One of the first things we think of when we think self-care? Manicures and pedicures! There’s just something about taking care of our hands and feet—two areas of the body that are so often overlooked—that allows us to feel refreshed and pampered. Let’s backtrack for a sec—what is a pedicure? A pedicure is all about taking care of your feet and toes via exfoliation, massages, moisturizing, a fresh coat of nail polish, and more!
Of course, as much as we love a good pedi, heading to the nail salon on the reg may not always be in your budget. When that’s the case, knowing how to give yourself a pedicure at home can definitely come in handy. Below, we’re sharing how to do a pedicure at home, along with a few pedicure design ideas to spruce up your toes. Get ready to break out the open-toed shoes!
HOW TO GIVE YOURSELF A PEDICURE AT HOME
Follow the steps below to give yourself a pedicure at home!
STEP #1: SOAK
Soaking your feet is a sure way to relax—and get rid of any unwanted calluses or corns. The American Academy of Dermatology (AAD) recommends soaking your feet in warm water for 10 minutes or so, until your skin has softened. Consider adding some magnesium sulfate into your water pre-soak, as it can be used as a soaking solution to relieve muscle aches or discomfort, soreness, and tired feet, per the Mayo Clinic.
STEP #2: SMOOTH
Next, you’ll want to smooth and exfoliate any rough areas—AKA those calluses and corns we were talking about earlier. The AAD suggests filing the corn or callus with a pumice stone by first dipping the stone in warm water, then gently filing with circular or sideways motions. Just be sure to take caution not to take off too much skin!
STEP #3: HYDRATE
Just like your face, hands, and the rest of your body, the skin on your feet needs moisturizing. Reach for a lotion or cream and apply it right after your soak when your skin is still slightly damp—this will help seal-in hydration. Massage the formula onto your skin using circular motions for some added relaxation. If you aren't going to move straight to polished your toes, you can pop on a pair of socks (bonus points if they’re fuzzy socks!) to lock in that moisture even more.
Editor’s tip: Need a moisturizer rec? The AAD suggests looking for a moisturizing lotion or cream with salicylic acid, ammonium lactate, or urea as these ingredients will help gradually soften hard corns and calluses.
STEP #4: CLIP
No one wants long, unruly toenails—yuck! Be sure to trim your toes regularly. That being said, the Cleveland Clinic advises allowing your toenails to grow out a bit, as cutting them too short can lead to ingrown toenails. Additionally, when you do trim your nails, clip them straight across the nail to help prevent ingrowns.
STEP #5: FILE
Grab a nail file to gently smooth and perfect any rough edges after clipping.
STEP #6: CONDITION
Apply a few drops of cuticle oil to your toes to soften, hydrate, and condition.
STEP #7: PAINT
It’s time to reach for your favorite nail polish and get to it! Speaking of painting your toes…
5 PEDICURE IDEAS
Looking for some pedicure designs to try? Consider giving one of the following a go.
PEDICURE IDEA #1: NUDE
Sometimes, it’s best to keep things simple. Paint your toenails in a wash of nude. Bonus: A nude nail color is ideal for those who prefer to keep it low maintenance since it won’t be super obvious if you fall victim to a chip or two.
PEDICURE IDEA #2: CORAL
Coral happens to be one of the colors for 2019, so why not incorporate it into your pedicure? This vibrant hue is perfect for summer beach days.
PEDICURE IDEA #3: POLKA DOT
If you want to get a little fancier with your pedicure design, but don’t want to spend all day painting your toes, try a polka dot pedi! All you have to do is use a toothpick to create tiny dots over a base color. Easy, peasy, and oh so cute!
PEDICURE IDEA #4: WHITE
Similar to nude polish, you can’t go wrong with a coat of white. A white pedicure looks professional enough for a work event while being totally wearable for a date. It also looks great with a tan!
Editor’s note: Don’t have a tan? That’s nothing a little self-tanner can’t fix. Reach for the L’Oréal Paris Sublime Bronze Self-Tanning Water Mousse to get a faux glow.
PEDICURE IDEA #5: DECALS
It’s all in the decals—that’s how the saying goes, isn’t it? Remember all those fun decals you used to use as a child? Well, they don’t have to just be for play! The right decals can take your pedicure from pretty to pretty Instagram-worthy—not to mention, it’ll be your holy grail when you don’t have much time to spare but want an awe-inspiring design. We love the look of floral decals during the summer months!
Next, don’t forget to make sure your fingernails are on point, too! Here are 10 Nail Art Designs to Try in 2019.