Closeup photo of a female feet at spa salon on pedicure procedure. Legs care concept
Photo Credit: Dollar Photo Club

After  long days of wool socks and sturdy boots, at some point your feet deserve some pampering. A Fabulous DIY pedicure is what you need!

I caught up with Jie, my  oh-so-talented and knowledgeable nail technician, to find out the secrets to the perfect at-home pedicure. Here’s her advice for how to bring the fabulous back to your feet in seven easy steps:

First, gather your supplies!

Step 1: Soak

Start with clean, polish-free nails. Fill a basin (or your bathtub) with warm water and add your soap of choice: dish soap, hand soap, body wash, etc. Dip your feet into the water and let them soak for 2 to 5 minutes. While you relax, peruse Facebook, Instagram, or flip through a magazine, the soapy water will be naturally softening your calluses.

Step 2: File

Remove your feet from the soak and, while they’re still slightly wet, scrub both feet with a foot file, focusing on the rougher areas. Jie recommends starting with the coarser grain to file calluses, then moving to the fine grain side to smooth. But either side will get the job done; it just depends on your personal preference.

Step 3: Scrub

Put some relaxation into your exfoliation with Peppermint Cooling Pumice Foot Scrub. The mint scent will send you into a full-on pampering head space, while the natural pumice particles will do away with any dry and rough skin. When you’re sufficiently soothed, dip your feet back into the basin to rinse, or wipe off the scrub with a damp towel. Then, wash your hands.

Step 4: Shape

Now it’s time to get out your manicured kit and clip and shape your nails. Clip each nail straight across, and then use an emery board underneath the edge to gently shape and smooth each nail. It’s important to do this step before the next one (cuticle softener) to avoid damaging your nails.

Step 5: Cuticles

Apply a drop of cuticle softner to the base of each nail. Jie recommends Super Nail Cuticle Softner  because it’s not only gentle, but amazingly effective at softening cuticles. Let your toes sit for one or two minutes, so the cuticle softner can really soak in and do its thing.  Then, it’s time for your cuticle pusher.

Direct the end of the cuticle pusher so that the curve arches in the same way as your nail plate. Lay the curved end of the cuticle pusher on your nail plate at about a 45-degree angle, and gently push back your cuticles.

Using the cuticle nipper is entirely optional. With your cuticles pushed back, you’re ready to move on to the next step. Only use your nippers on dead skin and hang nails, never live skin or any parts of the cuticle that are still protecting your nail bed.

Dip your feet back into the basin to rinse off any remaining cuticle softner, and then dry thoroughly.

Step 6: Polish

Put toe separators on both feet, and sit in a position that’s comfortable and allow you to easily reach your feet.

Now, it’s time to put your best foot forward!