So you wanna go for the max?! Is 5” for you?

Most of us who have been adding height for many years (16 years plus in my case) know that you CAN get away with 5” (12cm) elevators, but that every half inch over 3” comes with its limitations, challenges and requirements. Even to experienced height adders like myself. And the less time you have been adding height, the greater the challenges. As someone who regularly DOES add 5” in height, I am telling you that, in 80% of cases, I advise other guys to go lower than 5” (and it’s not just that I don’t want the competition!).

But, for those who have decided that they want to add the MAX in height, here is my guide to doing it well, comfortably, discreetly and undetectably. 

luxury height increasing boots

People are NOT that observant, but…

Firstly, you are in luck - people are not very observant. I have mentioned this before but my mother is a psychologist and she has to explain to incredulous police officers why witnesses to crimes say that the alleged criminal was anything from 5’8” to 6’2”, blond to dark brown and wearing a green, red, blue or black shirt. In a nutshell, unless others have tabulated your height, measured you against others and then come up with absolutes, they will NOT actually know how tall you are, or much by way of comparison with others, until they decide for some reason to focus on it. 

However, although not everyone will notice added height, even at the 5” level, that IS a big difference depending upon your existing height and it comes with challenges that you have to be aware of. Including inevitably a greater chance of detection at some point in the process than, for example, with 2”- 3” elevators. It is still a small chance but it IS greater. 

Use lifts or a smaller elevator beforehand

Now this is really important. If you are set on going for the max, you just MUST make a start on adding height NOW, before you even order your boots. You must either start by buying and wearing a pair of 2”-3” elevators right away or add lifts to your shoes TODAY – with these, my own course of action has always been to get footwear a size or two bigger than you wear now, and add more lifts than you can fit in those your own size. Hi top trainers, higher leg boots and shoes. Some are not keen on this advice – I understand this but trying to fit lifts into ready made footwear not designed for it is limiting – it means you really can only add an inch without pressure on various parts of your foot.

Ideally (ideally!) you should buy a pair of elevators in the 2”-3” mark to wear for a few months or more before you ‘graduate’ onto the Big Ones. 

There are many reasons for all this – firstly it will give you the proof that no-one is noticing you are suddenly taller. This is good and bad (‘they haven’t noticed – aaargh’), but really it’s good because it proves that other people are not super-aware. At that lower level, trust me, even your own girlfriend/best mate would not notice you have added height. It seems counterintuitive – but buying a cheap set of lifts to prove the point seems to me to be a good proof – I have at times told people in e-mails a dozen times, but still they come back “Yeah I know but surely, she will be able to tell…surely they will notice when I go into the office…”. Nope they won’t, get over it, no point asking me a 13th time, buy some lifts, shove them in your boots and see for yourself. And then make a start with lower level elevators for a while. 

The other main reason is that it starts to help you experience that for YOU the difference in height will be immediate and obvious, even if (joy oh joy) it is not to anyone else. Your experience will allow you to get used to ‘being’ a couple of important inches taller, walking with them, just generally being taller. 

You really only have to do this for a few months and your transition to the Big Ones will be made A LOT easier.

Getting used to walking in 5”

I have found that walking in the lower 3” elevators is very very easy. I can do almost anything at all in them, even run. Walking in 5” elevators, though, takes a little time to finesse. And there is just NO running for the bus. Before you even start, therefore, you have to get into your head that once you have got your 5” elevators, you must go for lots of walks (short ones) in them, to the shops or to a mate’s place, taking the dog for a walk, whatever. That way you will gradually come to walk as naturally as possible. And you will also understand about running and trying to hurry - you have to learn to be cool at all times (not for everyone who wants to bustle around).

Your wardrobe really has to reflect your bigger boots – if you are a devotee of European style skinny jeans then my advice is to lay off them for a little while till you work out the best way of wearing stuff which so exposes the boot. I wear them but I have carefully finessed it and know that I have to take great care wearing big elevators with them – the boots are of course always way more on show. Many of the styles around, specially in colder countries or in colder seasons, involve tight skinny jeans and big boots, so you get away with it more. But at first stick to stuff that covers the boot a bit more. 

New clothes needed – isn’t that great?!

Always make sure your pants/ trousers are LONGER than before – you really cannot just add all that 5” in height and stick to the same old pairs. At their highest level, elevators DO mean buying longer pants – funny enough, not 5” longer. It’s weird that all you really need is 2” or max 3” longer. Not really sure why this is but I have always found it so.

What you want to avoid above all is the pants riding up over the back of the boot and getting hitched in the top of the boot. As a matter of course, just get in the habit of casually looking back and checking the back of the pants are down OVER the boot before you get up out of a chair. 

Your existing height

In an earlier piece, I have been through the business of what you can easily add in relation to your current height. Read this again if you are thinking of going for the max.

Would I advise a guy who is 5’6” to wear 5” elevators? That is a tough one really and it so depends upon lifestyle and current situation. Every single person is different (some guys wear a suit all the time, others are only happy in sweat shirt and jeans). I think I would more likely say that day-to-day FOR MOST GUYS in that height area you would be better adding 2” – 3”. But it’s really about how you see yourself and what you would like to achieve and when. At night, on special occasions, say when you are gonna be photographed at a friends or family event. Well you might want to appear just that bit taller.

But in that height area, I would suggest that unless you were only adding big height for specific occasions and never otherwise, then you are better having really good quality big elevators just for occasions and always stick to a bit lower. Never have just 5” elevators.

