Hiding your feet away in socks and boots during winter is not an excuse to neglect them.
Think of the major disservice you are doing to yourself: months of neglect in winter will only mean more effort will be needed to get your feet sandal ready. It is important to maintain good foot care practices throughout the year. Believe it or not, your feet have a blood supply that is affected by climate. When your feet are cold, the blood supply to the top layers of the skin has been reduced to preserve heat. Your feet can become as dry as chapped lips without even being exposed to the elements.
Granted, painting your toenails is not all that necessary in boot season, so rather think of winter pedicures as a means to care for the skin of your feet and pamper them, keeping cracked heels at bay. Pedicures that involve paraffin dips or the newly popular MediHeel Pedi (available at a vast number of salons nationwide) are great winter choices. “If you are experiencing dry heels, be wary of the amount of foot filing you subject your feet to!” warns Kelly Maytham, a Johannesburg based aesthetician. “Over-filing your feet can lead to an overgrowth of hard skin, which will create callouses. Rather opt for a good heel balm and minimal filing.”
Foot care tricks you can follow at home this winter
- Remove dirt from under your toenails after a shower using a nailbrush in an upward motion.
- Restore heat in cold feet by applying foot cream in circular motions from the heel up to the toe. This will not only warm your feet, but also moisturise them at the same time.
- Use nail oil with antifungal properties such as tea tree oil to restore and maintain healthy nails.
- A simple mix of olive oil and sea salt can gently remove layers of superficial dead skin and help replenish lost moisture.
- Put a layer of petroleum jelly on your feet followed by a pair of thick socks before going to bed to prevent skin from splitting.
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