It’s (hopefully) coming round to flip flop weather hurrah! I could literally wear flip flops everyday of my life but unfortunately living in this country, its more Uggs and Hunters than Havaianas, which can be cute and cosy but can play havoc on our feet. Hard skin, chipped nail polish, cuticle growth, none of this adds up to very pretty feet. Pedicures at salons do not come cheap – they often vary at around £30-60 and so I decided to pop together a few products and tools and have my very own at-home-pedicure session. Now don’t get me wrong, it isn’t the easiest thing to do, giving yourself a pedicure, but it can save you a fortune.
I managed to pick up the tools for £1.99 from B&M Bargains for a set of cuticle clippers, nail clipper and metal file, which the plastic end was really good for pushing down cuticles.
The sweet pink flip flop nail files I actually picked up from an amazing store called Bath & Body Works when I was over in Florida in March. It is best to get a washing up bowl (no fancy foot spa required), fill it with warm water and add your favourite scented shower gel or bubble bath, ensure that you put a towel underneath the bowl just in case of spillage. Leave your feet in there to soak for five minutes or so, and then work on each foot, using the cuticle pusher to soften the cuticles and then clip them off using the clippers, putting each foot back in the water when finished. I then filed my toenails, which is a pretty simple task, even if I did have my legs practically wrapped round the back of my head!
Next up, for the hard skin on the edges of my heels I used a 4-in-1 pedicure tool, which I picked up at a pound shop. They have a scrubbing brush part, a pumice part, what I call a cheese grater side and then a file side. These are so good for removing hard feet and are so cheap that if you are super keen on hygiene, you can restock time after time without breaking the bank. I firstly used the cheese grater metal side and then smoothed the skin with the file side.
Scrub A Dub Dub
Now that the feet are lovely and freshly prepped, I recommend using The Body Shop Peppermint Soothing Foot Scrub (£7). It is made up of intensely exfoliating volcanic rock granules which help to slough away rough patches of hardened skin, to leave your toes feeling soft, smooth and smelling HEAVENLY. The peppermint scent is quite strong but it smells so invigorating and fresh, perfect for the feet. Massage the scrub in circular movements over wet feet and then wash off in the bowl, ensuring that you remove all of the scrub. You will notice that your feet feel much smoother straight away, and body scrubs, face scrubs, and foot scrubs are all brilliant to renew the skin and prepare for tanning.
Smooth Those Heels Baby!
Let me introduce to you my cracked heel saviour – Flexitol Heel Balm Platinum. This comes in a regular squirty tube, and as the cream is that thick, you do need a bit of muscle to squeeze the cream out. You do not need a lot of the balm as it is so luxuriously thick that it spreads really well. Simply massage this in to the areas of your feet that has dry, hardened skin. I used this on my boyfriend’s feet at the weekend and I wouldn’t go as far to say that I could have kissed them, but they certainly felt a lot smoother instantly. You can buy Flexitol Heel Balm Platinum from most pharmacies for around £6 for 50ml.
The last skin product I love to use is Clarins Foot Beauty Treatment Cream. I often use this cream before bed, as well as during my home-made pedicures, as the smell is so divine, I cannot even describe it to you and it helps to relax me. The Foot Beauty Treatment Cream is designed to tackle multiple foot problems, including dry skin, foot perspiration, brittle toenails and foot swelling, and so all in all it is a perfect go-to product. It is infused with plant-derived ingredients like virgin cashew nut oil, shea butter, arnica and myrrh. I like to warm the cream up in my hands and apply all over my toenails, feet and ankles, slowly massaging it into the skin. The texture absorbs quickly and feels quite like a body butter, without being oily or greasy. You can purchase the Clarins Foot Beauty Treatment Cream from department stores or online at www.clarins.co.uk and it costs £23 for 125ml.
Now it’s time to get creative!
Before we go any further, take a cotton wool pad and pour a little nail polish remover on to it and wipe over each toenail as the cream you have just applied will have soaked in but the excess will need to be removed or the polish won’t set properly. Use a little more cotton wool to keep those tootsies apart ready for adding some colour.
I started off with Orly Bonder Base Coat (around £5 from stores such as Boots), I really like this product as it leaves a nice smooth base for the polish. The colour I chose, was a rather bright pink (practically neon), and is called 24/7 by Sinful Colors (available from Boots for just £1.99). Sinful Colors is an American brand that has been brought over here via Boots in the last year or so, and they have a wide array of colours and textures at a really reasonable £1.99. I love this colour and even though it is very bright, I thought it would be perfect for my holiday next week. Now with it being a neon colour, the polish does dry matte, which is fine on its own, but I prefer a bit of shine and so I top it off with Andrea Fullerton’s Gloss Up Overcoat (£2.50 from Superdrug) and it makes the nails look really really shiny and plump. Now as I have no patience whatsoever I top the whole lot off with Bourjois Instant Dry Nail Enamel Dryer (£5.99 from Boots, Superdrug etc), which is a little bottle with a drop applicator and you just release one drop per nail and it dries your nails much quicker than without it. I do not proclaim to have nice feet in the slightest – I have even had to have some operations on my feet, but here is the finished result (tan courtesy of my new St Tropez Dry Oil which I shall be blogging about soon).