In summary, prepare for adding the max by going half way for a reasonable period – it helps you get accustomed to walking and being taller, and others get accustomed to you being a bit taller without suddenly seeing a big change. As someone who wears 4” and 5” elevators every day, I just so love the extra height I get – I would never be without them now.

So you wanna go for the max?! Is 5” for you? - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote

Why wear elevators or add height?

Sounds a funny question considering you are reading this comment and site, but I have noticed that many guys have so many questions that their actual reasons for wanting to add height can get lost. And it has an effect of making it more difficult to decide what to do and when. So there’s a very simple one-phrase answer to the question “Why wear elevators?” and it’s “I wanna be taller”. But that ignores the many different reasons and the factors which make you want to be taller – and it’s those reasons that are so interesting and, in a way, define how much you should add and when.

It goes back to the heart of lifestyle factors which dictate to a great degree how much you can add. And how successful you will be in your aims to appear taller. One guy who got in touch with me only really wanted to be a bit taller in public than his girlfriend who always wears big heels – it amounts to adding a couple of inches and the job is done. Very easy. No detection ever and low added height and he looks just right. Very focused, and “no thanks” to any idea of maybe adding yet more in years to come! But that’s an easy one. Most guys just want to be quite a bit taller (even tall guys like myself) and the motivations/drives are many and various. Some are practical and some less so.  My own situation is a classic example of what can be done in some circumstances but not in others. I wanted to add several inches of regular height to match a group of really incredibly tall and dominant guys at a club I helped to run. It was a tall order even with my height but it was possible for me because of my lifestyle. I have managed it with 4” and 5” elevators. But I myself work in a field where it is easy to do it – I am a club promoter, I am not always wanting to play soccer or go swimming etc etc. So detection issues are negligible. And I am of an age where I can do as I please.

I have a contact in a similar position but he is much younger and has more limitations on his lifestyle. He can add height but not to the same degree that I can all the time. So he adds a certain amount during the day and more at night, when he is out. An interesting one was an 18 year old guy leaving home to study and wanting to at least match his older brother when he went home. The older brother was a few inches taller and my contact got himself some 4” elevators for his trip home – because they had not met for more than 6 months and because his new lifestyle meant he now wasn’t always at home with his brother (and because he was of an age where it was easy to pass it off if necessary as ‘still growing’!), he could get away with adding that amount. But he would find that really difficult to do suddenly and easily if he lived at home full time. He would have to limit the adding of height at first and maybe do it fully in a further stage. I also have made a few contacts in the military who add height but they are senior and although they would like to add much more, even in their positions, they take it carefully. Being senior they are less exposed day to day and can add height quite easily without detection – one now adds 5”. Their aim too is to be taller than any of the recruits, and therefore more dominant. If they were younger and in the ranks they would probably not be able to do this at all, even slightly.

On the business of wanting to be powerfully dominant, in my business I also know of several door supervisors/bouncers in nightclubs who add serious height, partly to create a powerful impression of force and size but also because it is very much part of the whole image in that profession. The bigger the better is the doorman’s motto, period. Most of the ones I refer to seem to wear lifts and elevators pretty much all the time, at work and out of it, but it is interesting that the four who have been in touch with me a lot for advice and have stayed in contact all tend to alter their height up and down quite a lot. And they find this the most successful approach. One massive bull of a guy who is built like a tank wears 5” elevators + more lifts when he is working to get himself to well over 2m (over 6’6”) – outside, though, he tends to wear just 3” elevators. 

When he first told me he wanted to do this, he was worried that people would notice the up and down in his height. And that fear stopped him from doing almost anything except adding lifts which he found uncomfortable and never gave him the height he wanted. But I have learned over many many years that people do NOT notice this type of change, and are not that observant – one of the reasons is that we ALL go up and down depending upon the footwear we have on – eg Timberlands are the best elevators until you buy elevators – but no-one ever says “you have added and inch and a half in height wearing those Timberlands”. So with some trepidation, he went ahead and was amazed that not even his girlfriend noticed the difference. The key to this is that sometimes you need reassuring against things that might appear intuitive, specially on detection issues. And you are right to be cautious and careful. To make the absolute most out of adding height and your elevators, decide early on what are your REAL objectives, right now, in adding height. Is it to add a couple of inches (even if you would like more ideally!) to seem taller than your girlfriend in her heels. Or that guy in the office or club really pisses you off being a few inches taller and you want to equal/tower him? A brother/cousin/mate? And then think it through. If, cards on the table, you are aiming for a big change in that ideal world, then without a period of wearing lifts at first over a period, or best of all much lower elevators, I would not go the full 4”/5” right away even if you are tall! I would go for a half way house around 2.5”/3” depending upon your height now (see my earlier post on what to do at what height!). Get used to it and then decide. This may all require adding a bit of height first, and then coming back for more later (even much later). As I have pointed out before, a couple of inches is undetectable as added height but gives you a definite boost.

Finally I have had several guys write to me telling me “I don’t care, I wanna go for the max immediately”. Next time I am going to explain the most efficident and effective way you can do this. It can be done – you just have to take a lot more care about what you do in the early stages to plan and prepare.

Why wear elevators or add height? - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote

Who should wear elevators?

It sounds an easy question to answer – “Who should wear elevators?” It goes without saying that they are mostly thought of as ‘footwear for short guys’. But this is no longer the case. We have got to the stage where almost everyone today will benefit from wearing elevators. And here’s why.

