Let’s accept it – regular pedicures can be one of the least prioritised beauty treatments ever. Most of us may get regular manicures, but pedicure is something we save only for special occasions or for the time when our feet look absolutely gross.
But thanks to the lockdown, going to your favourite nail spa to give your rough and calloused feet a pedicure may not be on the cards just yet. But does this mean you have to continue living with those uneven toe nails, chipped nail polish and cracked heels? Absolutely not, because we are about to tell you how to give yourself a super quick, simple yet highly effective pedicure at home. Isn’t that awesome? Let’s begin!
- Step 01: Prep your nails
- Step 02: Soak ‘em in
- Step 03: Slough away the dead skin
- Step 04: Cut your nails
- Step 05: Now it’s time to shape your nails
- Step 06: Use a bit of cuticle oil
- Step 07: Time for a quick massage
- Step 08: Apply a layer of base coat to your nails
- Step 09: Go ahead and paint your nails
- Step 10: Finally, apply a top coat
- Frequently asked questions about pedicure at home
Before we get into it, it is important to look at the tools you need for a pedicure session at home:
- Nail polish remover
- Nail clipper, file and buffer
- Cuticle pusher
- Q-tips and cotton balls
- Cuticle oil
- Foot file or pumice stone
- Foot lotion or body lotion
- Base & top coat
- Nail polish
Now that you have everything you need for an at-home pedicure, let’s see how to give yourself one in a few simple steps.
Step 01: Prep your nails
To ensure a clean, professional-level pedicure, it is really important to prep your nails. To do so, you need to start with properly removing all the remnants of that chipped nail polish that has been sitting on your nails since your last pedicure session. And even if you don’t have any nail polish on, it is important to go over each nail using your nail polish remover to get rid of any accumulated dirt or other impurities. This will help the nail polish that will follow to stay on a lot longer.
Step 02: Soak ‘em in
Once you’ve cleaned your toenails, it is now time to soften the hard skin around your nails and on your feet by soaking them. To do so, fill a tub with warm water and put your feet in it for about 15 minutes. To elevate this calming experience further and to give your at-home pedicure a spa-like vibe, you could add in elements such as Epsom salt, vinegar or even an essential oil of your choice. This soaking time is a great way to catch up on some reading or video call a friend you’ve been meaning to for a while!
Step 03: Slough away the dead skin
The main point of the soaking is to soften the skin on your feet and make it easier and less harsh to scrub away the dead skin that may have accumulated on your feet and heels. So, once you take your feet out of the tub of water, gently yet thoroughly pat them dry. Next, grab that foot file or pumice stone and rub it in a gentle back and forth motion over your feet and any other hardened area to slough away all the dirt and dead skin. An important thing to keep in mind when scrubbing your feet is that you need to scrub enough to remove the dead skin and not scrub till your feet feel raw.
Step 04: Cut your nails
It is time to shift your focus onto your nails. An important thing to keep in mind when doing your own pedicure at home is that you need to invest in good quality nail tools such as clippers, files and buffers. So grab your nail clipper and trim your nails to the length you want them to be. Don’t worry about cutting them in a particular shape, as that’s something your nail filer will take care of in the next step. All you need to do is ensure that you don’t cut your nails too short as that may cause stinging due to overexposed skin.
Step 05: Now it’s time to shape your nails
This is the step in your at-home pedicure where you need to decide whether you want your toenails to be square or more-rounded at the edges and then shape them with your nail file accordingly. While filing your nails, ensure that you do so in a single, long swift motion instead of several small strokes as that can harm the topmost enamel, making your nails brittle and chip more easily. After you’ve filed your nails to the desired shape, grab your nail buffer and very gently buff your entire nail bed to even out the surface and get rid of uneven edges, if any. This will ensure that the nail polish will go on smoother.
Step 06: Use a bit of cuticle oil
This may be quite an underrated product, but trust us, it’s a game-changer when it comes to keeping your nails strong and healthy. So after you’ve trimmed, filed and buffed your nails, gently push your cuticles using a popsicle stick if you don’t have the right tools and then apply a bit of cuticle oil to the skin around your nails to protect them as well as ensure that your manicure lasts longer.
Step 07: Time for a quick massage
Once your nails have been taken care of, you must now focus your attention on massaging your feet. Take a tiny amount of foot cream (you can always use a rich body lotion if you don’t have a foot cream) and apply it all over your feet, in between your toes as well as calves. Massage the product into your skin to not only hydrate it but also pamper them a little bit after that thorough soak-n-scrub you put them through.
Step 08: Apply a layer of base coat to your nails
How often do you skip applying a base coat while doing your manicure or pedicure at home? Most of us think of applying base coats as pointless, but they are anything but. Apart from ensuring that your nail polish lasts longer, it also acts as a barrier between your nails and the nail polish to help maintain the health of your nails.
Step 09: Go ahead and paint your nails
This step has to be everyone’s favourite part when doing their pedicure at home, isn’t it? Once your base coat has completely dried off, apply at least two coats of any nail colour of your choice. Apply the polish in long, even strokes and avoid going over it until each layer has completely dried to give your nails a beautiful, professional finish.
Step 10: Finally, apply a top coat
Another important step for a long-lasting pedicure is applying a top coat without fail. Once your nail polish has dried down, apply a thin layer of topcoat to seal everything in place. And with that, your professional at-home pedicure session comes to an end!
Frequently asked questions about pedicure at home
Q. What can I put in my pedicure water at home?
A. There are a lot of things you can add to the foot soak when giving yourself a pedicure at home. White vinegar, tea tree oil, bath salts, Epsom salts and chemical foot scrubs are some of the most common ingredients you can add to your foot soak for a relaxing experience.
Q. Can pedicure prevent and heal cracked feet?
A. Yes, definitely! Exfoliating and applying foot cream, both form very important steps of the pedicure that help reduce, heal and eliminate cracked heels. But the only key to this is regularity - give yourself a pedicure once or twice a month to keep those cracked heels at bay.
Q. How often should one get regular pedicures?
A. There is no definite answer for this as it all really depends on your lifestyle and how much wear and tear your feet go through on a regular basis. But generally speaking, getting a pedicure every three weeks to a month is ideal.
Written by Urvi Dalal on Oct 05, 2020
Writer, avid reader and hardcore beauty enthusiast is the best way to describe Urvi Dalal. With over 5 years of writing experience in the beauty industry, you can trust her to have the latest skin, hair and makeup tidbits on her fingertips. In her time working as a beauty writer, she has had the opportunity to interact and work closely with a string of dermatologists, makeup artists and hairstylists. All that knowledge exchange, coupled with her flair and love for writing make it possible for her to bring you some authentic yet fun beauty content. When Urvi isn’t working, you’d usually catch her curled up with a big, fat book, drinking a cup of tea or practising her makeup skills; there is no in-between!