TLC for Tired Toes
Estimates by American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) put the percentage of women who opt for at-home pedicures at 25%. A further 34% have used spa or salon pedicures. It does not matter how you get it done, the most important thing is to prioritize safety. Dr. Marlene Reid, a member of APMA, gives some pointers:
1. Soothe the soles, and while at it avoid a foot razor. Your feet will thank you for smoothing calluses on the heels, balls, and the sides of your feet by making you feel much better. While doing this, avoid using a razor, which may take away too much skin, and even cause permanent damage, not to mention breakages on the skin through which infections can enter the body. You should use a pumice stone, a foot scrub, or a foot file instead.
2. Dry your feet. After you are done soaking the feet and scrubbing them, rinse them off thoroughly and pat them with a towel until they are dry. Moisture, especially in easy to miss areas such as between the toes, can cause fungal infections such as athlete’s foot.
3. Trim your toenails. Trim the toenails just above the top of each toe, and make sure you do so using a straight-edged razor. A curved razor can cause your toenails to get curved and rounded at the corners.
4. Clean under the nails. Some dirt gets trapped beneath the nails, and you should use a wooden or rubber manicure stick to get rid of it. The skin on this part of the toe is quite sensitive, which is why you should be gentle, and above all use something that is too sharp or could rupture the skin.
5. Shape your toenails. You should use an emery board to smooth out the toenails’ edges. Also, make sure to file in a single direction rather than back and forth to avoid rounding the nails’ corners.
6. Don’t forget the cuticles. Use a hand cream or a cuticle cream to moisturize your cuticles. After this, push them back with a cuticle pusher or a manicure stick. Never cut off your cuticles, as they act as barriers to bacteria trying to get into your body.
7. Apply nail polish. Nail polish prevents the nail bed from ‘breathing’ in addition to locking out moisture. You should only paint the nails if they are health. Also ensure that you remove the polish once in a while using a nail polish that is free of acetone.