Go back just 15 years and indeed that’s what elevators were, for shorter smaller guys – available in just small sizes, and in very old fashioned styles, they were  marketed in old fashioned and coy terms using outdated language (‘discreet height assistance for the discerning gentleman’). That meant they were for guys much shorter than average. And way older.

elevator shoes

I am in my mid 30s and started adding height at around 19, very back end of the 1990s – I was using lifts in my hi top sneakers/trainers, combat boots/Chelsea boots etc. I checked out the elevators available at that time and made a mental note never to look at them ever again. They looked like the styling had got stuck at around the time when Dean Martin was singing Let it Snow. Nothing like millennial fashion at all. But of course happily it all changed with boots by companies like GuidoMaggi.

I then in my 20s began to realize something – that wanting to be taller was the key. Not being ‘short’ (whatever that means). And it applies to guys of all heights and for varying reasons. I noticed something interesting – working in the club scene at that period you met all kinds of people. And you realized right from the outset – some guys you might think of as ‘short’ (a guy I ran one night with regularly) was perfectly happy being short. In fact I think he even quite liked it. He was able to build his body up quickly because of his height and he never had the slightest problem with women! Wore the flattest All Stars and shoes that were fashionable at the time and never gave a thought about his height.

However, I knew for a fact of other guys who were already really tall, even taller than me, had a thing about their height and liked being the tallest guy in the room. I could see plainly as a typical club promoter observing his clients that they were very aware of other guys who were tall. And that they would prefer to be taller still.

I was specially aware of this because I fell into that category myself – at 6’2.5” (190cm) I wanted to be as tall as 3 really huge guys who came to a night I worked on. Period. And what is more I met another guy who was the same. And he introduced me to the idea of adding height. He always seemed really big, he worked the door of another bar and we got talking a lot and eventually he confided in me.

Over a very long period I came to realize that this business of adding height was not really just about ‘shortness’. It was a lifestyle thing, and increasingly tailored into perceptions of what looks good according to the individual and his own lifestyle – not about some fixed idea written down about how you should look or behave in certain circumstances. Like the old fashioned rules about what colours ‘a gentleman’ should wear together that are now regarded as silly and restrictive. This is a big change and it has definitely occurred over the past 15 years.

I have written a lot on websites about all of this and over a few years have had a good few hundred people get in touch with me for advice on elevators and lifts – and what has struck me is the degree to which, for example, so many tall guys want to be taller (it’s always a bit about competition), also how many mid height guys want to add just a bit without detection (and in comfort!) so, for example, when they go out they are just a tiny tad taller than their partner if she wears heels. This has become more of an issue but it totally depends upon stuff like fear of detection etc. And of course, naturally, guys shorter than average wanting to be taller. But there are no hard and fast categories or cut off points about short/ tall/medium height (what is tall in Indonesia is short in Holland for example, average heights being so massively varied across countries and continents). The old categories break down simply because people are different shapes, builds, cultures. So along with fashion, they vary in what they want – often at different times in their lives as well. 

This really means that added height is for almost everyone at some point or other. And the key is to get it right in style terms – almost every single guy looks better with a couple of inches extra height. Also the issue of detection. Detection is THE biggest fear and I totally get that, as it is (and always has been) mine as well. I will write more about this in another piece.

And if I have any one piece of advice for all guys even vaguely thinking of adding height, at any height level you might currently be. Get yourself a quality pair of elevators in a standard style to suit your usual clothes, with a 2”+ elevator (maybe 3”, if you are taller than 5’11”) as a start point. Something in the 6cm, 7cm or 8cm range. And in a style somewhat like what you might normally wear. This height lift is undetectable both on and off, so you do not feel that people think your height is going way up and down – take them off and it just looks like you have lost the usual height when you take off ANY pair of shoes; put them ON and they just lift you to a degree you yourself realize, but which others will not think is anything out of the usual. All boots and shoes add height, even the humble flip flop!

All the pluses with none of the (potential) minuses of going really tall.

Guys like myself who add a lot more inches have learned the tricks and how to do it without detection – that too depends upon lifestyle and that too I will address in a future post!

Who should wear elevators? - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote

Why buy Elevators?

This is another one I get asked a lot – “why spend cash on (expensive) elevators when I can buy cheap lifts and stick them in my footwear?” In fact it’s what I myself thought for many years, until I actually discovered elevators that looked like proper shoes and boots, stuff I would ACTUALLY wear. Here is my story for my own transition from lifts to elevators, why I did what I did and how I came to do it. And then a few pointers, hints as to how to make the best of all worlds. 

elevator boots

I work in the nightclub business and first got into wanting to be taller when I saw 3 huge blokes who really appeared to take control of a friend’s nightclub I helped run when I was in my late teens – this was over 15 years ago. Without thought I started adding lifts to my boots to compete and get at least some way to their height (at first rolled up socks and cardboard - aaargh, really uncomfortable, specially when it all slipped to the side). It felt good though, adding that extra inch or so.

As the years went by, I had always hoped to find elevators: of course I had heard of them. I just finessed my lift wearing. But all I saw online of elevators a decade or so ago was crap, total rubbish. Like real old 1950s-man very very dated stuff, and only in really small sizes. So I put the whole idea out of my head. None of them would like right with the styles of jeans etc around at the time. Also, I would look at the day-to-day stuff you get in the various boot and shoe shops or see guys wearing and think “I want that” or something like it, not some crap looking olde worlde shoe. And then along came the real new trend for very flared trousers and I was in height heaven for a few years  – I worked out that you buy your boots bigger, plenty of room and stuff them full – by now I had gone on to proper lift kits. The flared pants made it so easy to buy big boots, the flares long and draped over the boot…and inside was just total height adding heaven – I know I managed to get over the Regulation Max 3” at that time.

