How to Have Healthy Pretty Feet

Roses

It is important to note that proper foot care measures should be taken year round no matter what season. However I will be the first to admit that no other season requires as much display of foot skin as summer time does.

There are many reasons to skip the nail salon visits. Besides cost there are also safety/health issues. Being a scientifically inclined woman I would be doing myself a great disservice if I pretended there are no chances for micro-injuries or infections lurking at these salons. There are ways to minimize your risk but you cannot account for the hundreds of people that have been in the chair before you or the chemicals they use in their products, sanitation methods, or the nail technician that clips away at your body’s first line of defense: your skin/ cuticle. The chance of fungal and bacterial infections are high in places like this and a nick or cut here or there opens the door for direct entry into your bloodstream.

Lets take a short poll. How many of you have been to a nail salon and witnessed a disinfection and sterilization process of all tools used from the person before you that lasted longer than 20 minutes? How many of you have seen a medical grade autoclave in a nail salon? How many of you ask what the sterilization process and standards are?

A lot of nail salons use liquid disinfectants, but this method is only effective if nail technicians soak the instruments for around 20 minutes.

Fact: Hepatitis B, MRSA, and other bacterial infections are potentially life-threatening and can be picked up in salons​. You could be risking your life here.

First things first, proper foot care begins at home.  if for any reason  you suspect that something funky is going on with your feet, see a doctor even if it’s the dead of winter and you don’t have a boo thang that will see it. Once you get that straightened out and learn how to never let it happen again you can proceed.

  • Let your nails breathe. Its important that every once in a while especially if you are a back to back nail painter that you let your nails properly breathe by removing all traces of nail polish. Your nails can change color and deteriorate from always being suffocated with varnish.
  • Change your socks daily. This one could be hard for some but when you take off your shoes immediately throw your socks in the laundry bag. Your socks soak in sweat and dirt from the day, so do not wear your socks in the house keeping your feet in dirty socks is just cruel. If you like the comfort of wearing socks at home wash your feet, dry thoroughly, apply a thick foot cream and put on a fresh pair. See advice on purchasing socks from The Institute of Chiropodists and Podiatrists.
  • Keep your feet dry. Wash your feet twice daily, in the morning and before bed. Pat them dry with a towel; make sure to get between the toes. Apply foot cream then powder or spray to keep your feet dry; pay special attention to area between toes.
  • Cut your toenails. Dont over cut, which can cause ingrown nails. Cut straight across the tops and don’t allow your toes to grow too far past this length.
  • Wear proper fitting shoes. Own your size, the days of killing your feet to make them look smaller are over. Especially heels, they can tear your feet up in so many ways.
  • Wear reasonable shoes. High heels can be so sexy, however that walk of pain at the end of the day? Not so much. Have a comfort shoe to go with your heels. Minimize time walking in heels, wear your comfort shoes just just before you make your entrance and right after you leave. Alternate heel height. Wear proper shoes for the activity, ie. running, running shoes.
  • Moisturize feet and cuticles. Use an oil or heavy foot cream, not body lotion.
  • Don’t wear anyone else’s shoes. Don’t share shoes or socks. You can’t account for anyones foot hygiene but your own. Plus, we all have different chemical compositions of sweat, sharing shoes is like sharing sweaty gym clothes from the day before.
  • Wear breathable footwear. Go barefoot at home and wear orthotically correct sandals not $1 flip flops, especially if you plan on walking.
  • Do not go barefoot in public places, in changing rooms you can use those $1 flip flops.
  • Break in new shoes. Blisters hurt, and scarred up blistery feet are not cute. Wear new shoes at home and work on them a little a day.
  • Know your feet like the back of your hands. That way you know when something is going wrong. Inspect your feet daily, especially if you are diabetic.
  • Do your own pedicures. Heres how.
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