How to Give Yourself a Pedicure
5 simple steps to achieve the perfect pedicure.
Sandal weather is here, so don’t forget to pretty up your feet. If you’re like many gals, you’ve not yet perfected the at-home pedicure and doubt your skills. You don’t need to leave your home or spend big bucks to get a perfect pedicure— if you learn how to do your own, your feet will never look better. “Pedicures are really easy to do yourself,” assures Ji Baek, owner of the Rescue Beauty Lounge in New York City, and author of Rescue Your Nails ($10.95, amazon.com). “This is one thing where you’ll have instant gratification. And guess what? If you do screw up one toe nail polish, you can take it off and redo it. Mistakes are easily forgiven. Just go into this project and say ‘I can do this.’” Here, Baek shares her foolproof tips for the perfect pedicure:
1. Take care of your tools.
According to Baek, the rule is simple: if the tool is non-metal, such as emery boards or foot files, it’s one-use only. For metal tools like nail clippers, wash it in hot water and soap and then disinfect in alcohol for 20 minutes after each use—and don’t share your tools with anyone, not even family members, she says. “I don’t know why people think they can use things over and over; bacteria is bacteria,” Baek says. “A lot of people share nail tools and that’s kind of gross. I’ve seen clients who went on a business trip and got fungus from some weird nail salon. It only takes one germ.” To save money, Baek recommends cutting emery boards in half.
Revlon Dual Sided Emery Boards 10 Pack ($1.25, drugstore.com)
2. Clip, file and soak.
Gather up your disinfected nail clipper, new emery boards keep them near you and then clip and file your nails. “When you file your nails, use long, slow and gentle strokes,” Baek says. “Aggression is never a good thing. It’s not like a log you need to saw off.” Then, apply cuticle cream around your cuticles and soak your feet. Don’t have cuticle cream? Try eye cream, or “if your cuticles are in bad shape, apply olive oil on them and push the cuticles back,” Baek says, advising against cutting cuticles at home. After, clipping and pushing, soak your feet in warm water so the skin can soften.
Tweezerman Power Nail Clipper ($5.59, drugstore.com)