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Proper Foot Care Techniques

Updated on June 27, 2014
Healthy Feet
Healthy Feet | Source

Why look after your feet?

Your feet are one of the hardest working parts of your body - you squash them into shoes, you stand on them all day, you walk miles and miles on them... No wonder they are the source of a lot of people's problems! Everything from ingrown toenails to dry, cracked skin, to more serious problems like gout, people the world over have problems with their feet. Looking after them should be one of your top priorities, whether young or old, male or female. So read on, dear reader, and learn how to take care of your feet properly!

Toenails

Toenails are not only important in making your feet look good (when they're painted they're stunning), they also protect the ends of your toes. Most people neglect their toenails and, when it comes to summer, are embarrassed to show them off in sandles or at the beach. Which these handy hints, your toenails will be summer-ready in no time:

  • Toenails should be cut regularly, and should be cut to just below the tip of each toe. This might seem long, but it stops the toenail from growing inward and causing you painful ingrown toenails which can require surgery
  • You can buff your toenails to remove any rough surfaces or imperfections; use a soft nail buffer designed for the task
  • If you find cutting your toenails difficult, get a professional to do them
  • As always, make sure your diet is rich in calcium to avoid white marks on your toenails

Cracked Skin

Cracked skin is one of the most common foot-related complaints. Whilst not usually painful, cracked skin can cause embarrassment for the owner when going barefoot and can contribute to holes in your socks if your skin is really rough! Follow these tips for soft feet:

  • Buff your feet regularly with a pumice stone or similar which is the right coarseness for your feet - feet that are extremely hard and cracked will need a coarser stone than those which are already quite smooth, and over-buffing can harm your feet rather than help them. Concentrate on areas which need it, such as the heels and balls of your feet
  • Moisturise before you go to bed - coat your feet in a foot-friendly lotion before you go to bed and put on a pair of fresh cotton socks to stop the lotion going all over you bedclothes. When you wake up, your feet will be beautifully soft
  • Wear good-fitting shoes and cotton socks, which will not only help your feet stay comfortable during the day but will contribute to keeping your feet looking great when you're showing them off

Foot Nasties

Bacterial, fungal and other infections can infect your feet just like any other part of your body. Verrucas should be dealt with by a qualified professional, although home-treatment kits are available for smaller verrucas, and bad athlete's foot should be assessed by your doctor. However, you can follow these tips to treat athlete's foot and avoid it in the future:

  • Wear flip-flops in communal areas such as swimming pool showers and don't share towels or anything else that touches your feet, to avoid picking up foot nasties in the first place
  • Wash and dry your feet thoroughly
  • Wear cotton socks to let your feet breathe during the day
  • Treat fungal infections using medicated talc - the talc will also help soak up excess moisture

Cast your vote for Foot Scrub

The Homely Coder's Foot Scrub

Treat your feet with my special home-brewed foot scrub! It's gentle on the skin, contains only natural ingredients available from any health food store, and can be made time and again from the ingredients you need. For this foot scrub, you will need:

  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp solid coconut oil
  • A few drops peppermint, spearmint, or other scent oil you choose

To make the scrub:

  1. Zap the coconut oil in the microwave for a few seconds to soften it up
  2. Add the sugar, and mix thoroughly with a fork
  3. Add the few drops of mint oil and mix again

To use:

  1. Put down a towel or work on tiled floor so you can clean up easily. Get a bowlful of warm to hot water with a few drops of bubble bath in it, mixed so it's nice and bubbly
  2. Sit comfortably. Taking half of the scrub for each foot, massage the scrub into your skin, paying particular attention to any hard areas of your foot such as the heel
  3. Get between your toes, over the top of your foot and up to your ankle. Really pamper yourself
  4. When you've finished one foot, move onto the other, paying equal attention to it
  5. Wash your feet when you've finished, taking care to get all the sugar off but not washing so hard as to wash all the coconut oil off
  6. Dry your feet thoroughly, making sure your skin is not slippery so when you go to walk away you don't fall over!

Comments

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    • womentips profile image

      womentips 

      4 years ago

      really useful one.gonna to try this.I think it's easy to do at home.Thanks for sharing.

    • The Homely Coder profile imageAUTHOR

      Liz Felton 

      4 years ago from Essex, England

      Thank you both!

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 

      4 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Well done hub with useful information about foot care!

      Voted up as useful! Welcome to HubPages!

    • LeslieAdrienne profile image

      Leslie A. Shields 

      4 years ago from Georgia

      I need to take heed to this, because my feet are a mess!

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