But then flares went out all of a sudden, as styles do. And here is the issue. With lifts you can only really comfortably add a couple of inches. 3” is so so far pushing it that I would never advise unless the style suits it (like my cover-all flares at the time). And they are still uncomfortable and you have to finesse the size of your shoe (taking into the account the upper and its pressure on your foot – it can be really painful). And not always suitable for what you might have to wear – ever seen the terrible clumpy footwear worn on red carpet occasions by actors who clearly do add height? OMG. Great big thick Munster boots with suits. Well, you can’t add much height by lifts to standard dress shoes in that situation. 

So at this time I looked again online – and I discovered GuidoMaggi and saw how it had all changed in the elevator market. Given what I had seen before, I was entranced. They key now was that the styles looked cool, many looked just like normal fashion boots, like brogues (wingtips in North America) or boots you would wear on a night out, or to the office as a younger guy – not all were my kinda stuff, but plenty plenty were. In big enough sizes. And colours. And I thought long and hard about it. What did I want to achieve and could I afford it. I work hard, earn reasonably well but I am just NOT the sort who usually spends that amount of cash an anything I wear. Well in the end I went wild and bought a pair of the boots with the biggest 5” lift – I am already tall, have a bit of a thing about wanting to be very very tall and thought “Go for it”. I bought the 5” Shanghais. [I would btw not advise most guys to go for 5” first off!]. But I think for myself that I was helped in my ‘transition’ by the simple fact that I had used lifts, had already got used to ‘being’ taller and so the next stage up was just so easy.

And the main thing was the comfort. OMG the difference is spectacular. I still do wear lifts very occasionally in some things where I like the style but it is never as comfortable or as effective. And now that GuidoMaggi carries a full range of all types of footwear, I have identified many that I like.

And this is really the point and here are a few thoughts – lifts are a great way of testing out at first greater height and making you realize – “OMG no-one actually KNOWS I am adding height”. You yourself FEEL taller but no-one else is aware of what you are doing. It is the halfway house to the major confidence of going a bit higher with elevators. Once you have worn lifts for a while you will certainly want to go on to elevators. Really, lifts are just a way of trying out added height.

And of course an important thing – it’s clear that making footwear allowing for added height is a type of science. It is not and cannot ever be just jamming a few inches onto a standard boot. So properly-made elevators make your added height look natural, the sole and the upper etc have been made to make it look normal – not as if your upper is raised and straining against laces or leather. If you go TOO high with lifts, you DO get that unnatural looking and feeling situation where your upper presses hard against the laces or top of the boot. 

By and large no-one will ever notice, but that is not comfortable. Elevators do not do that. They fit and give you the inches without the aggro. The key to adding serious height, ultimately for me, has been to get to the max and with great comfort. Adding a couple of inches max by way of lifts before getting your elevators also helps you to finesse your walking. Not everyone has this problem, but going up with a bit of lift first and breaking it in over a few weeks makes you suddenly realize “Wow this is EASY”.

Why buy Elevators? - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote

Will my mates be able to tell?

Here is something I am asked all the time – “I really want to buy some elevators and add height but I am worried that my mates will easily be able to tell”. My answer is a definite and big - “NO, they will NOT be able to tell if you do it right and follow my rules”, but I think that the psychology behind it all needs explaining. And the rules.

I have mentioned here before that I have added height for over 15 years since my late teens and no-one has ever realized. I am very lucky in already being very tall but there are as many rules for me as there are for guys who are much shorter. I have mentioned already in an earlier piece why even potential girlfriends do not need to know, if you get it right.

elevator shoes

Here is my guide to making sure that mates and co-workers do not know. And here too there are rules and commonsense strategies. 

Firstly it DOES depend upon what you do with your friends and colleagues. We are all different. Some of us cannot wait to get onto the football pitch or into the swimming pool with our friends or even co-workers. Others might never go near these things after they have stopped having to do them at school. Put bluntly, a lifestyle that revolves around socializing at the bar is a lot easier in terms of height enhancement than one of constant sport. But in both situations, height can be added. Firstly there is the matter of degree. Any sudden and serious jump has the potential to be noticed, and I have mentioned before the BigRob Rule in my earlier piece “How much can I add safely?” At different height levels, you can add more or less depending upon your real height. Check out that piece in conjunction with this one. But even when you push at the max you would be amazed at just how few, if any, would notice. But I start from my own position where I want NO-ONE EVER to notice. Ultra secure. I am assuming that you want to add as much height as possible with no risk of detection. And that you are really thinking of investing in the kind of modern quality elevators that are fashionable or classic but clearly well made and not just cheap Far East old fashioned styles.

Firstly, if you have any fear at all of being called out on adding height, I suggest that you ‘prepare’ for your elevators: before getting them, add a bit of height every day through lifts etc. The real absolute max max you can add with these is 2” and at that level they take a lot of finessing to get right. An inch+ is fine and is the only addition which feels comfortable with shoes your own size. But you yourself do notice it and feel taller (and no-one else ever does!). They will never ever be as comfortable or as straightforward to wear as elevators, trust me – I did this for over 10 years till I found GuidoMaggi boots. I choose elevators now every time over lifts. With lifts you should ideally use them in shoes 1 size bigger (or more) than your normal shoe size. To stop the pressure on your upper foot.  The reason for doing this is that you are preparing yourself for the serious adding of comfortable and realistic height once you have your elevators. Let us say you decide upon 3” or 4” elevators: well an interim height addition of just over an inch, up to 2”, not only makes you realize that you yourself can easily add that height undetectably (no-one ever ever can detect a couple of inches) but also it is a staging post. It makes the graduation to the next stage, even just during the period waiting for your elevators to be delivered, easier. It’s probably sensible to do this even if you are buying elevators less than 3”. You get used to a good chunk of your new height and also you then realize – “Wow no-one has even shown any knowledge at all”. Co-workers and mates will not notice, and I have explained before the psychology of why.

