Beauty

7 steps to happier feet

Author: Canadian Living

Beauty

7 steps to happier feet

Check out our expert tips for tantalizing tootsies.

1. Prepare your toenails
• Begin by removing old nail polish with cotton balls dipped in acetone-free remover. Non-acetone removers are less drying for cuticles.
• Cut nails straight across using toenail clippers. Don't cut or try to round the corners as this may cause ingrown nails. Try to keep the white edge of the nails less than 1/8-inch long, cutting below tears and breaks.
• Use a fine- to medium-grade file to smooth the nail edge, working only in one direction to prevent splitting.
• Lightly buff the entire nail to smooth out any nicks or bumps.

2. Work on the cuticles
• Apply a cuticle remover gel or cream to the nail beds and around the edges of the nail. Let sit for approximately five minutes or according to individual product instructions.
• Use orange stick to gently loosen the cuticle.
• Wash away excess gel or cream with warm, soapy water.

3. Soak your tootsies
• Prepare a foot soak by adding bath tablets or a foot soak powder to warm water.
• Immerse your feet in this special bath for five minutes.
• Dry your feet with a towel.
• Gently push back the cuticles using an orange stick.

4. Exfoliate
• Apply an exfoliating scrub to your feet.
• Rub your heels with a pumice stone or foot file to remove dead skin.
• Rinse and dry your feet again and snip off hangnails. Be sure not to cut the actual cuticles as they help prevent infections.

5. Moisturize
• Rub hydrating cuticle oil onto your nails and surrounding skin.
• Apply a moisturizing foot lotion to the rest of your feet. Work the cream up to the calves, and massage the foot and leg as you go along. Hand or body moisturizers are not ideal for feet as they may not be strong enough for the dry skin on your heels and sides of your feet. Invest in a good quality foot cream instead.
• If you have time, wrap your moisturized feet in plastic wrap and cover with warm towels. The heat will help the cream penetrate.
• Take a cotton ball and wipe off any oil that may be left on your nails. The oil will wreak havoc with your polish.

6. Paint your nails
• Use a toe separator or cotton balls between your toes to keep wet polish from smudging onto other toes.
• Apply a base coat of polish and let dry completely. The base coat fortifies and protects nails.
• Apply two coats of colour. Once again, let each coat dry completely before applying the next.
• Use a cotton swab moistened with remover to get rid of any extra polish on your toes.
• Finish off with a top coat.

7. Maintain your pedicure
• Exfoliate the skin on your feet daily.
• Moisturize feet with a good foot cream.
• Add another top coat every three to four days to help make the polish last longer, and change the nail polish altogether every two weeks.
• After long days in high heels, rub your legs and feet with a rejuvenating cream.

If you follow these tips you'll be ready to bare your soles to the world!

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Beauty

7 steps to happier feet

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