pretty feet

Finally freeing your feet from the binding shoes and socks of winter feels oh-so delicious. Toes just need to be naked sometimes…or all summer. Walking around with your tootsies completely bare except for a pair of flops can make you feel light and airy—and no summer feels complete without squishing sand between your toes or splashing your unbound feet in some sort of cool, refreshing body of water.

Whiling away the summer in bare feet feels lovely, but exposing your tootsies to the full-blown summer sun and frolicking around sans shoes can leave your feet dried out, callused and kinda icky. What’s a no-shoe lover to do?

Give your feet some TLC with a homemade natural pedicure. No need to shell out wads of cash for someone else to soak your feet in unknown chemical concoctions, slather them in unidentified lotions, and then paint them with toxic nail polish. You can do it yourself (for free!) in five simple (and healthy!) steps. Here’s how.

1. Soak

Start off pampering your worn out feet by filling a basin with warm water. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. That tasty oil you love to put to culinary uses will make the skin on your feet and ankles uber soft. You could also lace your water with a few drops of an antibacterial essential oil, such as rosemary or eucalyptus oil. No essential oils on hand? Cut one lemon into thin slices and add them to the basin. Luxuriate for 15 minutes.

2. Wash 

Scour away tough dirt and grime on your footsies with a loofah or scrub brush. Make sure to give your feet a good cleaning. Although the rest of your body might be bright and shiny, feet can often get overlooked during a daily shower. You could also use a natural castile soap for super sudsy action.

3. Exfoliate 

If you haven’t already, remove any nail polish still on your tootsies. Next, scrub away dead skin by massaging the rough areas on your feet with a pumice stone. You could also try our Aromatic Foot Scrub for some seriously special foot care.

4. Moisturize 

Slather (and I mean slather) your feet in your favorite organic lotion. The key to getting rid of those calluses and cracked heels is ultimate moisture.

5. Trim and Shape

Shape up your toenails by cutting them straight across (to prevent painful ingrown toenails.) Then buff them with a nail file. To finish, rub a drop of almond or olive oil into each toenail and cuticle for buffed out shiny toes.

Nail polish-free tootsies look naturally beautiful, but if you do plan to paint them, look for nail polishes that don’t contain toxic additives, formaldehyde, toluene or phthalates.

Before bed on the evening of your do-it-yourself pedicure, coat your feet in organic lotion. Then stick your feet in organic cotton socks and wear them overnight to lock that moisture into your footsies and prolong the efforts of your pedicure.

image: D. Sharon Pruitt