A Podiatrist Weighs In On The TikTok-Viral "Barbie Feet" Challenge

Those arches are arching.

Why everyone on TikTok is trying the Barbie feet challenge.
Getty Images/Jon Kopaloff / Stringer; TikTok/@annacyphre

Barbie is known for a lot of things, including but not limited to her dream house, her many careers, her love for the color pink — and her perpetually pointed feet. Barbie is the girl who can wear heels anywhere and everywhere, including when she isn’t wearing them at all. And, as the world waits with bated breath for the film premiere, it’s her signature tippy-toe walk that has inspired the Barbie feet challenge, which now has over 42 million views on TikTok.

The viral challenge recreates the iconic scene from the upcoming movie where Barbie (Margot Robbie) effortlessly steps out of her fluffy pink heels before walking away with her permanently super-arched feet. Chrissy Teigen recently attempted it, but not without struggling out of her shoes and saying “ow” in the process. Many others have tried it, too, but the challenge seems just as hard as Ken’s abs.

It definitely isn’t natural to have mega-arches — Barbie is a doll, after all — and it isn’t easy to walk on your toes, so it makes sense why the world is positively amazed by Robbie’s tiptoe stroll (and why Teigen is demanding more info on exactly how she did that). So, is the Barbie feet challenge impossible? And is it creating unrealistic foot standards? Bustle talked to a podiatrist to find out.

No surprises here, but according to Dr. Nam Tran, a board-certified foot and ankle surgeon with Dallas Direct Podiatry, Barbie’s foot shape is not particularly realistic. While some folks do have high arches — and a few nail the challenge on the first try — feet come in all different forms, and most aren’t this... erm, high heel-shaped.

If you try the challenge and it seems impossible, get this: Even Robbie wasn’t walking on her toes. In an interview with Fandango, the actor revealed that while the feet in the shot are her own, she was holding onto a bar to help her stay aloft. There was also double-sided sticky tape on the floor to help the heels stay put, which is why her feet slide out so easily. Aah... movie magic.

While Barbie’s feet are pointy in a way that isn’t exactly human, it’s OK to try this challenge — and to strut around in bright pink heels — if you like. “Generally speaking, standing on your tiptoes or wearing high heels sparingly is not going to cause many issues,” Tran notes. It’s only if you were to walk around like Barbie all day that foot problems, like big toe pain or plantar fasciitis, might arise. Just try to take breaks... or drive around in your Barbie dream car instead.


Dr. Nam Tran, board-certified foot and ankle surgeon with Dallas Direct Podiatry