First lady Melania Trump has drawn criticism from some for her consistent use of high-heeled shoes, with others commenting that she will not be the "fashion icon" like former first lady Michelle Obama.
In a Newsweek article entitled "Melania, Ivanka and Ivana Trump Wear High Heels, A Symbol Of Everything That Is Beautiful And Horrifying About Them," author Nina Burleigh notes that the first lady, in addition to other women in the Trump family, are hardly ever seen without high-heeled shoes.
The article bobs between criticism and admiration, as Burleigh mentions that wearing high heels is such an effort that everyday use is incredible. But Burleigh went further, suggesting a hidden misogyny in the family that almost requires the women to look their best at all times.
"Six months in, and the Trump women are well on their way to normalizing the footwear of the beauty pageant," Burleigh writes.
A former editor of the fashion magazine Vogue surmised that Trump women were likely early wearers of such a shoe, taught proper posture and gait from a young age.
"It is a shoe that defies gravity," said Andre Leon Talley. "It is a risk-taking shoe. If you stumble, you will break your ankle. But these girls have mastered the art absolutely through rigorous discipline of daily exercise and weight loss, and when you set your foot into the toe box you have the mental knowledge that you can’t make those mistakes and fall."
Others have wondered why the Trump family has come under such sharp scrutiny. On the Fox News program "Fox & Friends," host Abby Huntsman asked why Michelle Obama and other first ladies had often been left alone when it came to their appearance but Melania received criticism often.
"I think the rule with first ladies in general is that they are off limits," said guest Steve Kurtz. "They weren't elected, they're not setting public policy, you just leave them alone." Both Kurtz and Huntsman went on to suggest reasons they believe the current first family has not been given the same consideration.
In January, The Hollywood Reporter noticed that Melania opted for a pair of sky blue stilettos on Inauguration Day rather than the typical kitten heel or something similarly conservative. The publication declared Melania was "ushering in the era of the stiletto in Washington."
The Hollywood Reporter also noted Melania's wardrobe choices seemed to be inspired by Robin Wright's character in the Netflix political drama "House of Cards" as well as former first lady Jackie Kennedy.