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Normally I wear grishko nova pointe shoes, and while they're very supportive they look rubbish on my feet. In the search for a prettier, softer shoe, I bought a brand new pair of Mirella Whisper pointe shoes. In the shop they looked gorgeous on, I had no trouble getting over them (which is rare for my flat feet) and I was super excited to dance in them. Fast forward to today, where 5 minutes into class I am in agony and about ready to throw these shoes against the wall! Rises were alright to start with but once we got to releves I felt like I was putting all my weight straight on my big toe and toenail (on both feet), it was excruciating and I couldn't attempt anything in the centre. These shoes have a gel 'cushion' thing that I'm thinking, far from cushioning things, is actually causing more problems. It's a curved pillow and I think it is digging into the toe under the nail and the curve is pushing my toe out of alignment. I'm thinking of removing the gel cushion entirely, though this will make the shoe bigger. I was thinking maybe padding with lambswool might help? My teacher says the shoes don't look too wide, though this happened last time with bloch european balance shoes and both my toenails cracked and fell off. I just dropped £75 on these shoes and while I don't want to see this go to waste, I also want to keep my toenails...has anyone else had this problem before with shoes like the mirella or euro balance? Are there any DIY fixes I can try before packing it in? Obviously I've sewed ribbons on and danced in them so there's no chance of taking them back.