With extended outdoor activity in the sun and heat, our little feet may need a little extra TLC. Showing off those summer toes in open footwear comes with the territory. Here are a few tips to keep those feet from being beat and looking healthy and beautiful.
1. Moisturize cracked heels
Backless and unsupportive shoes can cause more stress on the fat pad of the heel. This, along with not wearing socks, can cause heels to crack. Superficial cracks should be moisturized daily with moisturizing treatment and an exfoliant. You can use a pumice stone in the shower 2 or 3 times a week to help keep those heels smooth. Deeper skin fissures or other skin conditions such as fungal infections, diabetes-related conditions and psoriasis should be treated by your podiatric physician.
2. Sweaty feet
It can be embarrassing, but it is a very common complaint. With the heat, odor and sweaty feet are hard to avoid. Avoid nylons and pantyhose. Try wearing socks that are of cotton and synthetic blend. The synthetic will act as a “wick” to keep away moisture from the skin. If your feet continue to sweat, try a drying foot powder or antiperspirant spray. Change your socks daily and keep dry in between toes.
3. Blister protection
Strappy sandals can cause quite a pinch. Avoid painful irritation that may lead to blister formation. Try keeping an extra product on hand (or foot!): a simple band-aid, moleskin or blister stick can do wonders. Also gel pads and anti-chafing lubricants may be applied. Larger blisters should be attended by your podiatrist. Remember to switch shoes whenever friction occurs.
4. Try a safe pedicure
Pedicure facilities are known to harbor a plethora of microorganisms and should never use a razor or blade on your feet. Try a safe home pedicure using a formaldehyde-free nail polish. Intermittently remove polish and give the nails a breather from harsh staining pigments found in some of the polishes.
5. Foot bath
After being on our feet all day, our feet may swell. Also, our feet may need relief from shoes that may become tight or restricted with ill-fitting straps. Try cool to lukewarm water, add peppermint oil, and Epsom salt. Soak your feet and let them relax. The cooler bath will reduce the end of the day swelling and refresh “tired” feet.
Also at day’s end, remember to air out and elevate your legs and feet. Your feet will thank you!