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The Biggest Summer Fashion Faux Pas

Yay!  Your feet slide into sandals, you wiggle your toes and breathe a sigh of relief.  Summer is here, your feet are free, and you are good to go, right?  Well, maybe…

It is easy to forget about our feet.  I mean, hey, they are way down there, and we don’t see our heels and the bottoms of our feet unless we make a conscious effort to do so.  So, unless they hurt for some reason, it’s a classic case of “out of sight, out of mind.”

Here’s the dilemma: other people can (and do) see your feet…much more than you might think!  And, while fashion and style preferences might be personal, good grooming is universal (or at least we hope so).

The other day, for instance, I was sitting at the little café next door, drinking tea and writing.  As I was thinking and mulling over some ideas, I casually glanced around the room taking in the scenery and the people enjoying their social time and lunch.  I noticed several women sitting at a table nearby.  All were neatly dressed, chatting and having a lovely time with their friends.

As my eyes drifted down, I could not help but notice a row of dried, cracked heels staring back at me.  Perhaps I am wrong but I suspect that if they were aware that their feet were in such a sad, neglected state that they would have run to their bathroom to grab their pumice stone or to the nearest salon for a pedicure.

Women (and men, too) who would never leave the house with dirty, unkempt fingernails are unwittingly (I assume) walking around with heels and sometimes toes that clearly need some attention.   (Please know that I am not talking about bunions or more complicated feet issues – unless those feet could also benefit from some simple basic grooming.)

And, I am not pointing this out to embarrass anyone.  It’s really more about awareness.  Like I said, it’s easy to overlook something that we can’t see.  Even if you take a shower or bath every day, it doesn’t mean your feet are getting as clean as you think.  We walk around in sandals open to the dirt of the streets so they get twice as dirty twice as fast!

So, if this makes you think, “Ooops, I better take a peek,” then here are 3 quick steps to get your feet looking and feeling good:

  1. Every day when you take a shower or wash up in the morning, take a quick look at your feet.  It is easier to give them a little TLC once a day than to have to do a major intervention every week.
  2. If they need some refreshing, give them a quick wash and then keep your pumice stone or Ped-Egg handy to give them a once-over.  It takes all of about 2 minutes tops if you have everything at the ready.
  3. Rub a little moisturizer into them, and you’re good to go.

If doing anything more than that feels overwhelming and you just keep putting it off, then find a nearby salon (ask around to find one that you’ll enjoy going to and that takes sanitation very seriously) and once every couple of weeks have a soothing pedicure.  It’s good for your feet, is soothing and relaxing (so it’s good for your soul), and is one less thing you have to think about doing so you can get back to enjoying the summer.

That said, if you prefer to do your own pedicure, check out this site for step-by-step instructions:

Then, how about treating yourself to a new pair of sandals – aren’t these pretty:

Want more?  Join me for my new monthly seminar (only $20!).  Limited to 20 people.  The first one will be held on Tuesday, July 20 from 7:00 to 8:30 pm when I’ll talk about “The Top 10 Most Unflattering Summer Fashions: How to avoid them, replace them and live without them.” Location (in the Greater Boston area) is to be determined so stay tuned.


9 Responses

  1. I have the driest heels known to man. I don’t know why! It’s a constant battle. Even after a pedi, cracky looking. If I don’t sleep w/heavy cream and socks every night (which I don’t), dry heels are an issue for me. *sigh*

  2. Being “cold and thin skinned” sometimes has advantages… LOL. Since I’m cold for much of the year, I don’t wear sandals much and since the skin on my feet has never been able to tolerate much by way of barefoot walking, my feet have remained in relatively good shape. Yay. I recently had my first pedicure (for so long we didn’t have money for things like that – it never occurred to me to get one) and I do like having my toes looking pretty.

    I have a question – because my feet tend to be rather touchy – is there some sort of padding that can be used on thong type sandals? I recently bought a cute pair, unfortunately the thong part bothers me. I found some “gel pads” but they are too small for the sandal I bought. I didn’t know if there was some other padding or other trick I might try to make them more comfortable.

    1. Maybe other people have some suggestions for how to get used to a thong sandal. I (personally) hate the way they feel and find them too hard to “break in” so I don’t wear them. I think it’s just a matter of wearing them until you build up the toleration (callus!) so they become comfortable. It’s one of the reasons I favor boots (I, too, am cold and thin-skinned!) but somehow I don’t think it would work (on many levels) to wear them in this weather :-)! Keep us posted!

  3. I may try wrapping them in moleskin which is something I have used in shoes in the past for spots that rub. I guess it’s worth a try. I don’t know if I could wear them long enough to build callouses. LOL.

  4. I love having a pedicure; having my toenails look wonderful and a pretty color. The problem I have is if I leave color on my nails too long including changing colors over the summer, the nails turn yellow and sometimes break back into the nail bed.

    1. I’m wondering, Sue, if you are wearing 4 coats of polish at a time — 1 base coat, 2 of the color and a top coat. That should take care of any yellowing. Just a thought if you are not already doing it.

  5. I’m starting to use a cream w/glycolic acid I purchased from my dermatologist for a different purpose. I have a hunch it may help w/my cracky heel issue (if I’ll be good about consistent use!).

    1. That cream should work really well…and you’re right, it’s like anything else, creating a new habit makes all the difference in the world in giving you the results you want. I’ll look forward to hearing more!

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Ginger Burr is a fashion stylist and personal shopper serving clients worldwide from metro Boston.