To keep your feet as healthy as possible in between regular podiatry check-ups, it’s important to establish an effective foot care routine. Don’t worry – we don’t mean anything overly complicated or time-consuming, just simple, worthwhile foot care tasks.
With that in mind, keeping a foot care kit at home can be extremely helpful, which is why we’ve drawn up this list of essential items for looking after and protecting your feet.
1. Toenail Clippers
Cutting your toenails every six weeks or so will help you to avoid pain and injuries caused by overlong nails pressing against your shoes. Trim each toenail straight across with sturdy clippers and leave no more than 1-2mm of growth beyond the tip of the toe.
As Men’s Health magazine points out, it’s more hygienic to have one pair of clippers for toenails and a different, smaller pair for fingernails rather than using the same for both.
2. Pumice Stone
Did you know that pumice is volcanic rock? This natural wonder’s abrasive surface makes it ideal for removing hard, dead skin from heels, toes and elsewhere. Soak your feet in warm water for several minutes, wet the pumice stone then rub it gently over calluses in a circular motion, rinsing it often. Afterwards, scrub the stone with a firm brush and leave to dry.
3. Foot Cream
After pumicing calluses, treat your feet to a massage with a good quality foot cream. For soft, supple skin, look for one containing synthetic urea, known for its hydrating and moisturising properties. Rub the cream all over your feet, apart from between your toes. (If that area gets moist, it could become a breeding ground for athlete’s foot fungus.)
4. Gel Plasters
Covering blisters with gel plasters (Compeed is a well-known brand) can reduce pain and promote healing by cushioning and protecting the affected areas. The plasters are especially useful if the tops of blisters have been rubbed off and tender, weeping skin is exposed.
5. Anti-Chafing Gel
Blisters are caused by excess friction, so follow the lead of keen runners by applying an anti-chafing gel, such as Lanacane’s, to your feet before intense activity. The gel is also useful when breaking in new shoes.
6. Antiperspirant Spray
Feet have more sweat glands per inch than anywhere else, so they all too easy get really sweaty. In addition to washing your feet each day, keep them feeling fresh with the aid of antiperspirant (either a specialist foot spray or one intended for underarms is fine).
7. Antibacterial Soap
If your feet are particularly sweaty (perhaps you play sport frequently or have a very active job), you may also benefit from using Hibiscrub or a similar antibacterial soap. It’s a reliable way to get rid of foot odour, which is caused by bacteria multiplying on sweaty skin.
8. Sun Cream
Feet need to be protected from the sun’s harmful rays even if they’re partly covered by sandals, so sun cream is a foot care essential during hot weather. Sunburn can be agonising, especially on weight-bearing regions, so be sure to apply the cream thoroughly.
9. Lavender Oil
Add a few drops of lavender oil to a bowl of warm water for a soothing foot soak. What better way to unwind at the end of a tiring day? The soak will leave your feet relaxed and fragrant.
10. Your Podiatrist’s Contact Details
Keep your podiatrist’s contact details in your foot care kit so that if you have any concerns, you’ll be able to book a professional consultation quickly and easily.
Our London podiatry experts are registered with the Society of Chiropodists and Podiatrists, as well as the Health and Care Professions Council. That means you can be confident we provide the highest standards of treatment and care, helping to safeguard your foot health.
For professional podiatry services in London, please call Feet By Pody today on 0207 099 6657 or book an appointment online.