Lifestyle is a key, though, to how much you can get away with. If I were someone who was always playing sport, I would not wear the 4” and 5” elevators that I do, even though I myself am very tall and BigRob’s chart says I can! But if I were a serious sport devotee, I would happily wear 3” day to day, put them on after a soccer match to go to the bar or wherever. Reason for this is that when mates see you in these kinda intimate situations regularly, SOMEONE will spot if you have added a LOT of height relative to the size they see you without footwear. In my case 5” is a lot. And 3” is not. But people are not really programmed to calculate or really notice the lower level of height addition. It can so easily be written off in the mind as simply the addition that everyone gets with heavier footwear (or near to it) – eg you finish the match and put your Timberlands on. You are a bit taller. Is everyone saying “he has added height”? No.  So on your own scale if you are a sports nut, then go low. You will have NO problem with that at all.  If however you are more the socializer and find your relaxation at the bar/club/restaurant whatever, then you really can get away with going for the max on my chart for your height. Here again, though, add a little to other footwear before you get your elevators, just to give you that confidence. You will be very surprised.

One of the very few guys I have met personally who wears elevators is now a good mate. He is 5’9”, swims occasionally, works in marketing and finally bought his first elevators – very standard boots with a 3.1” (8cm) addition, the Portofino I think. He had spent a few months adding height through lifts and was amazed that no-one noticed he was adding height. The same now with his elevators. I have been through all the reasons before, how people are just not that observant, specially with incremental and gradual change.

Now he is going to buy some 4” (10cm) elevators and is thinking even of 5” ones for special.

There is a lot to be said for starting at a lower level (but one that still adds real height), specially if you are not tall. But the key is to always understand that anyone can add a few inches safely and then later go for more once you are totally comfortable (or stick at where you are once you are happy with the few extra inches). It just depends upon your circumstances.

Will my mates be able to tell? - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote

How high can I go day to day? The clothes and style considerations

It’s a really important question to address, “how high can I go?’ - at work, with mates etc. Get it right and you will never ever have any problems with adding height. And it is all about lifestyle and different situations in your life, as well as your existing height. I have spent over 15 years wrestling with this and even now I learn new things about it.

The first point I have to make is that no doubt in an ideal world you would like to jump straight into 5” elevators (“hell, why don’t they do 6” – or MORE?!”). You wanna be as tall as possible.

But practical considerations dictate that in some situations if you actually go that height, you sacrifice some other aspect of style…and the overall look is then wrong. 

There are different aspects of this and one of them relates to the other clothes you wear – every day, at night, casually, on weekends. These are really important.

bespoke elevator shoes

The most common of these potential problems is, for example, when wearing a suit or formal pants/ trousers.  Suits pretty much always demand a certain type of shoe (or modern boot style), however fashionable. By and large, great clumpy boots and obvious thick soled shoes look all wrong. And with heavy boots plus a suit, there is a danger that it LOOKS like you are adding height, which is the opposite of what you want to achieve. The material tends to hang wrong and the boots flash up at you.

I have a pair of Ischias (4”/10cm) and a pair of Shanghais 5”/12.5cm) – just look at them in the GuidoMaggi site: the Ischias are PERFECT for a suit because they are not thick soled and the suit material slips neatly over them as if they were a totally normal pair of brogues or wing-tips. My Shanghais are superb with jeans or in my leathers on the bike (and I love that extra inch of lift, oh boy). Now I would love to be able to gain 5” instead of 4” when I wear something like that suit. But I cannot, because unless that thick ‘Doc Martens + suit’ look is in style and other guys are all wearing it (and sometimes it is, hooray), it just seems all wrong. So go with the flow, accept it. It’s only an inch.

There are loads of examples like this, where what is fashionable (and more importantly what is not) dictates that you should be careful how much you add.

Sometimes fashion is right with you – in the UK, a decade ago when I really started adding serious height I was helped by the fact that very flared pants were in fashion. I wore the widest flares, real long inside leg, and then the most massive shoes packed with lifts etc. Today it would be elevators of the very highest!! But that trend is long gone and no way could I do it today! You have to start with your own style and build your height addition around it. You cannot just bolt on 5” thick-soled elevators to anything and everything. A pair of 4” or 3” ones will do just as well, and will look way easier in most mainstream stuff. 

With jeans, there are a number of caveats – in the UK and Europe, skinny still rules. Most young lads wear them, but not all – and they vary in skinniness: some are skin tight and superstretch. With these, if you wanna wear very thick soled 5” boots you CAN but it is a specific style and takes a bit of finessing. I have done it and am never detected but I do occasionally worry about the style – it is very ‘in your face’ and focuses attention on the boots. This is not a problem with that style, as it is quite mainstream, specially in winter. But you have to be into that style. 

In general, though, if you wanna go real tall, then stick to bootcut jeans (plenty of modern slim-ish styles) and I have found even better is to have frayed hem bottoms, even to slim cut jeans, and even sometimes a slight split in the seam again down at the base of the hem, so that the material drapes over the boot and particularly the back of the boot. I try to avoid the material bunching and riding up on the boot which can then make the heel area look chunky – you want the jeans, however slim, to sort of hang around or drape over the boot as long as possible and over the leather. A break in the hem WILL allow that and looks cool as well, specially if frayed.

