as you step down evenly on the ball of your foot and your heel. Just, uh, maybe don’t walk like this model.

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STASH SLIP-ONS IN YOUR PURSE

OK, here’s the real secret to wearing heels in NYC: Sometimes you have to give your feet a rest. When you’re sitting at your desk at work, catching a movie or seeing a Broadway show, swap out your heels for flats and no one will be the wiser. Your secret’s safe with us.

RELATED: 5 Clever Ways to Keep Your Favorite Shoes Looking New

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