Unless you’re a foot model, pedicures are one of those oft-neglected luxuries most working women enjoy only when they get a gift certificate for Christmas or their birthday. Granted, feet are hidden by shoes at least six months out of the year. But when warm weather comes, neglected feet can be downright embarrassing.
An easy solution to this is home pedicures, a practice which can save you both money and time. The following ideas will help you keep sandal-ready feet all year long, if you so desire, for much less than the $20-$30 of a salon manicure.
Invest in a $20-$30 foot spa. Foot spas aren’t that expensive, and are a great tool for home pedicures. A small container of warm water with Epsom salt will also effectively soften your feet, but some foot spas contain jets, vibration, or exfoliating tools to assist with your home pedicure and add a little more luxury to the experience.
The Ped Egg: $10. The Ped Egg, an “As Seen On TV” exfoliating tool, cost about $10 and has high reviews for its ability to remove hard callouses and dead skin better than a traditional pumice stone. Although the cheese grater appearance of the tool may look a bit alarming, the process is painless and only takes a few minutes, leaving your heels silky smooth.
Home-remedy exfoliating: under $10. Surprisingly, there are a number of common foods and natural substances you can use to exfoliate and moisturize your feet. Kiwi and pineapple, also used as meat tenderizers, are great at sloughing dead skin; a simple foot scrub can also be made out of sugar and fruit juice. The internet abounds with foot bath recipes that include milk, honey, Epsom salts and essential oils which are well proven to soften the feet, naturally.
Foot cream or lotion socks: $10 or less. After exfoliating your feet using a Ped Egg, pumice stone, or home recipe, moisturize with a foot cream or wear some lotion socks overnight. You can even make your own lotion socks using banana, honey and lemon. Ordinary lotion may not contain enough moisture for your feet, so be sure to get products specifically intended for them. Olive oil also works as a great moisturizer for your feet if you don’t mind it.
Nail polish and toe separator, under $10. Polishing your toenails is an important part of a pedicure. You may have to spend a good half hour to make them look as good as a salon pedicure, but the money savings will be worth it. A simple toe separator is cheap and will keep you from smudging. Be sure to clean and buff the nail surfaces and apply a base and top coat to preserve your polish, just as you would with fingernails.
As you can see, all the essential elements of a good pedicure should cost no more than $20-$30 initially, with the cost of replacement materials much less than the $20-$30 per pedicure at most salons. Of course, it’s more relaxing to have someone else give you a pedicure, so get your girlfriends together and make a night of it.