Generally, the slimmer that width of the pant leg, the more careful you have to be about drawing attention to heavy shoes. If your style is for baggier stuff (and there are some – limited – signs that it might make a revival), well you are lucky…you can wear almost anything unless you turn the hems up heavily.

Next time I am going to focus on another area of ‘how high can I go?” and it relates to your ACTUAL current height. That is important and a factor is decinding how high you can go.

How high can I go day to day? The clothes and style considerations - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote

"How much can I add safely"

So here's an issue that we ALL face when adding height. How high can I go when taking into account my current 'real' height. Elsewhere on here I have addressed the style considerations of 'how high can I go?' and dispel the myths about whether you might be rumbled if you go back with a girl. Here I am going to talk about the practical considerations of how high you can go, specially in regard to your present height and detection issues.

Firstly, a general point – a small amount of extra height is in essence undetectable even to very observant people, simply because everyone's shoes and boots add height. And because women's shoes in particular go up and down in height, making judgment on height by your girlfriend quite tricky outside of very broad bands. Certain sneakers and Timberlands and other workwear style boots will add anything up to just under 2" or about 5cm (and a lot of boots give between one inch and 1.5"). No-one really comments when you just shove on a pair of Timberlands or Air Maxes and undoubtedly gain well well over an inch. They just don't.

elevator boots


So going for elevators that give you the 6cm, or 7cm (a strong 2"+) makes your added height basically undetectable even to your mates and girlfriend, whatever your current height. You notice it for sure but no-one else ever will. And for some that is a comfortable start point, from which they never want to move up: I have mentioned elsewhere in my advice column how the vast majority of people are scientifically proven to be fairly unobservant. But yes I realize that when you are adding height you want that to be a fairly cast iron 100% who will not be able to tell you are adding height... not just "the vast majority". So there is a kinda bit more sophisticated formula I have come to appreciate what works.

So here are my tips about how many inches you can add pretty undetectably, taking into account your current height.
I am going to divide this into two lifestyles, the first of which is:

Conventional and wanting 100% certainty all the time: I am assuming for the purpose of this first lifestyle that you want to be able to walk around very easily, be able to take your footwear off in front of others, occasionally play sport and sometimes not wear footwear around the house, again in front of others. All without fear of any type of serious "Wow you just got taller/shorter" comments. It's a kinda day-to-day practical lifestyle. The aim is to add height, do it ultra convincingly, not have to worry if you DO have to take your shoes or boots off.

For that purpose, imho you can easily go for boots that offer 6cm (2.4") or 7cm (2.75") if you are up to 5'11" (180cm). No-one, trust me, will notice. Not even your partner. This type of height addition I call turbo charged normal footwear, as it is totally normal just pushes the barriers right up to the limit of normal. When you take your shoes off it will be just really like taking normal shoes off to others. But you WILL be much taller. And you can decide later if you wanna go taller.

Now slightly unfairly, some might say, if you are in the 6' (183cm) plus area, you can easily go for the 7cm or 8cm (2.75" to 3.1"), and above 6'2" (188cm) then the 4" (10cm) boots as well. All very easily for walking around and appearing normal if you take them off. You may be surprised to learn that many many tall guys want to be taller: I have written over the past couple of years about this elsewhere and have recently had my 151st guy over 6' (183cm) writing to me and asking for advice on how to get taller! Amazing eh? Competition with other guys, a hyper understanding of the advantages of height, all sorts of factors make it not just the desire of people under 6' tall.

If you are 6'3", you are already taller than 97% of other guys... add 3" and people do not think twice at all. Trust me, I know from my own experience! I stress that you can go higher at any height that you might be but I am talking above about ultra ultra safe situations.

On therefore to the second lifestyle.

This is when you either don't take your shoes off a lot in front of others, you kinda want your image to be tall and are prepared to go further. Here it's a case of all bets are off and you want to get just as tall as possible but still be basically undetectable – only, you are prepared to push it out a little more. It may be that you want to do this all the time, or it may be that day-to-day you want to conform to the first lifestyle of ultra safe that I mention above, but that at night when you are out or in some situations you want to go a bit further and be the 2nd lifestyle! That works as well.

For this, more radical approach I suggest the following:

Up to 5'7" real height and go for 7cm (2.75") or 8cm (3.1")
Up to 5'11" go for 8cm (3.1") or 10cm (4")
And over 5'11 go for 10cm (4"), or 11cm (4.3") most times, and 12cm (5") if you really really wanna push it out

These three bands are the kinda optimum for the following situations – so they remain much more undetectable than if you simply went for broke and wore 5" elevators at 5'9"! They allow you to move around easily, to work, rest and play, to occasionally take your footwear off if you have to.

And as I have said you can mix it up – go higher in the evening s etc and more cautious during the day.

Now I want to illustrate this approach through one of the very few guys I have actually met who I know wears elevators (we met through one of the sites when he asked me for advice) and he does EXACTLY that – he is 5'9' and day to day he wears 7cm (2.75") elevators. He loves the ease of adding height at that level – no restrictions, he could take the shoes off if he wanted, he swims, hits the gym, and doesn't feel self conscious about taking off and putting on. We have often talked about this and he is always amazed that his girlfriend and fellow workers and gym buddies have no idea at all – he takes these shoes off at home, does the usual, puts them on to go to work etc. But at night if they go out to a bar or whatever, he wears the higher 4" Ischias that I myself have and he also has a pair of 5" elevators for occasions he really wants to get tallest possible.

What he is doing is the 'horses for courses' thing – he absolutely and totally would NOT want to wear 5" elevators all day every day – even though he would love the height. He knows that there might JUST be the greater chance he could be rumbled for whatever reason. It might never happen but it might. But at night when you are out, it's way easier as you are not gonna be taking your boots off in public, well you can gain that bit extra.

