Stay on Top of Your Nail & Foot Care: What You Need to Know
Caring for your feet and toenails often seems like the last thing on the self-care to-do list. Yet, there are few things I could think of that are as unsightly and unattractive as unkempt feet.
If you think about it, feet are the workhorses of our existence. They carry our weight all day, taking us from place to place or helping us shine at sports, and still get the short end of the stick when it comes to foot care.
Taking care of your feet is especially beneficial if you intend on baring it all in sandals or flip flops once the lockdown restrictions are lifted.
While foot care may seem trivial, this seemingly insignificant part of your body can cause huge problems down the line, becoming a source of pain, or infection. To take proper care of your feet and toe nails, here are the steps you should take to keep your feet looking fabulous.
Feet And Nail Care Remedies
“Visiting a spa for a pedicure from time to time for a little TLC is a great way to give your feet the treatment they deserve”, says Dr Tilman Stasch from The Source Medispa. “It’s also a great way to get out of the same old house setting to do something you enjoy,” he adds.
If you have diabetes or foot problems such as corns, cracked feet or bunions, seeing a podiatrist is a better option. A podiatrist is a doctor who specializes in foot care.
There are basic run-of-the-mill steps you can take to ensure that your feet are taken care of. These are:
- Smoothing out your feet by using a pumice stone or foot file on damp heels. The best thing to do is to make this a habit when showering.
- Moisturizing your feet with oil, especially your heels. This keeps your heels from cracking.
- Ensuring your feet are always clean and dry, wear socks, change them and ensure you allow your feet to air out to avoid fungus from developing, and trimming your toenails by filing them down occasionally.
- Kicking back and elevating your feet for minutes at a time, everyday.
Foot & Toenail Care at Home
While it sure does feel nice to spend a day at the spa getting pampered, having pretty feet doesn;t always mean visiting a spa and burning a hole through your pocket as a result. With a little spare time and effort, you can give yourself a fabulous foot makeover at the comfort of your home.
Doing this regularly will keep your feet soft and supple, and will in turn help protect them from cracking and getting infected. Dry, cracked are often a byproduct of lack of moisturization, pollution overexposure and also medical conditions like eczema, diabetes, psoriasis and thyroid
Here’s how to take care of your feet at home:
- Cut your toenails every other week to keep them short and clean to avoid infection.
- Use a toenail clipper to cut your toenails. There are clippers specifically designed to cut toenails and help in avoiding injury.
- Wash your feet daily. To avoid complications like warts or fungus, it is important to always keep your feet clean.
- Cut your toenails straight across and file the edges into a rounded shape to help avoid jagged edges that could then cause ingrown nails.
- Don’t poke, push, or cut your cuticles. These are a protective layer that keeps infection away from your nail bed.
- Change your socks daily, especially if you actively play sports. Fungus thrive in wet and warm conditions so keep your feet dry and clean.
- Wear flip flops in public showers or pool areas. Bare feet expose you to fungus or germs which eventually cause foot problems so always wear flip-flops no matter how tempted you are to remain barefoot.
- Wear comfortable shoes. Wear shoes that fit properly. Avoid pinchy shoes, apply too much pressure, or cause blisters. If you play sports, ensuring you have the right gear for your practice sessions is especially key.
- For strong nails ensure you eat healthy diets. A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and proteins assist in growing strong nails hence makes them resistant to damage.
- Cut your kid’s nails and care for their feet often to avoid health problems and infection.
Types of Home Remedies
Salt, glycerine and rose water foot mask
- The antioxidants contained in rose water prevent cell damage and also its anti-inflammatory properties help relieve dry and irritated skin. Use a combination of these and glycerine in a basin with warm water. Soak for 15 to 20minutes and scrub with pumice stone for that smooth feel
- You can also mix a tablespoon of glycerine and teaspoon of rosewater, apply on cracked heels and wear socks overnight. Clean with lukewarm water in the morning
Banana and Avocado foot mask
- Avocados are a good source of vitamin A, E and omega fatty acids and other nutrients that promote wound healing whilst bananas are good moisturizers.
- Use a mix of blended ripe bananas and half avocado. Apply over heels of feet and keep for 15 to 20 mins. Wash with lukewarm water.
- Do this daily for best results
Natural Paraffin wax remedy
- Paraffin wax acts as a natural emollient that helps soften your skin thus making it an effective treatment for cracked heels
- Mix paraffin wax with 2 to 3 drops of coconut oil. Heat the mixer until wax melts and allow it to cool down to room temperature. Apply on foot heels before going to bed and wear a pair of socks. Wash off in the morning.
- Do this one to two times a week only.
CAUTION: – Don’t dip feet in wax when hot and don’t try this treatment if you are diabetic
- Since honey is a natural antiseptic, it helps heal cracked feet whilst its soothing properties assist/help in revitalizing the skin
- Mix one cup of honey in half a bucket of warm water, soak feet for 15 to 20minutes and scrub gently. Do this regularly for supple and soft feet
- Petroleum jelly helps reduce water loss from our outer skin and this keeps skin soft and hydrated.
- Soak feet in warm water for 15 to 20mins, use pumice stone to scrub and dry your feet. Apply moisturizer and petroleum jelly over to lock in the moisture and wear a pair of socks overnight. Wash your feet the following morning.
- Do this regularly before going to bed