Are Your Feet Ready For Sandal Season?

Seeing this phenomenal bronze Einstein sculpture by Robert Berks made me think about sandal season.  Interestingly, Einstein had difficulty tying his shoes and so often wore sandals as depicted in this work.  Some tips on getting ready for sandal season:

In winter, cold, dry air and over-heated homes result in dry, callused, cracked feet and heels.  During the winter months, our feet are hidden in socks, tights and boots and we tend to neglect our foot care because nobody is looking.  As a result callus builds, feet are dry and cracked and toenail polish is often left on for way too long creating white surface irregularities at the toenails that are revealed upon removal of polish (keratin granulations).  Four easy tips to get your feet sandal ready:

 1)  First soften superficial dead skin cells and callus either chemically with creams that contain urea (prescription or over-the-counter) or mechanically with abrasives.

Product tips:   Over-the-counter Urea containing options include Kneipp Healthy Feet Anti-Callus-Salve, $25, available at DermStore. To mechanically remove the hard, scaly skin with an abrasive, I prefer a foot file with a removable grit such the Flowery Foot File with disposable/removable grit.   I am not a fan of pumice stones as they can harbor bacteria and molds once they become wet, due to their porosity.  If you are going to use a pumice, use it as a one time use item and dispose of it after each use. 

2) Use a rich moisturizer.  I am a huge fan of shea as a key moisturizing ingredient and particularly for the feet as it acts as a barrier for the skin and really helps to seal in moisture.  I love L’Occitane shea butter foot cream.  This particular formula also contains lavender oil making it a calming and relaxing before bed treat for you and your feet.  I also like CeraVe Renewing SA Foot Cream for the same reasons that I like other CeraVe moisturizers as it is packed with Ceramides and Hyaluronic Acid, thus mimicking the skin’s natural lipid barrier.  The addition of Salicylic Acid will help to prevent callus from returning.

 3) If your feet are not just dry and flaky but also red and itchy, you may have tinea pedis (athlete’s foot) and you should see a dermatologist.  Toenail fungus often begins on the skin and it is imperative to treat it before it gets to the nails.

 4)As for keratin granulations, those pesky white patches that appear on toenails often after prolonged polish exposure – The Dr. DANA™ Nail Renewal System will instantly remove these surface irregularities and discoloration leaving you with lustrous, shiny healthy toenails that are ready for a chic new pair of sandals this spring!  Launching March 25th on QVC!