It's all about what you want to achieve. Even at his higher level he probably wouldn't be detected, but he wants to feel totally comfortable in what he is doing 100% of the time – and mixing up his heights like that to suit the occasion really works for him.
So, at lower levels on my chart of heights, you are all totally safe but feel totally great and taller. And as time goes by you may feel you just wanna get an extra inch or so – or maybe even have something in your wardrobe that pushes you right up there to the max.

"How much can I add safely" - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote

Will they notice at the airport

OK here is a query that I am asked more than anything else, apart from the one about ‘will women notice when you are back home together?’. It’s a funny one that touches on other areas – “Oh God, what will happen when I go through security at the airport? They are BOUND to notice”. No they are not and they don’t. And here’s why.

It might appear a fair question, but only because of fear of the unknown, and it is linked to the kind of typical scare stories that you get with things like flying (on a par with the old falsehood one about breast implants blowing up on an aeroplane, totally false, never ever happened).

elevator shoes

How do you know? I hear you ask. Well I work in the club business and I travel all over Europe and indeed often to the USA and North America, often using a plane 10 times a month, but always half a dozen times. And it has never ever happened to me that some idiot security official on the conveyor belt or anywhere else has asked anything at all. I always wear my elevators and often with additional lifts. In the days when I wore just lifts, I always made sure these were neat and tidy, just one lift, well fitted into the heel, and again, no-one ever said a thing. Ever. Not even when at Gatwick they started altering the rules and getting each passenger individually (after going through security) to specifically take their shoes off and only your shoes at a different stage just before entering the lounge.

When this first happened I thought “hmmm, I wonder if this will be different?” It wasn’t. As ONLY my boots went through, I was able to keep an eye on what was happening:  it was clear that once again they were not looking for me and my elevators!

Now why is this? Well, it’s simple. Security at airports is looking for specific things – it’s the only way they can operate without making everyone strip search. They are not looking for people who wear elevators or lifts, and in all Western countries ethics standards are similar, and they are specifically told NOT to either make personal remarks or to publicly humiliate. All sorts of personal things exist, you have only to consider what these might be. Human rights legislation demands certain standards of behaviour and one of these is not to be humiliated by guys yelling across the concourse about your colostomy bag or underpants.

The way things like elevators or most lifts show up on scanners mean that it is obvious that there is no security risk. Still in the UK (and many other countries but not all now)  we have the absurd situation of taking your boots off (it’s an irrelevance and is pointless for security but there you go), but as each time they go through the machine I see the operatives and they bat not an eyelid.

Now it has never happened to me in 15 years of flying. But of course there is an outside chance that some sudden scare might make scanners more aware of different or unusual things. It is clear to me that an operative could notice of course. But so what?

There is an additional consideration here and one that is worth bearing in mind. Always be prepared. Let us say you have had a bad trip, there is a sudden massive scare about footwear, and that the security guard in a country not really covered by human rights legislation takes against you and asks you something about your boots. Well the simple answer is: “I have been advised that I should wear an insole when I fly as it REALLY helps prevent problems over Deep Vein Thrombosis”. Adding “you should try it yourself it REALLY works’” with a smile if it seems right. And no more.

But I have just done a quick add up while writing this, and if I have travelled 1,400 times on a plane in 15 years and never once been questioned, what chance do you yourself think you might have on your travels of being stopped and grilled about your boots?

A caution – if you wear elevators, I think the chances are almost 100% for you. With lifts (or additional lifts as I wear) it is JUST as easy for you to pop these in your bag (go to the toilet on the way through and take them out) if you feel awkward. I always felt that lifts were more likely to be noticed but I say again, mine never have been.

A side point – some worry about taking their shoes/boots off at security and then, shock horror, appearing shorter. Get over it. No-one is looking when you are in that stressful situation and at minor changes like this – they are all fretting about whether someone is gonna have a go at them for taking a packet of chewing gum in their hand luggage or forgetting to take a key out of their pocket. Not interested in ‘littler’ old you. You get the other side, put them back on and continue. I take my 4” elevators off (with their additional lifts!), shove them in the tray, walk through, put everything back in my bags, take the boots off the tray and quickly sit down and put them back on and continue. If you are with someone or people and are really bothered about this aspect, go through first, get it sorted while they are still messing around through security and quickly put your footwear back on. I tend in that situation to not stand up fully. But your fellow travellers will NOT notice because of the stuff I mentioned. For most, however regular, flying is stressful and a time when you are focused on yourself and not others.

Will they notice at the airport - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote

Now you can try on your Elevators before you buy – with total discretion & secrecy

OK here's a shout for actually having the opportunity to try elevators on. And to be able to take along your tape measure to see how much taller you can get! It's all possible the new GuidoMaggi showroom in Milan which opens this week on 1st December.

Now it's great buying anonymously and online, which I do, but it is also superb to actually get to try on some boots in a completely secure and anonymous showroom. Probably the first thing really you would do this for (certainly I would) would be to make sure I get the added inches OK!

showroom elevated shoes

One of the things I have ALWAYS wanted to do has been to be able to try my boots first, look at them and feel them and test out the height. When I bought my first pair from GuidoMaggi, I obviously did it online and anonymously. To be true I didn't know what to expect, after years of wearing lifts in bigger sized normal boots. I knew they would have that Italian quality but wondered what I would actually get by way of height and how ‘obvious’ they would be. When I got them they were kinda even better than I had imagined. I was just so excited at the amazing extra height I got from my Shanghais. Full height achieved and no-one has ever ever noticed. So job done. And in fact one of the guys I have discussed this with online has told me exactly the same the other day after he got his. The only problem being is that once you have got them, you want to buy more. And with a showroom, that 'problem' will be multiplied tenfold - you will want to buy them all!

