(Again, I've been M.I.A. I've been @ Coachella and Vegas. Interesting times at both).
But I'm here now. When I first started dancing, the highest heels I wore were all of 3 inches with no platform whatsoever. They were usually pumps. I recall I did have a pair of the infamous Frederick's of Hollywood mules which were strapless with the fuzzy feathers on the foot band. I believe I had some maryjanes too.
Around 1985-86, I added ankle socks into the mix. Back then, I still had a very young look, so I could rock them. (No way I would do that now!). I did graduate to some strappy high-heeled (still around 3 to 4 in.), but still no platform.
In the late 80's, I started taking a lot of various dance classes. In my head, I fancied myself "a real dancer". So, I went through a phase of wearing character shoes. I think some people did find them adorable. But looking back, I guess that was sort of a dork move on my part.
In the mid-nineties, I purchased my first pumps with a 1 in platform. Apparently, this was a ground breaking move and a lot of my co-workers disapproved and really hated the look. I found they were a bit more comfortable than the lower heels I had been wearing previously. Who knew I was starting a future trend in my area, lol?
In the late nineties, I went through a period of wearing retro go-go boots. Again, the heels were relatively low and being small I could pull them off. I didn't start wearing actual platform boots with at least a five inch heel until 2002. I was 42 then!
Finally, in 2003, I bought my first pair of 6 inch platform heels! It took me over 20 years!! In the past two years or so, I do prefer platform boots, but if I find a pair of magic heels, I go with them.
I think dancing in such low heels for so long has added to my longevity as a dancer. Also, when I moved to San Francisco, I wore low heels or even Teva sandals because I walked those treacherous hills all the time. Wearing low heels and flats were saviors to me feet and ankles. At least I think that helped keep those areas strong.
If I can find some pics, I will try to stage an evolution of exotic dancer shoes.