3 Medical Theories On Why Feet Are So Irresistibly Sexy

Indulging in a foot fetish can be healthy, satisfying, and fun.


I can’t think of anything more enjoyable after a long day than relaxing on the sofa while my partner gives me a foot massage. Honestly, I can’t remember any of my exes not massaging my feet at one point or another.

And, while I wouldn’t go as far as to say that all of us have foot fetishes, I do know that there can be something incredibly sexy about cuddling up for some easy conversation and a relaxing foot massage. (Assuming, of course, that neither party has talons for toenails and two-inch-thick callouses.)

These days, working as a Dominatrix and Fetishist, one of my favorite sessions to have with a client is “Foot Worship,” during which I sit in a comfy chair while the client gives me an amazing foot massage and kisses my toes. (Yes, I do get paid for this.)

I realize that for non-feet people this seems ridiculous and maybe even repulsive, but for individuals who have a foot fetish, this experience is as erotic (if not more so) then having physical sex. In fact, foot-related fetish rank #1 on the list of the most popular fetishes.

It’s becoming more mainstream, too. Many celebrities and notable men and women have come out about their love of feet:

· Elvis Presley had a well-documented foot fetish, possibly from having to massage his mother’s feet as a child (or “rub her little sooties,” as the King put it). Presley’s handlers would screen women based on their feet before they could have a romantic encounter with the rock icon.
· Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, the German author of Faust, claimed that he would sell his soul for a pretty pair of pedis.
· F. Scott Fitzgerald, the author of The Great Gatsby was a notorious womanizer and foot fetishizer. He had a near-phobia of letting other people see his own feet, but he loved obsessing over women’s feet. Fitzgerald frequented a particular prostitute solely on the basis of her feet.
· N.E.R.D. front man Pharrell Williams, when asked in an interview if he had a fetish, responded, “Girls’ feet.”
· Quentin Tarantino, the maker of notable films such as Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill and Death Proof, also belongs on this list. All three of those films feature shots of nude female feet. Uma Thurman, frequently barefoot star of Pulp Fiction and Kill Bill, mocked Tarantino’s foot fetish by drinking champagne out of her shoe at a Friar’s Club roast of the director.
· Britney Spears rarely wears shoes and has said publicly that she enjoys having men kiss her feet.

So, you may have heard about these celebrities, known someone with a foot fetish, or perhaps you even have a bit of a foot fetish yourself. But did you know that there are actually medical theories about why and how people eroticize feet? Here are three of the most interesting ideas:

1. According to the neuroscientist Vilayanur S. Ramachandran, the part of the brain that relates to the genitalia and feet are located next to one other in the brain’s body image map located in the parietal cortex. This can lead to some “crossed wiring” and potentially causes a pronounced sexual interest in feet. Ramachandran also points out that in people whose parietal cortexes did not exhibit this proximity, the chances of having a foot fetish were far less likely.
2. Dr. Ogi Ogas, a neuroscientist and co-author of A Billion Wicked Thoughts, claims that cue theory or imprinting may have a direct effect on a person’s erotic attraction to feet. He explains, “Following cue theory, during a man’s critical period of sexual desire formation, his innate foot cue makes him more likely to pay attention to feet and makes him more receptive to foot-related stimuli. If through chance or culture he is then exposed to a strong foot-related experience — a woman sticking her foot in a thirteen-year-old’s face or watching your first girlfriend slowly unroll her black stockings — then the foot-related details of the experience are more likely to get imprinted.”
3. Finally, Sigmund Freud’s theory in 1927 of foot fetishism also involved early imprinting, but he considered the foot as a symbol of the penis (a theory that surprises no one who is even slightly familiar with Freud’s work) and believed that a foot fetish might indicate a castration complex.

We need more research before we can make any final call about where in the brain foot fetishes come from and why they affect some people so strongly.

Until that research comes, though, we’ll just have to make due with the knowledge that indulging in a foot fetish, just like indulging in any positive, consensual sexual desire, is healthy, satisfying, and fun.

And, if you’ve never really thought about other people’s feet before, give it a try. Give your partner a loving foot massage or incorporate liking or kissing of your feet or toes into your next passionate encounter — you might like what you find.

Sandra LaMorgese Ph.D. is an expert in personal and professional reinvention, authentic living, communication, and bridging the gap between sexuality and a lifestyle that focuses on holistic health of the mind, body and spirit. She is the author of Switch: Time for a Change, a memoir of her journey from holistic practitioner to professional dominatrix at 55-years-old after losing everything, and her passion and purpose is to empower others towards healthy authentic living. To learn more about Sandra and receive your FREE eBook “5 Steps for Better Communication, Sex, and Happiness (Did I mention better sex?) visit www.sandralamorgese.com.