1. Seal the cracks

Always start with a clean, smooth canvas by smoothening out rough textures. For those with dehydrated or cracked heels, use a homecare product daily as it reduces dry skin build-up. Commit to a repair cream for a speedy recovery or go the au naturel way with a simple home remedy. Ingredients like lemons, avocados and olive oil make for a great soothing cure.

2. Exfoliate regularly

Scrub your feet at least once a week. Just like our face and body, our feet require frequent exfoliation to get rid of dead skin cells and debris caught under nail beds. When you’re showering, use a pumice stone to gently buff away rough areas around your feet and even up to your ankles.

3. Keep hydrated

Whichever part of the body we talk about, it always goes back to the most basic rule of thumb: Moisturise, moisturise and moisturise. Apply cuticle oil daily, especially right before you step out of your home to avoid brittle nails. It will give your toes an extra boost in moisture and they’ll look healthy and shiny almost instantly. An alternative would be to apply a nourishing foot and nail cream often.

4. Pamper yourself

For maintenance, get a pedicure at least once a month. If you have damaged heels, opt for treatment pedicures. It’s a good way to get basic care for your feet and since you get to sit back and relax, why not? Another option is to enjoy a foot mask in your own home. Slip it on for the advised period of time (some varies between 30 to 90 minutes) and you won’t regret it.

5. Colour it in

For the finishing touch, add a dash of colour by applying nail polish on your toes. Pick a shade that complements your skin colour. Fair complexions are spoilt for choice whereas tan to dark complexions should avoid light, pale colours or too vibrant ones like neon yellow. On the other hand, colours used on your feet should be stronger or slightly brighter than your fingers.”

6. Switch things up

If you experience discomfort while walking, change the type of sandals you wear regularly. This helps to ensure the weight of your feet won’t be applied at the same areas. Also, wear well-fitted sandals so that the weight distributes evenly. That way, you can avoid dry or hard skin build-up.

This story was originally published in Her World Malaysia on March 24, 2015.