An at-home pedicure treatment is a relaxed and pampered experience. While looking after your toenails is probably second nature for you, your heels could be crying out for attention. Dry air and ill-fitted shoes leave the skin dry, cracked and peeling. Treating and nourishing your heels retains moisture and prevents future discomfort. Take your pedicure to the next level to treat dry and cracked heels.
The skin on your feet needs to be softened so you can remove dry, dead skin. Start by running a warm bath or filling a basin with warm water. Pour 3/4 cup of Epson salts into the bath to naturally soften the skin. A tablespoon of liquid dish soap is also a suitable softener. Place your feet in the water and soak them for five minutes.
Exfoliation removes the layer of dead skin from your heels to reveal a smooth surface. Pick up a golf ball-sized amount of foot scrub and remove one foot from the water. Massage the scrub into your heel using the palm of your hand in a circular motion. Scrubs containing large granules are best, as they are effective without requiring you to scrub harshly. Scrub your heel for two minutes and dip your foot back in the water to rinse it. Repeat on your other foot.
Foot Files and Pumice Stones
Foot files and pumice stones buff away thick layers of skin that the scrub cannot remove. Use a foot file with an emery board surface or a clean and dry pumice stone to avoid damaging your skin. Remove your feet from the water and gently pat them dry with a towel. Apply the file or pumice to the dry skin and move it toward your toes and back again repeatedly. Continue until the dry patches are removed.
Heels need moisture after treatment to encourage raw areas to heal and prevent further cracking. They absorb moisture best immediately after exfoliation. Pour a quarter-sized amount of foot balm into the palm of your hand and massage it into your heel using a circular motion. Balms containing peppermint and lemon are good for the feet. Repeat on your other foot and pull on a pair of cotton socks to lock in moisture. This works best when done at night, as your feet have hours to absorb the moisture and heal.
Celeigh O'Neil has been writing professionally since 2008. She has a Bachelor of fine arts from the University of Ottawa, as well as degrees in fashion illustration/design, digital arts and certification in hair and makeup artistry. O'Neil was a frequent contributor to Toronto's "Dialog" newspaper and has worked as an instructional writer, creating lessons in fashion, art and English for students of all ages.