Our feet play an important role during our everyday lives—after all, they allow us to walk. That said, we often take them for granted, and forget about properly taking care of them. For instance, when’s the last time you prioritized foot care?
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What is harmful to our feet?
In order to answer the question of how to care for your feet, you should first learn about what’s harmful to them. Eliminating, or at the very least, reducing harmful factors is the first step to improving the situation.
The key here is to avoid using the wrong footwear, that’ll press and rub on the feet, obstructing proper blood flow, and causing corns and calluses. Frequent wear of high-heeled shoes, narrow ballerina flats, or thin-soled shoes can cause foot pain and problems.
It’s also recommended against wearing any shoes on bare feet. This exposes them to abrasions and increases the risk of a foreign body getting under the skin. And when it comes to sports, choosing the appropriate footwear that will properly secure the feet will prevent injury.
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Treated improperly, feet can end up with various skin issues that, in extreme cases, can lead to more serious health problems. So how do you take care of your feet to avoid corns, calluses, and other ailments? Here are some ways you can keep your feet healthy! And don’t worry, if you’d rather go to a professional, feel free to start your search on Booksy.
How to properly take care of the feet, from a podiatrist
Baths are the first step—and truly the basis—of foot care. They moisturize and soften callused skin. Additionally, as an added bonus, they also allow you to relax and unwind after a hard day. You know the basics of running a bath. A foot bath is pretty similar. There’s tons of specialized foot baths on the market, so your feet can soak in their own space. (Trust me, it feels amazing).
All you’ll need to do for maximum comfort is add some shower gel, olive oil, or epsom salt to your foot bath. These products will help firm and soften the skin of your feet. After this you’re done, thoroughly dry your feet with a towel. And don’t forget to moisturize right after your bath to lock in that hydration.
Removing dead skin is also very important, not only for aesthetic reasons but also for hygiene. Did you know that dead skin is a habitat for bacteria and fungi? Letting it accumulate excessively could lead to long-term health problems. So, it’s necessary to add dead skin removal into your foot care plan.
It’s worth using products dedicated for the feet. They have the right grain and proper content of aromatic and nutritional substances. All these are specially selected for the needs of the skin of your feet. Together with the peeling, you can consider using a fine-grained grater to remove dead skin from the heels and the bottom of the foot.
As the final step of your peeling routine, apply foot cream. This will regenerate, soften, and moisturize your skin.
One last element when it comes to foot care is getting a pedicure. It’s especially important in the summer, when we expose our feet and nails. To shorten the nails, use metal clippers. Thanks to this, we will avoid cracking the nails. Shorten the plate in such a way that it slightly goes beyond the pad. Saw the sides, but very lightly, otherwise the nails will become painfully ingrown.
Now it’s time for the cuticles. They should be removed with a wooden pedicure stick. Nails prepared in this way can be painted with nail polish or just with a special conditioner. Whatever you choose, you’re now ready to show your feet in those new sandals!
Foot cream–what should it contain?
Foot cream is a product that you should use every day to soften and smooth the skin. However, in order to truly maximize its effect, it has to have appropriate ingredients. It should be rich in vitamins E, F and A, and lanolin. Foot cream should also contain oils that will moisturize the skin. You may want to look for creams containing acids and shea butter. Finally, a great ingredient is tea tree oil, as it has antiseptic and antibacterial properties. This will protect our feet against bacteria, fungi, and unpleasant odors.
Another product with a similar, but which is more concentrated, is a regenerating serum. The concentration of active substances is greater than in a regular foot cream, so its effect is visible almost immediately.
Foot care–what should you avoid?
First of all, pay attention to what shoes you wear. Poorly fitting and uncomfortable footwear can lead to various issues quite quickly. Corns, abrasions, or blisters, all these will appear fast, while their removal may take much more time than you would like.
When choosing shoes, pay attention to the materials from which they are made. Avoid footwear made of unnatural, synthetic materials that don’t allow air to pass through. This won’t allow your feet to breath and will contribute to increased sweating. Also wearing high heels too often is not good for our feet. They not only force the foot into an unnatural position, but they also often have narrowed fronts, contributing to the deformation of the toes.
Finally, one last thing you’ll want to avoid is using pumice on cracked skin. This will only additionally irritate the skin and make the problem even more severe.
Hopefully, the tips provided in this article will help you avoid various problems or solve the existing ones. Our feet are as important as our hands, face, or hair. Remember to give them the same care as the other parts of your body. This will certainly allow you to avoid unpleasant and painful surprises.
How to take care of your heels
When it comes to caring for the heels, vegetable oils such as coconut oil or shea butter are perfect. They’re particularly effective if they’re used in an overnight compress–preferably after a “home spa” for the feet.
The idea is to apply a thick layer of oil to the callused skin of the feet, then put on soft cotton socks. With this method, you’ll prevent the oil from staining your bedding, but also it’ll allow the oil to penetrate the skin gradually throughout the night–resulting in exceptional hydration in the morning.
Home spa pedicure
Hosting an at-home spa for the feet consists of a few simple activities that’ll provide them with comprehensive care. A spa pedicure will consist of 5 different stages: cleansing, softening, exfoliating dead skin, nourishing and moisturizing, and optional styling. You can expect the entire procedure to take around 30 to 60 minutes. For your own DIY spa pedicure, you’ll need the supplies mentioned above, ingredients for a foot bath, and a peel treatment (this can be bought at a drugstore or prepared at home).
Stage 1: Cleansing consists of removing the remains of old nail polish from the nails and preparing them for the next care steps.
Stage 2: The bath is meant to additionally cleanse and soften the skin of the feet. This step aims to provide general relaxation but likewise will facilitate exfoliation of the dead skin.
Stage 3: For the exfoliation stage, you can use a peel treatment and a foot file. This step aims to nourish and exfoliate the skin, as well as prevent the formation of calluses or corns. Massage the peel treatment into the feet gently, with circular movements for about 3 minutes. Then, rinse with water and use the foot file.
Stage 4: After thoroughly drying the feet, you’ll want to moisturize the skin and nails. You can use either a cream purchased from the drugstore or natural vegetable oil. In a home spa setting, it’s recommended to use the sock wrap method, as described in the previous section.
Stage 5: Nail care includes steps such as shortening and shaping the nails, as well as possible styling. Be careful not to round the sides of the ingrown nails, as this can lead to ingrown nails).
Homemade foot scrub recipes
- Salt peel: Use 2 tablespoons of salt, with the addition of a few drops of essential oil (eucalyptus or peppermint oil and 1 large spoon of shea butter or coconut oil).
- Coffee peel: Prepared on a base of coffee grounds (2 tablespoons), with the addition of a tablespoon of natural vegetable oil (for example: olive oil), and a teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice.
- Sugar peel: Combine 2 tablespoons of sugar, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1 tablespoon of shea butter, and 1 tablespoon of natural honey.
Taking care of your feet at a salon
Of course, you can also get a spa pedicure in a salon setting. There, you’ll find other professional foot care services—both for rejuvenating and decorative purposes. For the best options of pedicures in your city, check out your options nearby using Booksy.