Getting a Foot Spa

There used to be a time when getting a pedicure is just a ho-hum routine. Nowadays, it is unthinkable to get a pedicure without a foot spa thrown in. In a country where salons abound - just about every block in our neighborhood has one or two - one has no reason not to indulge in a foot spa now and then. In fact, in can be quite addicting that some have it once a week. Not only does it eliminate bad odor, you get sandal-worthy feet all year round.

And why not? The feet is the most abused part of our body. According to the American Orthopaedic and Ankle Society, we take an average of 10,000 steps a day. Depending on the type of exercise, we run, jump and sometimes, during strenuous exercise injure them without even knowing it. Consider also the fact that we subject our footsies to fashion abuse by wearing clogs and high heels that cause trapped nerves, bunions, blisters and ankle pains.

That's why foot spas have become quite popular. If you want to scrimp since you might decide to have one once a week, you can go to your average neighborhood salon. For P200, you get a basic foot spa that includes a 20-minute soak in a tub of warm, medicated water to cleanse the feet. Then, every rough spot is scrubbed into smoothness with a foot file. Next comes the application of a whitening mask and another 20-30 minute soak in an electric foot massager/spa. After which lotion is applied and the feet is massaged where pressure points in the soles of the feet are given attention. Then, the pedicure.

For a high-end foot spa, you can go to The Nail Spa (Essie) at Shangri-la Mall (tel. No. 687-4991), California Nails or Footlose where you choose from a selection of scrubs and essential oils. Apres Salon and Nail Spa (in Salcedo Village, Makati; tel no. 8937661) has an innovative foot spa treatment (P580) where hot lava stones are placed between the toes to relieve stress. Simply divine! The scrub contains Dead Sea salts to make your footsies soft and smooth and lemongrass essential oils to invigorate them.

You can do an at-home foot spa if you want to. Just get a foot spa pack which includes a scrub, lotion, foot blush (optional), cooling leg gel which is usually a peppermint gel and one of those foot spa/massagers that sell for under P800 at Watson's and you're in business. For a complete foot spa pack try the following: Freeman's Bare Foot Peppermint and Plum foot care line and The Body Shops' Peppermint Complete pack, P725. You can also try Home Spa's Soothing Wild Berry Mint Foot Scrub, P150.

For the foot file, I recommend you buy the Titania double foot file. Start with the pumice side to remove hard or callused skin and finish with the emery side. You may also use a foot whitening mask if you want which you can buy at Hortaleza Beauty Center. But of course, there's nothing like getting someone to do it for you while you read a magazine or get a snooze.

Foot Care Tips

Just as healthy teeth, hair and skin are important, so are healthy feet. Make an effort to care for your feet so you can prevent many foot conditions that affect the feet.

  1. Don't ignore pain. Painful feet are not normal. Wearing high heels may be sexy but they do a lot of harm to the feet because standing on heels forces your body weight to rest unnaturally on your arches and the balls of your feet. Overtime the constant pressure can cause toe deformities, nerve damage and even shorter foot muscles that limit your stride. So choose heels that are no higher than two inches and wear them for just a few hours daily, then let your feet recover by wearing flats and sneakers for the next several days.
  2. Bacteria and fungi thrive in moist places. Keep your feet dry especially in between the toes. If your feet are itchy, that may be a sign of a fungal infection. Go to a dermatologist.
  3. Trim toe nails with a nail trimmer. Cut them straight across and not too short. Do not cut down the corner as this can lead to in growing toenails.
  4. Wear new shoes in slowly and remember that new shoes should not hurt your feet. Purchase new shoes later in the day when feet tend to be at their largest.6. Wake up to super-smooth feet. To soften your feet, apply a thick cream all over the feet and slip on socks before you go to bed.


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