Your feet are the hardest-working part of your body and deserve special treatment. Day after day of being shoved into heels or confining work shoes, it's no wonder they develop callouses and ache. Rather than wait for a spa gift card to come your way, why not indulge your tired tootsies with a home spa pedicure? Follow the steps below to rejuvenate your feet anytime.
Remove all old polish with acetone. Pour warm water into a foot bath, along with liquid soap, commercial bath salts, or your own mixture of 1/2 cup epsom salts and 1/4 cup Borax. Add a little scented oil, if you prefer. Make certain that you have a handy supply of plush towels. Soak as long as you like, but for at least 5 minutes. File calluses with an 80-grit foot file paddle, removing all dead skin.
Lift one foot out of the bath and pat dry. File the toenails straight across, but round the corners slightly. Use clippers if necessary. File and bevel the edges. Apply cuticle remover and massage into cuticles. Use an orangewood stick to push back gently on the cuticle. Remove any loose cuticle with clippers. Place the foot back in the water and repeat the process with the other foot. Scrub both feet with a nail brush. Apply a foot scrub, made from 3/4 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon of heavy cream, 1 tablespoon real butter, 1 tablespoon sea salt, and 1 tablespoon vanilla. Scrub for 3 minutes on each foot. Put feet back into the water. Apply a commercial masque next, following manufacturer's instructions and wait until masque sets up. In fresh water, use a washcloth to remove all traces of the masque. Massage the feet with baby oil or olive oil and plunge them back into the water.
Remove one foot from the water and towel dry. Massage the calf, using long strokes with one hand while holding the ankle with the other. Go up the front and down the back of the calf, using greater pressure on the upward stroke. Alternate hands. Change to a friction massage, using circular movements with the heel of your hand in a clockwise motion up the calf to the knee, and a long stroke back down. Massage the foot starting at the heel. Squeeze the heel with the thumb and forefinger several times. Put your thumbs on one side of the foot, fingers on the other, and pull the foot in a sideways motion, as if pulling it apart. Follow up with long strokes. Massage the toes, beginning with the big toe, from base to tip. Using both hands, rub the foot between them, creating friction. Finish with long strokes and wrap the foot in a towel. Repeat on the other foot.
Spray both feet with warm clean water, rinse, and dry. Use a cotton ball and acetone to clear all oils from the toenails. Insert toe separators or place cotton balls between toes. Apply a base coat, two coats of color, and a top coat. Finish with a polish dryer. For an additional treat, apply 100% shea butter, massage into feet, wrap in plastic, and cover with a sock. Leave on overnight.