The TUC may be attempting to ban high heels in the workplace, but for many women, it’s not equality that immediately springs to mind when slipping on strappy sandals in the summer months; it’s the state of our feet inside them.
The irony is that it’s actually exposure to the air and decreased protection, through thin soles, against pounding the pavement that causes heels to harden..
But we’ve found a genuine little marvel that ensures heels stay soft and smooth. Use it as part of a quick, three-step mini makeover for your feet and your tootsies will look almost tantalising…
Revlon Pedi Expert, £8.99, from Superdrug. We thought JML’s famous Ped Egg was a clever little gadget when it came along a couple of years ago – it acts like a grater, gently scraping away layers of hard skin. But, we’re sorry, Mr JML: Revlon’s Pedi Expert is just far superior.
The ‘grater’ is sharper and larger and gets rid of months of build-up in one go – it really is the most effective hard-skin remover we’ve ever tried and helps make the most hoof-like of heels look human again.
Tip: Because it’s so effective, use the grater on dry skin only; it may remove too much soft, wet skin, leaving heels tender.
ClearZal Callus Crème, £6.85, from Waitrose and Lloyds Pharmacies. It contains urea, which is a natural constituent of skin and helps ‘re-bond’ layers broken as a result of lack of moisture, as well as salicylic acid, which is an effective exfoliator.
Tip: Apply when you’ve got half-an-hour to put your feet up so the ingredients have time to sink into skin without being wiped away in footwear or on the floor.
Leighton Denny Quatro, £4.89, www.leightondenny.com. Toenails grow much slower than fingernails, but are made up of more layers which means ridges are more prominent. Buffing smooths out ridges so nails reflect light to look glossier – even without polish. Leighton’s four-sided block includes surfaces to buff, smooth, shine and file for a professional-style finish.
Tip: The newly buffed nail is particularly absorbent so seal the surface with a base coat before painting to prevent discolouration or clear varnish if you’re going au naturel. And don’t buff too often – it does thin the nail.