There are loads of reasons for considering going to have a look and see - one of them is that there is simply NOTHING like seeing good quality high end stuff in front of your eyes, the different styles and the feel of the boots. If you are in any doubt whether it would be a worthwhile investment in your appearance, a visit will dispel any doubt at all. And of course to be able to judge with your own two eyes - do I REALLY get the added inches? So OK it's an added bonus to be able to do this.

The brand new GuidoMaggi Elevator showroom, opening in Milan on 1st December - it's the first elevator showroom anywhere in the world where you can try on stuff to your heart's content and see styles and leathers before you buy. And all the options of discretion and secrecy are well covered.

I know what you are saying or might be thinking - "No way do I wanna go into somewhere and be seen trying on elevators. Aaaargh!". Well that is well covered. The place is discreet, with its own entrance and no windows to the outside world as it's on the luxurious first floor of a historic 18th century building.

So you can try on all sorts of things in total secrecy and discretion. For most, buying online is just great but there is nothing like being able to actually SEE the footwear - "we have realised that for many, they want somewhere they can actually try (and even personalise) boots or shoes that they can see, maybe check out the various leathers and styles and talk to the experts who can give you the best style tips," says Emanuele Briganti of GuidoMaggi.

The new showroom is in the Brera district of Milan, Via Fiori Chiari, 18. Milan is an easy trip from all over Europe so well worth a visit.

Now you can try on your Elevators before you buy – with total discretion & secrecy - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote

Will my (new) girlfriend notice?

My name is Rob and I am based in London (the one in the UK). I work in the nightclub business and have been adding height since my late teens (I am now mid 30s) and have learned loads of the pitfalls and mistakes (having made every single one of them so far, and still learning). Adding height is actually very straightforward, almost a science, and it's helped by the modern generation of elevators. But even if you stock up with loads of elevators in all styles, there are still lessons to be learned and niggling questions that people ask again and again. And I am here to help. By all means ask. And then this is my first piece in the Advice Section...

big rob elevated shoes

I will start for the first few weeks by drawing from questions people have asked my when I have put my e-mail address on a website about height.

My first piece of advice stems from a dozen or so queries I have had when I have mentioned on height websites that I add height through lifts and/or elevators. There is an obsession among guys with some very basic things. One is "won't it cause problems going through security at airports?" (nope, but I will deal with that here another time, and the reasons).

But the main query which keeps on coming up every time, as if it is something new, relates to; "What happens when you get back home with a girl and you take your shoes off." The implication being that she will notice (shock horror) that you have lost almost all your height and be turned off. I cannot tell you how often guys ask me this.

Well, hopefully a lot happens when the pair of you 'get back home' and I can tell you almost certainly none of it will be related to measuring your height! It has never ever happened to me.

Here is the real point about this. Women wear all sorts of footwear, far far more varied in height adding than guys. Up and down they go, in and out of the house, day and night - 4" heels, 5" heels even higher with platforms. Trainers with whopping great platforms. Every single woman, even tall ones, tends to wear heels – my own girlfriend wears ridiculously high heels and platforms and she is very very tall already.

What this means is that the fears of guys adding height are almost certainly unfounded at that early and happy stage of a relationship! Girls just do not notice, Period. But there are a few very basic caveats which I list here:

1 Existing height is important. If you are 5'7", do not go for 5" elevators – believe it or not, even with these most girls will not notice! But some WILL. It's not worth the risk at that height. At that level stick to a few inches max. Then it just looks like the natural added height that ALL shoes give. But in fact it is slightly more. If you are already tall, over 6', well (and life isn't fair I guess!) you really can add as much as you like and women never ever notice. I am 6'2.5' and always add over 4" all the time now. I am staggered how I can take my boots off, wander around and even then girls just do not realize.

2 If you are adding height in this situation, do not draw attention to your feet: this is something that applies particularly in North America where most people are very conservative and slightly old fashioned. Europe is different and some countries seriously so: all sorts of options are acceptable in many countries in Europe, it really all depends upon age and personal style and what is fashionable – but generally, if you are asking me or yourself a question about being detected and fearing the response of a girl, then stick to traditional and mainstream. No very unusual styles or with trousers that do not cover/sit nicely on the boot/shoe. There is an irony here: once you are with someone full time, then you can give full rein to your choice and that can often mean adding more height through heavier soles in varied colours etc. But obviously only if it is your style.

3 And finally do not be tempted to add too much new height as well, simply because of comfort – they higher you go, the more you have to work at it. At walking right, at the right clothes etc. Trust me you get used to it, and I love being at least 4" taller. But I have only got there over a very long period. So go carefully at first.

And you will always be amazed at how people in general, even your family, will not notice that you have grown.

My mother works as a psychologist helping the baffled police in England to grasp why different witnesses tell them that the alleged culprit is 5'8" or 6', blond or dark, wearing a green jumper or a red one. This is because people are NOT observant even about really major details never mind about the gradations of height. However, once something is fixed in their mind, of course, that is different. So do NOT go around measuring yourself with others or drawing attention to your height until and unless you really want to.

So that is why adding height at a level that is appropriate will NOT be detected. And once you get to know the girl more, well then it is up to you what you do or say – she may not ever really actually notice unless you say, and a lot of the time it's just like the woman herself - in some footwear you are taller than others. It's No Big Deal.

 

Will my (new) girlfriend notice? - 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 vote