The good news: It’s finally warm enough to wear open-toed shoes. The bad news: After clomping around the city in snow boots all winter long, your feet look like bear claws. Follow these steps and you’ll have baby-soft feet just in time to show off your new tasseled sandals. Problem solved.
1. Prep for a pedicure.
Remove all polish, and leave toenails au naturel for the rest of the week. If nails are discolored, rub them with a lemon wedge for one minute.
2. Come clean.
Deep clean your feet in a tub of water with a few drops of tea tree oil. Then rub feet with a washcloth and mild soap—and don’t overlook the space between your toes, where dirt and lint can linger. Pat feet dry.
3. Scrub off stuff.
While in the shower or bath, use an exfoliating scrub to remove any rough patches. Be sure to work on the ankle area. For extra-rough spots—usually the heels and balls of feet—use a pumice stone or foot file to gently smooth and buff skin.
4. Tend to your cuticles.
For smoother, more even cuticles, apply a remover and then push back the cuticle. Any hanging skin still left behind can be gently trimmed with cuticle nippers.
5. Go deep with a mask.
After exfoliating and cuticle snipping, your feet will already feel much smoother…but we’re just getting started. Slather on an exfoliating mask and put on a pair of socks for 30 minutes to soften your heels and the balls of your feet. One episode of Kimmy Schmidt and you’re all done.
6. Trim your toenails.
After showering, clip your nails straight across, then trim the corners of each nail at a 45-degree angle. Remember, your toenails should be no longer than the edge of your toe. Be sure to file the corners into rounded edges to prevent ingrown toenails. Use a scrub brush to clean underneath the nails, and then gently buff them.
7. Pick a polish.
You’re finally ready for the most exciting part of any pedicure- the polish! Pick your favorite hue- from royal blue to hot pink.
8. Keep your feet hydrated.
Use a lotion with alpha hydroxy acid to seal in moisture and kick your feet up to maximum softness. For an extra hydrating boost, spray your feet with a facial mist when you wear open-toed shoes.