And, summer can be really hard on your feet, depending on what you do to them. Here are a few summer tips for keeping your toes and pedicures in tip-top shape! And these are for anyone - women or man - who wants to have great looking and great feeling feet!
* Use moisturizer - especially at night. If your feet are really getting dry and crusty, you can even wear a pair of light socks after applying lotion and it will give them an extra deep treatment while you sleep. Make sure you rub lotion in and around your cuticles, between your toes, and on heels and any callouses that may be starting to build.
- you can even rub a little olive oil into your cutilces and the pads of your feet for a longer-lasting type of moisturizing that will feel great too.
* Respect the sun! Your feet may look great with a deep summer tan, but they will also dry out faster, and you increase the chance that your skin will become wrinkled and lose it elasticity over time. Use a lotion with the appropriate amount SPF factor when you are going to be outside for extended periods.
* Don't change polish too often. Actually, it's not the polish but the remover that will dry out your skin. Once you do remove any old polish, soak your feet in warm water with a little Dreft to soften them before polishing again. It's a nice treat and it will help protect your skin from the chemicals present in nail polish. Make sure you lightly brush the nail surface with remover to remove any residue before polishing though!
* Use a good basecoat before polish. It will help condition and strengthen your nails and keep them from staining. I like OPI Nail Envy, but ther are many others available that will do the trick.
- here is a tip: apply one layer of topcoat over the base coat, before applying the polish. This will provide a very smooth surface on which the polish will just glide on and look like glass. Use a final layer of topcoat when finished applying the color too for a perfect finish. I like Seche Vite because it spreads like butter and evens out any imprefections before it sets. And, it sets in minutes to the touch which I find totally amazing!
* Wear flip flops after a pedicure for a few hours to give your polish a chance to harden. If you are polishing your nails at night, do it early enough so that you have at least an hour before going to bed. That way, the perfect pedicure you worked so hard on will survive the sheets.
* Try layering colors. Using a base of a deeper color and applying a lighter sheer polish over it can sometimes result in a really cool, almost 3D effect. You can even try layering parts of the nail to give it a graduated shading effect. There are many websites with instructions for doing this, just do some searching. Wearing a unique and eye-catching pedicure is a lot of fun and makes wearing that favorite pair of sandals or open shoes even that much more enjoyable.
* Schedule a pedicure at least once a month. Why not? You deserve a treat at least that often! Spa pedicures are a total treat too, but you don't have to splurge every time. Twice a month is perfect if you don't want to do your toes yourself.
* Get Bold! Try a color that you normally wouldn't. Heck, it's summer - go for the neon orange or bright tropical blue for a change. Those bright, fun colors look great on tanned feet with summer attire!
* Get your SO into it too. Whether you are a woman or man, you will definitely increase the enjoyment if you share this experience and interest with a partner. Some men may not go for the color yet, but there are few who would not enjoy a relaxing pedicure - and having feet that feel softer and look better.
*** Gals, I took a quick telephone survey of fourteen nail salons this week here in the upper midwest, and they tell me that yes, they all have an increasing number of male clients who wear colored polish on their toes. It seems that about 60% of the guys were encouraged to try it by their SO, about 20% started after the nail tech suggested they try it and the remainder just did it on their own.
With a little encouragement, your guy could make the leap and try something that many other guys have found to be quite satisfying and fun!
I've taken to wearing muted silvers and grays lately for some reason, and I have found a few that I think work well with the summer sandal look:
...yeah, I know, my cuticles could use a little moisturizing too...
Well, enjoy your summer and take some time to have fun. Life's too short to let this one get by without a little splurging, right?